Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, GOOD FRIDAY, HYMNS, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 2 April – Good Friday

Quote/s of the Day – 2 April – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

“O SACRED HEAD”
By St Bernard (1090-1153)
Mellifluous Doctor

O Sacred Head surrounded
By a crown of piercing thorn!
O bleeding Head, so wounded,
Reviled and put to scorn!
Death’s pallid hue comes o’er Thee,
The glow of life decays,
Yet angel hosts adore Thee
And tremble as they gaze.

I see Thy strength and vigour
All fading in the strife,
And death, with cruel vigour,
Bereaving Thee of life;
O agony and dying!
O love to sinners free!
Jesus, all grace supplying,
O turn Thy face on me!

In this Thy bitter Passion,
Good Shepherd, think of me,
With Thy most sweet compassion,
Unworthy though I be.
Beneath Thy Cross abiding,
‘Forever would I rest,
In Thy dear love confiding,
And will Thy presence blest.

“Do not pass one day without devoting a half hour,
or at least a quarter of an hour,
to meditation on the sorrowful Passion of your Saviour.
Have a continual remembrance
of the agonies of your crucified Love
and know, that the greatest saints,
who now, in heaven,
triumph in holy love,
arrived at perfection in this way.”

St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Quote/s of the Day – 11 March – “Whoever does not gather with me, scatters.” Luke 11:23

Quote/s of the Da -y 11 March – Thursday of the Third Week of Lent, Readings: Jeremiah 7:23-28, Psalms 95:1-2, 6-7,8-9, Luke 11:14-23

“Whoever does not gather
with me, scatters.”

Luke 11:23

“Do not have Jesus Christ on your lips
and the world in your heart.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (37-105)
Bishop & Martyr

“How can you become a sharer,
in His glory (1 Pt 5:1)
if you will not consent,
to become a sharer,
in His humiliating death?”

St Simeon the New Theologian (949-1022)

“Without the Way, there is no going,
Without the Truth, there is no knowing,
Without the Life, there is no living.”

Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471)

“The medicine of God,
is Jesus Christ,
Crucified and Risen,
the measure of all things.”

St John Leonardi (1541-1609)

“We ought to glory in nothing
other than, the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.
You are blessed and don’t know it.
You have Jesus Crucified, with you!”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

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 DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSECUTION, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 3 March – ‘The proof of our love’

Quote/s of the Day – 3 March – Wednesday of the Second week of Lent, Readings: Jeremiah 18:18-20,Psalms 31: 5-6, 14, 15-16, Matthew 20: 17-28

“Are you able to drink the cup
that I am to drink?”

Matthew 20:22

“Only let it be in the name of Jesus Christ,
that I may suffer together with Him!
I endure everything
because He Himself,
Who is perfect man, empowers me.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35–107) Martyr

“Do not rejoice in the Cross only in times of peace,
preserve the same faith in times of persecution.
Do not be a friend to Jesus in times of peace alone,
only to become His enemy in times of war.
You are now receiving forgiveness for your sins
and the spiritual gifts lavishly bestowed by your King so,
when war breaks out, fight valiantly for your King.”

St Cyril of Jerusalem (315-387)
Father and Doctor of the Church

“Do not live any longer in yourself
but let Jesus Christ live in you in such a way
that the virtue of this Divine Saviour may be resplendent
in all your actions, in order that all may see in you
a true portrait of the Crucified and sense,
the sweetest fragrance of the holy virtues of the Lord,
in interior and exterior modesty,
in patience,
in gentleness,
suffering,
charity,
humility
and in all others that follow.”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

“To labour and to suffer
for the One we love,
is the greatest proof of our love.”

St Anthony Mary Claret (1807-1870)

Posted in "Follow Me", CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, LENT 2021, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – “The servant is not greater than his Master”

Quote/s of the Day – 18 February – Thursday after Ash Wednesday, Readings: Deuteronomy 30:15-20, Psalms 1:1-2, 3, 4 and 6, Luke 9:22-25

“The servant is not greater than his Master”

John 13:16

“Only let it be in the name of Jesus Christ,
that I may suffer together with Him!
I endure everything
because He Himself,
Who is perfect man, empowers me.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35 – 107)

“Oh cherished cross!
Through thee my most bitter trials
are replete with graces!”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

“Humility, obedience, meekness
and love are the virtues
that shine through the Cross
and the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar.
O my Jesus, help me imitate you!”

“To labour and to suffer
for the One we love,
is the greatest proof of our love.”

St Anthony Mary Claret (1807-1870)

“It is only through suffering
that we become holy.
And to become holy is our only purpose in life,
our only preparation for heaven.”

Bl Francis Xavier Seelos CSsR (1819-1867)

Posted in "Follow Me", ARMOUR of CHRIST, CHRIST the KING, CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, GOD ALONE!, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE LIGHT of CHRIST, The MOST HOLY REDEEMER, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 30 January – “Why are you so afraid? – Mark 4:40

Quote/s of the Day – 30 January – Mark 4:35-41

And the wind ceased
and there was a great calm.
He said to them,
“Why are you so afraid?
Have you still no faith?”

Mark 4:39-40

“Stay with us, for it is nearly evening
and the day is almost over.”

Luke 24:29

“Come along then, every human family,
full of sin as you are
and receive the forgiveness of your sins.
For I Myself, am your Forgiveness,
I am the Passover of salvation,
the Lamb slain for your sakes,
your redemption, life and resurrection;
I am your Light, your Salvation and your King.
It is I, who lead you to the heights of heaven,
I, who will raise you up;
it is I, who will bring you to see the Father
who is from all eternity;
it is I, who will raise you up
by My all-powerful Hand.”

St Melito of Sardis (Died c 180)
Bishop, Apologist

“Christ first of all,
Christ in the centre of the heart,
in the centre of history
and of the cosmos.
Humanity needs Christ intensely
because, He is our “measure.”
There is no realm,
that cannot be touched
by His strength;
there is no evil,
that cannot find remedy in Him,
there is no problem,
that cannot be solved in Him.
Either Christ or nothing!”

St John Leonardi (1541-1609)

“Look upon the face of the Crucified,
who invites you to follow Him.
He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

“Keep Jesus Christ
as your dial, at all times,
His Cross for mast,
on which to hoist
your resolutions, as a sail.
Let your anchor be,
profound trust in Him
and set out early!”

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622)
Doctor of the Church

Posted in "Follow Me", LOVE of NEIGHBOUR, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on HUMILITY, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on SACRIFICE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – St Paul of the Cross

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – The Memorial of St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775)

We ought to glory in nothing
other than, the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ.
You are blessed and don’t know it.
You have Jesus Crucified, with you!

“Your crosses dear God,
are the joy of my heart.
How beautiful to suffer with Jesus.”

“Oh cherished cross!
Through thee my most bitter trials
are replete with graces!”

“The passion of Jesus is a sea of sorrows
but it is also an ocean of love.
Ask the Lord to teach you to fish in this ocean.
Dive into its depths.
No matter how deep you go,
you will never reach the bottom.”

“Do not live any longer in yourself
but let Jesus Christ live in you in such a way
that the virtue of this Divine Saviour may be resplendent
in all your actions, in order that all may see in you
a true portrait of the Crucified and sense,
the sweetest fragrance of the holy virtues of the Lord,
in interior and exterior modesty,
in patience,
in gentleness,
suffering,
charity,
humility
and in all others that follow.”

“Look upon the face of the Crucified,
who invites you to follow Him.
He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, Our MORNING Offering, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 October – “What shall I do?” Luke 12:17

One Minute Reflection – 19 October – Monday of the Twenty Ninth week in Ordinary Time, Readings: Ephesians 2:1-10, Psalms 100:1-2, 3,4, 4-5, Luke 12:13-21 and the Memorial of St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775)

“What shall I do? For I do not have space to store my harvest ” – Luke 12:17

REFLECTION“What shall I do?” There was a ready response to this: “I will satisfy hungry souls, open up my barns, call in everyone in need… I will speak out words of generosity – all you, who are short of bread, come to me; each according to your needs, take your share of God’s gifts flowing like a public fountain.” Yet you, you foolish rich man, are very far from doing this! And why? Jealous of seeing others enjoy their wealth you give yourself up to wretched calculations – you are not anxious about how to distribute to each according to their need but how to take everything and deprive everyone else, of the profit they might have drawn from it…

So then, my brethren, take care you don’t experience the same fate as that man! If Scripture gives us this example, it is so, that we can avoid behaving in the same way. Imitate the earth! – bear fruit and don’t prove yourself worse than it, soulless as it is. It yields crops, not for it’s own pleasure but to serve you. To the contrary, all the fruit of the kindnesses you show, will be gathered for yourself, since the graces that arise from good works, return to those who bestow them. You have given to the hungry and what you gave, remains with you and even comes back to you, with increase. As the grain of wheat that fell into the earth brings profit to the sower, so the bread given to the hungry, will bring you superabundant profit later on. May the end of all your labours, be for you, the commencement of your sowing in heaven.” – St Basil The Great (329-379) Monk and Bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, Father and Doctor of the Church – Sermon 6, on Wealth

PRAYER – Almighty God, Your Priest Saint Paul, loved only the cross. May he obtain Your grace for us, so that, inspired with a new courage and the virtue of obedience and sacrifice, by his example, we may take up our cross without flinching. We make our prayer through Jesus Christ our Saviour, who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, God now and for all eternity, amen.

Posted in Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 19 October – Oh Jesus, My Love By St Paul of the Cross

Our Morning Offering – 19 October – Monday of the Twenty Ninth week in Ordinary Time and the Memorial of St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775)

Oh Jesus, My Love
By St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775)

Oh Jesus,
my Love,
may my heart be consumed
in loving Thee.
Make me humble and holy;
giving me childlike simplicity;
transform me into Thy holy Love.
O Jesus,
life of my life,
joy of my soul,
God of my heart,
accept my heart as an altar,
on which I will sacrifice to Thee,
the gold of ardent charity,
the incense of continual,
humble and fervent prayer
and the myrrh of constant sacrifices!
Amen

Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 19 October

St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775) (Optional Memorial)
About St Paul here:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/10/19/saint-of-the-day-st-paul-of-the-cross-1604-1775/

North American Martyrs (Optional Memorial) – 8 saints: Two priests and six lay-brothers, all Jesuits, who were sent as missionaries to the area of modern Canada and New York and who were murdered by the locals for their work.
• Saint Antoine Daniel
• Saint Charles Garnier
• Saint Gabriel Lalemant
• Saint Isaac Jogues
• Saint Jean de Brébeuf
• Saint Jean de la Lande
• Saint Noel Chabanel
• Saint Rene Goupil
Canonised – 29 June 1930 by Pope Pius XI

Bl Agnes of Jesus
St Altinus
St Aquilinus of Evreux
St Asterius of Ostia
St Beronicus of Antioch
St Desiderius of Longoret
St Ednoth
St Ethbin
St Eusterius of Salerno
St Frideswide
Blessed Jerzy Popieluszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr
His Life and Death:

https://anastpaul.com/2019/10/19/saint-of-the-day-19-october-blessed-jerzy-popieluszko-1947-1984-priest-and-martyr/

St Laura of Cordoba
St Lucius of Rome
St Luke Alonso Gorda
St Lupus of Soissons
St Matthaeus Kohyoe
St Pelagia of Antioch
St Peter of Alcantara OFM (1499-1562)
Biography:

https://anastpaul.com/2018/10/19/saint-of-the-day-19-october-st-peter-of-alcantara-ofm-1499-1562/

St Philip Howard
St Potenzianus of Sens
St Ptolemy of Rome
St Sabiniano of Sens
St Theofrid
Blessed Thomas Hélye (c 1180-1257) Priest
St Varus of Kemet
St Verano of Cavaillon

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: 18 Beati
• Blessed Antonio Elizalde Garvisu
• Blessed Constantino Miguel Moncalvillo
• Blessed Dionisio Arizaleta Salvador
• Blessed Emiliano Pascual Abad
• Blessed Eusebio de Las Heras Izquierdo
• Blessed Ferran Castán Messeguer
• Blessed Francesc Solá Peix
• Blessed Francisco Marco Martínez
• Blessed Francisco Milagro Mesa
• Blessed Francisco Simón Pérez
• Blessed Josep Ferrer Escolà
• Blessed Josep Ribé Coma
• Blessed Julio Leache Labiano
• Blessed Juan Senosiaín Zugasti
• Blessed Manuel Font y Font
• Blessed Narcís Simón Sala
• Blessed Nicolas Campo Giménez
• Blessed Pere Vives Coll

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES for CHRIST, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on DISCIPLESHIP, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on GRACE, QUOTES on LOVE of GOD, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, QUOTES on THE MYSTICAL BODY, The FAITHFUL on PILGRIMAGE, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 23 June – Remain in Him

Quote/s of the Day – 23 June – “Month of the Sacred Heart” – Tuesday of the Twelfth week in Ordinary Time, Year A, Readings: 2 Kings 19:9-11, 14-21, 31-36, Psalm 48:2-4, 10-11, Matthew 7:6, 12-14 and The Memorial of St Joseph Cafasso (1811-1860)

“Enter by the narrow gate.
For the gate is wide
and the way is easy
that leads to destruction
and those who enter by it are many.
How narrow the gate and constricted
the road that leads to life.
And those who find it are few.”

Matthew 7:13-14

matthew 7 13-14 enter by the narrow gate 23 june 2020

“I am the vine, you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me and I in him
will bear much fruit
because without me,
you can do nothing.”

John 15:5-6

john 15 5-6 i am the vine - 23 june 2020

“We give glory to You, Lord,
who raised up Your Cross to span the jaws of death
like a bridge by which souls might pass
from the region of the dead to the land of the living. ..
You are incontestably alive.
Your murderers sowed Your living body in the earth
as farmers sow grain but it sprang up
and yielded an abundant harvest of men
raised from the dead.”

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

we-give-glory-to-you-lord-st-ephrem-30-march-2018-good-friday and 9 june 2020

“God is not a deceiver,
that He should offer to support us
and then, when we lean upon Him,
should slip away from us.”

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

god is not a deceiver, that he should offer to support us - st augustine - 23 june 2020

“He is the one who teaches
the truth of prophecy
through His presence
and makes obedience
to the commandments possible,
through grace.”

St Pope Leo the Great (400-461)
Father and Doctor of the Church

he is the one who teaches the truth of prophecy - st pope leo the great 10 june 2020

“He who trusts in himself is lost.
He who trusts in God can do all things.”

St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Most Zealous Doctor

he who trust in himself is lost - st alphonsus liguori 23 june 2020

“Celebrate the feast of Christmas everyday,
even every moment in the interior temple of your spirit,
remaining like a baby in the bosom
of the heavenly Father,
where you will be reborn, each moment,
in the Divine Word, Jesus Christ.”

St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)

celebrate the feast of christmas everyday - 23 june 2020 st paul of the cross

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 19 October

St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775) (Optional Memorial)
About St Paul here:
https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/10/19/saint-of-the-day-st-paul-of-the-cross-1604-1775/

North American Martyrs (Optional Memorial) – 8 saints: Two priests and six lay-brothers, all Jesuits, who were sent as missionaries to the area of modern Canada and New York and who were murdered by the locals for their work.
• Saint Antoine Daniel
• Saint Charles Garnier
• Saint Gabriel Lalemant
• Saint Isaac Jogues
• Saint Jean de Brébeuf
• Saint Jean de la Lande
• Saint Noel Chabanel
• Saint Rene Goupil
Canonised – 29 June 1930 by Pope Pius XI

Bl Agnes of Jesus
St Altinus
St Aquilinus of Evreux
St Asterius of Ostia
St Beronicus of Antioch
St Desiderius of Longoret
St Ednoth
St Ethbin
St Eusterius of Salerno
St Frideswide
Bl Jerzy Popieluszko (1947-1984) Priest and Martyr

St Laura of Cordoba
St Lucius of Rome
St Luke Alonso Gorda
St Lupus of Soissons
St Matthaeus Kohyoe
St Pelagia of Antioch
St Peter of Alcantara OFM (1499-1562)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.com/2018/10/19/saint-of-the-day-19-october-st-peter-of-alcantara-ofm-1499-1562/

St Philip Howard
St Potenzianus of Sens
St Ptolemy of Rome
St Sabiniano of Sens
St Theofrid
St Varus of Kemet
St Verano of Cavaillon

Martyred in the Spanish Civil War: 18 Beati
• Blessed Antonio Elizalde Garvisu
• Blessed Constantino Miguel Moncalvillo
• Blessed Dionisio Arizaleta Salvador
• Blessed Emiliano Pascual Abad
• Blessed Eusebio de Las Heras Izquierdo
• Blessed Ferran Castán Messeguer
• Blessed Francesc Solá Peix
• Blessed Francisco Marco Martínez
• Blessed Francisco Milagro Mesa
• Blessed Francisco Simón Pérez
• Blessed Josep Ferrer Escolà
• Blessed Josep Ribé Coma
• Blessed Julio Leache Labiano
• Blessed Juan Senosiaín Zugasti
• Blessed Manuel Font y Font
• Blessed Narcís Simón Sala
• Blessed Nicolas Campo Giménez
• Blessed Pere Vives Coll

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, FATHERS of the Church, FRUITS of the SPIRIT, MARTYRS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on OBEDIENCE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The HOLY CROSS, The WORD

Quote/s of the Day – 24 September – He will be everything to you ….

Quote/s of the Day – 24 September – Tuesday of the Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 8:19-21

But he said to them,
“My mother and my brethren,
are those, who hear
the word of God and do it.”

Luke 8:21luke 8 27 my mother and my brethren are those who hear the word of god and do it 24 sept 2019

“We recognise a tree by its fruit
and we ought to be able to recognise
a Christian by his action.
The fruit of faith should be evident in our lives,
for being a Christian is more than making
sound professions of faith.
It should reveal itself in practical and visible ways.
Indeed it is better to keep quiet about our beliefs
and live them out,
than to talk eloquently about what we believe
but fail to live by it.”we-recognise-a-tree-by-its-fruit-st-ignatius-of-antioch-speaking-of-living-the-light-no-2-24-sept-2018.jpg

“A Christian is not his own master,
since all his time belongs to God.”

St Ignatius of Antioch (c 35-c 108) Martyr

 Father of the Churcha christian is not his own master - st ignatius of antioch 24 sept 2019.jpg

“Look upon the face of the Crucified,
who invites you to follow Him.
He will be a Father, Mother–
everything to you.”

St Paul of the Cross CP (1694-1775)look upon the face of the crucified st paul of the cross 24 sept 2019.jpg

Posted in CHRIST, the WAY,TRUTH,LIFE, ONE Minute REFLECTION, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 24 September – Nothing but Christ

One Minute Reflection – 24 September – Tuesday of the Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 8:19-21

But he said to them, “My mother and my brethren, are those, who hear the word of God and do it.”…Luke 8:21luke 8 21 my mother and my brethren are those who hear the word of god and do it 24 sept 2019.jpg

REFLECTION – “He who wishes for anything but Christ, does not know what he wishes; he who asks for anything but Christ, does not know what he is asking;  he who works and not for Christ, does not know what he is doing.” … Saint Philip Neri (1515-1595)he who wishes for anything - st philip neri - 19 april 2018.jpg

PRAYER – Shepherd of Your Church and we, the sheep of Your flock, who follow You and hear and do Your Word. Support us with grace those who are constantly striving to do Your will, so that following the example of the humble fiat of Your blessed Mother and ours, we may devote all our powers and talents to love of You and our neighbour and finally arrive safely in our heavenly home. In God, our Father we pray through You who live in union with Him and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ages and ages. Amenmother mary - pray for us - 6 may 2018.jpg

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, HOLY WEEK 2019, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on SUFFERING, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SPEAKING of ....., The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION

Quote/s of the Day – 15 April – Speaking of the Cross

Quote/s of the Day – 15 April – Monday of Holy Week

Speaking of the Cross

“If you seek patience,
you will find no better example than the cross.
Great patience occurs in two way –
either when one patiently suffers much,
or, when one suffers things which one
is able to avoid and yet does not avoid.
Christ endured much on the cross
and did so patiently, because,
when He suffered, He did not threaten,
He was led like a sheep to the slaughter
and He did not open His mouth.”

St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274)
Doctor of the Churchif you seek patience - st thomas aquinas - mon of holy week - 15 april 2019.jpg

“The road is narrow.
He who wishes to travel it more easily
must cast off all things
and use the cross as his cane.
In other words, he must be truly resolved
to suffer willingly for the love of God in all things.”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591)
Doctor of the Churcheven-though-i-should-die-matthew-26-35-and-the-road-is-narrow-st-john-of-the-cross-9-july-2018 (1).jpg

“O souls! Seek a refuge, like pure doves,
in the shadow of the crucifix.
There, mourn the Passion of your divine Spouse
and drawing from your hearts flames of love
and rivers of tears, make of them a precious balm
with which to anoint the wounds of your Saviour.”

o-souls-seek-a-refuge-st-paul-of-the-cross-26-march-2018.jpg

“Look upon the face of the Crucified,
who invites you to follow Him.
He will be a Father, a Mother –
everything to you.”

St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)

look upon the face - st paul of the cross - memorial of vincent strambi 25 sept 2017.jpg

“What does he gain who refuses the cross?
He increases it’s weight!”

St Alphonsus Liguori (1696-1787)
Doctor of the Churchwhat does he gain who refuses the cross - st alphonsus mon of holy week 15 april 2019.jpg

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 September – Today’s Gospel: Luke 8:19-21 and the Memorial of St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

One Minute Reflection – 25 September – Today’s Gospel: Luke 8:19-21 – Tuesday of the Twenty-fifth week in Ordinary Time, Year B and the Memorial of St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

But he said to them, “My mother and my brethren are those who hear the word of God and do it.”...Luke 8:21

REFLECTION – “Look upon the face of the Crucified, who invites you to follow Him.   He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”….St Paul of the Cross C.P. (1694-1775)my mother and my brethren - luke 8 21 - look upon the face of the crucified who invites you to follow - st paul of the cross 25 sept 2018

PRAYER – Jesus, our Lord and our God, only You are the best Shepherd of Your Church and we, the sheep of Your flock, who follow You and hear and do Your Word.   Support with grace those who are responsible for the fate of Your fold, so that following the example of St Vincent Maria Strambi, they devote all their powers and talents to service to the Church.   In God, our Father we pray through You who live in union with Him and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ages and ages. Amenst vincent strambi pray for us - 25 sept 2018

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 25 September – St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

Saint of the Day – 25 September – St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824) Passionist Religious Priest and Bishop of Macerata and Tolentino, Apostle of Charity, Preacher, Teacher, a man of great learning and prodigious memory.VincentStrambi

Born in 1745 at Civitavecchia near Rome, the son of a wealthy businessman, Saint Vincent Strambi never showed any inclination for any occupation other than the service of God.   He found his vocation when after his ordination as a deacon in 1767, he made a retreat amid the Passionists of Monte Fogliano, where Saint Paul of the Cross (1694-1775), their founder, was residing at the time.   The Passionist houses are called retreats and by their Rule must be situated outside cities.   Saint Paul of the Cross told his brethren on his deathbed, as he had taught them during his active years, to conserve always the spirit of prayer, solitude and poverty, in that way the apostolic success of their works would also be conserved.   The life of contemplation, essential formation for any fruitful works, was what Saint Vincent Strambi already desired.

st paul of the cross - never seen
St Paul of the Cross

It was formally declared by St Vincent’s last secretary, Monsignor Catervo Serrani, that it would not be temerity to believe that he knew by heart all the works of Saint Thomas Aquinas.   The same might have been said of his knowledge of Sacred Scripture.   His studies of religion, ever an inexhaustible wealth, continued throughout his lifetime, yet his preaching was so simple that all could easily grasp his thought.   He never used notes but taught according to the needs of his listeners, which he always discerned with exactitude after praying intently at the foot of the crucifix.   As he studied, he seemed to see around his desk the faces of his spiritual children, waiting for the bread of life he was destined to break for them.   This method of study has been preserved among his followers in the Order;  the Passionists think of and pray for, their future spiritual children before they study.

Saint Vincent became a bishop after many years of preaching missions all over Italy.   But never could he forget his Order, though he had to put aside its habit.   Saint Paul of the Cross on his deathbed had said to him several times:  ‘Padre Vincenzino, I recommend to you the poor Congregation’. When Saint Vincent asked what he wished him to do, Saint Paul replied:  ‘You will do great things!   You will do great good  ! I recommend to you this poor Congregation!’   

In 1773 Father Paul put the former seminary prefect and rector in charge of the training of the young students for future missionary preaching at the newly acquired monastery of Sts John and Paul in Rome.   Eventually Father Vincent would write a manual on Sacred Eloquence.   In this way Father Vincent was able to be with St Paul during the final years of his life.   Paul saw in this young man the apostolic spirit of holiness he was bequeathing to his congregation.   We are told that as he was dying St Paul one day turned to Father Vincent Mary and told him he was entrusting the congregation to his care.

Vincent, like the others, missed the founder very much as he continued to prepare young Passionists for the missionary apostolate.   He also went forth to preach missions as often as possible.

st vincent strambi

As bishop of Macerata and Tolentino, he continued whenever possible to rise at midnight for the divine office and regretted being unable to dedicate more than five hours to prayer each day.   He called in the poor and gave them alms, he visited the hospitals and the prisoners, blessed, embraced and helped them.   He visited every religious house of his diocese, then the Canons and the parish priests.   He preached for his clergy a beautiful mission, then organised specialised services for the various professions of the laity, saying, the lawyers need different instruction and different sowings than the merchants or the physicians, for example, to each his own portion of the truth!   His table was very frugal, never did he permit more than two dishes.   He reduced expenditures to a minimum, to be able to give more to the poor.São Vicente Maria Strambi1

He wished to resign as bishop at the age of seventy-eight and Pope Leo XII ceded to his wish but asked him to come to Rome as his counsellor.   That his life was soon to end was revealed to him and when the Holy Father was about to die that same year, he offered his life to save that of the Vicar of Christ.   He did not say so directly but told everyone not to be anxious, because the Pope would live.   Someone he knew had offered his life for him, he added.   The prayer was answered on the very day he said this, 24 December, the Pope rose, suddenly cured.   Three days later Saint Vincent was struck by apoplexy and died on 1 January 1824.   He was Canonised by Pope Pius XII in 1950.25-San Vicente Maria Strambi-25

In 1780 he became rector of the Community of Sts John and Paul.   In 1781 he was elected provincial.   He also served as provincial and general consultor.   During this time that he published a biography of the founder.   Father Vincent used the testimonies of eye-witnesses as given in the Canonisation processes.   It is said that he wrote the life of St Paul on his knees, out of reverence for the founder.   His “Life” of Saint Paul has become  a classic.

SantosPassionistas-02
Passionist Saints

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS, THOMAS a KEMPIS

Quote/s of the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

Quote/s of the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

“In the Cross is salvation;
in the Cross is life;
in the Cross is protection against our enemies;
in the Cross is infusion of heavenly sweetness;
in the Cross is strength of mind;
in the Cross is joy of spirit;
in the Cross is excellence of virtue;
in the Cross is perfection of holiness.
There is no salvation of soul,
nor hope of eternal life,
save in the Cross.”

Thomas à Kempis (1380-1471) The Inner Lifein-the-cross-is-salvation-thomas-a-kempis=14 sept 2017

“The road is narrow.
He who wishes to travel it more easily
must cast off all things and use the cross as his cane.
In other words, he must be truly resolved
to suffer willingly for the love of God in all things.”

St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the Churcheven-though-i-should-die-matthew-26-35-and-the-road-is-narrow-st-john-of-the-cross-9-july-2018

The everlasting God has in His wisdom
foreseen from eternity the cross He now
presents to you as a gift from His inmost heart.
The cross He now sends you
He has considered
with His all-knowing eyes,
understood with His divine mind,
tested with His wise justice,
warmed with loving arms
and weighed with His own hands
to see that it is not one inch too large
nor one ounce too heavy for you.
He has blessed it with His holy name,
anointed it with His grace,
perfumed it with His consolation,
taken one last glance at you and your courage
and then sent it to you from heaven,
a special greeting from God to you,
an alms of the all-merciful love of God.

St Francis de Sales (1567-1622) Doctor of the Churchthe everlasting god has in his wisdom - st francis de sales - 14 sept 2018

Camillus wanted to have on his habit the Sign of the Cross
in order ‘to demonstrate that this is a religion of the Cross…
so that those who want to follow our way of life will get ready…
to follow Jesus Christ unto death’.
He wanted it to be dark red
‘because more like the true wood of the most holy Cross
on which the Redeemer of the World died and was appended’.

St Camillus de Lellis (1550-1614)st-camillus-wanted-to-have-on-his-habit-14-july-2018

“Oh cherished cross!
Through thee my most bitter trials
are replete with graces!”

St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)oh-cherished-cross-st-paul-of-the-cross-14 sept 2017

“Everything is a reminder of the Cross.
We ourselves are made in the shape of a cross.”

St John Vianney (1786-1859)everything is a reminder of the cross - st john vianney - 14 sept 2018

“Let us not forget,
that Jesus not only suffered
but also rose in glory;
so, too, we go to the glory
of the Resurrection,
by way of suffering
and the Cross.”

St Maximillian Kolbe (1894 -1941)let-us-not-forget-st-max-kolbe-14-aug-2018

“There is line from the illuminator of the St John’s Bible that states:
“We have to love our way out of this.”
There is nothing wimpy or namby-pamby
or blind about this conviction.
When we love extravagantly,
we are not purposely blinding ourselves to moral realities—
just the contrary.

Love is not a sentiment, but “a harsh and dreadful thing,”
as Dostoevsky said.

This is just what Jesus shows on His terrible cross.
And this is just what we, His followers, must imitate.
Taking up the cross means, not just being willing to suffer
but being willing to suffer as He did,
absorbing violence and hatred through our forgiveness and nonviolence.”

Bishop Robert Barronlove-is-not-a-sentiment-robert-barron-3-aug-2018

Posted in HOLY WEEK, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION

One Minute Reflection – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

One Minute Reflection – 30 March 2018 – Good Friday of the Passion of the Lord

When Jesus had spoken these words, he went forth with his disciples across the Kidron valley, where there was a garden, which he and his disciples entered.   Now Judas, who betrayed him, also knew the place;  for Jesus often met there with his disciples..…..John 18:1-2jesus was in a garden, not of delight - blaise pascal - 30 march - good friday 2018

REFLECTION – “Jesus was in a garden, not of delight as the first Adam, in which he destroyed himself and the whole human race but in one of agony, in which He saved Himself and the whole human race.”…Blaise Pascal  (1623-1662)
“Do not pass one day without devoting a half hour, or at least a quarter of an hour, to meditation on the sorrowful Passion of your Saviour.   Have a continual remembrance of the agonies of your crucified Love and know that the greatest saints, who now, in heaven, triumph in holy love, arrived at perfection in this way.” – St Paul of the Cross  (1694-1775)st paul of the cross - do not pass one day - good friday - 30 march

PRAYER – Be mindful Lord, of this Your family, for whose sake our Lord Jesus Christ, when betrayed, did not hesitate to yield Himself into His enemies hands and undergo the agony of the Cross.   Help us holy Father, to ever keep the Cross in our hearts and minds and to accept our own with love of You.   Through Jesus our Lord, with the Holy Spirit, one God, amen.jesus praying in the garden

Posted in HOLY WEEK, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SIN, QUOTES on SUFFERING, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY CROSS, The PASSION

One Minute Reflection – 26 March 2018 – Monday of Holy week and the Memorial of St Braulio (590-651)

One Minute Reflection – 26 March 2018 – Monday of Holy week and the Memorial of St Braulio (590-651)

Mary brought in a pound of very costly ointment, pure nard, and with it anointed the feet of Jesus, wiping them with her hair; the house was filled with the scent of the ointment…John 12:3

john 12 3

REFLECTION – “O souls! Seek a refuge, like pure doves, in the shadow of the crucifix. There, mourn the Passion of your divine Spouse and drawing from your hearts flames of love and rivers of tears, make of them a precious balm with which to anoint the wounds of your Saviour.”…St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)o souls, seek a refuge - st paul of the cross - 26 march 2018

PRAYER – Almighty God, grant that we who are constantly betrayed by our own weakness, may draw the breath of new life from the passion and death of Your only-begotten Son.   St Braulio, you who worked so zealously to assist those in weakness, both in body and soul, please pray for us too.   Through our Lord and Saviour, who suffered and died for us, in unity with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.st braulio - pray for us - 26 march 2018

Posted in LENT, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on SUFFERING

Quote/s of the Day – – 17 February – The First Saturday of Lent 2018

Quote/s of the Day – – 17 February – The First Saturday of Lent 2018

“The statue must be chiselled
with very sharp tools
before it is fit to be placed
in the grand gallery.”

St Paul of the Cross (1694-1775)the-statue-must-be-chiselled-st-paulof-the-cross-2017

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October – The Memorials of St Paul of the Cross and Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko

Quote/s of the Day – 19 October
The Memorials of St Paul of the Cross and Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko

“Look upon the face of the Crucified,
who invites you to follow Him.
He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”look upon the face - st paul of the cross 19 oct 2017

“Do not live any longer in yourself
but let Jesus Christ live in you in such a way
that the virtue of this Divine Saviour may be resplendent
in all your actions, in order that all may see in you
a true portrait of the Crucified and sense,
the sweetest fragrance of the holy virtues of the Lord,
in interior and exterior modesty,
in patience,
in gentleness,
suffering,
charity,
humility
and in all others that follow.”

St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775) do not live - st paul of the cross - 19 oct 2017

“It is not enough for a Christian to condemn evil,
cowardice, lies and use of force, hatred and oppression.
He must at all times be a witness to
and defender of justice, goodness, truth, freedom and love.
He must never tire of claiming these values
as a right both for himself and others.”

Blessed Jerzy Popiełuszko (1947-1984)it is not enough - bl jerzy popieluszko - 19 oct 2017

Posted in MORNING Prayers, SAINT of the DAY

Our Morning Offering – 19 October – The Memorial of St Paul of the Cross

Our Morning Offering – 19 October – The Memorial of St Paul of the Cross

Morning Offering
by Passionist Fr Chris Gibson CP

Lord,
here I am in Your Presence.
I am entirely Yours.
I adore You.
I offer You my whole heart.
I wish only to do Your will.
I offer You all my efforts
I offer You all my sufferings.
I offer You this day
with all that it brings.
I offer them now,
but especially in the Eucharist,
in union with Your Sacrifice
on the Cross,
and in union with all those
who offer themselves to You
for the Salvation of the World.
Amen.

“In this we know what love is:  in that he died for us.
We too should lay down our life for one another”       1 John 3:16lord here I am - passionist fr chris gibson on the feast of st paul of the cross - 19 oct 2917

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 19 October – St Paul of the Cross (1604-1775) CP

Saint of the Day – 19 October – St Paul of the Cross CP (1604-1775) Priest, Mystic, Preacher, endowed with miraculous powers of healing and prophecy, Founder of the Passionists – born  Paolo Francesco Danei on 3 January 1694, in the town of Ovada, Italy and he died at 81 on 18 October 1775, at the Retreat of Saints John and Paul (SS. Giovanni e Paolo), Rome.   By the time of his death, the congregation founded by Saint Paul of the Cross had one hundred and eighty fathers and brothers, living in twelve Retreats, mostly in the Papal States.    There was also a monastery of contemplative sisters in Corneto (today known as Tarquinia), founded by Paul a few years before his death to promote the memory of the Passion of Jesus by their life of prayer and penance.   Saint Paul of the Cross was beatified on 1 October 1852 and canonised on 29 June 1867.   His relics are also in the Church of Sts John and Paul, Rome.   His Memorial is celebrated on the day after his death due to the Feast of St Luke the Evangelist on 18 October.   Patronages – The Passionist Orders of Priests and Sisters.st paul of the cross - header

Paul Daneo was born on January 3, 1694, in Ovada, Italy, the second of 16 children.   Even as a young person, Paul felt strongly connected to God and moved by the passion of Christ.   At the age of 19, Paul’s father wanted him to become a merchant like himself. Marriage was a possibility looming in the future.   At times Paul dreamed of becoming a soldier and even enlisted in the Venetian army when volunteers were requested by the Pope.   But he soon realised that neither the adventure of a military career, the financial promise of the business world, nor the joys and sorrows of marriage were to be his life’s journey.   Listening one day to a simple sermon on the sufferings of Jesus, Paul suddenly experienced what he called his “conversion.”   He heard the voice of God calling him to a life of the spirit and a path of spiritual rigour.

 

He spent long hours in prayer, wrestling often with his own inner darkness and fierce temptations, a struggle that continued throughout 40 years of his life.   But it was in his connection to the Crucified Jesus that Paul found solace and meaning and in his meditations on Christ’s passion that new inner directions opened up for Paul.   His prayer life became an experience for him of the tremendous love God has for us.

Paul could see how many of his contemporaries did not know that God’s love had not deserted them.   The sick, the poor, the ordinary people of his day had few hours of rest, little hope of healing and lived in crippling fear of war and bloodshed.   Few found spiritual strength in the ritualistic services of the Church, which had became increasingly inaccessible to those who were living at the margins of society.   It was these abandoned people who Paul wanted to reach and eventually, it was to their side that Paul traveled long hours throughout the harsh countryside to preach a message of faith, compassion and loving redemption.

Paul had dreamed of gathering companions who would live together in community and promote this new message.   But it took from 1720 to 1741—twenty-one years of humble service as a hospital chaplain and traveling preacher combined with quiet perseverance in the face of official Church rejection—for Paul to receive his first papal authority to found his religious order, “The Congregation of the Passion.”paul-50

For over 40 years, Paul and his “like-minded companions,” the Passionists, preached the loving memory of the passion and death of Jesus Christ.   Paul would challenge his hearers to die a mystical death with Christ so as to rise up with Christ to a life of faith and love.  The sick and the poor remained special recipients of Paul’s care but he would also preach to the clergy and remind them of their obligations to serve the neglected. After many years of preaching, teaching and serving the Passionist community as its founder and leader, Paul died in 1775.

 

Paul received gifts of prophecy and healing from the Holy Spirit.   He was so powerful when he preached and so gentle in confession that he brought many sinners back to the Lord.   Paul once said, “England is always before my eyes, and if ever again it becomes Catholic, the benefit to the Church will be immeasurable.”   Within 65 years, a Passionist named Blessed Dominic Barberi went to England to help reconcile John Henry Newman and others to the Catholic Church, aiding the revival of Catholicism there.

 

Posted in MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 25 September – The Memorial of St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

One Minute Reflection – 25 September – The Memorial of St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

May Christ dwell in your hearts through faith……Ephesians 3:17

REFLECTION – “Look upon the face of the Crucified, who invites you to follow Him. He will be a Father, Mother–everything to you.”….St Paul of the Crosslook upon the face - st paul of the cross - memorial of vincent strambi 25 sept 2017

PRAYER – Jesus, our Lord and our God, only You are the best Shepherd of Your Church.
Support with grace those who are responsible for the fate of Your fold,
so that following the example of St. Vincent Maria Strambi, they devote all their powers and talents to service to the Church.
In God, our Father we pray through You who live in union with Him and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ages and ages. Amenst vincent strambi pray for us

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 25 September – St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824)

Saint of the Day – 25 September – St Vincent Strambi C.P. (1745-1824) Passionist Religious Priest and Bishop, Apostle of Charity, Preacher, Teacher – Patronage – Diocese of Macerata-Tolentino. Attributes – Passionist habit, Episcopal attire, Crucifix.   Beatified on 26 April 1925 at Saint Peter’s Basilica, Kingdom of Italy by Pope Pius XI and Canonised on 11 June 1950 at Saint Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City by Pope Pius XII.

Saint Vincenzo Strambi (1 January 1745 – 1 January 1824) – in religious Vincenzo Maria di San Paolo – was an Italian Roman Catholic prelate who was a professed member from the Passionists and served as the Bishop of Macerata-Tolentino from 1801 until his resignation in 1823.   Strambi became a Passionist despite its founder Saint Paul of the Cross refusing him several times due to Strambi’s frail constitution.   But he practiced Passionist austerities which continued after his appointment as a bishop that saw him favour his religious habit rather than the usual episcopal garb.   He was known for his charitable projects that included the care of the poor and the reduction of diocesan expenditures in order to provide for them; he took special interests in the education and ongoing formation of priests.

saint_vincent_strambi

Strambi was exiled from his diocese 1808 after he refused to take an oath of allegiance to the First French Empire under Napoleon who had annexed Macerata as part of his empire.   He spent that time in Novara and Milan before he managed to return to his see in a triumphant return in 1814.   He served as bishop for the remainder of the pontificate of Pope Pius VII before his successor Pope Leo XII accepted Strambi’s resignation and summoned him to Rome as his advisor.   But the sudden illness of the pope – which seemed to prove fatal – prompted Strambi to offer his own life to God so that the pope could live.   Leo XII rallied to great surprise but Strambi died of a stroke within the week.

Education and priesthood
Vincenzo Strambi was born in 1745 in Civitavecchia as the last of four children to Giuseppe Strambi and Eleonora Gori;  his three elder siblings all died in childhood.   His father served as a pharmacist known for his charitable works and his mother was noted for her piousness and holiness.

He was often a troublesome child who excelled in athletics and became more devout in his adolescence.   The Friars Minor oversaw his education and he taught his fellow students the catechism.   His desire to become a priest was met with encouragement from his parents and he commenced his ecclesial studies in November 1762.   It was at this time that he became quite attracted to the notion of the religious life though his frail health saw him refused admission into the Order of Friars Minor Capuchin and the Vincentians. Strambi was noted for his oratorical gifts and so was sent to Rome for studies in Sacred Eloquence and thereafter continued his theological studies with the Dominicans at Viterbo.   While still a student he was appointed prefect of the seminarians and thereafter acting-rector of seminarians at Bagnorea.

Before his ordination to the priesthood he made a retreat at the convent in Vetralla which belonged to the Passionists; it was here that he met the founder Saint Paul of the Cross.   Strambi became impressed and enthralled with what he had seen and admired their ardent devotion.   This made him ask the founder to be admitted into the order.   But he was refused since Paul of the Cross believed that Strambi did not have the stamina for the Passionist life.   Strambi left the convent on 18 December 1767 to be ordained.

He was received into the diaconate in Bagnoregio on 14 March 1767.   Strambi was ordained to the priesthood on 19 December 1767 and then returned to Rome to further his theological studies.   Here he was noted for his studies of the life and works of Saint Thomas Aquinas.   He still felt called to the Passionists and made several trips to see Paul of the Cross to beg to be admitted into the order.   In September 1768 the founder relented and Strambi commenced his novitiate assuming the name Vincenzo Maria di San Paolo.   His parents were not too pleased with this and his father objected to the decision citing his son’s frail health as a sign that Strambi would die due to the rigid penances.   He made his profession on 24 September 1769 and continued with a particular emphasis on the Church Fathers and on Sacred Scripture.

Strambi preached missions – a focal point of the Passionist charism – and drew large crowds due to the effectiveness of his preaching.   There were even several occasions where he preached before bishops and cardinals.   In 1773 he was made a professor of theological studies at the order’s house in Rome – at Santi Giovanni e Paolo – and it was here that he was present at the death of St Paul of the Cross.   The founder said to Strambi on his deathbed:  “You will do great things! You will do great good!”

Three Passionists – Saint Vincent Strambi, St. Paul of the Cross and Blessed Eugene Bossilkov
Three Passionists – St Vincent Strambi, St Paul of the Cross and Blessed Eugene Bossilkov

  It was after this that he occupied several high offices in the order such as the rector of the Roman house and the provincial for the Roman province.   In 1784 he was relieved of these duties in order to write a biographical account of Paul of the Cross which was later published in London (the Blessed Dominic Barberi wrote the preface).   The Napoleonic invasion in the Papal States and the anti-religious decrees forced Strambi to flee Rome in 1798 though was in vain when French forces – in May 1799 – took him as their prisoner though he managed to return to Rome not long after this.

passionists-strambi

Episcopate
The death of Pope Pius VI saw his friend Cardinal Leonardo Antonelli nominate him for the papal see and he even received five votes in the conclave.   The new Pope Pius VII – in mid-1801 – appointed Strambi as the Bishop of Macerata-Tolentino and he became the first bishop to come from the Passionists.   This news – before it was made public – surprised and frightened him and he rushed to Rome in an effort to get the appointment cancelled before it was publicised.   Even his good friend Cardinal Antonelli counselled him to accept the nomination for the welfare of the Church.   Strambi even took his case to the pope who listened and told Strambi the decision to name him a bishop was “a divine inspiration” he was firm on.   Cardinal Antonelli presided over his episcopal consecration at Santi Giovanni e Paolo.   But he continued to wear his Passionist habit in private despite his higher office.   His episcopate was marked with a concern for the poor and he even begged on their behalf on occasion.   He took great care in the education of diocesan priests and paid close attention to the teaching standards in the diocesan seminaries.   His charitable works included the establishment of orphanages and homes for the aged.   He still practiced the frugalities the Passionists advocated and this applied to his living and eating habits:  he never did permit more than two dishes for his meals.

Napoleon – in 1809 – issued a decree that annexed Macerata as part of the French Empire. The French ordered that this decree be read in all churches but Strambi refused to do so. He also refused to provide the French with a list of all the men in his diocese who would be suitable for service in the armed forces.   The French arrested him in September 1808 for refusing to take the oath of allegiance to the French invaders and was then exiled and cut off from his diocese.   He was first sent to Novara but was sent in October 1809 to Milan where he spent the remainder of his exile as a guest of the Barnabites.   He returned to his see in 1814 with vast crowds lining the route of his return.   Pius VII had returned from his own exile and remarked:

“This holy man overwhelms me”.

The invaders had left much damage in their wake – not just destruction to infrastructure – but a lax sense of morals and values which Strambi worked hard to rebuild.   He instituted strict reforms that ended corruption to the point where he received some death threats.   Strambi was also the spiritual director of Blessed Anna Maria Taigi – a friend – as well as Saint Gaspare del Bufalo and Saint Vincenzo Pallotti (Vincent Pallotti)

But the French returned to Macerata in 1817, to set up their headquarters aiming to use that location to attack the Austrian forces.   The people turned to Bishop Strambi for fear of what the French would do.   His response was to gather priests and seminarians in his private chapel to beg for God’s intercession and after one and a half hours he rose and declared that Macerata would be saved through the intercession of the Mother of God. The French were indeed defeated though the local people feared what would happen during their retreat.   Strambi met with the leader of the French forces and begged him not to enter the town to which General Murat agreed.   Strambi then secured the assurances of the Austrian generals that the French soldiers would not be slaughtered.

He was a close friend of Carlo Odescalchi and was pleased to learn that the pope named him as a cardinal on 10 March 1823.  Strambi tried several times to secure his resignation from Pius VII but on one occasion the pope reprimanded him for using ill health as a vain excuse and dismissed him.   Strambi tried once again in 1823 in a letter to Cardinal Ercole Consalvi to the pope but the letter arrived in Rome when the pontiff broke his thigh in a fall and died soon after.

Declining health and death
In 1823 his health started to decline and Pope Leo XII gave him his permission to retire. He was then appointed the as Leo XII’s personal advisor and took up residence at the Quirinal Palace in Rome.   It was during his time in this office that Napoleon’s sister Pauline returned to the faith with Strambi’s guidance.   When the pope fell ill he asked God that his life should be taken rather than that of the pope.   The pope recovered on 24 December 1823 and Strambi died in 1824 within the week due to a stroke he had suffered on the previous 27 December.   His remains were placed at the Quirinal Palace for mourners to see and was then buried in the Santi Giovanni e Paolo church.   Mourners who viewed his mortal remains included Cardinal Bartolomeo Alberto Cappellari – future pope – who took Strambi’s right hand in his own and formed it with the greatest of ease into the sign of the cross.   His remains were later transferred on 12 November 1957 to the Chiesa di San Filippo in Macerata.

Sainthood
The cause for Strambi’s canonisation opened on a diocesan level for the collection of testimonies and documents in relation to his life and his episcopal works.   The formal introduction did not come until 25 June 1845 when he was named as a Servant of God. The recognition of his life of heroic virtue led Pope Leo XIII to name him as Venerable on 1 April 1894.   Pope Pius XI presided over the beatification rites on 26 April 1925 and signed a decree on 25 November that allowed the cause to continue.   Pope Pius XII canonised Strambi in Saint Peter’s Basilica on 11 June 1950.

Posted in FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, The HOLY CROSS

Quote/s of the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross/Triumph of the Cross

Quote/s of the Day – 14 September – Feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross

“Everything is a reminder of the Cross.
We ourselves are made in the shape of a cross.”everything is a reminder of the cross - st john vianney

“You must accept your cross.
If you bear it courageously,
it will carry you to heaven.”you-must-accept-your-cross - st john vianney

“The sign of the cross
is the most terrible weapon
against the devil.
Thus the Church wishes not only,
that we have it continually
in front of our minds,
to recall to us
just what our souls are worth
and what they cost Jesus Christ
but also that we should make it
at every juncture ourselves:
when we go to bed,
when we awaken during the night,
when we get up,
when we begin any action,
and, above all,
when we are tempted.”

St John Vianneythe sign of the cross

“Oh cherished cross!
Through thee my most bitter trials
are replete with graces!”

St Paul of the Crossoh cherished cross - st paul of the cross

“In the Cross is salvation;
in the Cross is life;
in the Cross is protection against our enemies;
in the Cross is infusion of heavenly sweetness;
in the Cross is strength of mind;
in the Cross is joy of spirit;
in the Cross is excellence of virtue;
in the Cross is perfection of holiness.
There is no salvation of soul,
nor hope of eternal life,
save in the Cross.”

Fr Thomas à Kempis, The Inner Lifein the cross is salvation - thomas a kempis

“The everlasting God has in His wisdom
foreseen from eternity the cross He now
presents to you as a gift from His inmost heart.
The cross He now sends you He has considered
with His all-knowing eyes, understood with His divine mind,
tested with His wise justice, warmed with loving arms
and weighed with His own hands to see that it is not
one inch too large nor one ounce too heavy for you.
He has blessed it with His holy name,
anointed it with His grace,
perfumed it with His consolation,
taken one last glance at you and your courage
and then sent it to you from heaven,
a special greeting from God to you,
an alms of the all-merciful love of God.”

St Francis de Salesthe everlasting god has in his wisdom - st francis de sales

Posted in CHRISTMASTIDE!, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS

Quote/s of the Day – 25 December

Quote/s of the Day – 25 December

“Celebrate the feast of Christmas every day,
even every moment in the interior temple
of your spirit, remaining like a baby in
the bosom of the heavenly Father,
where you will be reborn each moment
in the Divine Word, Jesus Christ.”

St. Paul of the Cross

Meister Eckhart once said: ‘What good is it that Christ was born 2,000 years ago if he is not born now in your heart?’

“Lord, we do far too much celebrating your actual coming in our hearts. I believe in God, but do I believe in God-in-me? I believe in God in heaven, but do I believe in God-on-earth? I believe in God out there, but do I believe in God-with-us?

“Lord, be born in my heart. Come alive in me this Christmas! Amen.”

st-paul-of-the-cross