Posted in MARIAN TITLES, MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Quinquagesima Sunday +2021, Our Lady of Bourbourg, Flanders (1383) and Memorials of the Saints – 14 February

Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time +2021
Quinquagesima Sunday (Traditional Calendar) +2021 – From Latin quinquagesimus meaning “fiftieth,” therefore, this is the period of fifty days before Easter. It begins with the Sunday before Ash Wednesday, called Dominica in Quinquagesima or Esto Mihi from the beginning of the Introit of the Mass; it is a Sunday of the second class and the colour the Mass and Office is violet.
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Our Lady of Bourbourg, Flanders (1383) – 14 February:

Jean Froissart, born in the 1330s, was a man devoted to literature. His famous Chronicles was aimed at a knightly and aristocratic audience and was devoted to “the honourable enterprises, noble adventures and deeds of arms, performed in the wars between England and France…to the end that brave men taking example from them may be encouraged in their well-doing.” His history is one of the most important sources for the first half of the Hundred Years’ War, and certain events of the era, such as the battles of Crecy and Poitiers and the English Peasant Revolt of 1381. He was also an eyewitness to the miracles of Our Lady of Bourbourg that occurred in the year 1383.
“When the king of France came before Bourbourg there were never seen such fine men at arms nor such numbers as he had with him. The lords and their men were all drawn up, and eager for the attack. Those who had reconnoitred the place, said it could not hold out long. The Bretons, Burgundians, Normans, Germans and others, who knew there was much wealth in the place, which, if taken by storm, would probably fall to their share, began to skirmish with the infantry at the barriers, without waiting for orders from the constable or marshals of the army.
This skirmish increased so much that the French set fire to the town by means of fire-arrows and cannons, so that such a flame and smoke came from the houses of Bourbourg as might have been seen forty leagues off. Many gallant deeds were done and the assailants leaped cheerfully into the mud of the ditches above the knees when they engaged with the English at the palisade and barriers.

The garrison defended themselves handsomely, indeed, they had need of their exertions, for they knew not on which side to turn themselves. They were attacked on all part and the houses of the town were blazing with fire, which more confounded the English than anything else. This, however, did not throw them off their guard, nor cause them to quit their posts. Sir Matthew Redman and Sir Nicholas Drayton, with their men, in the centre of the town, endeavoured to check the progress of the fire but it was such a dry season, that the smallest spark set the houses in flames. It is certain, that if the attack had begun earlier, or had not the night come on soon, the town must have been taken by storm but the approach of night put an end to it.
On the attack ceasing, the French retired to their quarters, to attend the sick and bury the dead. They said that on the morrow they would renew the attac, and it should be irresistible. The English were employed in repairing the palisades which had been broken, in putting all things in a good state and in extinguishing the fires in the town. They were in a most perilous situation, being surrounded on all sides, without means of escaping by flight.

The Duke of Brittany, who was on the opposite side of the town to the King, entered into negotiations with the English, aware of the peril they were in. He advised them to surrender the town, on their lives and fortunes being spared. This they were very willing to do and they entreated the Duke, through love of God and in honour of his gentility, to undertake the business. The King of France replied, that, in God’s name, he would willingly agree to a treaty. The English had been much renowned for gallantry and deeds of arms and it was settled that the English should depart from Bourbourg and Gravelines and carry away with them as much of their wealth as they could. Several of the Bretons, French, Normans and Burgundians were much vexed at this treaty, for they thought of partaking of the spoils but the King and his council had ordered it otherwise.
The whole of Tuesday they employed in shoeing their horses and in packing up all their wealth, of which they had much and in making preparations for their departure. On the Wednesday morning they loaded their baggage-horses and began their march, passing through the army with passports from the King. The Bretons were much exasperated when they saw them so loaded, waiting at Calais for a favourable wind to return to England.
The King of France and all the lords of his army, with their attendants, entered Bourbourg on Thursday morning. The Bretons began to plunder it, without exception, even the Church of St John. In that Church a pillager stood upon an Altar with the intent of forcing out a precious stone that was in the crown of an image of Our Lady. As he reached to steal the stone, the image suddenly turned about and the pillager in his fright, fell from the Altar and was instantly struck dead. This is a certain truth, for many persons were witnesses of it. Shortly afterwards, another pillager came with a similar intent of robbing the image but all the bells began a peal without anyone touching them, for no-one could have rung them, the bell-ropes being drawn up and fastened.
On account of these miracles, the Church was visited by large crowds. The King made a handsome present to the Church, as did all the lords, so that the amount of their gifts was upwards of three thousand francs.

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St Cyril (827-869) (Memorial)
St Methodius (826-885) (Memorial)
The great Saints Cyril & Methodius: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/14/saints-of-the-day-14-february-sts-cyril-827-869-methodius-826-885/

St Valentine (176-273) Priest and Martyr (Optional Memorial)
The story of Saint Valentine: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/02/14/blessed-memorial-of-st-valentine-14-february/

St Abraham of Harran
St Antoninus of Sorrento OSB (c 555-625) Abbot
St Auxentius of Bithynia
St Conran of Orkney
St Eleuchadius
St Juan García López-Rico O.SS.T. (1561-1613)
Biography:

https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/14/saint-of-the-day-14-february-st-juan-garcia-lopez-rico-o-ss-t-1561-1613/
St Nostrianus of Naples
St Theodosius of Vaison
St Valentine of Terni
Blessed Vicente Vilar David (1889-1937) Martyr
His Life and Death:

https://anastpaul.com/2020/02/14/saint-of-the-day-14-february-blessed-vicente-vilar-david-1889-1937-martyr/
St Vitale of Spoleto

20 Mercedarians of Palermo
Martyrs of Alexandria – 16 saints
Martyrs of Rome
Felicula
Vitalis
Zeno

Martyrs of Terni: Three Christians who gave proper burial to Saint Valentine of Terni. Martyred in the persecutions of Aurelius.
273 in Terni, Italy – Apollonius, Ephebus, Proculus.

Martyrs of Alexandria: A group of Christians murdered in various ways for their faith in Alexandria, Egypt. We know the names and a few details about 16 of them – Agatho, Agatone, Ammonio, Ammonius, Antonius, Bassiano, Bassianus, Cirione, Cyrio, Dionysius, Dionysius, Lucio, Moses, Moses, Proto and Tonione.

Posted in MARTYRS, SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 14 February

St Cyril (827-869) (Memorial)
St Methodius (826-885) (Memorial)
The great Saints Cyril & Methodius:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/14/saints-of-the-day-14-february-sts-cyril-827-869-methodius-826-885/

St Valentine (176-273) Martyr (Optional Memorial)
The story of Saint Valentine:

https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/02/14/blessed-memorial-of-st-valentine-14-february/

St Abraham of Harran
St Antoninus of Sorrento
St Auxentius of Bithynia
St Conran of Orkney
St Eleuchadius
St Juan García López-Rico O.SS.T. (1561-1613)
Biography:
https://anastpaul.com/2019/02/14/saint-of-the-day-14-february-st-juan-garcia-lopez-rico-o-ss-t-1561-1613/
St Nostrianus of Naples
St Theodosius of Vaison
St Valentine of Terni
Blessed Vicente Vilar David (1889-1937) Martyr
St Vitale of Spoleto

20 Mercedarians of Palermo
Martyrs of Alexandria – 16 saints
Martyrs of Rome
Felicula
Vitalis
Zeno

Martyrs of Terni: Three Christians who gave proper burial to Saint Valentine of Terni. Martyred in the persecutions of Aurelius.
273 in Terni, Italy – Apollonius, Ephebus, Proculus.

Martyrs of Alexandria: A group of Christians murdered in various ways for their faith in Alexandria, Egypt. We know the names and a few details about 16 of them – Agatho, Agatone, Ammonio, Ammonius, Antonius, Bassiano, Bassianus, Cirione, Cyrio, Dionysius, Dionysius, Lucio, Moses, Moses, Proto and Tonione.

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 14 February – “Satisfying our Restless Hearts”

Thought for the Day – 14 February – The Memorial of St Valentine (176-273) Martyr

SATISFYING OUR RESTLESS HEARTS
by Fr Steve Grunow

“And what is this God?   I asked the earth and it answered: ‘I am not God and all the things in the earth made the same confession.’   I asked the sea and the deeps and creeping things and they answered:   ‘We are not your God, seek higher.’   I asked the winds that blow and the whole air with all that is in it and the wind answered: ‘  I am not God.’   I asked the heavens, the sun, the moon, the stars and they answered:   ‘Neither are we God whom you seek.’   So I asked all those things that entice the senses:   ‘Tell me then of this Mysterious One that I search for.’   And all cried out to me in one great voice: ‘God made us and God made you…’”

“So I set about to find God and found that I could not find Him until I embraced the mediator between God and man, Christ Jesus, who is all over all these things, who was calling me and saying: ‘I am the Way, the Truth and the Life…’”

These marvellous words belong to St Augustine….

St Augustine is one of the most renowned and influential saints of the Church, though his early life did not foreshadow such an identity and mission.   He lived much of his young life in resistance to God’s will and purposes.   Preoccupied with his body, he sought satisfaction in sex.   Preoccupied with power, he sought to ingratiate himself with the mighty.   Preoccupied with status, he sought self-promotion.   Preoccupied with wealth, he tried to sell himself to a career.

And none of these things, for all their allure and all their promises, brought him satisfaction.

As a result, Augustine embraced the prevailing esoteric and arcane “spiritualities” of his day.   He followed strange gods in an attempt to shake his alarming sense of dissatisfaction.   This left him emptier and even more diminished.

But a reckoning came that changed Augustine forever.

“I found myself weeping in the bitter sorrow of my heart.   And suddenly I heard a voice from a nearby house, a child’s voice, boy or girl I do not know – but it was sort of a sing song that repeated over and over again.   ‘Take and read, take and read.’   Wiping away my tears I took this as a divine command and opened the scriptures and in silence read the passage on which my eyes first fell – ‘Not in rioting and drunkenness, not in debauchery and impurity, not in contention and envy but put on the Lord Jesus…’”i found myself weeping in the bitter sorrow - sdt augustine - conversion - 14 feb 2019

So this is what Augustine did- he discarded the skin of his old self and put on the Lord Jesus.   And what God did with Augustine was remarkable.   He became a leader in the Faith, as a teacher, priest and bishop.   His writings have directed the mind and soul of the Church for centuries.   His influence is with us still- in how we pray, how we worship, and in what we believe.

At the heart of the Gospel is the call to conversion in Christ.   There is no moment in our life when this call does not beckon toward us.   There is no time in our life we are exempt from the summons.   Conversion is the substance of the work of the spiritual life. Conversion in Christ is our privileged spiritual way.

Like Augustine, so many of us fall into the illusion that something other than God can satisfy us or give our lives purpose and meaning.   Like the young Augustine, we are captivated by self-deception that directs us away from the one who is absolutely necessary – Christ.   In response to all the futility of our refusals, the wisdom of St Augustine rings true:

“You have made us for yourself and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”

St Augustine, Pray for Us!st augustine pray for us 14 feb 2019.jpg

Posted in DIVINE MERCY, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on CONSCIENCE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FEAR, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on TRUST in GOD, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 14 February – “The faith of the Canaanite woman”

One Minute Reflection – 14 February – Thursday of the Fifth week in Ordinary Time, Year C – Gospel: Mark 7:24–30 and the Memorial of Sts Cyril and Methodius “Apostles to the Slavs”- Patrons of Europe and St Valentine (176-273) Martyr

But immediately a woman, whose little daughter was possessed by an unclean spirit, heard of him and came and fell down at his feet....Mark 7:25

REFLECTION – “O woman, your faith is great.   Let it be done to you as you wish” (Mt 15:28).   Indeed, she had great enough faith, since she knew neither the ancient miracles, commands and promises of the prophets, nor the more recent ones of the Lord himself. In addition, as often as she was disregarded by the Lord, she persevered in her entreaties and she did not cease knocking by asking him, though she knew only by popular opinion that he was the Saviour.   On account of this, she secured the great object for which she implored…
If one of us has a conscience polluted by the stain of avarice, conceit, vain-glory, indignation, irascibility, or envy and the other vices, he has “a daughter badly troubled by a demon” like the Canaanite woman.   He should hasten to the Lord, making supplication for her healing…   Being submissive with due humility, [such a person] must not judge himself to be worthy of the company of the sheep of Israel (that is, souls that are pure) but instead, he must be of the opinion that he is unworthy of heavenly favours. Nevertheless, let him not, in despair, rest from the earnestness of his entreaty but with his mind free of doubt, let him trust in the goodness of the supreme Benefactor, for the one who could make a confessor from a robber (Lk 23:39f.), an apostle from a persecutor (Acts 9:1-30, an evangelist from a publican (Mt 9:9-13) and who could make sons for Abraham out of stones, could turn even the most insignificant dog into an Israelite sheep.”...St Bede the Venerable (673-735) – Father & Doctor of the Churchmark 7 25 the caananite woman - if one of us - st bede 14 feb 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Help us Lord, to cleave to You alone and grow in sanctity and charity. Create in us a clean heart O Lord!   As we walk in the ways of Your divine Son, our Saviour, may we grow in faith and by our lives and words, be a light in the world.   Grant that by the prayers of Sts Valentine and Sts Cyril and Methodius, we may be strengthen and grow in worthiness to receive Your grace.   Through our Lord Jesus Christ in unity with the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.st valentine pray for us 14 feb 2019sts-cyril-and-methodius-pray-for-us-14-feb-2018-no-2

Posted in SAINT of the DAY, YouTube VIDEOS

Memorials of the Saints – 14 February

St Cyril (827-869) (Memorial)
St Methodius (826-885) (Memorial)
The great Saints Cyril & Methodius: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2018/02/14/saints-of-the-day-14-february-sts-cyril-827-869-methodius-826-885/

St Valentine (176-273) Martyr (Optional Memorial)
The story of Saint Valentine: https://anastpaul.wordpress.com/2017/02/14/blessed-memorial-of-st-valentine-14-february/

St Abraham of Harran
St Antoninus of Sorrento
St Auxentius of Bithynia
St Conran of Orkney
St Eleuchadius
St Juan García López-Rico O.SS.T. (1561-1613)
St Nostrianus of Naples
St Theodosius of Vaison
St Valentine of Terni
Bl Vicente Vilar David
St Vitale of Spoleto

20 Mercedarians of Palermo
Martyrs of Alexandria – 16 saints
Martyrs of Rome
Felicula
Vitalis
Zeno

Martyrs of Terni: Three Christians who gave proper burial to Saint Valentine of Terni. Martyred in the persecutions of Aurelius.
273 in Terni, Italy – Apollonius, Ephebus, Proculus.

Martyrs of Alexandria: A group of Christians murdered in various ways for their faith in Alexandria, Egypt. We know the names and a few details about 16 of them – Agatho, Agatone, Ammonio, Ammonius, Antonius, Bassiano, Bassianus, Cirione, Cyrio, Dionysius, Dionysius, Lucio, Moses, Moses, Proto and Tonione.

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

One Minute Reflection – 14 February

One Minute Reflection – 14 February

On that day you will know that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you……….John 14:20

REFLECTION – “Jesus Christ must live in us and we must live only in Him.
His life must be our life and our life must be a continuation and expression of His life.”………….St John Eudes

PRAYER – Lord Jesus, make me realise that You are living in me and I am in You.   Enable me to readiate You in my outward life by being consciously generous, loving, humble, kind.   By being consciously united to You in every thought, word and deed.   I pray that Your purpose may be mine too, do the Father’s Will.   That the Saints who walk before me, Sts Cyril and Methodius, St Valentine, may pray for us all, amen!

john-14-20quote-st-john-eudes-jesus-christ-must-live-in-ussts-cyril-and-methodius-pray-for-usst-valentine-pray-for-us

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Blessed Memorial of St Valentine – 14 February

Blessed Memorial of St Valentine – 14 February (176-273) Bishop and Martyr – Patron of affianced couples, against epilepsy, against fainting, against plague, apiarists, bee keepers, betrothed couples, Bussolengo, Italy, engaged couples, greeting card manufacturers, greetings, happy marriages, love, lovers, travellers, young people.

Header - Leonhard_Beck_-_Heiliger_Valentin_(Veste_Coburg)

Saint Valentine is a widely recognized third-century Roman saint commemorated on 14 February and since the High Middle Ages is associated with a tradition of courtly love.

All that is reliably known of the saint commemorated today, is his name and that he was martyred and buried at a cemetery on the Via Flaminia close to the Ponte Milvio to the north of Rome.

Because so little is reliably known of him, in 1969 the Catholic Church removed his name from the General Roman Calendar, leaving his liturgical celebration to local calendars. The Church continues to recognise him as a Saint, listing him as such in the Roman Martyrology and authorising liturgical veneration of him on 14 February.   Saint Valentine’s Church in Rome, built in 1960 for the needs of the Olympic Village, continues as a modern, well-visited parish church.

painting-of-st-valentine-santa-maria-degli-angeli-church-rome

Father Frank O’Gara of Whitefriars Street Church in Dublin, Ireland, tells the story of the man behind the holiday—St Valentine.

“He was a Roman Priest at a time when there was an emperor called Claudias who persecuted the church at that particular time,” Father O’Gara explains. ”   He also had an edict that prohibited the marriage of young people.   This was based on the hypothesis that unmarried soldiers fought better than married soldiers because married soldiers might be afraid of what might happen to them or their wives or families if they died.

I think we must bear in mind that it was a very permissive society in which Valentine lived,” says Father O’Gara.   “Polygamy would have been much more popular than just one woman and one man living together.    And yet some of them seemed to be attracted to Christian faith. But obviously the church thought that marriage was very sacred between one man and one woman for their life and that it was to be encouraged.    And so it immediately presented the problem to the Christian church of what to do about this.

The idea of encouraging them to marry within the Christian church was what Valentine was about.    And he secretly married them because of the edict.”

Valentine was eventually caught, imprisoned and tortured for performing marriage ceremonies against command of Emperor Claudius the second.    There are legends surrounding Valentine’s actions while in prison.

One of the men who was to judge him in line with the Roman law at the time was a man called Asterius, whose daughter was blind.    He was supposed to have prayed with and healed the young girl with such astonishing effect that Asterius himself became Christian as a result.

In the year 269 AD, Valentine was sentenced to a three part execution of a beating, stoning, and finally decapitation all because of his stand for Christian marriage.    The story goes that the last words he wrote were in a note to Asterius’ daughter.    He inspired today’s romantic missives by signing it, “from your Valentine.”

What Valentine means to me as a priest, explains Father O’Gara, “is that there comes a time where you have to lay your life upon the line for what you believe.     And with the power of the Holy Spirit we can do that —even to the point of death.”

Valentine’s martyrdom has not gone unnoticed by the general public.    In fact, Whitefriars Street Church is one of three churches that claim to house the remains of Valentine. Today, many people make the pilgrimage to the church to honour the courage and memory of this Christian saint.