Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DIVINE MERCY, EUCHARISTIC Adoration, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL HOMILIES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on MERCY, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 29 October – The Memorial of St Gaetano Errico (1791-1860)

Thought for the Day – 29 October – The Memorial of St Gaetano Errico (1791-1860), Founder of the Missionaries of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary

Day by day, city to city, village to village, among both the poorest and those of high esteem, he saw the hunger each possessed to know that sin was forgiven, that God’s mercy was infinite and that they were loved.   Countless souls found a merciful listener, the embodiment of God’s promise of peace and renewal, in Fr Gaetano, in the Confessional.

“The priest, Gaetano Errico, dedicated himself to this sacrament with diligence, assiduity and patience, never refusing it nor counting the cost. He thus entered among the group of other extraordinary priests who tirelessly made the confessional a place to dispense God’s mercy, helping men to rediscover themselves, to fight against sin and make progress in the spiritual life.

The street and the confessional were the two particular places of Gaetano Errico’s pastoral work.   The street was the place that permitted him to offer his customary invitation:  “God loves you, when shall we meet?” and in the confession he made their encounter with the mercy of the heavenly Father possible.   How many wounded souls did he heal in this way! How many people did he help to be reconciled with God through the sacrament of forgiveness!

In this way St. Gaetano Errico became an expert in the “science” of forgiveness, and concerned himself with teaching it to his missionaries:   “God, who does not wish the death of the sinner, is always more merciful than his ministers;  so be as merciful as you can and you will find mercy with God!”

Pope Benedict XVI, Homily at Canonisation Mass, October 2008

He found his own encouragement on his knees in prayer . . . indeed it was prayer and the hours he spent in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament that strengthened and renewed him and kept the fire of his love for God ever burning.

Let us rediscover the great grace of the Confessional and the immense joy of Eucharistic Adoration for ourselves!

St Gaetano Errico, Pray for Us!god who does not wish the death of a sinner - st gaetano errico pray for us no 2 - 29 oct 2018

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Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MORNING Prayers, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SAINT of the DAY

Celebrating and Learning from Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos C.Ss.R. (1819-1867) on his Memorial today, 5 October

Celebrating and Learning from Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos C.Ss.R. (1819-1867) on his Memorial today, 5 October

TOP 10 Practical Guide to Holiness

1. Go to Mass with deepest devotion.
2. Spend a half hour to reflect upon your main failing
and make resolutions to avoid it.
3. Do daily spiritual reading for at least 15 minutes, i
if a half hour is not possible.
4. Say the rosary every day.
5. Also daily, if at all possible, visit the Blessed Sacrament
and toward evening, meditate on the Passion of Christ for a half hour.
6. Conclude the day with evening prayer
and an examination of conscience over all the faults & sins of the day.
7. Every month make a review of the month in confession.
8. Choose a special patron every month
and imitate that patron in some special virtue.
9. Precede every great feast with a novena, that is, nine days of devotion.
10. Try to begin and end every activity with a “Hail Mary.”

Blessed Francis Xavier Seelos, Pray for Us!bl francis xavier seelos - top ten tips a pactical guide to holiness - 5 oct 2018

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on SIN, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 28 August – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 23:23–26 and The Memorial of St Augustine (354-430) – Doctor of Grace

One Minute Reflection – 28 August – Tuesday of the Twenty-first week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 23:23–26 and The Memorial of St Augustine (354-430) – Doctor of Grace

“You blind Pharisee! first cleanse the inside of the cup and of the plate, that the outside also may be clean.”…Matthew 23:26

REFLECTION – “You are before God.   Question your heart:  see what you have done and what you have been yearning for there—your salvation or the windy praise of men.   Look within, for a person cannot judge one whom he cannot see.   If we are assuring our heart, let us assure it in his presence.
“Because if our heart thinks badly”—that is, if it accuses us within, because we aren’t acting with the spirit with which we should be acting —“God is greater than our heart, and he knows all things” (v.20).   You hide your heart from man – hide it from God if you can.   How will you hide it from Him to whom it was said by a certain sinner in fear and confession:  “Where shall 1 go from your spirit, and where shed!   I flee from your face?”… For where does God not exist?   “If,” he said, “I go up to heaven, you are there;  if I go down to hell, you are present” (Ps 139[138]:7-8).   Where will you go?   Where will you flee?   Do you want to hear some advice?   If you want to flee from Him, flee to Him.   Flee to Him by Confessing, not from Him by hiding, for you cannot hide, but you can Confess.   Tell Him.   “You are my refuge” (Ps 32[31]:7) and let there be nursed in you the love that alone leads to life.”…St Augustine (354-430) – Doctor of Graceyou blind pharisee - matthew 23 25 - you hide your heart from man - augustine - 28 aug 2018

PRAYER – Lord God, renew Your Church with the Spirit of wisdom and love which You gave to St Augustine.   Lead us by that same Spirit, to seek You, the only fountain of true wisdom and the source of everlasting love.   Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, in union with the Spirit, one God, forever and ever.    St Augustine, pray for the Church and for us all, amen.st augustine - pray for us - 28 aug 2018

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, MARIAN TITLES, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PAPAL HOMILIES, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on PRAYER, The BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 27 July – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 13:18–23

Thought for the Day – 27 July – Friday of the Sixteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 13:18–23

“As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the word and understands it;
he indeed bears fruit and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty and in another thirty.”…Matthew 13:23

“Dear brothers and sisters, Jesus invites us today to look inside ourselves:  to give thanks for our good soil and to tend the soil that is not yet good.

Let us ask ourselves if our heart is open to welcome the seed of the Word of God with faith.

Let us ask ourselves if our rocks of laziness are still numerous and large;  let us identify our thorns of vice and call them by name.

Let us find the courage to reclaim the soil, to effect a conversion of our heart, bringing to the Lord in Confession and in prayer, our rocks and our thorns.” …Pope Francis (Angelus, 16 July 2017)let us ask ourselves if our rocks of laziness - pope francis - 27 july 2018

Holy Mary, Mother of God, Pray for us!mary mother of god pray for us - 27 july 2018

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, DOCTORS of the Church, EASTER, FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on the CHURCH, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 4 April – Easter Wednesday and the Memorial of St Isidore of Seville (560-636) Father & Doctor of the Church

Quote/s of the Day – 4 April – Easter Wednesday and the Memorial of St Isidore of Seville (560-636) Father & Doctor of the Church

“War with vices
but peace with individuals.”

“The more you devote yourself
to study of the sacred utterances,
the richer will be your understanding of them,
just as the more the soil is tilled,
the richer the harvest.”

“We, as Catholics, are not permitted
to believe anything of our own will,
nor to choose what someone has believed of his.
We have God’s apostles as authorities,
who did not themselves of their own wills,
choose anything of what they wanted to believe
but faithfully transmitted to the nations,
the teachings of Christ.”war with vices...the more you devote yourself...we, as catholics - st isidore - 4 april 2018

“Confession heals,
Confession justifies,
Confession grants pardon of sin,
all hope consists in Confession;
in Confession there is
a chance for mercy.”

St Isidore of Seville (560-636) Father & Doctor of the Churchconfession heals - st isidore - 4 april 2018

Posted in CONFESSION/PENANCE, HOLY WEEK, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL HOMILIES, Pope BENEDICT XVI, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES - J R R Tolkien and MORE, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, The PASSION, The WORD

Thought for the Day – 29 March – Holy Thursday – The Mass of the Lord’s Supper 2018

Thought for the Day – 29 March – Holy Thursday – The Mass of the Lord’s Supper 2018vatican - statue at the gethsemane steps in rome

When the Lord tells Peter that without the washing of his feet he would never be able to have any part in Him, Peter immediately and impetuously asks to have his head and hands washed as well.   This is followed by the mysterious words of Jesus:  “Whoever has bathed has no need except to have his feet washed” (John 13:10).   Jesus alludes to a bath that the disciples, according to ritual prescriptions, had already taken; in order to participate in the meal, they now needed only to have their feet washed.   But naturally, a deeper meaning is hidden in this.   To what does it allude?   We do not know for sure.  In any case, we should keep in mind that the washing of the feet, according to the meaning of the entire chapter, does not indicate a single specific Sacrament but the “sacramentum Christi” in its entirety – His service of salvation, His descent even to the cross, His love to the end, which purifies us and makes us capable of God.

Here, with the distinction between the bath and the washing of feet, nevertheless, there also appears an allusion to life in the community of the disciples, to life in the community of the Church – an allusion that John may have intentionally transmitted to the community of his time.   It then seems clear that the bath that purifies us definitively and does not need to be repeated is Baptism – immersion in the death and resurrection of Christ, a fact that changes our lives profoundly, giving us something like a new a identity that endures, if we do not throw it away as Judas did.   But even in the endurance of this new identity, for convivial communion with Jesus we need the “washing of the feet.”   What does this mean?   It seems to me that the first letter of Saint John gives us the key for understanding this.   There we read: “If we say, ‘We are without sin,’ we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.   If we acknowledge our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive our sins and cleanse us from every wrongdoing” (1:8ff.).

We need the “washing of the feet,” the washing of our everyday sins and for this we need the confession of sins.   We do not know exactly how this was carried out in the Johannine community.   But the direction indicated by the words of Jesus to Peter is obvious:  in order to be capable of participating in the convivial community with Jesus Christ, we must be sincere.   One must recognise that even in our own identity as baptised persons, we sin.   We need confession as this has taken form in the Sacrament of reconciliation.   In it, the Lord continually rewashes our dirty feet and we are able to sit at table with Him.

But in this way, the word takes on yet another meaning, in which the Lord extends the “sacramentum” by making it the “exemplum,” a gift, a service for our brother:   “If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another’s feet” (John 13:14).   We must wash each other’s feet in the daily mutual service of love.   But we must also wash our feet, in the sense, of constantly forgiving one another.   The debt that the Lord has forgiven us is always infinitely greater than all of the debts that others could owe to us (cf. Mt. 18:21-35).   It is to this that Holy Thursday exhorts us:  not to allow rancour toward others to become, in its depths, a poisoning of the soul.   It exhorts us to constantly purify our memory, forgiving one another from the heart, washing each other’s feet, thus being able to join together in the banquet of God.

Holy Thursday is a day of gratitude and of joy for the great gift of love to the end that the Lord has given to us.   We want to pray to the Lord at this time, so that gratitude and joy may become in us the power of loving together with His love. Amen.

Pope Benedict XVI 20 March 2008 Holy Thursday – Mass of the Lord’s Supperwe must wash each other's feet in the daily mutual service of love- pope benedict - 29 march 2018 holy thurs

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Thought for the Day – 28 March – Wednesday of Holy Week 2018 Judas

Thought for the Day – 28 March – Wednesday of Holy Week 2018
Judas

Commentaries on Holy Week | Wednesday

Wednesday of Holy Week recalls the sad story of one who was an apostle of Christ, Judas. As St Matthew tells us in his gospel:  Then one of the twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What will you give me if I deliver him to you?”   And they paid him thirty pieces of silver. And from that moment he sought an opportunity to betray Him.spy wed

So that we realise that we all might behave as Judas did.   So that we ask our Lord that, on our part, there be no treachery, nor distancing, nor abandonment.   Not only because of the great harm this could bring to our personal lives but because we could drag along others who need the help of our good example, of our support, of our friendship.

JUDAS’ KISS

In some places in Latin America, the images of Christ crucified show a deep bruise on our Lord’s left cheek.  People say this represents Judas’ kiss.   So great is the pain that our sins cause Jesus.   Let us tell Him that we want to be faithful, that we don’t want to sell Him, as Judas did, for thirty coins, for a trifle, for that’s what our sins are:  pride, envy, impurity, hatred, resentment… When a temptation threatens to overwhelm us, let’s remember that it is not worthwhile to exchange the happiness of God’s children, which is what we are, for a pleasure that ends right away, leaving the bitter aftertaste of defeat and infidelity.

We have to feel on our shoulders the weight of the Church and of all humanity.   Isn’t it marvellous to know that each of us can influence the whole world.   In that place where we are, doing our work well, caring for our family, serving our friends, we can help make so many people happy.   As St Josemaria wrote, through the fulfilment of our duties, we Christians have to be like the stone fallen into the lake.   With your word and your example you produce a first circle… and it another… and another, and another…Until you reach the furthest sites.

Let us ask our Lord that there be no more betrayals;  that we learn, with His grace, how to reject the temptations that the devil presents us with, trying to trick us.   We have to say no, firmly, to all that would separate us from God.   Thus the sad story of Judas will not be repeated in our own lives.

SACRAMENT OF DIVINE MERCY

And if we feel ourselves weak, let us hurry to the holy Sacrament of Penance!   There our Lord is waiting, like the father in the parable of the prodigal son, to give us an embrace and offer us His friendship.  He is continually going forth to meet us, even if we have fallen low, very low.   It’s always time to return to God!  We should never react with discouragement or pessimism.   Don’t think:  What can I do, if I’m just a pile of wretchedness?   God’s mercy is even greater.   What can I do, if I fall again and again through my weakness?   God’s power to lift us from our falls is even greater.

The sins of Judas and of Peter were great.   Both of them betrayed the Master:  one by handing Him over to His persecutors, the other by denying Him three times.   And nevertheless, how differently each reacted.   Our Lord longed to show mercy towards both.   Peter repented;  he wept over his sin, he asked for forgiveness and Christ strengthened him in his faith and love.   In time, he came to give his life for our Lord.   But Judas failed to trust in Christ’s mercy.   Up till the last moment, God held the doors of forgiveness open for him, but he didn’t want to enter them through penance.

MOMENT OF CONVERSION AND FORGIVENESS

In his first encyclical, John Paul II spoke of Christ’s “right to meet each one of us in that key moment in the soul’s life constituted by the moment of conversion and forgiveness” (Redemptor Hominis, 20).   Let’s not deprive Jesus of that right!   Let’s not take away from God the Father the joy of giving us a welcoming embrace!   Let’s not sadden the Holy Spirit, who wants to give supernatural life back to souls!

Let’s ask Blessed Mary, the Hope of Christians, to prevent us from becoming discouraged on seeing our mistakes and sins, perhaps repeated ones.   May she win for us from her Son the grace of conversion, an efficacious desire to go humbly and contritely to Confession, the sacrament of divine mercy, beginning and beginning again as often as necessary.and if we feel ourselves weak - Bishop Javier Echevarria (1932-2016) opus dei - wed of holy week

Bishop Javier Echevarria (1932-2016)

Fr Javier Echevarria (born 1932) was the second successor of St Josemaria Escriva as head of Opus Dei from 1994-2016.
He worked closely with St. Josemaria Escriva as his personal secretary from 1953 until St Josemaria’s death in 1975. Bishop Echevarria was ordained as a priest on 7 August 1955.
He was elected and appointed by John Paul II as prelate of Opus Dei on 20 April 1994.
The Pope ordained him as a bishop on 6 January 1995.
Bishop Echevarria died in Rome on 12 December 2016.BISHOP JAVIER