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

Thought for the Day – The Memorial of St Simplician (c 320-c 401),– 15 August

Thought for the Day – The Memorial of St Simplician (c 320-c 401),– 15 August

“Augustine and Simplician, sons of Milan, followers of Christ”

“Another great name enters Milan’s rich story in 384, that of the man who became St Augustine.   In 384 he was not yet a saint.   But he was a man who was searching, probing and asking questions, testing the spirits that drove him.   First he found Ambrose, who “welcomed me as a father would and like a good bishop approved of my journeying,” according to his Confessions.   Still, he was not ready to accept the Christian faith and way of life.   But Ambrose could not be the spiritual director he needed.

Augustine had gotten through his doctrinal doubts and he “liked the Way, which was our Saviour, though the tight and narrow parts of that way” annoyed him.   So God put it in his mind to go to Simplician, “whom I considered to be your good servant and your grace shone in him.   I heard that since his youth he lived most devoted to you.”   Now he had grown old and to Augustine he seemed to have become a great expert in studying God’s ways.   “And so he was!   So I wanted to share with him my inner turmoil so he might teach me how best I, as I was, could walk in your ways.”

That is quite an endorsement!   From one saint-to-be about a wise and holy mentor, guide, companion on the road.   One intently searching, the other guiding that search.   We all need help from time as we make our authentic way.   Maybe it can sound trite, an easy image, our life as a journey or pilgrimage, our walking the camino to a holy goal.   But it speaks a deep truth.“…(Fr Edward W Schmidt S.J.)

St Simplician, Sts Augustine & Ambrose, pray for us!st-simplician-pray-for-us-2-15 aug 2017sts-augustine-and-ambrose-pray-for-u-15 aug 2017 - me of st simplician

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Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES on CONVERSION, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY

Quote/s of the Day – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplicain (c 320-c 401)

Quote/s of the Day – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplicain (c 320-c 401), Friend and Teacher of St Ambrose and the “spiritual father of my soul” of St Augustine, Fathers and Doctors of the Church

“Only the “new” person
can sing a new song to the Lord:
the person restored
from a fallen condition,
through the grace of God.
Let us sing a new song –
not with our lips
but with our lives!”

St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Churchonly-the-new-person-no-2-st-augustine-15 aug 2017 - mem of simpliacianus

“All the children of the Church are priests.
At Baptism, they received the anointing
that gives them a share in the priesthood.
The sacrifice which they must offer to God
is completely spiritual – it is THEMSELVES!”

St Ambrose (340-397) Father and Doctor of the Churchall-the-children-of-the-church-no-2-st-ambrose-15 aug 2017- mem of st simpliacianus

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, PRAYERS of the SAINTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on CONVERSION, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplician (c 320-c 401)

One Minute Reflection – 15 August – The Memorial of St Simplician (c 320-c 401) Bishop and Successor of St Ambrose (340-397) in the ArchDiocese of Milan.

“For I am the LORD, your God, who grasp your right hand;
It is I who say to you, Do not fear, I will help you.”….Isaiah 41:13isaiah-41-13-15 aug 2017

The Confessions – Book VIII – St Augustine’s Conversion to Christ:  Augustine is deeply impressed by Simplicianus’ story of the conversion to Christ of the famous orator and philosopher, Marius Victorinus.   He is stirred to emulate him but finds himself still enchained by his incontinence and preoccupation with worldly affairs.   He is then visited by a court official, Ponticianus, who tells him and Alypius the stories of the conversion of Anthony and also of two imperial “secret service agents.”   These stories throw him into a violent turmoil, in which his divided will struggles against himself.   He almost succeeds in making the decision for continence but is still held back.   Finally, a child’s song, overheard by chance, sends him to the Bible; a text from Paul resolves the crisis;   the conversion is a fact.   Alypius also makes his decision and the two inform the rejoicing Monica.

REFLECTION – “And Thou didst put it into my mind and it seemed good in my own sight, to go to Simplicianus, who appeared to me a faithful servant of Thine and Thy grace shone forth in him.   I had also been told that from his youth up he had lived in entire devotion to Thee.   He was already an old man and because of his great age, which he had passed in such a zealous discipleship in Thy way, he appeared to me likely to have gained much wisdom–and, indeed, he had.   From all his experience, I desired him to tell me–setting before him all my agitations–which would be the most fitting way for one who felt as I did to walk in thy way.”…St Augustine (From the Confessions – Book VIII – Chapter 1)go on Lord and act - stir us up and call us back - st augustine - mem of simpliacinus 15 aug 2018

PRAYER – “Go on, O Lord and act, stir us up and call us back, inflame us and draw us to Thee, stir us up and grow sweet to us, let us now love Thee, let us run to Thee. Are there not many men … who, out of a deeper pit of darkess.. return to Thee–who draw near to Thee and are illuminated by that light which gives those who receive it power from Thee to become Thy sons? “… (St Augustine – From the Confessions Book VIII – Chapter IV) St Simplician, pray for us, Amen.   St Simplicianus, Pray for us!st-simplician-pray-for-us-15 aug 2018

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

Quote of the Day – 13 August – The Memorial of Sts Pontian (Died 235) & Hippolytus (170 – 235) Martyrs

Quote of the Day – 13 August – The Memorial of Sts Pontian (Died 235)

& Hippolytus (170 – 235) Martyrs

“Fly to the Catholic Church!

Adhere to the only faith

which continues to exist from the beginning,

that faith which was preached by Paul

and is upheld by the Chair of Peter.”

St Hippolytus

(170 – 235) 

Father of the Churchfly to the catholic church - st hippolytus - 13 aug 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on JOY, QUOTES on PATIENCE, QUOTES on PEACE, QUOTES on PERSEVERANCE, QUOTES on SANCTITY, SAINT of the DAY

Thought for the Day – 12 August – The Memorial of St Jane Frances de Chantal (1572-1641)

Thought for the Day – 12 August – The Memorial of St Jane Frances de Chantal (1572-1641)

Always active, always at rest. – St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctoralways active always at rest - st augustine - 12 august 2018

At the age of sixteen, Jane Frances de Frémyot, already a motherless child, was placed under the care of a worldly-minded governess.   In this crisis, she offered herself to the Mother of God and secured Mary’s protection for life.   When a Protestant sought her hand, she steadily refused to marry “an enemy of God and His Church” and shortly afterwards, as the loving and beloved wife of the Baron de Chantal, made her house the pattern of a Christian home.
But God had marked her for something higher than domestic sanctity.   Two children and a dearly beloved sister died and, in the full tide of prosperity, her husband’s life was taken by the innocent hand of a friend.   For seven years the sorrows of her widowhood were increased by ill-usage from servants and inferiors and the cruel importunities of friends, who urged her to marry again.   Harassed almost to despair by their entreaties, she branded on her heart the name of Jesus and in the end left her beloved home and children to live for God alone.
It was on the 19th of March 1609, that Madame de Chantal bade farewell to her family and relations.   Pale, and with tears in her eyes, she passed round the large room, sweetly and humbly taking leave of each.   Her son, a boy of fifteen, used every entreaty, every endearment, to induce his mother not to leave them and at last passionately flung himself across the door of the room.   In an agony of distress, she passed on over the body of her son to the embrace of her aged and disconsolate father.   The anguish of that parting reached its height when, kneeling at the feet of the venerable old man, she sought and obtained his last blessing, promising to repay in her new home his sacrifice by her prayers.
Well might St Francis call her “the valiant woman.”
She was to found with St Francis de Sales a great Order.   Sickness, opposition, want, beset her and the death of children, friends and of St Francis himself followed, while eighty-seven houses of the Visitation rose under her hand.   Nine long years of interior desolation completed the work of God’s grace and in her seventieth year, St Vincent of Paul saw, at the moment of her death, her soul ascend, as a ball of fire, to heaven.

May we all rest in Christ and His Mother!

St Jane Frances de Chantal, Pray for us!st jane frances de chantal pray for us - 12 aug 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY EUCHARIST, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 12 August – Today’s Gospel: John 6:41–51

One Minute Reflection – 12 August – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: John 6:41–51

…the bread which I shall give, for the life of the world is my flesh...John 6:51

REFLECTION – “How could humankind, which remained riveted to the earth and subject to death, gain entry to immortality once more?   Its flesh had to become assimilated to the life-giving force in God. Now, God the Father’s life-giving force is His Word, His only Son, and so it was He whom God sent as Saviour and Redeemer…
If you put a breadcrumb into oil, water or wine, it at once soaks up their properties. If you place iron into contact with fire it will shortly become full of the fire’s energy and, even though by nature it is only iron, will take on the appearance of fire.   In the same way, then, God’s life-giving Word, by uniting Himself to the flesh He assumed, caused it to become life giving.
Did He not say: “Whoever believes in me has eternal life. I am the bread of life.”   And again: “I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live for ever and the bread that I will give is my flesh… Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.”   So then, by eating the flesh of Christ, the Saviour of us all and drinking His blood, we have life in ourselves, we become one with Him, we remain in Him and He in us.
Therefore it is for Him to enter within us, through the Holy Spirit, in a way fitting to God and to mingle with our body, after a fashion, through the holy flesh and precious blood, we receive, under the forms of bread and wine, as our life-giving blessing.   Indeed…, God has exercised His condescension towards our weakness and placed all His life-force into the elements of bread and wine, which are thus endowed with the spirit of His own life. So believe in it without hesitation, for our Lord Himself has clearly said: “This is my body” and “This is my blood”.”…St Cyril of Alexandria (380-444) Bishop, Father & Doctor of the Churchthe bread which i shall give john 6 51 - god has exercised his condescension - st cyril of alex - 12 aug 2018

PRAYER – Almighty God and Father, by Your grace, we are made one in mind and heart. Give us a love for what You command and a longing for what You promise, so that, amid this world’s changes, our hearts may be set on the world of lasting joy.   Grant, we pray that by the prayers of St Jane de Chantal and Blessed Pope Innocent XI, we will be made always faithful and may Mary, the Mother of our life, lead us to our everlasting joy, Your Son, Jesus Christ.   Through Him, with Him and in Him, in the union of the Holy Spirit, one God forever, amen.st-jane-de-chantal-pray-for-us=12 august 2017bl pope innocent xi - pay for us - 12 august 2018

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

One Minute Reflection – 11 August – Saturday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 17:14–20

One Minute Reflection – 11 August – Saturday of the Eighteenth week in Ordinary Time, Year B – Today’s Gospel: Matthew 17:14–20

He said to them, “Because of your little faith.   For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.”…Matthew 17:20

REFLECTION – “The word “faith” has one syllable but two meanings.   First of all it is concerned with doctrine and it denotes the assent of the soul to some truth.   Faith in this sense brings blessing and salvation to the soul, as the Lord said:  “He who hears my word and believes in him who sent me, has eternal life.” (Jn 5:24)…
The word “faith” has a second meaning:  it is a particular gift and grace of Christ.  “To one is given throu gh the Spirit the utterance of wisdom and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing” (1Cor 12:8-9).   Faith in the sense of a particular divine grace conferred by the Spirit is not, then, primarily concerned with doctrine but with giving a person powers quite beyond their natural capability.   Whoever has this faith will say to a mountain: “Move from here to there” and it will move and anyone who can in fact say these words through faith and “believes without hesitation that they will come to pass,” (Mk 11:23) receives this particular grace.   It is to this kind of faith that the Lord’s words refer: “If you have faith as a grain of mustard seed.”   Now a mustard seed is small in size but its energy thrusts it upwards with the force of fire.   Small are its roots, great the spread of its boughs and once it is fully grown the birds of the air find shelter in its branches (Mt 13:32).  So too, in a flash, faith can produce the most wonderful effects in the soul.
Enlightened by faith the soul gazes at the glory of God so far as human nature allows and, even before the consummation of all things, ranging beyond the boundaries of the universe, it has a vision of the judgement and of God making good the rewards he promised.    As far as it depends on you then, cherish this gift of faith that leads you to God and you will then receive the higher gift which no effort of yours can reach, no power of yours attain.”…Saint Cyril of Jerusalem (313-350) Bishop of Jerusalem, Father & Doctor of the Church (Baptismal Catechesis 5)if you have faith the size of a mustard seed - matthew 17 20 - as far as it depends on you then - sy cyril of jerusalem - 11 aug 2018

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

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MORNING Prayers, PAPAL HOMILIES, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on LOVE, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

Quote of the Day – 10 August – Feast of St Lawrence, Martyr (died 258) – Today’s Gospel: John 12:24–26

Quote of the Day – 10 August – Feast of St Lawrence, Martyr (died 258) – Today’s Gospel: John 12:24–26if anyone serves me - john 12 26 - 10 august 2018

“Jesus brought new hope into the world and He did so in the manner of the seed:  He became very small, like a grain of wheat, He left his heavenly glory in order to come among us, He “fell into the earth”.
But this still was not enough.
In order to bear fruit, Jesus experienced love to the fullest, allowing Himself to be split open by death as a seed lets itself split open under the ground.   Precisely there, at the lowest point of His abasement — which is also the loftiest point of love — hope burgeoned.
When we choose the hope of Jesus, we gradually discover, that the successful way of life is that of the seed, that of humble love.   There is no other way to conquer evil and give hope to the world.   But you might tell me: “No, it is a losing rationale!”  . It might seem so, seem that it is a losing rationale because those who love, lose power.   Have you considered this?   Those who love, lose power;  those who give, impart something and loving is a gift.
In reality, the rationale of the seed that dies, of humble love, is God’s way and only this bears fruit.”

Pope Francis General Audience, 12 April 2017)when we choose the hope of jesus - john 12 24-26 - pope francis - 10 aug 2018.jpg

“We must note, therefore,
that he that does things pleasing to God,
serves Christ but he that follows his own wishes,
is a follower, rather of himself and not of God.”

St Cyril of Alexandria (376-444)we must note therefore that he does - st cyril of alex - 10 august 2018

Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, FATHERS of the Church, MARTYRS, MORNING Prayers, ON the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 10 August – Feast of St Lawrence, Martyr (died 258) – Today’s Gospel: John 12:24–26

One Minute Reflection – 10 August – Feast of St Lawrence, Martyr (died 258) – Today’s Gospel:  John 12:24–26

“If anyone serves me, he must follow me and where I am, there shall my servant be also; if any one serves me, the Father will honour him.”…John 12:26if anyone serves me - john 12 26 - 10 august 2018

REFLECTION – “Dear brothers, your faith recognises this seed fallen into the earth that death has multiplied.   Your faith recognises it because it dwells in your hearts.   No christian hesitates to believe what Christ said of Himself.   But when this seed died and multiplied, many seeds were scattered on the earth.    Saint Lawrence is one of them and today we celebrate the day when he was sown.   We see what a tremendous harvest has sprung up from all those seeds scattered over all the earth and the sight fills us with joy, provided only that we ourselves belong to God’s grain store, by His grace.
For not everything that is harvested goes into the grain store.   The same necessary and fruitful rain causes both good seed and straw to grow but we don’t store both of them in the barn.   Now is the time for us to choose…  Listen to me, you holy seed, for I have no doubt that it is here in abundance…  Listen to me or, rather, listen to Him in me who was first called a good seed.   Do not love your life in this world!   If you truly love yourselves do not thus love your life and then you will save your life!.. “Whoever loves his life in this world will lose it.”   It is the good seed who said that: the seed thrown into the ground who died that He might bear much fruit.   Listen to Him because as He speaks so has He done.  He both teaches us and shows us the way by example.
Christ wasn’t attached to the life of this world.   He came into the world to be stripped of Himself, to give His life and take it up again when He willed…  He, the true man, is true God, a sinless man that He might take away the sin of the world, clothed with power so great that He could truly say:  “I have power to lay down my life and power to take it up again.   No one can take it from me;   it is I who lay it down and I who take it up again” (Jn 10,18)…. St Augustine (354-430) Father & Doctor of the Church (Sermon 305)now is the time for us to choose - st augustine - 10 august 2018

PRAYER – Lord God, You inspired St Lawrence with so ardent a love that his life was renowned for the service of Your people and his death for the splendour of his martyrdom.   Help us to love what he loved and to life as he showed us.   St Lawrence, Martyr for Christ and His Church, pray for us.   Through our Lord, Jesus Christ, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever amen.st lawrence pray for us - 10 august 2018

Posted in FATHERS of the Church, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, HOMILIES, MORNING Prayers, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SAINT of the DAY, The TRANSFIGURATION

Quote of the Day – 6 August – Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord – Today’s Gospel: Mark 9:2–10

Quote of the Day – 6 August – Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord – Today’s Gospel: Mark 9:2–10

It is indeed good to be here, as you have said, Peter.   It is good to be with Jesus and to remain here for ever. What greater hap  piness or higher honour could we have than to be with God, to be made like Him and to live in His light?

Therefore, since each of us possesses God in his heart and is being transformed into His divine image, we also should cry out with joy:
It is good for us to be here – here where all things shine with divine radiance, where there is joy and gladness and exultation; where there is nothing in our hearts but peace, serenity and stillness;  where God is seen.
For here, in our hearts, Christ takes up His abode together with the Father, saying as He enters:  Today salvation has come to this house.

With Christ, our hearts receive all the wealth of His eternal blessings and there where they are stored up for us in Him, we see reflected as in a mirror both the first fruits and the whole of the world to come.

St Anastasius of Sinai (630-701)

for here, christ takes up his abode - transfiguration homily - st anastasius of sinai - 6 aug 2018