Posted in DOCTORS of the Church, Fathers of the Church, LENT, Quotes of the Saints, Saint of the Day

LENTEN REFLECTION – The Second Week- Saturday 18 March

LENTEN REFLECTION – The Second Week- Saturday 18 March
St Cyril of Jerusalem,  (315-386)
Father and Doctor of the Church

The symbolic meaning of the sacrament of baptism as sharing in Christ’s passion according to Cyril of Jerusalem, Bishop of Jerusalem in the middle of the fourth century and one of the most important sources we have for how the church celebrated the sacraments during that era.  In his Jerusalem Catechesis from which this excerpt comes, St. Cyril instructs new Christians in the days immediately before and after their initiation into the life of the Church at the Easter Vigil.

You were led down to the font of holy baptism just as Christ was taken down from the cross and placed in the tomb which is before your eyes.   Each of you was asked, “Do you believe in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit?”   You made the profession of faith that brings salvation, you were plunged into the water and three times you rose again.   This symbolized the three days Christ spent in the tomb.

As our Saviour spent three days and three nights in the depths of the earth, so your first rising from the water represented the first day and your first immersion represented the first night.   At night a man cannot see but in the day he walks in the light.   So when you were immersed in the water it was like night for you and you could not see but when you rose again it was like coming into broad daylight.   In the same instant you died and were born again; the saving water was both your tomb and your mother.



Solomon’s phrase in another context is very apposite here.   He spoke of a time to give birth and a time to die.   For you, however, it was the reverse: a time to die and a time to be born, although in fact both events took place at the same time and your birth was simultaneous with your death.

This is something amazing and unheard of!    It was not we who actually died, were buried and rose again.   We only did these things symbolically but we have been saved in actual fact.   It is Christ who was crucified, who was buried and who rose again and all this has been attributed to us.   We share in His sufferings symbolically and gain salvation in reality.   What boundless love for men!   Christ’s undefiled hands were pierced by the nails; he suffered the pain.   I experience no pain, no anguish, yet by the share that I have in his sufferings he freely grants me salvation.

Let no one imagine that baptism consists only in the forgiveness of sins and in the grace of adoption.   Our baptism is not like the baptism of John, which conferred only the forgiveness of sins.   We know perfectly well that baptism, besides washing away our sins and bringing us the gift of the Holy Spirit, is a symbol of the sufferings of Christ.   This is why Paul exclaims: Do you not know that when we were baptised into Christ Jesus we were, by that very action, sharing in his death?    By baptism we went with him into the tomb.

These words of St. Cyril of Jerusalem on the symbolic meaning of the sacrament of baptism, a symbol of Christ’s passion, are read in the Roman Catholic liturgy’s Office of Readings on the Thursday in the Octave of Easter (Cat. 21 Mystagogica 3, 1-3 PG 33. 1087-1091) with the accompanying biblical reading of I Peter 3:1-17.




Posted in Morning Prayers, Quotes of the Saints

Quote/s of the Day – 18 March

Quote/s of the Day – 18 March

“Approaching do not come with thy palms stretched flat nor with fingers separated.  But making thy left hand a seat for thy right and hollowing thy palm, receive the Body of Christ, responding Amen.    And having with care hallowed thine eyes by the touch of the Holy Body, take it, vigilant lest thou drop any of it.   For shouldst thou lose any of it, it is as though thou wast deprived of a member of thy own body.”   “Then after Communion of the Body of Christ, approach the Chalice of His Blood, not extending thy hands but bending low, and with adoration and reverence saying Amen, sanctify thyself by receiving also the Blood of Christ.   And while thy lips are yet wet, touch them with thy hands and sanctify thy eyes and thy forehead and thy other senses.”

“We are to make the sign of the cross when we eat and drink, sit, go to bed, get up, talk, walk, in short, in every action.”

“If thou should be in foreign cities, do not simply ask where is the church – but where is the Catholic Church, for this is the proper name of this holy Mother of all.”

St Cyril of Jersualem (315-386)
Father and Doctor of the Church



Posted in Morning Prayers, Quotes of the Saints, Saint of the Day

Quote/s of the Day – 17 March

Quote/s of the Day – 17 March

“I pray that those who believe in God and who read this confession, which I, Patrick, an unlearned sinner have written in Ireland, may recogniSe that whatever I achieved or taught that was pleasing to God, was done so by the gift of God.   This is my confession before I die.”

“The Lord had to humble me first through my captivity to get his attention.   Then in His mercy He came and raised me up and lifted me to the very top of a wall.   And from there I can only shout out in gratitude to the Lord for His great favours which He showed me without measure”

“Whether you be great or small, learned or simple, listen and consider how God summoned me, a fool and a wretch in this world, to serve Him with reverence, faith and humility.   It was the love of Christ that inspired me to give my life in service to this people.”

“I came to the Irish people to preach the Gospel and endure the taunts of unbelievers, putting up with reproaches about my earthly pilgrimage, suffering many persecutions, even bondage and losing my birthright of freedom for the benefit of others.   If I am worthy, I am ready also to give up my life, without hesitation and most willingly, for Christ’s name.  H I want to spend myself for that country, even in death, if the Lord should grant me this favour.   It is among that people that I want to wait for the promise made by Him, who assuredly never tells a lie. HHe makes this promise in the Gospel: “They shall come from the east and west and sit down with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.”  H This is our faith: believers are to come from the whole world.”

“I do not seek honour from others because the Lord Himself is enough for me.   Although I am most unworthy, the Lord has exalted me beyond measure.   I prefer poverty and failure rather than a life of wealth and pleasure.   After all, Christ the Lord Himself was poor for our sakes.   I fear nothing, not even betrayal, slavery, or murder because of the promises of heaven.    I am in the Lord’s hands, as Scripture says: “Cast your burden on the Lord and he will sustain you.”

“Whatever befalls me, be it good or bad, I will accept it equally and give thanks always to God.    I will put my trust in him and dare to undertake so holy and so wonderful a work, so that I might imitate those who have gone before as heralds of the Gospel to all peoples, even to the ends of the earth.   This commission is being fulfilled even today, as we witness the Gospel being proclaimed in far away places such as this land.”

– from the Confession of Saint Patrick


Posted in IGNATIAN - Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, Morning Prayers, Quotes of the Saints, Saint of the Day, The Word

One Minute Reflection – 16 March

One Minute Reflection – 16 March

All who believe………………have eternal life in him……….John 3:15

REFLECTION – “Faith is in no way a burden or a yoke imposed on humban beings.  Far from it! Faith is an immense benefit because it commences life in us even on this earth.”………….St Thomas Aquinas

PRAYER – Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me the gift of faith.  Help me to remain firm in my faith throughout my life and to strive, no matter to what suffering You call me, to increase in faith and love for You, day by day.  St Jean de Brebeuf, you have reached the glory of heaven and by your life and suffering for your faith, you taught us the true beauty of love for Christ the Lord, please pray for us all, amen.


Posted in LENT, Morning Prayers, Quotes of the Saints, Saint of the Day

Quote/s of the Day – 15 March

Quote/s of the Day – 15 March

“I gave myself to God to accept the designs of His Providence, if He willed me to continue, for the remainder of Lent, in a state of interior abandonment and even affliction so as to honour the sufferings of Jesus Christ which the Church places before our eyes.”

“Let us love suffering then
and let us make strong resolutions
to desire as much of it as the will of God
wants us to experience.
Rest assured that it is a sign
of God’s love for you since it is through this
that He makes you somewhat like his Son.
Suffer then, in His same spirit, through
submission to all that God wills of you.”

“The person who does not love does not know God, for God is Charity.”

“Love the poor and honour them as you would honour Christ Himself,”

~~~ St Louise de Marillac


Posted in Morning Prayers, Quotes of the Saints, Saint of the Day, The Word

One Minute Reflection – 15 March

One Minute Reflection – 15 March

Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them.
Are not you more important than they?……………………Matthew 6:26

REFLECTION“If you completely entrust everything to the guidance of Divine Providence and love the most holy will of God, this will contribute greatly to your
peace of mind and heart. In fact, this is one of the most essential practices I know of for growth into holiness.”……..St Louise de Marillac

PRAYER – Loving and compassionate Father, we celebrate with great joy the faith and works of St Louise de Marillac. Instill in us the fire of her love, the tenacity of her belief and the tenderness of her care for the most abandoned. Draw us together into the light of your presence and help us to trust in the power of Your Spirit and the Light of Your Son, leading us to ever closer to You, who live and reign forever and ever. St Louise de Marillac, pray for us, amen.