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Thought for the day – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906) Saints and Lawyers?

Thought for the day – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, Cardinal-Priest (1835-1906)

Speaking of Saints and Lawyers?

A lawyer was visited by Satan who promised that if he sold his soul to him, he would be wealthy, have a beautiful wife who would never leave him and all his cases would be successes.

The lawyer said “Yeh, but what’ the catch?”

So many ‘official’ saints were Lawyers – I have been trying to work this out, what is the connection between holiness and the mind of the lawyer?   Especially in the light of the general opinion we all have of lawyers, something akin to the second-hand car salesman! In other words, a bit of a lier and a cheat, at the very least, someone who shines and polishes the little bit of truth available to him.   Perhaps it is just this – this ability to grab the bit of truth available and make it grow, make it shine, make it the reason why we must have that car or why the judge must release the prisoner?

So the saintly lawyers, grab the bit of truth and delve deeper and further until they find the whole truth – this must be it!   And in that digging they, of course, find the ONLY truth – Jesus the Christ and His Church!   Then, if they were good lawyers, that natural instinct, to delve, to dig, will continue and in that effort, sanctity is achieved.

Here are some, I could find on a quick search, who kept their eye on heaven:
Blessed Anacleto González Flores
Blessed Angelo Carletti
Blessed Antoine-Frédéric Ozanam
Blessed Antonio Franco
Blessed Augustine Novello
Blessed Bartholomew Longo
Blessed Bernardine of Fossa
Blessed Charles Steeb
Blessed Contardo Ferrini
Blessed Demosthenes Ranzi
Blessed Dermot O’Hurley
Blessed Gennaro Maria Sarnelli
Blessed Giacomo Villa
Blessed Giuseppe Antonio Tovini
Blessed Henry of Segusio
Blessed Humbert of Romans
Blessed Jacopone da Todi
Blessed James the Almsgiver
Blessed Jean of Hainaut
Blessed John of Vercelli
Blessed John Storey
Blessed José Perpiñá Nácher
Blessed Luigi Beltrame Quattrocchi
Blessed Manuel Basulto Jiménez
Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre
Blessed Mark Fantucci
Blessed Nazju Falzon
Blessed Paul Burali d’Arezzo
Blessed Paul of Wallachia
Blessed Peter de Geremia
Blessed Pierre de Barellis
Blessed Pietro of Gubbio
Blessed Pope Innocent XI
Blessed William Scott
Saint Alphonsus Maria de Liguori
Saint Amphilochius of Iconium
Saint Andrew Avellino
Saint Aprus of Toul
Saint Bernadine Realino
Saint Bertrand of Aquileia
Saint Charles Borromeo
Saint Fidelis of Sigmaringen
Saint Francis de Sales
Saint Germanus of Auxerre
Saint Gregory Barbarigo
Saint Ivo of Kermartin
Saint James of the Marches
Saint Jerome
Saint John Houghton
Saint John of Avila
Saint John of Capistrano
Saint Josemaria Escriva
Saint Liphardus of Orleans
Saint Paulinus of Nola
Saint Philogonius of Antioch
Saint Raymond of Penyafort
Saint Richard of Chichester
Saint Salvius of Albi
Saint Satyrus of Milan
Saint Sylvester Gozzolini
Saint Theophilus the Lawyer
Saint Thomas a Becket
Saint Thomas More
Saint Tryphillius of Leucosia
Saint Turibius of Mogroveio
Venerable Cesare Baronio
Venerable Luis de Trelles y Nogerol

Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre, pray for us that we too shine and polish the truth until we meet you in heaven as saints!blessed marcelo - no 2 pray for us



Posted in MORNING Prayers, PRAYERS for our HOLY FATHER and all PRIESTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the PRIESTHOOD, SAINT of the DAY, SPEAKING of ....., The WORD

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (1835-1906)

One Minute Reflection – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (1835-1906)

And Jesus called to him the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over unclean spirits… So they went out and preached that men should repent...Mark 6:7,12mark 6 - 7,12

REFLECTION – “‘O Priest! You are not yourself because you are of God.   You are not of yourself because you are the servant and minister of Christ.   You are not you own because you are the spouse of the Church.   You are not yourself because you are the mediator between God and man.   You are not from yourself because you are nothing. What then are you?   Nothing and everything.   O Priest!   Take care lest what was said to Christ on the cross be said to you: “He saved others, himself he cannot save!”‘ ...St NorbertO Priest! - St Norbert

PRAYER – O Lord of all, today we pray for our priests. All our priests from the Holy Father to our the newly ordained. Keep them holy and for yourself O Lord. Keep them in the image of Your Son, our High Priest, Jesus Christ. Keep them pure in heart, loving in spirit, filled with charity for all and most of all, with the greatest of love for You. Bless their hearts and their hands, that administer Your Eucharistic Son to your faithful. Grant that the prayers of Blessed Marcelo Spínola, may intercede for all our priests and ourselves. Amenblessed marcelo - pray for us

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 19 January – Blessed Marcelo Spinola y Maestre (1835-1906)

Saint of the Day – 19 January – Blessed Marcelo Spinola y Maestre (1835-1906) Cardinal – served as Archbishop of Seville, Founder of the Handmaids of the Divine Heart (Religious Sisters), Lawyer.   He was beatified on 29 March 1987 by St Pope John Paul II at Vatican City and his canonisation cause is still pending.   Blessed Marcelo was born 14 January 1835 on the Isle of San Fernando, diocese of Cadiz, Spain as Marcelo Rafael José María de los Dolores Hilario –  20 January 1906 at Seville, Spain of natural causes.   Patronage s – Archdiocese of Seville, Handmaids of the Divine Heart.   Attributes – Cardinal’s attire, Crucifix.blessed marcelo spinola

header - bl marcelo

Marcelo Spínola was born on the island of San Fernando in Cádiz Province on 14 January 1835 at 06.00.   His parents were Juan Spínola y Osorno, Marquis of Spínola and Antonia Maestre y Osorno;  they had eight children, of whom four died in infancy.   He was baptised the following day in the military parish of San Fernando by the military chaplain of the second battalion of the Real Cuerpo de Artillería de la Marina.   His last name is also listed as Espínola.

He did his initial studies in the school of San Fernando, directed by priests from 1843-1845;  then at the Colegio Santo Tomás in Cádiz, 1845-1846 where he studied Latin, Spanish and French grammar and basic philosophy.   He then went to the school of Motril, where his father had been transferred from 1846-1847.   He went on to the school in Granada, 1847-1848, where he studied physics, chemistry and natural history.   His university education was completed at the University of Valencia from 1849-1852 and the University of Seville, graduating on the 29 June 1856.

He opened a law office in Huelva, offering free services to the poor.   He moved to Sanlúcar de Barrameda when his father was transferred to that city as chief of the port. He decided to follow his sacerdotal vocation on the advice of Canon Diego Herrero y Espinosa de los Monteros and began to study theology at home.   He received the ecclesiastical tonsure on 29 May 1863 and the diaconate on 20 February 1864.

He was ordained on 21 March 1864.   He did pastoral work in the archdiocese of Seville from 1864 in various parishes until 1880 and was then appointed titular bishop of Milos and auxiliary bishop of Seville by Pope Leo XIII on 16 December 1880.   He was transferred to the diocese of Coria on 10 November 1884 and to the diocese of Málaga on 10 June 1886.   Bl Marcelo was promoted to the metropolitan see of Seville on 2 December 1895 and he also served as a Senator of the Spanish Kingdom from 1891 to 1894 and from 1898 until his death.

He was created a cardinal by Pope Pius X in the consistory of 11 December 1905.   He was made a Cardinal-Priest but with no title assigned to him but Blessed Marcelo died at noon on 20 January 1906 in Seville, prior to being officially installed as a Cardinal.


On 24 January 1913, his remains were transferred to a new mausoleum built in the chapel of Dolores in the Cathedral of Seville, the Seat of the Archbishop.   The statue below is situate in the Cathedral at the Shrine of Blessed Marcelo.Blessed_Marcelo_Spínola_Y_Maestre_-_Cathedral_of_Seville

The cause of beatification commenced on 19 February 1956 under Pope Pius XII and began on a diocesan level in the Archdiocese of Seville.  The Positio – which documented his life of heroic virtue – was submitted to the Congregation for the Causes of Saints in 1978.   This culminated with the decree of heroic virtue on 24 September 1983 in which Pope John Paul II bestowed upon him the title of Venerable.   A miracle attributed to his intercession was investigated and ratified in 1985.   St John Paul II confirmed the miracle on 10 November 1986 and it led to his beatification on 29 March 1987.   Another miracle is at present under investigation.

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Memorials of the Saints – 19 January

St Abachum of Persia
Bl Andrew of Peschiera
St Arsenius of Corfu
St Audifax of Persia
St Bassian of Lodi
Bl Beatrix of Lens
St Branwallader of Jersey
St Canute
St Catellus of Castellammare
St Contentius
Bl Elisabetta Berti
St Faustina of Como
St Fillan
St Firminus of Gabales
St Germanicus of Smyrna
St Godone of Novalesa
St John of Ravenna
St Joseph Sebastian Pelczar
St Liberata of Como
Bl Marcelo Spínola y Maestre
St Maris of Persia
St Messalina of Foligno
St Ponziano of Spoleto
St Remigius of Rouen
St Wulstan of Worcester

Martyrs of Numidia – 9 saints: A group of Christians martryred together for their faith. The only details to survive are nine of their names – Catus, Germana, Gerontius, Januarius, Julius, Paul, Pia, Saturninus and Successus. 2nd century Numidia in North Africa.

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

Thought for the Day – 18 January – The Memorial of St Margaret of Hungary (1242-1270)

Thought for the Day – 18 January – The Memorial of St Margaret of Hungary (1242-1270)

A young woman of extraordinary beauty, St Margaret attracted the attention of suitors even though she was a nun.   Ottokar, the king of Bohemia, was determined to marry her.   For political reasons, Béla liked the idea.   He asked Margaret to get released from her commitments and marry Ottokar.   Béla had not bargained for the steely resistance of his strong-willed daughter.   She responded to his request with defiance:

“When I was only 7-years-old, you tried to espouse me to the Polish Duke.   You will remember my answer then.   I said that I wished to serve Him only to whom you had espoused me at my birth.   As a child, I would not yield to your will in opposition to God’s claims on me.   Do you think that I am likely to give in to you now that I am older and wiser?   And am I more capable of grasping the greatness of the divine grace that has been given me?   Then, my Father, stop trying to turn me from my determination to remain a religious.   I prefer the heavenly kingdom to that which has been offered me by the King of Bohemia.   I would rather die than obey these commands of yours that will bring death to my soul.   Mark my words. If matters ever come to such a pass and I am driven to it, I will surely put an end to the whole affair by mutilating myself, so that I shall never again be desirable to any man.”

So Béla backed down.   Witnesses say that had he persisted, gritty Margaret would likely have fulfilled her threat.   Butler’s Lives of the Saints says that she performed “marvellous” service to the sick, so nauseating that its “details cannot be set out before the fastidious modern reader.”   Out of sympathy for the poor, Margaret also imitated their squalor. She so neglected all personal hygiene, for example, that she repulsed her sisters.   And for long periods she denied herself food and sleep.   Since she was a princess and the convent was built for her, no one seems to have been able to temper her excesses.

The church recognises Margaret of Hungary as a saint in spite of the traces of wilfulness and pride that seem to have marked her life.   But she excelled in charity and “love covers over many a sin” (1 Peter 4:8).   Those of us who want to be holy but have many “in-spite-ofs” to contend with, can be glad of that!

St Margaret of Hungary, pray for us!st margaret of hungary - pray for us 2 - 18 jan 2018


One Minute Reflection – 18 January – The Memorial of St Margaret of Hungary (1242-1270)

One Minute Reflection – 18 January – The Memorial of St Margaret of Hungary (1242-1270)

Just as the Father who has life sent me and I have life because of the Father, so the man who feeds on me will have life because of me...John 6:57john 6 57 - 18 jan 2018

REFLECTION – “The Holy Eucharist, is a fire that purifies and consumes all our miseries and imperfections.   Do everything in your power to make yourself worthy of the Eucharist and this Divine Fire, will take care of the rest.”…St Hyacinth of Mariscotti T.O.R.(1585-1640)the holy eucharist - st hyacinth - 18 jan 2018

PRAYER – Living God, You have given me the Eucharist as my food for heavenly life.   Help me to partake of it often and so be strengthened on my pilgrim journey on earth.   Grant that St Margaret of Hungary, may add us all to her prayers, that by her intercession, we too may learn the true way home.   Through Jesus Christ, our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, margaret of hungary - 18 jan 2018

Posted in SAINT of the DAY

Saint of the Day – 18 January – St Margaret of Hungary O.P. (1242-1270)

Saint of the Day – 18 January – St Margaret of Hungary O.P. (1242-1270) – Nun and Virgin – born in 1242 and died on 18 January 1271 at Budapest, Hungary.   Her relics were given to the Poor Clares at Pozsony (modern Bratislava, Slovak Republic) when the Dominican Order in the area was dissolved, however, most of her relics were destroyed in 1789 though what remains are still preserved at Gran, Gyor, Pannonhalma, Hungary.   Patronage – against flood.   Attributes – Dominican holding a lily and a book, a princess with a lily,  Dominican in prayer with a globe of fire over her head.    Princess Margaret was a Dominican nun and the daughter of King Béla IV of Hungary and Maria Laskarina.   header - Margaret of Hungary

Margaret, the daughter of King Bela IV, champion of Christendom and Queen Mary Lascaris of Hungary, was offered to God before her birth, in petition that the country would be delivered from the terrible scourge of the Tartars.   The prayer having been answered, the king and queen made good their promise by placing the rich and beautiful three-year-old in the Dominican convent at Vesprim.   Here, in company with other children of nobility, she was trained in the arts thought fitting for royalty.

Margaret was not content with simply living in the house of God, she demanded the religious habit–and received it–at the age of four.   Furthermore, she took upon herself the austerities practised by the other sisters–fasting, hairshirts, the discipline (scourge), and night vigils.   She soon learned the Divine Office by heart and chanted it happily to herself as she went about her play.   She chose the least attractive duties of the nuns for herself.   She would starve herself to keep her spirit humble.   No one but Margaret seemed to take seriously the idea that she would one day make profession and remain as a sister, for it would be of great advantage to her father if she were to make a wise marriage.

This question arose seriously when Margaret was 12.   She responded in surprise.   She said that she had been dedicated to God, even before her birth and that she intended to remain faithful to that promise.   Some years later her father built for her a convent on the island in the Danube between Buda and Pest.   To settle the matter of her vocation, here she pronounced her vows to the master general of the order, Blessed Humbert of the Romans, in 1255 and took the veil in 1261.

Again, when Margaret was 18, her father made an attempt to sway her from her purpose, because King Ottokar of Bohemia, hearing of her beauty, had come seeking her hand.   He even obtained a dispensation from the pope and approached Margaret with the permission.   Margaret replied as she had previously, “I esteem infinitely more the King of Heaven and the inconceivable happiness of possessing Jesus Christ than the crown offered me by the King of Bohemia.”   Having established that she was not interested in any throne but a heavenly one, she proceeded with great joy to live an even more fervent religious life than she had before.

Margaret’s royal parentage was, of course, a matter of discussion in the convent.   But the princess managed to turn such conversation away from herself to the holy lives of the saints who were related to her by blood–King Saint Stephen, Saint Hedwig, Saint Elizabeth of Hungary and several others.   She did not glory in her wealth or parentage, but strove to imitate the saints in their holiness.   She took her turn in the kitchen and laundry, seeking by choice much heavy work that her rank might have excused her from doing.   She was especially welcome in the infirmary, which proves that she was not a sad-faced saint and she made it her special duty to care for those who were too disagreeable for anyone else to tend.


Margaret’s austerities seem excessive to us of a weaker age.   The mysteries of the Passion were very real to her and gave reason for her long fasts, severe scourgings and other mortifications detailed in the depositions of witnesses taken seven years after her death (of which records are still in existence).   Throughout Lent she scarcely ate or slept. She not only imitated the poverty-stricken in their manual labour and hunger but also in their lack of cleanliness–a form of penance at that time.

She had a tender devotion to Our Lady and on the eve of her feasts, Margaret said a thousand Hail Mary’s.   Unable to make the long pilgrimage to the Holy Land, to Rome, or to any of the other famous shrines of Christendom, the saint developed a plan by which she could go in spirit:  she counted up the miles that lay between herself and the desired shrine and then said an Ave Maria for every mile there and back.   On Good Friday she was so overcome at the thoughts of Our Lord’s Passion that she wept all day.   She was frequently in ecstasy and very embarrassed if anyone found her so and remarked on her holiness.

A number of miracles were performed during Margaret’s lifetime and many more after her death because Margaret had an implicit faith in the power and efficacy of prayer. The princess nun was only 28 when she died.   Most of the particulars of her life are recorded in existing depositions of witnesses taken in 1277.   Her friends and acquaintances petitioned for her to be acclaimed a saint almost immediately after her death.   Among them was her own servant, Agnes, who rightly observed that this daughter of a monarch showed far more humility than any of the monastery’s maids. Although their testimony expressed Margaret’s overpowering desire to allow nothing to stand between her and God, the process of canonisation was not complete until 1943, when she was canonised on 19 November by Venerable Pope Pius XII.