Posted in LENT 2019, LENTEN THOUGHTS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST, The SIGN of the CROSS

Lenten Thoughts – 6 April – THE BELOVED CROSSES

Lenten Thoughts – 6 April – Saturday of the Fourth week of Lent, Year C

THE BELOVED CROSSES
“Not for a day, not for a week, not for a year but all our lives.”
St John Vianney (1786-1859)

The saints, my dear brethren, all loved the Cross and found in it their strength and their consolation.

But, you will say to me, is it necessary, then, always to have something to suffer? …. Now sickness or poverty, or again scandal or calumny, or possibly loss of money or an infirmity?

Have you been calumniated, my friends?   Have you been loaded with insults?   Have you been wronged?   So much the better!   That is a good sign, do not worry, you are on the road that leads to Heaven.   Do you know when you ought to be really upset? I do not know if you understand it but it should be precisely for the opposite reason — when you have nothing to endure, when everyone esteems and respects you.   Then you should feel envious of those who have the happiness of passing their lives in suffering, or contempt, or poverty.

Are you forgetting, then, that at your Baptism you accepted the Cross, which you must never abandon until death and that it is the key that you will use to open the door of Heaven?   Are you forgetting the words of our Saviour: “If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow me.” Not for a day, not for a week, not for a year but all our lives.   The saints had a great fear of passing any time without suffering, for they looked upon it as time lost.

According to St Teresa, man is only in this world to suffer and when he ceases to suffer, he should cease to live. St John of the Cross asks God, with tears, to give him the grace to suffer more as a reward for all his labours.

What should we conclude, my dear children, from all that?

Just this – Let us make a resolution to have a great respect for all the crosses, which are blessed and which represent to us in a small way all that our God Suffered for us.   Let us recall that from the Cross flow all the graces that are bestowed upon us and that as a consequence, a cross which is blessed is a source of blessings, that we should often make the Sign of the Cross on ourselves and always with great respect and, finally, that our houses should never remain without this symbol of salvation.

“Everything is a reminder of the Cross.
We ourselves are made in the shape of a cross.”

Fill your children, my dear brethren, with the greatest respect for the Cross and always have a blessed cross on yourselves, it will protect you against the Devil, from the vengeance of Heaven and from all danger.   This is what I desire for you.everything is a reminder of the cross - st jon vianney 2018.jpg

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Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on HAPPINESS, QUOTES on JOY, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST

Sunday Reflection – 31 March – “The Joy of the Eucharist, all through Life!”

Sunday Reflection – 31 March – “Laetare” Fourth Sunday of Lent, Year C

“The Joy of the Eucharist, all through Life!”

St John Vianney (1786-1859)

“When Jesus entered the house of St Elizabeth, although He was imprisoned in Mary’s womb, He sanctified both mother and child and Elizabeth exclaimed, “Whence comes so great a happiness to me, that the Mother of my God deigns to come to me?”

I leave you to consider how much greater is the happiness of him who receives Jesus Christ in Holy Communion, not like Elizabeth, into his house but into the depths of his heart, to be its protecting Master, not six months, as in Elizabeth’s case but all through life!”

i leave you to consider - st john vianney sun refl 31 march 2019 laetare sun.jpg

Posted in CATECHESIS, CONFESSION/PENANCE, LENTEN THOUGHTS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FORGIVENESS, QUOTES on GOSSIP, QUOTES on HYPROCRISY, QUOTES on LOVE, QUOTES on REPARATION, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on TRUTH

Lenten Reflection – 29 March – Repairing the Wrong Done by St John Vianney

Lenten Reflection – 29 March – Friday of the Third week of Lent, Year C, Gospel: Mark 12:28–34

“…You shall love the Lord your God
with all your heart and with all your soul
and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
The second is this,
‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’
There is no other commandment
greater than these.”

Mark 12:30-32

St John Vianney (1786-1859)

REPAIRING THE WRONG DONE

Having made satisfaction to God, we must then make satisfaction to our neighbour for the wrong which-either in his body or in his soul — we have done him.   I say that it is possible to wrong him in his body, that is to say, in his person, by attacking him either by injurious or insulting words or by bad treatment.   If we have sinned against him by injurious words, then we must apologise to him and make our reconciliation with him.   If we have done him some wrong by belabouring his animals, as sometimes happens when we find that they have been doing damage among our crops, we are obliged to give him all that we have been the cause of his losing: -we could have got compensation without maltreating these animals.   If we have done any harm, we are obliged to repay as soon as we can, otherwise we will be gravely at fault.   If we have neglected to do that, we have sinned and we must confess it.

If you have done wrong to your neighbour in his honour, as, for instance, by scandalous talk, you are obliged to make up by favourable and beneficent talk for all the harm you have done to his reputation, saying all the good of him which you know to be true and concealing any faults which he may have and which you are not obliged to reveal.   If you have calumniated your neighbour, you must go and find the people to whom you have said false things about him and tell them that what you have been saying is not true, that you are very grieved about it and that you beg them not to believe it.

But if you have done him harm in his soul, it is a still more difficult thing to repair and yet it must be done as far as possible, otherwise God will not pardon you.

You must also examine your conscience as to whether you have given scandal to your children or to your next-door neighbours.   How many fathers, mothers, masters and mistresses are there who scandalise their children and their servants, by not saying their prayers morning or evening or by saying them when they are dressing or sitting back in a chair, who do not even make the Sign of the Cross before and after a meal?   How many times are they heard swearing, or perhaps even blaspheming?

How many times have they been seen working on Sunday morning, even before Holy Mass?

You must consider, too, whether you have sung bad songs, or brought in bad books, or whether you have given bad counsel, as, for instance, advising someone that he should take his revenge on someone else, should exact satisfaction by force.

Consider, too, whether you have ever taken anything from a next-door neighbour and neglected to pay it back, whether you have neglected to give some alms which you had been told to give or make some restitution which your parents, who are dead, should have made.   If you wish to have the happiness of having your sins forgiven, you must have nothing belonging to anyone else, which you should and could pay back.   So if you have sullied your neighbour’s reputation, you must do all in your power to repair the damage.   You must be reconciled with your enemies, speak to them as if they had never done you anything but good all your life, keeping nothing in your heart but the charity, which the good Christian should have for everyone, so that we can all appear with confidence before the tribunal of God. repairing the wronge done - you must be reconciled - st john vianney 29 march 2019.jpg

Posted in CATECHESIS, LENT 2019, MORNING Prayers, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on CHARITY, The WORD

Lenten Reflection – 21 March- The rich man and Lazarus

Lenten Reflection – 21 March – Thursday of the Second week of Lent, Year C

“There was a rich man, who was clothed in purple
and fine linen and who feasted sumptuously every day.
And at his gate lay a poor man named Lazarus…”
Luke 16:19–20Luke 16 19–20 rich man and lazarus turs2ndweeklent-21march2019.jpg

St Peter Chrysologus (400-450)
Bishop of Ravenna, Doctor of the Church

Sermon 122, On the rich man and Lazarus

“Abraham was very rich,” Scripture tells us (Gn 13:2)… My brethren, Abraham wasn’t rich for himself but for the poor, rather than keeping hold of his fortune, he intended to share it…This man, who was himself a stranger, did not hesitate to do all he could so that the stranger might not feel himself to be a stranger.   Living in a tent, he was unable to let a passer-by remain without shelter.   Perpetual traveller, he unfailingly welcomed the travellers who came his way…  Far from taking his ease in God’s bounty, he knew himself called to spread it abroad, he used it to protect the oppressed, set prisoners free, even to snatch those about to die from their fate (Gn 14:14)…  Abraham did not sit but remained standing before the stranger he had received.   He was not his guest’s host but made himself his servant.   Forgetting that he was master in his own home, he himself brought the food and, concerned that it should be carefully prepared, called on his wife.   Where he himself was concerned he relied entirely on his servants, but for the stranger he had received he thought it barely enough to entrust it to his wife’s skill.
What more could I say, my brothers?   It was so perfect a consideration… that drew God himself to Abraham’s home and compelled him to become his guest.   Thus the very one who would later claim to be welcomed in the person of the poor and the stranger, came to Abraham, rest for the poor, refuge of strangers.   “I was hungry,” he said, “and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me” (Mt 25:35).
And again, we read in the Gospel:  “When the poor man died, he was carried away by angels to the bosom of Abraham.”   Isn’t it only right, brethren, that Abraham should welcome all the saints even into his own rest and should exercise, even in the blessedness of heaven, his service of hospitality?…  Doubtless, he could not have considered himself wholly happy unless, even in glory, he was able to continue to practice his ministry of sharing.”

Daily Meditation:
Bring us back to you.

The story of the Rich Man and Lazarus is our lesson today.
We beg to be open to the workings of the Spirit,
that we might not settle for the consolations of this life alone.

Blessed is the man
who walks not in the counsel of the wicked,
nor stands in the way of sinners,
nor sits in the seat of scoffers
but his delight is in the law of the Lord
and on his law he meditates day and night.
Psalm 1:1-2

LOVE OF OUR NEIGHBOUR

St John Vianney (1786-1859)

“All of our religion is but a false religion and all our virtues are mere illusions and we ourselves are only hypocrites in the sight of God, if we have not that universal charity for everyone, for the good and for the bad, for the poor people as well as for the rich, for all those who do us harm as much as for those who do us good.
No, my dear brethren, there is no virtue which will let us know better whether we are the children or God than charity.
The obligation we have to love our neighbour is so important, that Jesus Christ put it into a Commandment, which He placed immediately after that by which He commands us to love Him with all our hearts.   He tells us that all the law and the prophets are included in this commandment to love our neighbour.   Yes, my dear brethren, we must regard this obligation as the most universal, the most necessary and the most essential to religion and to our salvation.   In fulfilling this Commandment, we are fulfilling all others.   St Paul tells us that the other Commandments forbid us to commit adultery, robbery, injuries, false testimonies.   If we love our neighbour, we shall not do any of these things because the love we have for our neighbour would not allow us to do him any harm.”

all of our religion is but a false - st john vianney thurs2ndweeklent 21 march 2019.jpg

Closing Prayer:
Loving God,
I hear your invitation, “Come back to me”
and I am filled with such a longing to return to You.
Show me the way to return.
Lead me this day in good works I do in Your name
and send Your Spirit to guide me and strengthen my faith.
I ask only to feel Your love in my life today and if You are with me, how can I not love my neighbour?

May the Lord bless us,
protect us from all evil
and bring us to everlasting life.
Amen

Posted in EUCHARISTIC Adoration, QUOTES of the SAINTS, SUNDAY REFLECTIONS, The HOLY EUCHARIST, THOMAS a KEMPIS, Uncategorized

Sunday Reflection – 10 March – “What does Jesus Christ do in the Eucharist? – St John Vianney

Sunday Reflection – 10 March – The First Sunday of Lent

“What does Jesus Christ do in the Eucharist?

It is God, who, as our Saviour, offers Himself each day for us to His Father’s justice.

If you are in difficulties and sorrows, He will comfort and relieve you.
If you are sick, He will either cure you or give you strength to suffer, so as to merit Heaven.
If the devil, the world and the flesh are making war upon you, He will give you the weapons with which to fight, to resist and to win the victory.
If you are poor, he will enrich you with all sorts of riches for time and for eternity.
Let us open the door of His Sacred and Adorable Heart and be wrapped about for an instant, by the flames of His love and we shall see, what a God who loves us, can do.
O my God, who shall be able to comprehend?”

St John Vianney (1786-1859)

what does jesus christ do in the eucharist - st john vianney - sun reflection 10 march 2019

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, CONFESSION/PENANCE, LENT 2019, NOVENAS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on ALMS, QUOTES on FASTING, QUOTES on PRAYER, QUOTES on REPENTANCE, QUOTES on the CROSS of CHRIST

Lenten Preparation Novena – Day Nine – 5 March 2019 “Come Back to Me With all your Heart”

Lenten Preparation Novena – Day Nine – 5 March 2019 “Shrove Tuesday”
“Come Back to Me With all your Heart”

Lent 2019 will begin on
Wednesday, 6 March
The Holy Triduum is
Thursday 18 April – Holy Saturday 20 April
Easter Sunday 21 April 2019

You have been crucifying Our Lord!

We come to confession quite preoccupied with the shame that we shall feel.   We accuse ourselves with hot air. It is said that many confess and few are converted.   I believe it is so, my children because few confess with tears of repentance.

See, the misfortune is, that people do not reflect.   If one said to those who work on Sundays, to a young person who had been dancing for two or three hours, to a man coming out of an alehouse drunk, “What have you been doing?   You have been crucifying Our Lord!” they would be quite astonished, because they do not think of it.   My children, if we thought of it, we should be seized with horror;  it would be impossible for us to do evil.   For what has the good God done to us that we should grieve Him thus, and put Him to death again — Him, who has redeemed us from Hell?

It would be well if all sinners, when they are going to their guilty pleasures, could, like St Peter, meet Our Lord on the way, who would say to them, “I am going to that place where you are going yourself, to be there crucified again.”   Perhaps that might make them reflect.

St Jean Marie Baptiste Vianney, the Cure of Ars (1786-1859)what have you been doing - st john vianney - 5 march 2019.jpg

A Meditation for this ‘Prelude to Lent’

REFLECTION“Give back some of God’s gifts to God, that you may safely enjoy the rest. Fast, or watch, or abound in alms, or be instant in prayer, or deny yourselves society, or pleasant books, or easy clothing, or take on you some irksome task or employment;  do one or other, or some, or all of these, unless you say that you have never sinned and may go like Esau with a light heart to take your crown”

“But, O ye sons and daughters of men, what if this fair weather but ensure the storm afterwards? what if it be, that the nearer you attain to making yourselves as gods on earth now, the greater pain lies before you in time to come, or even (if it must be said), the more certain becomes your ruin when time is at an end?   Come down, then, from your high chambers at this season to avert what else may be.

Sinners as ye are, act at least like the prosperous heathen, who threw his choicest trinket into the water, that he might propitiate fortune.   Let not the year go round and round, without a break and interruption in its circle of pleasures.

Give back some of God’s gifts to God, that you may safely enjoy the rest.   Fast, or watch, or abound in alms, or be instant in prayer, or deny yourselves society, or pleasant books, or easy clothing, or take on you some irksome task or employment; do one or other, or some, or all of these, unless you say that you have never sinned and may go like Esau with a light heart to take your crown.

Ever bear in mind that Day, which will reveal all things and will test all things “so as by fire” and which will bring us into judgement ere it lodges us in heaven.”

Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890)give back some of god's gifts to god - lent prep nov 5 march 2019.jpg

Lenten Preparation Novena

DAY NINE

O gracious Father,
infuse in our hearts
the spotless light of Your Divine Wisdom
and open the eyes of our mind
that we may understand the teachings of Your Gospel.
Instill in us also the fear of Your blessed commandments,
so that having curbed all carnal desires,
we may lead a spiritual life,
both thinking and doing everything to please You.
Help us to see,
in our ordinary difficulties and duties,
in the trials and temptations of every day,
the best opportunity of making up for past infidelities.
United with Your Son,
who makes His way to Calvary,
I offer You my intention
………………….
(Mention your intention)
For You, our God,
are the enlightenment of our souls and bodies
and to You we render glory,
together with Your Suffering Son,
and with Your all holy,
life-creating Spirit,
now and ever and forever.
AmenLenten prep novena day nine - 5 march 2019.jpg

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, LENT 2019, NOVENAS, QUOTES of the SAINTS, QUOTES on FAITH, QUOTES on LOVE, The PASSION

Lenten Preparation Novena – Day Three – 27 February 2019 “Come Back to Me With all your Heart”

Lenten Preparation Novena – Day Three – 27 February 2019
“Come Back to Me With all your Heart”

Lent 2019 will begin on
Wednesday, 6 March
The Holy Triduum is
Thursday, 18 April, Good Friday, 19 April, Holy Saturday, 20 April
Easter Sunday – 21 April 2019

WE ARE WRETCHED CREATURES

We cannot dwell upon the conduct of the Jews, my dear people, without being struck with amazement.   These very people had waited for God for four thousand years, they had prayed much because of the great desire they had to receive Him and yet when He came, He could not find a single person to give Him the poorest lodging.   The all-powerful God was obliged to make His dwelling with the animals.

And yet, my dear people, I find in the conduct of the Jews, criminal as it was, not a subject for explanations but a theme for the condemnation of the conduct of the majority of Christians.

We can see that the Jews had formed an idea of their Redeemer which did not conform with the state of austerity in which He appeared.   It seemed as if they could not persuade themselves that this could indeed be He who was to be their Saviour;  St Paul tells us very clearly that if the Jews had recognised Him as God, they would never have put Him to death.   There is, then, some small excuse for the Jews.   But what excuse can we make, my dear brethren, for the coldness and the contempt which we show towards Jesus Christ?

Oh, yes, we do indeed truly believe that Jesus Christ came upon earth, that He provided the most convincing proofs of His divinity.    Hence the reason for our hope.   We rejoice and we have good reason to recognise Jesus Christ as our God, our Saviour and our Model.   Here is the foundation of our faith.

But, tell me, with all this, what homage do we really pay Him?   Do we do more for Him than if we did not believe all this?   Tell me, dear brethren, does our conduct correspond at all to our beliefs?   We are wretched creatures.

We are even more blameworthy than the Jews!

St John Marie Baptiste Vianney (1786-1859)oh-yes-we-do-indeed-truly-believe-st-john-vianney-27-feb-2018.jpg

A Meditation for this ‘Prelude to Lent’

“He thought he was as sure of the blessing as if he had not sold the birthright.”
And then, when all is done and over and their souls sold to Satan, they never seem to understand that they have parted with their birthright.   They think that they stand just where they did, before they followed the world, the flesh and the devil  they take for granted that when they choose to become more decent, or more religious, they have all their privileges just as before.   Like Samson, they propose to go out as at other times before and shake themselves.    And like Esau, instead of repenting for the loss of the birthright, they come, as a matter of course, for the blessing.   Esau went out to hunt for venison gaily and promptly brought it to his father.   His spirits were high, his voice was cheerful. It did not strike him that God was angry with him for what had past years ago. He thought he was as sure of the blessing, as if he had not sold the birthright.

Blessed Cardinal John Henry Newman (1801-1890)and then when all is done and over - bl john henry newman - 27 feb 2019

Lenten Preparation Novena
DAY THREE

Today Lord I choose life,
I choose Your love
and the challenge to live it
and share it,
I choose hope, even in moments of darkness,
I choose faith, accepting You as Lord and God,
I choose to let go of some part of my burdens,
day by day handing them over to You,
I choose to take hold of Your strength and power
ever more deeply in my life.
I choose repentance and reparation and suffering,
for all my sins
and those of all the world.
Forgive me my Lord!
May this truly be for me,
a time of new life, of change, challenge and growth.
May I come to Easter
with a heart open to dying with You
and rising to Your new life, day by day.
Help me to repent of my sins now
and make reparation throughout
this Lenten season and each day thereafter.
United with your Son,
who makes His way to Calvary,
I offer You my intentions
…………………………………………..
(Mention your special intention)
Amenlenten preparation novena day three - 27 feb 2019