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IN OUR OWN AGE, THE CALL TO SANCTITY IS MORE IMPERATIVE THAN EVER

IN OUR OWN AGE, THE CALL TO SANCTITY IS MORE IMPERATIVE THAN EVER

For Part 1 please click here.

HOLINESS THROUGH MARY

In our own Age, the call to sanctity is more imperative than ever, if only because our race seems to be drifting further and further from God. The Blessed Virgin has appeared, notably at Fatima, to appeal for reparation. God has raised up a great Saint like St Therese of Lisieux to recruit an army of victim souls. The Popes have called upon all members of the Church to seek after integral Catholicism, which necessarily implies the practice of the lay apostolate.

It is not surprising, therefore, that the Providence of God should in these times offer sincere souls a means of sanctity, specially designed for those who must continue to live in the world.

Mary’s Army exists primarily to sanctify its members. To accomplish this, it has devised a unique scheme of spiritual formation designed to bring its members ever closer to God through frequent reception of the Sacraments, regular prayer, the practice of all the virtues and, most of all, devotion to Our Lady.

We are well aware that no one can take the slightest step towards sanctity without grace. Mary’s Army calls all its members to have the greatest devotion to the Holy Eucharist, the very Source of Grace. The Mass is the continuation among men of the Sacrifice of Calvary, containing all that Christ offered to God and all that He acquired for men. From Calvary, every Grace flows: hence, desiring to share plenteously in the gifts of Redemption, the Child of Mary has fervent and frequent recourse to Holy Mass, which he is particularly enjoined to hear in union with and in the spirit of Mary. Through him, Mary will re-enact her prayer on Calvary, the first fruits of which were the earliest converts to the Faith. With Her, he will unite himself to Christ, to be but a single victim, offered to God for the sins of men. [to be continued]

– Excerpts from Holiness Through Mary by Fr Francis Ripley, copied from a pamphlet by the Universal Rosary Association. For the Association’s contact details, please visit the link above (Part 1).

 

 

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ST JOHN OF ST FACUNDUS – A DISTINGUISHED PEACEMAKER

ST JOHN OF ST FACUNDUS – A DISTINGUISHED PEACEMAKER

ST JOHN OF ST FACUNDUS, CONFESSOR; FEAST DAY: JUNE 12

John was born of a noble family at Sahagun in Spain. His parents, after having been childless for a long time, obtained him from God by reason of their holy works and by their prayers.

From his youth, he showed signs of his future sanctity. After being ordained a priest, he gave up, of his own accord, the ecclesiastical benefices with which he had been justly enriched, so that he might serve God in greater peace.

When he fell into a very severe illness at Salamanca, he bound himself by vow to a stricter discipline. To fulfil this vow, he withdrew to a monastery of St Augustine, then especially distinguished for a severe way of life.

When he had been admitted there, he surpassed even those who were most advanced in virtue. Sometimes by sermons, and at other times by private conversations and the sanctity of his life, he restored to peace the citizens of Salamanca, who had been harassed by bloody feuds.

He was more than once freed from imminent danger by the power of God. He was frequently able to behold the presence of Christ the Lord while he was celebrating Mass, to observe the secrets of the heart, and to foretell the future. At length, after having foretold the day of his death, he departed this life in a most holy manner, famous for many miracles before and after his death. When they were duly approved, Alexander VIII numbered him among the saints.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Roman Breviary, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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PSALM 32 – EXULTATE, JUSTI

PSALM 32 – EXULTATE, JUSTI

An exhortation to praise God, and to trust in him.

A psalm for David.

Rejoice in the Lord, O ye just: praise be cometh the upright.

Give praise to the Lord on the harp; sing to him with the psaltery, the instrument of ten strings.

Sing to him a new canticle, sing well unto him with a loud noise.

For the word of the Lord is right, and all his works are done with faithfulness.

He loveth mercy and judgment; the earth is full of the mercy of the Lord.

By the word of the Lord the heavens were established; and all the power of them by the spirit of his mouth:

Gathering together the waters of the sea, as in a vessel; laying up the depths in storehouses.

Let all the earth fear the Lord, and let all the inhabitants of the world be in awe of him.

For he spoke and they were made: he commanded and they were created.

The Lord bringeth to nought the counsels of nations; and he rejecteth the devices of people, and casteth away the counsels of princes.

But the counsel of the Lord standeth for ever: the thoughts of his heart to all generations.

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord: the people whom he hath chosen for his inheritance.

The Lord hath looked from heaven: he hath beheld all the sons of men.

From his habitation which he hath prepared, he hath looked upon all that dwell on earth.

He who hath made the hearts of every one of them: who understandeth all their works.

The king is not saved by a great army: nor shall the giant be saved by his own great strength.

Vain is the horse for safety: neither shall he be saved by the abundance of his strength.

Behold the eyes of the Lord are on them that fear him: and on them that hope in his mercy.

To deliver their souls from death; and feed them in famine.

Our soul waiteth for the Lord: for he is our helper and protector.

For in him our heart shall rejoice: and in his holy name we have trusted.

Let thy mercy, O Lord, be upon us, as we have hoped in thee.

 

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BEFORE THE EARTH CAME INTO BEING, WISDOM WAS BORN (PROV 8:22-31)

BEFORE THE EARTH CAME INTO BEING, WISDOM WAS BORN (PROV 8:22-31)

The Most Holy Trinity (Year C) – First Reading

The Wisdom of God cries aloud:

The Lord created me when his purpose first unfolded,

before the oldest of his works.

From everlasting I was firmly set,

from the beginning, before earth came into being.

The deep was not, when I was born,

there were no Springs to gush with water.

Before the mountains were settled,

before the hills, I came to birth;

before he made the earth, the countryside,

or the first grains of the world’s dust.

When he fixed the heavens firm, I was there,

when he drew ring on the surface of the deep,

when he thickened the cloud above,

when he fixed fast the springs of the deep,

when he assigned the sea its boundaries

– and the waters will not invade the shore –

when he laid down the foundations of the earth,

I was by his side, a master craftsman,

delighting in him day after day,

ever at play in his presence,

at play everywhere in the world,

delighting to be with the sons of men.

 

The word of the Lord.

 

 

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HOW YOU AVOID SEEDS OF DISCONTENT FROM SPROUTING IN YOUR LIFE

HOW YOU AVOID SEEDS OF DISCONTENT FROM SPROUTING IN YOUR LIFE

In order that life may be good and pleasant, occupation should surround and enter into it, as the air surrounds and penetrates the body.

To be without some useful occupation, which in addition to our great duties will fill all those little moments when we are alone, is to slowly plant within ourselves the seeds of a discontent which will end by destroying our cheerfulness, weakening our virtue, and embittering our character.

It would seem that a person who has noble thoughts, who says nothing ungracious, who is assiduous in her hours of work, and faithful to the demands on her position, needs nothing more to make her life good and useful. But no; her life, with all this, is not sufficiently useful, nor consequently meritorious, if, outside these duties, when she is alone, she permits her mind and heart to drift aimlessly on, because then her life is filled with little voids.

And through these moments of dreamy idleness there will come and go “troubles about nothing, dark clouds, little suspicions, sudden silences, cutting words, prolonged weariness, and sullenness without cause.”

Mothers, friends, you who wish to be always loved, find constantly some new and interesting occupation for those to whom you devote yourselves.

And you who wish to remain always joyous, pure, and loving, impose on yourselves each day some task: something definite, in order that you may not have the trouble of seeking it; something simple, which you can leave and resume without trouble; something interesting, which will attract you when your serious occupations are ended, retain you by its charm, and fill the voids in your day; “for instance, a collection to complete, a book to examine, something to learn, a work of art to perfect…”

God has given to occupation the mission of the north wind – that of purifying the miasma of the heart, as the wind purifies the miasma of the atmosphere.

The saints have all been very busy, even overburdened.

– From: Golden Grains, Eighth Edition, M. H. Gill and Son, Dublin, 1889

 
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Posted by on May 17, 2016 in Words of Wisdom

 

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THE FINEST SERMON EVER PREACHED WAS DELIVERED BY GOD

THE FINEST SERMON EVER PREACHED WAS DELIVERED BY GOD

HOLINESS THROUGH MARY

The finest sermon ever preached was delivered by God, in Person, as He sat on the slopes of a mountain over 2000 years ago: “Blessed are the poor in spirit; the kingdom of Heaven is theirs. Blessed are the patient; they shall inherit the land. Blessed are those who mourn; they shall be comforted. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for holiness; they shall have their fill.”

Christ was challenging the world. Speaking to a group of ordinary, illiterate country people, He told them that their vocation in life was to aspire after the holiness of God Himself. “You are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect… Lay up treasure for yourselves in Heaven… Make it your first care to find the Kingdom of God and His approval… Make your way in by the narrow gate.” Little wonder that St Paul, a few years later, could tell the people of Thessalonica: “What God asks of you is that you should sanctify yourselves.”

Christ lived and taught on this earth to sanctify souls. That was the reason He established His Church. He intended all men to be saints. There is not one kind of Christianity for priests, monks and nuns, and another for people living in the world. To all, St Peter addresses these words: “You are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a consecrated nation, a people God means to have for Himself; it is yours to proclaim the exploits of the God Who has called you out of the darkness into His marvellous light.”

Every Christian, in virtue of the fact that he is a Christian, is bound to seek after holiness. Monks and nuns bind themselves by vows to help them in their quest, but the vows do not make the obligation: they simply reinforce and emphasise it. The destination of the Christian life is perfection for all. In every Age of the Church, there have been saints in the world as well as in the cloister. [to be continued]

– Excerpts from Holiness Through Mary by Fr Francis Ripley, copied from a pamphlet by the Universal Rosary Association. For the Association’s contact details, please click here.

 

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ST MARGARET, QUEEN OF SCOTS

ST MARGARET, QUEEN OF SCOTS

ST MARGARET, QUEEN AND WIDOW; FEAST DAY: NOVEMBER 16

Margaret, of the English royal family, was born in Hungary. She exercised the greatest piety throughout her childhood and went to England with her father, who had been summoned to his royal home by her uncle, the holy King Edward.

Later she married Malcolm III of Scotland at the urging of his mother. Because of her holiness and works of mercy, she was a blessing to the whole kingdom for thirty years. She practised great austerity of life and had a burning love of neighbour, especially of the needy. She exhausted her treasury more than once feeding them.

After bearing bitter suffering and a prolonged illness with great patience, she died on the sixteenth of the Calends of November. At the moment of death, her pale, worn face flushed with unusual beauty. Clement X chose her as patroness of Scotland, and she is honoured with great devotion everywhere on earth.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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