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EXCUSE THE GIDDY ACTS OF WHICH YOU ARE THE VICTIM

EXCUSE THE GIDDY ACTS OF WHICH YOU ARE THE VICTIM

BE INDULGENT

We could not repeat these words often enough to every Christian – be indulgent.

Forget the little annoyances which people may have caused you, do not bear any resentment on account of the inconsiderate or unfavourable words which have been spoken about you. Excuse the awkward, and giddy acts of which you are the victim.

In a word, smile on everything.

Have an inexhaustible fund of kindness, patience and sweetness. Thus you will be in peace with your brethren; your love for them will undergo no change, and their affection for you will increase from day to day.

– Laverty & Sons, 1905

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Posted by on May 7, 2016 in Words of Wisdom

 

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O JESUS, YOU HAVE COME TO SET FREE THOSE WHOM FEAR OF DEATH HOLDS IN PERPETUAL SLAVERY

O day of triumph!

The Resurrection (First Glorious Mystery)

“O day of triumph for the Saviour! O day of joy for all the faithful. I adore you from my heart, O Jesus, triumphing over death. Truly, this day is your Passover, that is to say, your passing, in which you pass from death to life. Give us the grace, O Lord Jesus, to make our Pasch with you, passing to a new and holy life.

The world passes, but I do not wish to pass with the world; I wish to pass to my Father. This is the journey, which I have to make, I wish to make it with you.

In the ancient passover, the Jews who went forth from Egypt in order to go to the Promised Land, had to appear in the garb of travellers, with staves in their hands, and to hasten to eat the Pasch, so that they might be ready to set out at any moment.

This is the state in which the Christian soul should place himself, in order to make his passover with Jesus Christ. O my Saviour, receive your traveller, behold me here, ready: I desire to pass with you from this world to your Father, since you have wished that he should be my Father also.

My Saviour, I believe that you have not overcome death for yourself alone. You have overcome it for us, who believe in you.

I adore you, O Jesus, my Redeemer. I adore you, O Jesus, come to life again, for yourself and for all your followers, whom you have filled with your spirit, which is the spirit of eternal life.

You have submitted to death, in order that death might be conquered, and Satan disarmed, and in order to set free those whom the fear of death held in a perpetual slavery. Let us, my soul, appreciate these words of our Saviour, which rob death of all its terrors: ‘I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in me, even though he were dead, shall live; he who lives and believes in me, shall never die.’

I believe it, Lord, it is so; my sole Redeemer, I adore you.

O Jesus, you are, according to your word, ‘my resurrection and my life.'”

– Bossuet

 
 

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THE JOYFUL EXPECTATION OF OUR HEAVENLY HOMELAND IN THE MIDST OF THE ADVERSITIES OF OUR PRESENT EXILE

“[The words], ‘If you love me, keep my commandments, and ask the Father and he will give you another Paraclete’, were brought to fulfilment in the disciples themselves.

They were proven truly to have loved him, truly to have obeyed in his commandments, on that day when all at once the Holy Spirit appeared to them in [tongues of] fire as they were praying in the upper room, and taught them, [putting] in mouths a diversity of languages, and made them strong in heart with the consolation of his love.

Earlier, however, they possessed the Paraclete himself, namely, our Lord sojourning with them in the flesh. By the sweetness of his miracles and the wealth of his preaching they were wont to be raised up and strengthened, so that they could not be scandalised at persecution by unbelievers.

But since by ascending into heaven after his Resurrection he had deserted them bodily, although the presence of his divine majesty was never absent from them, he rightly added concerning this Paraclete, that is, the Holy Spirit: ‘to abide with you forever’. He abides eternally with the saints, always illuminating inwardly and invisibly in this life, and introducing them to the everlasting contemplation of the sight of his majesty in the future.

If we too, dearly beloved brothers, love Christ perfectly in such a way that we prove the genuineness of this love by our observance of his commandments, he will ask the Father on our behalf, and the Father will give us another Paraclete. He will ask the Father through his humanity, and will give [us another Paraclete] with the Father through his divinity…

If we commit ourselves with all care to hearing, reading, conferring with one another, and preserving these [deeds and teachings] in heart and body, it is sure that we will easily overcome the hardships of this age – as if the Lord were sojourning with us forever and consoling us. If we love this Paraclete and keep his commandments, he will ask the Father, and he will give us another Paraclete – that is, he will in his clemency pour forth the grace of his Spirit into our hearts, and it will gladden us in the expectation of our heavenly homeland in the midst of the adversities of our present exile.”

– St Bede the Venerable

 
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Posted by on August 8, 2015 in Words of Wisdom

 

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BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL (Mt 5:7) – HOW MERCIFUL DO WE NEED TO BE?

Blessed are the merciful

“You probably would feel quite offended if someone were to describe you as a cruel person. Yet, can you truthfully say that you never have caused unnecessary pain to another? You never have harshly criticised another, humiliated another or made cutting remarks to another? If you can answer, ‘Never’ (or even ‘Seldom’) to all such questions, then you are indeed close to the heart of Christ. ‘Blessed are the merciful,’ He has said, ‘for they shall obtain mercy.’

Vigilance, lest power corrupt in us the spirit of mercy

Few of us are so accomplished in this matter of mercy that we can afford to assume that we are included in our Lord’s blessing. Those of us who are in any position of authority, such as employers, supervisors, officials, teachers and religious superiors, have particular need to be vigilant lest power corrupt in us the spirit of mercy. It is so easy to be caustic towards those who cannot strike back.

Having others ‘at our mercy’

Failure in mercy is not confined, of course, to persons explicitly in positions of authority. There are many ways of having others ‘at our mercy’. We have the upper hand, for example, any time we enter a store or a restaurant. Since the customer is always right, clerks, waiters and managers must bear with our discourtesies in silent helplessness.

Often we inflict the deepest pain upon those we love

Often we inflict the deepest pain upon those who are bound to us by love. A husband snarls at his wife or a wife screams at her husband. Sometimes parents excoriate their children out of all proportion, making a capital offence of what is, at worst, a minor misdemeanor.

Venting our anger on the next best person

More often than not, the reason why we are grumpy or snappish toward another is because we have bottled-up feelings of resentment or frustration which press for ventilation. A teacher who has just been reprimanded by his principal, for example, will land like a charge of dynamite on the first pupil who steps out of line in the least degree. Nine-tenths of our temper explosions really do not belong at all to the hapless person who is rocked by our anger. Our victim simply happens to be the nearest and most defenceless object upon whom we can discharge our emotional pressure.

Reacting savagely to minor annoyances

Sometimes it is nervous fatigue or physical distress (such as a headache) which causes us to react savagely to minor annoyances. Like a sick animal, we growl and bare our teeth at anyone, however innocent, who happens to cross our path.

A gentleman never gives pain

Cardinal Newman has described a gentleman as one who never gives pain. A gentleman bears his own inner hurts and tensions with fortitude and does not visit them upon others. It is an infallible sign of a small mind and a weak character when a person is discourteous toward those over whom he has some advantage.

There are times, of course, when a person in authority must administer an admonition or a rebuke. Yet, even this can be done with gentleness and tact. It is so much better to say, ‘You are doing a fine job, George, but there is one small thing which I feel I should call to your attention,’ than to shout, ‘You stupid fool! See what you’ve done!’…

Our Lord Jesus singled out the virtue of mercifulness for special attention

‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.’ It is no wonder that Jesus singled out the virtue of mercifulness for such special attention. This is the one virtue above all others which characterises Himself. His patience, His allowance for human weakness, His compassion, His quickness to forgive – all combine to give us confidence as we pray to Him, ‘Lord, have mercy!’

The people whose lives touch ours have enough suffering already. It is inexcusable if we add to their hurt by our discourtesy, ill-temper and vindictiveness. If we cannot be gentle, patient and forgiving toward one another, then Jesus has a right to ask, ‘What price My crucifixion? Was it, then, all in vain?'”

– Fr Leo J. Trese, One Step Enough

 
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Posted by on August 3, 2015 in Words of Wisdom

 

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IT IS THE DEATH OF THE WORD MADE FLESH WHICH IS OUR GREAT LESSON OF THIS WORLD

“It is the death of the Eternal Word of God made flesh, which is our great lesson how to think and how to speak of this world.

His Cross has put its due value upon everything which we see, upon all fortunes, all advantages, all ranks, all dignities, all pleasures; upon the list of the flesh, and the list of the eyes, and the pride of life… Go to the political world… to the world of intellect and science… look at misery, look at poverty and destitution, look at oppression and captivity; go where food is scanty and lodging unhealthy… Would you know how to rate all these? Gaze upon the Cross.”

– Bl. John Henry Newman, We now learn the true values, P.S. VI, 84-86

 

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WHY IS THE ENTRANCE TO HEAVEN SO VERY LOW?

The entrance to heaven

“The gate of heaven is very low; we must lower ourselves greatly in order to enter.

Consider who they are who enter in most easily:

The humble, because they are overlooked.

The obedient, because they lower themselves daily.

The poor, because they possess nothing.

The pure in heart, because they are not attached to anything.

Patient souls, because daily suffering, borne with resignation, has made them bend under the fatherly hand of the Lord.

Lastly, charitable souls, because they despoil themselves in order to give to others.”

– Laverty & Sons (eds), 1905

 
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Posted by on July 23, 2015 in Words of Wisdom

 

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WE ARE ONLY ON LOAN TO OURSELVES – AT ALL TIMES WE REMAIN GOD’S PROPERTY

We are not our own

“We all are familiar with the concept of stewardship, of responsibility of another’s property which may be entrusted to our care. The manager of a chain store is the steward of the corporation which owns the store. The corporation’s board of directors are the stewards of the stockholders. A banker is the steward of his depositors and a pastor of his parishioners.

The obligation of a steward is to administer wisely the property which is entrusted to his care. He must guard it vigilantly, use it prudently and keep always in mind the best interests of the owner.

There are few of us who do not find ourselves in a position of stewardship

There are few of us who do not find ourselves in a position of stewardship, at least some times and at least in some small matters. It is to our credit that most of us do discharge conscientiously our duties of stewardship. There are frauds and embezzlements, true enough. But it is only because such betrayals of trust are exceptional that they rate newspaper headlines.

Our obligations of stewardship to God

We understand clearly and take seriously the obligations of stewardship as far as our neighbour is concerned. It seems somewhat surprising, therefore, that we pay so little heed to our duties of stewardship as far as God is concerned.

We acknowledge readily enough our indebtedness to God for all that we are and have. We never would question for a moment the fact that we owe to God our existence, our religious faith, our physical and mental endowments and all that is good and desirable in our lives. We are decently grateful to God, and pray that He will continue to bless us with His loving care.

Too few of us, however, develop a functioning realisation of our stewardship to God. Freely admitting all that He has done for us, we still do not operate on the recognised premise that we belong to God, in ourselves and in all that we are and have.

We shall be called upon to give God an account

We are not our own. We remain God’s absolute property. We are only on loan to ourselves. When we finally face God in judgment, it will not be to give an account of our gift. Usage has hallowed that expression, but strictly speaking there have been no gifts, only investments. In judgment we shall be called upon to give God an account of the dividends, in love and service, which His investments have garnered in our hands.

The unawareness of our role of stewardship shows itself in a hundred ways. For example, we often say (or think) ‘I owe it to myself to do this’, when the real basis of our decision should be, ‘I owe it to God to do this.’ Similarly we ponder, ‘How much can I afford to spend?’ or, ‘How much can I afford to give?’ when a more precise question would be, ‘How much of His money would God want me to shell out here?’ A still better question would be, ‘How much of His money would God want me to spend on myself while others lack enough to eat?’

Much of the loose writing and talking that is done concerning sex, in and out of marriage, stems from the forgetfulness of God’s ownership rights. The power of procreation has been entrusted to us by God to be used for His purposes. He has not abandoned His dominion over that power. The recommendations of sociologists, physiologists, physicians and psychologists can be valid only to the extent that they recognise God’s proprietary rights.

The power of procreation has been entrusted to us by God to be used for His purposes

God certainly wills the enhancement of His property. To put it more conventionally, God certainly wills the good of His beloved creature, man. But it is the good as God sees it and the good which God wants, which must be sought.

The development of a sense of stewardship will make our lives more fruitful

The development of a sense of stewardship will make our lives more meaningful, more fruitful. Almost always we are more careful with the property of another than we are with our own. If we see ourselves, our possessions, our health, our time and our talents as really belonging to God, there will be much less waste and misuse than when we see ourselves as the absolute master of our assets and resources.

It will make quite a difference, too, in our final accounting.”

– Fr Leo J. Trese, One Step Enough, 1966

 

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