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Tag Archives: Spirituality

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (MATTHEW 24:37-44)

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (MATTHEW 24:37-44)

First Sunday of Advent, Year A

Stay awake so that you may be ready.

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘As it was in Noah’s day, so will it be when the Son of Man comes. For in those days before the Flood people were eating, drinking, taking wives, taking husbands, right up to the day Noah went into the ark, and they suspected nothing till the Flood came and swept all away. It will be like this when the Son of Man comes. Then of two men in the fields one is taken, one left; of two women at the millstone grinding, one is taken, one left.

‘So stay awake, because you do not know the day when your master is coming. You may be quite sure of this that if the householder had known at what time of the night the burglar would come, he would have stayed awake and would not have allowed anyone to break through the wall of his house. Therefore, you too must stand ready because the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.’

V. The Gospel of the Lord. R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

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“THOU SHALT NOT KILL”: TO FULFIL THIS COMMANDMENT, IT IS NOT ENOUGH JUST TO REFRAIN FROM PHYSICALLY MURDERING SOMEONE

“THOU SHALT NOT KILL”: TO FULFIL THIS COMMANDMENT, IT IS NOT ENOUGH JUST TO REFRAIN FROM PHYSICALLY MURDERING SOMEONE

For I tell you, if your virtue goes no deeper than that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the Kingdom of heaven. (Mt 5:20)

The righteousness of the Pharisees is that they shall not kill; the righteousness of those who are destined to enter into the kingdom of heaven is that they shall not be angry without cause. Not to kill is, therefore, the least commandment; and whoever shall break that shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven. But whoever shall fulfil that commandment not to kill will not necessarily be great and fit for the kingdom of heaven; but yet he has ascended to a certain degree. He will be made perfect, however, if he refrains from anger without cause; and if he shall do this, he will be removed much further from the guilt of murder. And, therefore, he who teaches that we should not be angry, does not destroy the law which forbids us to kill, but rather completes it; so that we preserve our innocence both outwardly when we do not kill, and in the heart when we refrain from anger.

– From: St Augustine, Bishop, Book 1 on the Sermon of the Lord on the Mount, Ch. 9, from An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

 
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Posted by on November 21, 2016 in Words of Wisdom

 

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NEW WEBSITE: “THE ART OF DYING WELL”

NEW WEBSITE: “THE ART OF DYING WELL”

This new website has been set up by the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales. Sections include: What is dying well? Talking about death. Facing death personally. Losing a loved one. Caring for the dying. The address of this new website is http://www.artofdyingwell.org (external link).

 

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ZEAL FOR SOULS IS SIMPLY LOVE IN ACTION

ZEAL FOR SOULS IS SIMPLY LOVE IN ACTION

MARY’S ARMY

Previous chapter: HE KNOWS THAT, FOR EVEN THE MOST SERIOUS EVILS, THERE IS A REMEDY, AND ONE ONLY WHICH GOD WILLS HIM TO EMPLOY

HOLINESS THROUGH MARY

The love of God is the heart of sanctity. Training in the love of God is, therefore, the principal task of the Child of Mary. Everything is designed to make the flame of Divine Love burn brighter: His every act is made to converge towards God, the supreme Object of his love.

In mind, will and heart, he is united with God and assimilated to Him. Thus seeking God, he relishes and lives the great Truths of his Faith, receiving eventually indomitable strength to overcome every obstacle and perform even heroic acts of virtue. The Holy Spirit comes into his soul with fire and love, making it one with Mary’s love and with Mary’s will to save the world.

Then, the love aflame there bursts forth from soul to soul pressing on daily towards the final objective, the setting of the whole world alight with the Divine Fire. The love of God expresses itself particularly in the exercise of the supernatural love of all men for God’s sake; in other words, in zeal for souls. His whole life is made one long exercise of zeal and, therefore, of love: for ZEAL is simply LOVE in action. Thus, he merits all the graces, privileges and power attached to the ceaseless practice of Divine Charity.

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

 
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Posted by on November 15, 2016 in Prayers to Our Lady

 

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A MAN OUGHT TO ROOT HIMSELF SO FIRMLY IN GOD THAT HE WILL NOT NEED THE CONSOLATIONS OF MEN

A MAN OUGHT TO ROOT HIMSELF SO FIRMLY IN GOD THAT HE WILL NOT NEED THE CONSOLATIONS OF MEN

We are cast down, but we perish not: Always bearing in our body the mortification of Jesus, that the life also of Jesus may be made manifest in our body. (2Co4:9b,10)

THE VALUE OF ADVERSITY

It is good for us to have trials and troubles at times, for they often remind us that we are on probation and ought not to hope in any worldly thing. It is good for us sometimes to suffer contradiction, to be misjudged by men even though we do well and mean well. These things help us to be humble and shield us from vainglory. When to all outward appearances men give us no credit, when they do not think well of us, then we are more inclined to seek God Who sees our hearts. Therefore, a man ought to root himself so firmly in God that he will not need the consolations of men.

When a man of good will is afflicted, tempted, and tormented by evil thoughts, he realises clearly that his greatest need is God, without Whom he can do no good. Saddened by his miseries and sufferings, he laments and prays. He wearies of living longer and wishes for death that he might be dissolved and be with Christ. Then he understands fully that perfect security and complete peace cannot be found on earth.

– From: The Imitation of Christ, Thomas à Kempis

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2016 in Words of Wisdom

 

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HE KNOWS THAT, FOR EVEN THE MOST SERIOUS EVILS, THERE IS A REMEDY, AND ONE ONLY WHICH GOD WILLS HIM TO EMPLOY

HE KNOWS THAT, FOR EVEN THE MOST SERIOUS EVILS, THERE IS A REMEDY, AND ONE ONLY WHICH GOD WILLS HIM TO EMPLOY

MARY’S ARMY

Previous chapter: IT IS EVER GOD’S WAY TO PERFECT HIS GREATEST PROJECTS WITH INADEQUATE INSTRUMENTS

HOLINESS THROUGH MARY

There is no room for timidity in the work of a Child of Mary who trusts fully in God and the might of His Grace. What the world calls heroism is mere formality and, if persevered in, has an electrifying effect upon the accepted standards of a community.

As for difficulties and dangers, a little courage, nurtured on supernatural trust, shows that they resemble a forest which, at a distance appears solid and impenetrable, but when approached is found easy on entry.

In fact, he is trained for this difficult work and his vocation is to penetrate to the utmost depths his search for the lost sheep, to establish personal contact with every member of underprivileged groups, to reach each of the lapsed and uplift all of the most wretched and dejected of the population. So great is his trust in God, through Jesus and Mary, that he pursues his search for souls to the bitter end with far more zeal and earnestness than those who search for the rare and precious things of the earth.

[Enemies not of flesh and blood, but principalities and powers: the rulers of this world of darkness (Ep6:12)]

[THE ARMOUR OF GOD: ]

No matter how long and drawn-out the battle, how toilsome the labours, how severe the rebuffs, how hardened the cases, how hopeless the prospect, the Child of Mary is buoyed up with unfailing confidence in the omnipotence of grace. He knows that for even the most serious evils, there is a remedy, and ONE only, which God wills him to employ: the intense and patient application of the whole religious system of the Catholic Church.

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

 
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Posted by on November 13, 2016 in Prayers to Our Lady

 

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JESUS REMAINS ALWAYS FAITHFUL

JESUS REMAINS ALWAYS FAITHFUL

THE FAITHFUL HEART OF JESUS

It is not with God as with men,” says the Holy Spirit. Men often break their word, either because they lie in making the promise, or because they change their mind after promising. But God cannot be unfaithful to His promises; for He cannot lie, and He is unchanging.

How faithful then, is the Heart of Jesus, and what confidence we should have in His promises! He is faithful to the poor sinner, who asks Him for grace and mercy, for He has said: “If any hear my voice, and open to me the door, I will enter into his house, and I will sup with him, and he with Me.”

He is faithful to those who pray to Him with confidence. “Ask,” He has said, “and you shall receive.” He is faithful to the soul exposed to temptations who addresses to Him its cry of distress, for, as the apostle assures us, “God is faithful and He will not suffer you to be tempted beyond your strength.” Oh, how much better it is to deal with God than with men.

We ought to have as certain a conviction that the Heart of Jesus cannot fail us, as we have reason to fear that men would betray us.

– Laverty & Sons (eds), 1905

 

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