Author Topic: Wisdom: Saints, Doctors and Theological Writers of the Catholic Church  (Read 22407 times)

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Offline Xavier

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5/2: St. Athanasius, Bishop

May 2.--ST. ATHANASIUS, Bishop.

ATHANASIUS was born in Egypt towards the end of the third century, and was from his youth pious, learned, and deeply versed in the sacred writings, as befitted one whom God had chosen to be the champion and defender of His Church against the Arian heresy. Though only a deacon he was chosen by his bishop to go with him to the Council of Nicaea, in 325, and attracted the attention of all by the learning and ability with which he defended the faith. A few months later, he became Patriarch of Alexandria, and for forty-six years he bore, often well-nigh alone, the whole brunt of the Arian assault. On the refusal of the Saint to restore Arius to Catholic communion, the emperor ordered the Patriarch of Constantinople to do so. The wretched heresiarch took an oath that he had always believed as the Church believes; and the patriarch, after vainly using every effort to move the emperor, had recourse to fasting and prayer, that God Would avert from the Church the frightful sacrilege. The day came for the solemn entrance of Arius into the great church of Sancta Sophia. The heresiarch and his party set out glad and in triumph. But before he reached the church, death smote him swiftly and awfully, and the dreaded sacrilege was averted. St. Athanasius stood unmoved against four Roman emperors; was banished five times; was the butt of every insult, calumny, and wrong the Arians could devise, and lived in constant peril of death. Though firm as adamant in defence of the Faith, he was meek and humble, pleasant and winning in converse, beloved by his flock, unwearied in labors, in prayer, in mortifications, and in zeal for souls. In the year 373 his stormy life closed in peace, rather that his people would have it so than that his enemies were weary of persecuting him. He left to the Church the whole and ancient Faith, defended and explained in writings rich in thought and learning, clear, keen, and stately in expression. He is honored as one of the greatest of the Doctors of the Church.

Reflection.--The Catholic Faith, says St. Augustine, is more precious far than all the riches and treasures of earth; more glorious and greater than all its honors, all its possessions. This it is which saves sinners, gives light to the blind, restores penitents, perfects the just, and is the crown of martyrs.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

Offline Xavier

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5/3: The Discovery of The Holy Cross

May 3.--THE DISCOVERY OF THE HOLY CROSS.

GOD having restored peace to His Church, by exalting Constantine the Great to the imperial throne, that pious prince, who had triumphed over his enemies by the miraculous power of the cross, was very desirous of expressing his veneration for the holy places which had been honored and sanctified by the presence and sufferings of our blessed Redeemer on earth, and accordingly resolved to build a magnificent church in the city of Jerusalem. St. Helen, the emperor's mother, desiring to visit the holy places there, undertook a journey into Palestine in 326, though at that time near eighty years of age; and on her arrival at Jerusalem was inspired with a great desire to find the identical cross on which Christ had suffered for our sins. But there was no mark or tradition, even amongst the Christians, to show where it lay. The heathens, out of an aversion to Christianity, had done what they could to conceal the place where Our Saviour was buried, by heaping on it a great quantity of stones and rubbish, and building on it a temple to Venus. They had, moreover, erected a statue of Jupiter in the place where Our Saviour rose from the dead. Helen, to carry out her pious design, consulted every one at Jerusalem and near it whom she thought likely to assist her in finding out the cross; and was credibly informed that, if she could find out the sepulchre, she would likewise find the instruments of the punishment; it being the custom among the Jews to make a hole near the place where the body of a criminal was buried, and to throw into it whatever belonged to his execution. The pious empress, therefore, ordered the profane buildings to be pulled down, the statues to be broken in pieces, and the rubbish to be removed; and, upon digging to a great depth, the holy sepulchre, and near it three crosses, also the nails which had pierced Our Saviour's body, and the title which had been fixed to His cross, were found. By this discovery they knew that one of the three crosses was that which they were in quest of, and that the others belonged to the two malefactors between whom Our Saviour had been crucified. But, as the title was found separate from the cross, it was difficult to distinguish which of the three crosses was that on which our divine Redeemer consummated His sacrifice for the salvation of the world. In this perplexity the holy Bishop Macarius, knowing that one of the principal ladies of the city lay extremely ill, suggested to the empress to cause the three crosses to be carried to the sick person, not doubting but God would discover which was the cross they sought for. This being done, St. Macarius prayed that God would have regard to their faith, and, after his prayer, applied the crosses singly to the patient, who was immediately and perfectly recovered by the touch of one of the three crosses, the other two having been tried without effect. St. Helen, full of joy at having found the treasure which she had so earnestly sought and so highly esteemed, built a church on the spot, and lodged the cross there with great veneration, having provided an extraordinarily rich case for it. She afterwards carried part of it to the Emperor Constantine, then at Constantinople, who received it with great veneration; another part she sent or rather carried to Rome, to be placed in the church which she had built there, called Of the Holy Cross of Jerusalem, where it remains to this day. The title was sent by St. Helen to the same church, and placed on the top of an arch, where it was found in a case of lead in 1492. The inscription in Hebrew, Greek, and Latin is in red letters, and the wood was whitened. Thus it was in 1492; but these colors are since faded. Also the words Jesus and Judaeorum are eaten away. The board is nine, but must have been twelve, inches long. The main part of the cross St. Helen inclosed in a silver shrine, and committed it to the care of St. Macarius, that it might be delivered down to posterity, as an object of veneration. It was accordingly kept with singular care and respect in the magnificent church which she and her son built in Jerusalem. St. Paulinus relates that, though chips were almost daily cut off from it and given to devout persons, yet the sacred wood suffered thereby no diminution. It is affirmed by St, Cyril of Jerusalem, twenty-five years after the discovery, that pieces of the cross were spread all over the earth; he compares this wonder to the miraculous feeding of five thousand men, as recorded in the Gospel. The discovery of the cross must have happened about the month of May, or early in the spring; for St. Helen went the same year to Constantinople, and from thence to Rome, where she died in the arms of her son on the 18th of August, 326.

Reflection.--In every pious undertaking the beginning merely does not suffice. "Whoso shall persevere unto the end, he shall be saved."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/4: St. Monica

May 4.--ST. MONICA.

MONICA, the mother of St. Augustine, was born in 332. A, a girlhood of singular innocence and piety, she was given in marriage to Patritius, a pagan. She at once devoted herself to his conversion, praying for him always, and winning his reverence and love by the holiness of her life and her affectionate forbearance. She was rewarded by seeing him baptized a year before his death. When her son Augustine went astray in faith and manners her prayers and tears were incessant. She was once very urgent with a learned bishop that he would talk to her son in order to bring him to a better mind, but he declined, despairing of success with one at once so able and so headstrong. However, on witnessing her prayers and tears, he bade her be of good courage; for it might not be that the child of those tears should perish. By going to Italy, Augustine could for a time free himself from his mother's importunities; but he could not escape from her prayers, which encompassed him like the providence of God. She followed him to Italy, and there by his marvellous conversion her sorrow was turned into joy. At Ostia, on their homeward journey, as Augustine and his mother sat at a window conversing of the life of the blessed, she turned to him and said, "Son, there is nothing now I care for in this life. What I shall now do or why I am here, I know not. The one reason I had for wishing to linger in this life a little longer was that I might see you a Catholic Christian before I died. This has God granted me superabundantly in seeing you reject earthly happiness to become His servant. What do I here?" A few days afterwards she had an attack of fever, and died in the year 387.

Reflection.--It is impossible to set any bounds to what persevering prayer may do. It gives man a share in the Divine Omnipotence. St. Augustine's soul lay bound in the chains of heresy and impurity, both of which had by long habit grown inveterate. They were broken by his mother's prayers.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/5: St. Pius V

May 5.--ST. PIUS V.

A DOMINICAN friar from his fifteenth year, Michael Ghislieri, as a simple religious, as inquisitor, as bishop, and as cardinal, was famous for his intrepid defence of the Church's faith and discipline, and for the spotless purity of his own life. His first care as Pope was to reform the Roman court and capital by the strict example of his household and the severe punishment of all offenders. He next endeavored to obtain from the Catholic powers the recognition of the Tridentine decrees, two of which he urgently enforced--the residence of bishops, and the establishment of diocesan seminaries. He revised the Missal and Breviary, and reformed the ecclesiastical music. Nor was he less active in protecting the Church without. We see him at the same time supporting the Catholic King of France against the Huguenot rebels, encouraging Mary Queen of Scots, in the bitterness of her captivity, and excommunicating her rival the usurper Elizabeth, when the best blood of England had flowed upon the scaffold, and the measure of her crimes was full. But it was at Lepanto that the Saint's power was most manifest; there, in October, 1571, by the holy league which he had formed, but still more by his prayers to the great Mother of God, the aged Pontiff crushed the Ottoman forces, and saved Christendom from the Turk. Six months later, St. Pius died, having reigned but six years. St. Pius was accustomed to kiss the feet of his crucifix on leaving or entering his room. One day the feet moved away from his lips. Sorrow filled his heart, and he made acts of contrition, fearing that he must have committed some secret offence, but still he could not kiss the feet. It was afterwards found that they had been poisoned by an enemy.

Reflection.--"Thy cross, O Lord, is the source of all blessings, the cause of all graces: by it the faithful find strength in weakness, glory in shame, life in death."--St. Leo.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/6: St. John Before The Latin Gate

May 6.--ST. JOHN BEFORE THE LATIN GATE.

IN the year 95, St. John, who was the only surviving apostle, and governed all the churches of Asia, was apprehended at Ephesus, and sent prisoner to Rome. The Emperor Domitian did not relent at the sight of the venerable old man, but condemned him to be cast into a caldron of boiling oil. The martyr doubtless heard, with great joy, this barbarous sentence; the most cruel torments seemed to him light and most agreeable, because they would, he hoped, unite him forever to his divine Master and Saviour. But God accepted his will and crowned his desire; He conferred on him the honor and merit of martyrdom, but suspended the operation of the fire, as He had formerly preserved the three children from hurt in the Babylonian furnace. The seething oil was changed in his regard into an invigorating bath, and the Saint came out more refreshed than when he had entered the caldron. Domitian saw this miracle without drawing from it the least advantage, but remained hardened in his iniquity. However, he contented himself after this with banishing the holy apostle into the little island of Patmos. St. John returned to Ephesus, in the reign of Nerva, who by mildness, during his short reign of one year and four months, labored to restore the faded lustre of the Roman Empire. This glorious triumph of St. John happened without the gate of Rome called Latina. A church which since has always borne this title was consecrated in the same place in memory of this miracle, under the first Christian emperors.

Reflection.--St. John suffered above the other Saints a martyrdom of love, being a martyr, and more than a martyr, at the foot of the cross of his divine Master. All his sufferings were by love and compassion imprinted in his soul, and thus shared by him. O singular happiness, to have stood under the cross of Christ! O extraordinary privilege, to have suffered martyrdom in the person of Jesus, and been eye-witness of all He did or endured! If nature revolt within us against suffering, let us call to mind those words of the divine Master: "Thou knowest not now wherefore; but thou shalt know hereafter."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/7: St. Stanislas, Bishop, Martyr

May 7.--ST. STANISLAS, Bishop, Martyr.

STANISLAS was born in answer to prayer when his parents were advanced in age. Out of gratitude they educated him for the Church, and from a holy priest he became in time Bishop of Cracow. Boleslas II. was then King of Poland--a prince of good disposition, but spoilt by a long course of victory and success. After many acts of lust and cruelty, he outraged the whole kingdom by carrying off the wife of one of his nobles. Against this public scandal the chaste and gentle bishop alone raised his voice. Having commended the matter to God, he went down to the palace and openly rebuked the king for his crime against God and his subjects, and threatened to excommunicate him if he persisted in his sin. To slander the Saint's character, Boleslas suborned the nephews of one Paul, lately dead, to swear that their uncle had never been paid for land bought by the bishop for the Church. The Saint stood fearlessly before the king's tribunal, though all his witnesses forsook him, and guaranteed to bring the dead man to witness for him within three days. On the third day, after many prayers and tears, he raised Paul to life, and led him in his grave-clothes before the king. Boleslas made a show for a while of a better life. Soon, however, he relapsed into the most scandalous excesses, and the bishop, finding all remonstrance useless, pronounced the sentence of excommunication. In defiance of the censure, on May 8, 1079, the king went down to a chapel where the bishop himself was saying Mass, and sent in three companies of soldiers to dispatch him at the altar. Each in turn came out, saying they had been scared by a light from heaven. Then the king rushed in and slew the Saint at the altar with his own hand.

Reflection.--The safest correction of vice is a blameless life. Yet there are times when silence would make us answerable for the sins of others. At such times let us, in the name of God, rebuke the offender without fear.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/8: The Apparition of St. Michael The Archangel

May 8.--THE APPARITION OF ST. MICHAEL THE ARCHANGEL.

IT is manifest, from the Holy Scriptures, that God is pleased to make frequent use of the ministry of the heavenly spirits in the dispensations of His providence in this world, and especially towards man. Hence the name of Angel (which is not properly a denomination of nature, but office) has been appropriated to them. The angels are all pure spirits; they are, by a property of their nature, immortal, as every spirit is. They have the power of moving or conveying themselves from place to place, and such is their activity that it is not easy for us to conceive it. Among the holy archangels, there are particularly distinguished in Holy Writ Sts. Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael. St. Michael, whom the Church honors this day, was the prince of the faithful angels who opposed Lucifer and his associates in their revolt against Gad. As the devil is the sworn enemy of God's holy Church, St. Michael is its special protector against his assaults and stratagems. This holy archangel has ever been honored in the Christian Church as her guardian under God, and as the protector of the faithful; for God is pleased to employ the zeal and charity of the good angels and their leader against the malice of the devil. To thank His adorable goodness for this benefit of His merciful providence is this festival instituted by the Church in honor of the good angels, in which devotion she has been encouraged by several apparitions of this glorious archangel. Among others, it is recorded that St. Michael, in a vision, admonished the Bishop of Siponto to build a church in his honor on Mount Gargano, near Manfredonia, in the kingdom of Naples. When the Emperor Otho III. had, contrary to his word, put to death, for rebellion, Crescentius, a Roman senator, being touched with remorse he cast himself at the feet of St. Romuald, who, in satisfaction for his crime, enjoined him to walk barefoot, on a penitential pilgrimage, to St. Michael's on Mount Gargano, which penance he performed in 1002. It is mentioned in particular of this special guardian and protector of the Church that, in the persecution of Antichrist, he will powerfully stand up in her defence: "At that time shall Michael rise up, the great prince, who standeth for the children of thy people."

Reflection.--St. Michael is not only the protector of the Church, but of every faithful soul. He defeated the devil by humility: we are enlisted in the same warfare. His arms were humility and ardent love of God: the same must be our weapons. We ought to regard this archangel as our leader under God: and, courageously resisting the devil in all his assaults, to cry out, Who can be compared to God?
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

Offline Xavier

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5/9: St. Gregory Nazianzen

May 9.--ST. GREGORY NAZIANZEN.

GREGORY was born of saintly parents, and was the chosen friend of St. Basil. They studied together at Athens, turned at the same time from the fairest worldly prospects, and for some years lived together in seclusion, self-discipline, and toil. Gregory was raised, almost by force, to the priesthood; and was in time made Bishop of Nazianzum by St. Basil, who had become Archbishop of Caesarea. When he was fifty years old, he was chosen, for his rare gifts and his conciliatory disposition, to be Patriarch of Constantinople, then distracted and laid waste by Arian and other heretics. In that city he labored with wonderful success. The Arians were so irritated at the decay of their heresy that they pursued the Saint with outrage, calumny, and violence, and at length resolved to take away his life. For this purpose they chose a resolute young man, who readily undertook the sacrilegious commission. But God did not allow him to carry it out. He was touched with remorse, and cast himself at the Saint's feet, avowing his sinful intent. St. Gregory at once forgave him, treated him with all kindness, and received him amongst his friends, to the wonder and edification of the whole city, and to the confusion of the heretics, whose crime had served only as a foil to the virtue of the Saint. St. Jerome boasts that he had sat at his feet, and calls him his master and his catechist in Holy Scripture. But his lowliness, his austerities, the insignificance of his person, and above all his very success, drew down on him the hatred of the enemies of the Faith. He was persecuted by the magistrates, stoned by the rabble, and thwarted and deserted even by his brother bishops. During the second General Council he resigned his see, hoping thus to restore peace to the tormented city, and retired to his native town, where he died in 390. He was a graceful poet, a preacher at once eloquent and solid; and as a champion of the Faith so well equipped, so strenuous, and so exact, that he is called St. Gregory the Theologian.

Reflection.--"We must overcome our enemies," said St. Gregory, "by gentleness; win them over by forbearance. Let them be punished by their own conscience, not by our wrath. Let us not at once wither the fig-tree, from which a more skilful gardener may yet entice fruit."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/10: St. Antoninus, Bishop

May 10.--ST. ANTONINUS, Bishop.

ANTONINUS, or Little Antony, as he was called from his small stature, was born at Florence in 1389. After a childhood of singular holiness, he begged to be admitted into the Dominican house at Fiesole; but the Superior, to test his sincerity and perseverance, told him he must first learn by heart the book of the Decretals, containing several hundred pages. This apparently impossible task was accomplished within twelve months; and Antoninus received the coveted habit in his sixteenth year. While still very young, he filled several important posts of his Order, and was consulted on questions of difficulty by the most learned men of his day; being known, for his wonderful prudence, as "the Counsellor." He wrote several works on theology and history, and sat as Papal Theologian at the Council of Florence. In 1446 he was compelled to accept the archbishopric of that city; and in this dignity earned for himself the title of "the Father of the Poor," for all he had was at their disposal. St. Antoninus never refused an alms which was asked in the name of God. When he had no money, he gave his clothes, shoes, or furniture. One day, being sent by the Florentines to the Pope, as he approached Rome a beggar came up to him almost naked, and asked him for an alms for Christ's sake. Outdoing St. Martin, Antoninus gave him his whole cloak. When he entered the city, another was given him; by whom he knew not. His household consisted of only six persons; his palace contained no plate or costly furniture, and was often nearly destitute of the necessaries of life. His one mule was frequently sold for the relief of the poor, when it would be bought back for him by some wealthy citizen. He died embracing the crucifix, May 2d, 1459, often repeating the words, "To serve God is to reign."

Reflection.--"Alms-deeds," says St. Augustine, "comprise every kind of service rendered to our neighbor who needs such assistance. He who supports a lame man bestows an alms on him with his feet; he who guides a blind man does him a charity with his eyes; he who carries an invalid or an old man upon his shoulders imparts to him an alms of his strength. Hence none are so poor but they may bestow an alms on the wealthiest man in the world."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/11: St. Mammertus, Archbishop

May 11.--ST. MAMMERTUS, Archbishop.

ST. MAMMERTUS, Archbishop of Vienne in Dauphin, was a prelate renowned for his sanctity, learning, and miracles. He instituted in his diocese the fasts and supplications called the Rogations, on the following occasions. Almighty God, to punish the sins of the people, visited them with wars and other public calamities, and awaked them from their spiritual lethargy by the terrors of earthquakes, fires, and ravenous wild beasts, which last were sometimes seen in the very market-place of cities. These evils the impious ascribed to blind chance; but religious and prudent persons considered them as tokens of the divine anger, which threatened their entire destruction. Amidst these scourges, St. Mammertus received a token of the divine mercy. A terrible fire happened in the city of Vienne, which baffled the efforts of men; but by the prayers of the good bishop the fire on a sudden went out. This miracle strongly affected the minds of the people. The holy prelate took this opportunity to make them sensible of the necessity and efficacy of devout prayer, and formed a pious design of instituting an annual fast and supplication of three days, in which all the faithful should join, with sincere compunction of heart, to appease the divine indignation by fasting, prayer, tears, and the confession of sins. The Church of Auvergne, of which St. Sidonius was bishop, adopted this pious institution before the year 475, and it became in a very short time a universal practice. St. Mammertus died about the year 477.

Reflection.--"Know ye that the Lord will hear your prayers, if you continue with perseverance in fastings and prayers in the sight of the Lord" (Judith iv. 11).
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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5/12: St. Epiphanius, Archbishop

May 12.--ST. EPIPHANIUS, Archbishop.

ST. EPIPHANIUS was born about the year 310, in Palestine. In his youth he began the study of the Holy Scriptures, embraced a monastic life, and went into Egypt to perfect himself in the exercises of that state, in the deserts of that country. He returned to Palestine about the year 333, and built a monastery near the place of his birth. His labors in the exercise of virtue seemed to some to surpass his strength; but his apology always was: "God gives not the kingdom of heaven but on condition that we labor; and all we can do bears no proportion to such a crown." To his corporal austerities he added an indefatigable application to prayer and study. Most books then in vogue passed through his hands; and he improved himself very much in learning by his travels into many parts.

Although the skilful director of many others, St. Epiphanius took the great St. Hilarion as his master in a spiritual life, and enjoyed the happiness of his direction and intimate acquaintance from the year 333 to 356. The reputation of his virtue made St. Epiphanius known to distant countries, and about the year 367 he was chosen Bishop of Salamis in Cyprus. But he still wore the monastic habit, and continued to govern his monastery in Palestine, which he visited from time to time. He sometimes relaxed his austerities in favor of hospitality, preferring charity to abstinence. No one surpassed him in tenderness and charity to the poor. The veneration which all men had for his sanctity exempted him from. the persecution of the Arian Emperor Valens. In 376 he undertook a journey to Antioch in the hope of converting Vitalis, the Apollinarist bishop; and in 382 he accompanied St. Paulinus from that city to Rome, where they lodged at the house of St. Paula; our Saint in return entertained her afterward ten days in Cyprus in 385. The very name of an error in faith, or the shadow of danger of evil, affrighted him, and the Saint fell into some mistakes on certain occasions, which proceeded from zeal and simplicity. He was on his way back to Salamis, after a short absence, when he died in 403, having been bishop thirty-six years.

Reflection.--"In this is charity: not as though we had loved God, but because He hath first loved us."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

Offline Xavier

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5/13: St. John The Silent

May 13.--ST. JOHN THE SILENT.

JOHN was born of a noble family at Nicopolis, in Armenia, in the year 454; but he derived from the virtue of his parents a much more illustrious nobility than that of their pedigree. After their death, he built at Nicopolis a church in honor of the Blessed Virgin, as also a monastery, in which, with ten fervent companions, he shut himself up when only eighteen years of age, with a view of making the salvation and most perfect sanctification of his soul his only and earnest pursuit. Not only to shun the danger of sin by the tongue, but also out of sincere humility and contempt of himself, and the love of interior recollection and prayer, he very seldom spoke; and when obliged to, it was always in a very few words, and with great discretion. To his extreme affliction, when he was only twenty-eight years old, the Archbishop of Sebaste obliged him to quit his retreat, and ordained him Bishop of Colonian in Armenia, in 482. In this dignity John preserved always the same spirit, and, as much as was compatible with the, duties of his charge, continued his monastic austerities and exercises. Whilst he was watching one night in prayer, he saw before him a bright cross formed in the air, and heard a voice which said to him, "If thou desirest to be saved, follow this light." It seemed to move before him, and at length point out to the monastery of St. Sabas. Being satisfied what the sacrifice was which God required at his hands, he found means to abdicate the episcopal charge, and retired to the neighboring monastery of St. Sabas, which at that time contained one hundred and fifty fervent monks. St. John was then thirty-eight years old. After living there unknown for some years, fetching water, carrying stones, and doing other menial work, St. Sabas, judging him worthy to be promoted to the priesthood, presented him to the Patriarch Elias. St. John took the patriarch aside, and, having obtained from him a promise of secrecy, said, "Father, I have been ordained bishop; but on account of the multitude of my sins have fled, and am come into this desert to wait the visit of the Lord." The patriarch was startled, but God revealed to St. Sabas the state of the affair, whereupon, calling for John, he complained to him of his unkindness in concealing the matter from him. Finding himself discovered, John wished to quit the monastery, nor could St. Sabas prevail on him to stay, but on a promise never to divulge the. secret. In the year 503, St. John withdrew into a neigh, boring wilderness, but in 510 went back to the monastery, and confined himself for forty years to his cell. St. John, by his example and counsels, conducted many fervent souls to God, and continued to emulate, as much as this mortal state will allow, the glorious employment of the heavenly spirits in an uninterrupted exercise of love and praise, till he passed to their blessed company, soon after the year 558; having lived seventy-six years in the desert, which had only been interrupted by the nine years of his episcopal dignity.

Reflection.--A love of Christian silence is a proof that a soul makes it her chiefest delight to be occupied on God, and finds no comfort like that of conversing with Him. This is the paradise of all devout souls.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

Offline Xavier

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Re: Wisdom: Saints, Doctors and Theological Writers of the Catholic Church
« Reply #102 on: June 04, 2018, 12:27:57 PM »
5/14: St. Pachomius, Abbot

May 14.--ST. PACHOMIUS, Abbot.

IN the beginning of the fourth century great levies of troops were made throughout Egypt for the service of the Roman emperor. Among the recruits was Pachomius, a young heathen, then in his twenty-first year. On his way down the Nile he passed a village, whose inhabitants gave him food and money. Marvelling at this kindness, Pachomius was told they were Christians, and hoped for a reward in the life to come. He then prayed God to show him the truth, and promised to devote his life to His service. On being discharged, he returned to a Christian village in Egypt, where he was instructed and baptized. Instead of going home, he sought Palemon, an aged solitary, to learn from him a perfect life, and with great joy embraced the most severe austerities. Their food was bread and water, once a day in summer, and once in two days in winter; sometimes they added herbs, but mixed ashes with them. They only slept one hour each night, and this short repose Pachomius took sitting upright without support. Three times God revealed to him that he was to found a religious order at Tabenna; and an angel gave him a rule of life. Trusting in God, he built a monastery, although he had no disciples; but vast multitudes soon flocked to him, and he trained them in perfect detachment from creatures and from self. One day a monk, by dint of great exertions, contrived to make two mats instead of the one which was the usual daily task, and set them both out in front of his cell, that Pachomius might see how diligent he had been. But the Saint, perceiving the vainglory which had prompted the act, said, "This brother has taken a great deal of pains from morning till night to give his work to the devil" Then, to cure him of his delusion, Pachomius imposed on him as a penance to keep his cell for five months and to taste no food but bread and water. His visions and miracles were innumerable, and he read all hearts. His holy death occurred in 348.

Reflection.--"To live in great simplicity," said St. Pachomius, "and in a wise ignorance, is exceeding wise."
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

Offline Xavier

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Re: Wisdom: Saints, Doctors and Theological Writers of the Catholic Church
« Reply #103 on: June 10, 2018, 05:39:11 AM »
5/15: Ss. Peter and Dionysia

May 15.--STS. PETER and DIONYSIA.

IN the Decian persecution the blood of the Christians flowed at Lampsacus, a city of Asia Minor. St. Peter was the first who was led before the proconsul and condemned to die for the name of Christ. Young though he was, he went joyfully to his torments. He was bound to a wheel by iron chains, and his bones were broken, but he raised his eyes to heaven with a smiling countenance and said, "I give Thee thanks, O Lord Jesus Christ, because Thou hast given me patience, and made me victorious over the tyrant." The proconsul saw how little suffering availed, and ordered the martyr to be beheaded. But a little later, in the same city, the virgin Dionysia showed a like eagerness to suffer. St. Dionysia gained the crown which an apostate lost, and his history may teach us that those who lose Christ rather than suffer with Him lose all. With the strength that was left he cried out, "I never was a Christian. I sacrifice to the gods." Therefore he was taken down, and he offered sacrifice. But he was possessed by the devil, whom he had chosen for his master. He fell to the earth in a fit, bit out his tongue, and so expired. He escaped a little pain, and instead he went to the endless torments of hell, and forfeited eternal rest. "O wretched man!" Dionysia cried, "why have you feared a little suffering and chosen eternal pain instead?" She was seized and led away to horrible outrage, but her angel guardian appeared by her side and protected the spouse of Christ. Escaping from prison, she still burned with the desire to be dissolved and to be with Christ. She threw herself upon the bodies of the martyrs, saying, "I would fain die with you on earth, that I may live with you in heaven." And Christ, Who is the crown of virgins and the strength of martyrs, gave her the desire of her heart.

Reflection.--The martyrs were even like us, with natures which shrank from suffering. They were patient under it because they looked to the eternal recompense, and endured as seeing Him Who is invisible.
Locution, Aug 18, 2014: "They will realize that I have released an ocean of graces which have changed their darkness into light. They will realize that they have been freed from the past century of diabolical control. They will also know that this great gift has come through the consecration of Russia made by the Holy Father in communion with all the bishops in the world. http://locutions-forever.org/locutions/show/2014-08-18/1-the-overcoming-of-separation

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Re: Wisdom: Saints, Doctors and Theological Writers of the Catholic Church
« Reply #104 on: June 19, 2018, 07:34:01 PM »
Are there any other examples of Latin fools-for-Christ?

Quote
So he sent for him, and asked him privately: “Hast thou cut off the foot of a swine in the forest?” To which Father Juniper answered quite joyfully, not as one who has committed a fault, but believing he had done a great act of charity: “It is true, sweet Father, that I did cut off that swine’s foot; and if thou wilt listen compassionately, I will tell thee the reason. I went out of charity to visit the brother who is sick.” And so he related the matter in order, adding: “I tell thee, dear father, that this foot did the sick brother so much good, that if I had cut off the feet of a hundred swine instead of one, I verily believe that God would have been pleased therewith.”
From CCEL
Happy shall he be, that shall take and dash thy little ones against the rock. Alleluia.

Once Christ has filled the Cross, it can never be empty again.

"But God doesn't need your cookies!  Arrive on time!"

Offline Orthodox_Slav

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Re: Wisdom: Saints, Doctors and Theological Writers of the Catholic Church
« Reply #105 on: June 20, 2018, 11:50:57 AM »
Are there any other examples of Latin fools-for-Christ?

Quote
So he sent for him, and asked him privately: “Hast thou cut off the foot of a swine in the forest?” To which Father Juniper answered quite joyfully, not as one who has committed a fault, but believing he had done a great act of charity: “It is true, sweet Father, that I did cut off that swine’s foot; and if thou wilt listens compassionately, I will tell thee the reason. I went out of charity to visit the brother who is sick.” And so he related the matter in order, adding: “I tell thee, dear father, that this foot did the sick brother so much good, that if I had cut off the feet of a hundred swine instead of one, I verily believe that God would have been pleased therewith.”
From CCEL

what a fool for Christ! 

btw in Slavonic, we say юродивый which mean holy fool but you probably already know that don't you!
not every quiet man is humble but every humble man is quiet         st Isaac the Syrian