Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas – Saturday: The Grain of Wheat

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Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas

Saturday: The Grain of Wheat

Unless the grain of wheat falling into the ground die, itself remaineth alone.–John xii. 24.

We use the grain of wheat in two ways, for bread and for seed. Here the word is to be taken in the second sense, grain of wheat meaning seed and not the matter out of which we make bread. For in this sense it never increases so as to bear fruit. When it is said that the grain must die, this does not mean that it loses its value as seed, but that it is changed into another kind of thing. So St. Paul (i Cor. xv. 36) says, That which then thou sowest is not quickened, except it die first. Continue reading

Saint Oswald

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Saint Oswald

Archbishop of York
(† 992)

Oswald was of a noble Saxon family; he was endowed with a very rare and handsome appearance and with a singular piety of soul. Brought up by his uncle, Saint Odo, Archbishop of Canterbury, he was chosen, while still young, as dean of the secular canons of Winchester, at that time very lax. His attempt to reform them was a failure, and he saw, with that infallible instinct which so often guides the Saints in critical times, that the true remedy for the corruption of the clergy was the restoration of monastic life.
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Practice During Lent

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Practice During Lent

from the Liturgical Year, 1870

After having spent the three weeks of Septuagesima in meditating upon our spiritual infirmities, and upon the wounds caused in us by sin,–we should be ready to enter upon the penitential season, which the Church has now begun. We have now a clearer knowledge of the justice and holiness of God, and of the dangers that await an impenitent soul; and, that our repentance might be earnest and lasting, we have bade farewell to the vain joys and baubles of the world. Our pride has been humbled by the prophecy, that these bodies would soon be like the ashes that wrote the memento of death upon our foreheads. Continue reading

Saint Porphyry

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Saint Porphyry

Bishop of Gaza
(353-420)

At the age of twenty-five, Porphyry, a rich citizen of Thessalonica, left the world for one of the great religious houses in the desert of Scete. Here he remained five years, and then, finding himself drawn to a more solitary life, passed into Palestine, where he spent a similar period in the severest penance, until ill health obliged him to moderate his austerities. He then made his home in Jerusalem, and in spite of his ailments visited the Holy Places every day, thinking so little of his sickness, says his biographer, that he seemed to be afflicted in another body than his own. About this time God put it into his heart to sell all he had and give it to the poor; then, to reward the sacrifice, He restored him, by a miracle at the Holy Sepulchre, to perfect health.
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Saint Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows

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Saint Gabriel of Our Lady of Sorrows

Passionist
(1838-1862)

Saint Gabriel was born at Assisi in 1838. He was guided by Our Lady into the Passionist Order founded by Saint Paul of the Cross, and became a veritable Apostle of Her Sorrows. He was a very great and truly contemplative soul, whose only preoccupation was to unite himself to God at all times. He allowed no distractions to enter his spirit, and even though Italy, his country, was in a state of ferment when he entered religion, he wanted to know nothing of it.
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