Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas – Wednesday After the Fourth Sunday

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Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas

Wednesday After the Fourth Sunday

The Divine Friend

His sisters sent to Him saying : Lord, behold, he whom
Thou lovest is sick.–John xi. 3.

Three things here call for thought.

1. God’s friends are from time to time afflicted in the body. It is not, therefore, in any way a proof that a man is not a friend of God that he is from time to time sick and ailing. Eliphaz argued falsely against Job when he said, Remember, I pray thee, who ever perished being innocent? or when were the just destroyed? (Job iv. 7).

The gospel corrects this when it says, Lord, behold, he whom thou lovest is sick, and the Book of Proverbs, too, where we read, For whom the Lord loveth, He chastiseth: and as a father in the son He pleaseth himself (Prov. iii. 12).

2. The sisters do not say, “Lord, come and heal him.” They merely explain that Lazarus is ill, they say, he is sick. This is to remind us that, when we are dealing with a friend, it is enough to make known our necessity, we do not need to add a request. For a friend, since he wills the welfare of his friend as he wills his own, is as anxious to ward off evil from his friend as he is to ward it off from himself. This is true most of all in the case of Him who, of all friends, loves most truly. The Lord keepeth all them that love him (Ps. cxliv. 20).

3. These two sisters, who so greatly desire the cure of their sick brother, do not come to Christ personally, as did the centurion and the man sick of the palsy. From the special love and familiarity which Christ had shown them, they had a special confidence in Him. And, possibly, their grief kept them at home, as St. Chrysostom thinks. A friend if he continue steadfast, shall be to thee as thyself, and shall act with confidence among them of thy household (Ecclus. vi. 11).

The Month of the Blessed Sacrament

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The Month of the Blessed Sacrament

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. The Church traditionally encouraged the month of April for increased devotion to Jesus in the Holy Eucharist. “The Church in the course of the centuries has introduced various forms of this Eucharistic worship which are ever increasing in beauty and helpfulness; as, for example, visits of devotion to the tabernacles, even every day; Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament; solemn processions, especially at the time of Eucharistic Congresses, which pass through cities and villages; and adoration of the Blessed Sacrament publicly exposed . . . These exercises of piety have brought a wonderful increase in faith and supernatural life to the Church militant upon earth and they are re-echoed to a certain extent by the Church triumphant in heaven, which sings continually a hymn of praise to God and to the Lamb ‘Who was slain.'” –Pope Pius XII Continue reading

Saint Hugh

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Saint Hugh

Bishop of Grenoble
(1053-1132)

It was the good fortune of Saint Hugh to receive, from his cradle, strong impressions of piety through the example and solicitude of his illustrious and holy parents. He was born at Chateauneuf in Dauphiné, France, in 1053. His father, Odilo, who served his country in an honorable post in the army, labored by all means in his power to make his soldiers faithful servants of their Creator, and by severe punishments, to restrain vice. By the advice of his son, Saint Hugh, in his later years he became a Carthusian monk, and died at the age of one hundred, having received Extreme Unction and Viaticum from the hands of his son. Under his direction, his mother had served God in her own house for many years by prayer, fasting, and abundant almsgiving; and Saint Hugh also assisted her in her last hours.
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Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas – Passion Tuesday

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Meditations for Each Day of Lent by St. Thomas Aquinas

Passion Tuesday

The Burial of Christ

She hath wrought a good work upon Me. She in pouring this ointment upon Me hath done it for my burial.–Matt. xxvi. 10-12.

It was right that Christ should be buried.

1. It proved that He had really died. No one is placed in the grave unless he is undeniably dead. And, as we read in St. Mark (ch. xv), Pilate, before he gave leave for Christ to be buried, made careful enquiry to assure himself that Christ was dead.

2. The very fact that Christ rose again from the grave gives a hope of rising again through Him to all others who lie in their graves. As it says in the gospel, All that are in the grave shall hear the voice of the Son of God. And they that hear shall live (John v. 28, 25).

3. It was an example for those who by the death of Christ are spiritually dead to sin, for those, that is, who are hidden away from the turmoil of human affairs. So St. Paul says, You are dead; and your life is hid with Christ in God (Col. iii. 3). So, too, those who are baptised, since by the death of Christ they die to sin, are as it were buried with Christ in their immersion, as St. Paul again says, We are buried together with Christ by baptism unto death (Rom. vi. 4).

As the death of Christ efficiently wrought our salvation, so too is His burial effective for us. St. Jerome, for example, says, “By the burial of Christ we all rise again,” and explaining the words of Isaias (liii. 9), He shall give the ungodly for His burial, the Gloss says, “This means He shall give to God and the Father the nations lacking in filial devotion: for through His death and burial He has obtained possession of them.”

The Psalm (Ps. Ixxxvii. 6) says, I am become as a man without help, free among the dead. Christ by being buried showed Himself free among the dead indeed, for His being enclosed in the tomb was not allowed to hinder His coming forth in the Resurrection.

MANNER OF HEARING MASS AT HOME

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MANNER OF HEARING MASS AT HOME
by Rev. Leonard Goffine

For those who on account of sickness, old age, or for other proper reasons cannot assist at holy Mass, especially on Sundays and Holidays.
PREFATORY REMARKS.
Bear in mind, O Christian soul, that those who would with pleasure be present at the holy Sacrifice of the Mass, if it were possible, such as the sick, the infirm, the aged, fathers and mothers who must remain at home with the little children, and for other reasons, are all included in the holy Sacrifice, that is, take part in the prayers of the Church, in the blessings and merits of the Sacrifice, if they have a sincere desire for it, and, include themselves in the holy Sacrifice.
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