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“Let the Word of God come; let it enter the church; let it become a consuming fire, that it may burn the hay and stubble, and consume whatever is worldly; there is heavy lead of iniquity in many; let it be molten by divine fire; let the gold and silver vessels be made better, in order that understanding and speech, refined by the heat of suffering, may begin to be more precious.”

— St. Ambrose

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“Joseph’s virtue was sublime and exceptional; therefore it was subjected to a great and singular trial. But, as he heroically surmounted this trial, so God was pleased, not only to console him, but to exalt him to a dignity of extraordinary glory. … Jesus, the Son of God … willed to recognize this virgin spouse as His father in affection, adoption, government, and education, and to be constantly obedient and subject to him. The Holy Ghost, who had operated the incarnation of the Son of God in the womb of Mary, willed that to Joseph this His spouse should be entirely confided. He was to be the zealous guardian of her virginity, her guide, her aid, her support, and her inseparable companion through all the vicissitudes of life. And where, apart from the Divine Maternity, can so great a dignity be found upon earth as that which was conferred on Joseph by the Three Divine Persons of the Most Holy Trinity?”

— Edward Healy Thompson

 

“Act as if everyday were the last of your life, and each action the last you perform.”

— St. Alphonsus Liguori

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“People often think of Christian morality as a kind of bargain in which God says, ‘If you keep a lot of rules I’ll reward you, and if you don’t I’ll do the other thing.’ I do not think that is the best way of looking at it. I would much rather say that every time you make a choice you are turning the central part of you, the part of you that chooses, into something a little different from what it was before. And taking your life as a whole, with all your innumerable choices, all your life long you are slowly turning this central thing either into a heavenly creature or into a hellish creature: either into a creature that is in harmony with God, and with other creatures, and with itself, or else into one that is in a state of war and hatred with God, and with its fellow-creatures, and with itself. To be the one kind of creature is heaven: that is, it is joy and peace and knowledge and power. To be the other means madness, horror, idiocy, rage, impotence, and eternal loneliness. Each of us at this moment is progressing to the one state or the other.”

— C. S. Lewis

 

“Whatever you do, think not of yourself, but of God.”

— St. Vincent Ferrer

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“And so, in the redemptive economy of grace, brought about through the action of the Holy Spirit, there is a unique correspondence between the moment of the Incarnation of the Word and the moment of the birth of the Church. The person who links these two moments is Mary: Mary at Nazareth and Mary in the Upper Room at Jerusalem. In both cases her discreet yet essential presence indicates the path of ‘birth from the Holy Spirit’. Thus she who is present in the mystery of Christ as Mother becomes—by the will of the Son and the power of the Holy Spirit—present in the mystery of the Church. In the Church too she continues to be a maternal presence, as is shown by the words spoken from the Cross: ‘Woman, behold your son!’; ‘Behold your mother.'”

— Pope St. John Paul II

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Today is Bill’s and my 50th Wedding Anniversary.

This is a picture of my new ring, along with the others.

Photo credit: Victor Losse

“The poor have much to teach you. You have much to learn from them.”

— St. Vincent de Paul

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“Consider that the love of divine charity is so closely joined in the soul with perfect patience, that neither can leave the soul without the other. For this reason (if the soul elect to love Me) she should elect to endure pains for Me in whatever mode or circumstance I may send them to her. Patience cannot be proved in any other way than by suffering, and patience is united with love as has been said. Therefore bear yourselves with manly courage, for, unless you do so, you will not prove yourselves to be spouses of My Truth, and faithful children, nor of the company of those who relish the taste of My honor, and the salvation of souls.”

— St. Catherine Of Siena

 

“Dismiss all anger and look into yourself a little. Remember that he of whom you are speaking is your brother, and as he is in the way of salvation, God can make him a saint, in spite of his present weakness.”

— St. Thomas of Villanova

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“One of our sure guides along the path of life is that we do not know when earthly life will come to an end. How important that our repentance for past and present transgressions be a daily practice.”

— Rev. Thomas J. Donaghy

 

“The ordinary acts we practice every day at home are of more importance to the soul than their simplicity might suggest.”

— St. Thomas More

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“God wishes us to be meek even toward ourselves. When a person commits a fault, God certainly wishes him to humble himself, to be sorry for his sin, and to purpose never to fall into it again; but he does not wish him to be indignant with himself, and give way to trouble and agitation of mind; for, while the soul is agitated, a man is incapable of doing good.”

— St. Alphonsus De Liguori

 

“Christ is my Spouse. He chose me first and His I will be. He made my soul beautiful with the jewels of grace and virtue. I belong to Him whom the angels serve.”

— St. Agnes

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“Habits are being formed here under the pressure of temptation and difficulty that unfold in perfect form and beauty when the soul that has developed these habits passes into its true home. Those very temptations that made it so difficult to persevere were really the means of developing these powers. The spirit of prayer and worship grew on; hampered and oppressed by the distractions of life, it fought its way in spite of them and thus gained strength; then, when all these were removed, it opened out unhindered in its perfect growth. Now, there is one fundamental principle of the spiritual life that has to be learned and practiced here, mostly with suffering, often with the very keenest suffering, although so closely associated with it that it almost seems a necessary part of it, is indeed only accidental, and one day will altogether cease, while the grace that has been fought for and developed in so much agony will live on forever, and be the delight of the soul through eternity.”

— Fr. Basil Maturin

 

“To one who has faith, no explanation is necessary. To one without faith, no explanation is possible.”

— St. Thomas Aquinas

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“I think all Christians would agree with me if I said that though Christianity seems at first to be all about morality, all about duties and rules and guilt and virtue, yet it leads you on, out of all that, into something beyond. One has a glimpse of a country where they do not talk of those things . . . Every one there is filled full with what we should call goodness as a mirror is filled with light.”

— C.S. Lewis

 

“For true hearts there is no separating ocean; or, rather, God is their ocean, in Whom they meet and are united; they love, and lose themselves in Him and in each other.”

— St. Théodore Guérin

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“Jesus Christ did not think the sovereign beatitude and glory of Heaven too dearly purchased at the price of unspeakable tortures, and by suffering His sacred flesh to be mangled by nails, thorns, and scourges. Great indeed must be the value of that which cost the Son of God so dear! And yet we esteem it so little, as to be even ready to renounce our claim to it, as, in fact, so many of us do, for the sake of some wretched pleasure or despicable interest! Ye blind and deluded children of men, contemplate the Wounds of your Crucified God, and see in what manner the gates of the kingdom of glory have been opened to you! See what it has cost Him to place you in possession of it, and understand, if possible, how infinite a benefit was bestowed upon you by the Son of God when He purchased for you Heaven, which you had lost by sin! … Enter in spirit into these sacred Wounds, and you will comprehend the value and sublimity of that eternal felicity which they have acquired for you, and you will learn to detach your heart from the earth and from creatures, so as to place all your affections and desires upon Heaven.”

— Fr. Ignatius of the Side of Christ

 

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