Tuesday, April 30, 2013

QUOTATION: Knowledge

Bernard of Clairvaux
There are some who desire knowledge merely for its own sake; and that is shameful curiosity. And there are others who desire to know, in order that they may themselves be known; and that is vanity, disgraceful too. Others again desire knowledge in order to acquire money or preferment by it; that too is a discreditable quest. But there are also some who desire knowledge, that they may build up the souls of others with it; and that is charity. Others, again, desire it that they may themselves be built up thereby; and that is prudence. Of all these types, only the last two put knowledge to the right use.

--St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Sermon on the Canticle of Canticles

Monday, April 29, 2013

QUOTATION: St. Dominic and St. Francis

G. K. Chesterton
It is an old story that, while we may need somebody like Dominic to convert the heathen to Christianity, we are in even greater need of somebody like Francis, to convert the Christians to Christianity.

--G.K. Chesterton, The Dumb Ox

Sunday, April 28, 2013

QUOTATION: Accepting God's Will

When you accept God’s will in every aspect of your life you will find God providing with strength, courage, and a dignity that resounds to the heavens. It resounds to the heavens because it doesn’t have far to go. Heaven, you see, is suddenly in your heart.

--Mother Angelica, Mother Angelica’s Answers Not Promises

Saturday, April 27, 2013

QUOTATION: Divine Generation

It must be known that different things have different modes of generation. The generation of God is different from that of other things. Hence, we cannot arrive at a notion of divine generation except through the generation of that created thing which more closely approaches to a likeness to God. We have seen that nothing approaches in likeness to God more than the human soul. The manner of generation in the soul is effected in the thinking process in the soul of man, which is called a conceiving of the intellect. This conception takes its rise in the soul as from a father, and its effect is called the word of the intellect or of man. In brief, the soul by its act of thinking begets the word. So also the Son of God is the Word of God, not like a word that is uttered exteriorly (for this is transitory), but as a word is interiorly conceived; and this Word of God is of the one nature as God and equal to God.

--St. Thomas Aquinas, The Catechetical Instruction of St. Thomas Aquinas

Friday, April 26, 2013

QUOTATION: Fundraising

Henri NouwenAsking people for money is giving them the opportunity to put their resources at the disposal of the kingdom. To raise funds is to offer people the chance to invest what they have in the work of God. Whether they have much or little is not as important as the possibility of making their money available to God. When Jesus fed five thousand people with only five loaves of bread and two fish, he was showing us how God’s love can multiply the effects of our generosity (see Matthew 14:13-21).

--Henri Nouwen, A Spirituality of Fundraising

QUOTATION: Praying Without Ceasing

St. Paul of the Cross
By habitually thinking of the presence of God, we succeed in praying twenty-four hours a day.

--St. Paul of the Cross

Thursday, April 25, 2013


Pope Francis
Our Faith is not only centred on a book, but on a history of salvation, and above all on a person, Jesus Christ, the Word of God made flesh.

--Pope Francis

QUOTATION: Suffering

St. Padre PioI do not love suffering itself; I ask it of God because I desire its fruits: it gives glory to God, saves my brothers in exile, and frees souls from the fires of Purgatory.

--St. Padre Pio

QUOTATION: Evidence of Justification

Louis de GranadaThough it is true that no man can be certain of his justification, yet there are signs by which we can form a favorable judgment. The principal of these is a change of life; as, for example, when a man who hitherto committed innumerable mortal sins without scruple would not now be guilty of a single grave offence against God even to gain the whole world.

--Louis de Granda, The Sinner's Guide

QUOTATION: Be the Elect

St. AnselmIf you want to be certain of being in the number of the Elect, strive to be one of the few, not one of the many. And if you would be quite sure of your salvation, strive to be among the fewest of the few; that is to say, do not follow the great majority of mankind, but follow those who enter upon the narrow way, who renounce the world, who give themselves to prayer, and who never relax their efforts by day or night, so that they may attain everlasting blessedness.

--St. Anselm

QUOTATION: The Christian Soul

St. Francis de SalesThe Christian soul is the spouse not yet of Jesus glorified, but of Jesus crucified.

--St Francis de Sales

QUOTATION: Spiritual Dryness

St. John AvilaEven if the things of God are not always agreeable to us, still we must not wish for what is contrary to them, however delightful it may seem to us, for without doubt it would poison our souls.

--St. John of Avila, Letters, XIII

QUOTATION: Knowing What Sin Is

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
There is always hope for the man who knows that he is doing wrong; but there is no hope for the man who is doing wrong and calls the wrong right. The Catholic gets off the road like anyone else, but he never throws away the map.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, Wartime Prayer Book

QUOTATION: God's Pardon

St. AugustineMan should consider that God has pardoned him all the sins from which He has preserved him. Think not, therefore, that you may love this Master with a feeble love because He has pardoned you but a few sins. Your debt of love, on the contrary, is greater for His preventing grace which has saved you from committing many. For if a man must love a creditor who forgives him a debt, how much more reason has he to love a benefactor who gratuitously bestows upon him a like amount? For if a man live chastely all his life, it is God Who preserves him; if he be converted from immorality to a pure life, it is God Who reforms him; and if he continue in his disorders till the end, it is also God Who justly forsakes him.

--St. Augustine


St. John EudesSimilarly, although you must exert all your energy in trying to conquer your passions, vices and imperfections, and to became master of every kind of virtue, you must nevertheless, work at this without being carried away by your zeal. So that when you do not perceive in yourself as many virtues, or as much love of God as you would like to see, you may remain at peace and undisturbed, humiliating yourself because of the obstacles you yourself have placed in the path of virtue.

--St. John Eudes, The Four Foundations of Sanctity

QUOTATION: Martyrdom in the Early Church

Cardinal John Henry Newman
The suffering itself of Martyrdom was in some respects peculiar. It was a death, cruel in itself, publicly inflicted: and heightened by the fierce exultation of a malevolent populace. When we are in pain, we can lie in peace by ourselves. We receive the sympathy and kind services of those about us; and if we like it, we can retire altogether from the sight of others, and suffer without a witness to interrupt us. But the sufferings of martyrdom were for the most part public, attended with every circumstance of ignominy and popular triumph, as well as with torture. Criminals indeed are put to death without kindly thoughts from bystanders; still, for the most part, even criminals receive commiseration and a sort of respect. But the early Christians had to endure "the shame" after their Master's pattern. They had to die in the midst of enemies who reviled them, and in mockery, bid them (as in Christ's case) come down from the cross. They were supported on no easy couch, soothed by no attentive friends; and considering how much the depressing power of pain depends on the imagination, this circumstance alone at once separates their sufferings widely from all instances of pain in disease. The unseen God alone was their Comforter, and this invests the scene of their suffering with supernatural majesty, and awes us when we think of them.

--Blessed John Henry Newman, "Martyrdom", Parochial and Plain Sermons. Vol. 2

QUOTATION: Unconditional Love

We often confuse unconditional love with unconditional approval. God loves us without conditions but does not approve of every human behavior.

--Fr. Henri Nouwen

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

QUOTATION: The Blessed Mother

St. Louis de Montfort
St. Louis de Montfort

Mary has the authority over the angels and the blessed in heaven. As a reward for her great humility, God gave her the power and mission of assigning to saints the thrones made vacant by the apostate angels who fell away through pride. Such is the will of the almighty God who exalts the humble, that the powers of heaven, earth and hell, willingly or unwillingly, must obey the commands of the humble Virgin Mary. For God has made her queen of heaven and earth, leader of his armies, keeper of his treasure, dispenser of his graces, mediatrix on behalf of men, destroyer of his enemies, and faithful associate in his great works and triumphs.

--St. Louis de Montfort, True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin, 28


Henri NouwenIf our security is totally in God, then we are free to ask for money. Only when we are free from money can we ask freely for others to give it.

--Henri Nouwen, A Spirituality of Fundraising


St. John of AvilaHow long will you continue your minute self-examinations? It is like raking up a dust heap from which nothing can come but rubbish and unpleasantness. Feel sure of this, that it is not for your own merits, but for those of Jesus crucified, that you are loved and made whole. Do not give way to such discouragement about your faults, the results will show you how displeasing it is to God. It would be far better to be courageous and strong-hearted. Meditate on the benefits you have received through Jesus Christ in the past and possess now; reflect on them in such a manner as to lead you to sorrow for your sins against Him and to avoid offending Him, without losing your peace and patience if you happen to fall. As I have often repeated, God loves you as you are. Be content that His love should come from His goodness, and not from your merits. What does it matter to a bride if she is not beautiful, if the bridegroom s affection for her makes her seem so in his eyes? If you look only on yourself, you will loathe yourself and your many defects will take away all your courage.

--St. John of Avila, Letters, XIV

QUOTATION: Charity is a Foretaste of Heaven

In Heaven, faith and hope will exist no more for the mist which obscures our reason will be dispelled...But love; oh we shall be inebriated with it! We shall be drowned, lost in that ocean of divine love, annihilated in that immense charity of the Heart of Jesus! So that charity is a foretaste of Heaven.

--St. Jean Vianney, the Cure of Ars

Tuesday, April 23, 2013


Detail: Statue of an Angel
Angels are sentinels standing at the crossroads where life meets death. They work especially at moments of crisis, at the brink of disaster—for bodies, for souls, and for nations.

--Peter Kreeft, Angels (and Demons): What Do We Really About Them?, 2004

Monday, April 22, 2013

QUOTATION: Repentance

Archbishop Fulton J. SheenIt is so hard to admit that one is a sinner; it is so hard to climb the hill of Calvary and kneel beneath a cross and ask for pardon, forgiveness. Certainly it is hard.

But it is harder to hang there.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen

QUOTATION: The First Martyrs

Blessed John Henry NewmanMen, perhaps, suffer in various diseases more than the martyrs did, but they cannot help themselves. Again, it has frequently happened that men have been persecuted for their religion without having expected it, or being able to avert it. These in one sense indeed are martyrs; and we naturally think affectionately of those who have suffered in our cause, whether voluntarily or not. But this was not the case with the primitive martyrs. They knew beforehand clearly enough the consequences of preaching the Gospel; they had frequent warnings brought home to them of the sufferings in store for them, if they persevered in their labours of brotherly love. Their Lord and Master had suffered before them; and, besides suffering Himself, had expressly foretold their sufferings; "If they have persecuted Me, they will also persecute you." [John xv. 20.] They were repeatedly warned and strictly charged by the chief priests and rulers, not to preach in Christ's name. They had experience of lesser punishments from their adversaries in earnest of the greater; and at length they saw their brethren, one by one, slain for persevering in their faithfulness to Christ. Yet they continued to keep the faith, though they might be victims of their obedience any day.

--Blessed John Henry Newman, "Martyrdom", Parochial and Plain Sermons, Vol. 2

QUOTATION: Accepting God's Providence

St. Alphonsus LiguoriIf you embrace all things in this life as coming from the hands of God, and even embrace death to fulfill His holy will, assuredly you will die a saint.

--St. Alphonsus Liguori


Pope St. Clement IFollow the saints, because those who follow them will become saints.

--Pope St. Clement I


Pope John Paul IIEven if the forces of darkness appear to prevail, those who believe in God know that evil and death do not have the final say. Christian hope is based on this truth; at this time our prayerful trust draws strength from it.

--Pope John Paul II

QUOTATION: Our Sins Crucified Christ

Blessed Louis of GranadaYes, your sins apprehended Him and bound Him with ignominious fetters, loaded Him with infamy, overwhelmed Him with outrages, bruised Him with blows, and nailed Him to the Cross. His executioners could never have accomplished this without the fatal aid of your sins. Will you, then, feel no hatred for the barbarous enemies who put your Saviour to death? Can you look upon this Victim immolated for you, without feeling an increase of love for Him? All that He did and suffered upon earth was intended to produce in our hearts a horror and detestation of sin. His hands and feet were nailed to the Cross in order to bind sin.

--Louis de Granada, The Sinner's Guide

QUOTATION: Pride's Blindness

The heart of the proud man easily sees the vices which others have, because they are all outside him; but his own vices, often very numerous, he sees not, because they are within him; just as the eye does not behold what is within, but only what is without.

--St. Robert Bellarmine, Eternal Happiness of the Saints

Sunday, April 21, 2013

QUOTATION: Christ's Body

St. Teresa of Avila
Christ has no body now but mine. He prays in me, works in me, looks through my eyes, speaks through my words, works through my hands, walks with my feet and loves with my heart.

--St. Teresa of Avila

Saturday, April 20, 2013

QUOTATION: Modernism

G.K. ChestertonThe old atheists had a theory of life, that could be stated as a connected train of thought. The old theologians had a theory of life, that could be stated as a connected train of thought. But the moderns … have no connected theory that can be stated at all. Their view of life is a hotch-potch of human and superhuman and sub-human ideas, collected everywhere and connected nowhere.

--G.K. Chesterton, Illustrated London News, 1930

QUOTATION: Evil Inclinations

St. Francis de SalesGod permits you to have evil inclinations in order to make you humble.

--St Francis de Sales

QUOTATION: Isolation

Pope FrancisA Church that limits herself to administering parish work, that lives enclosed within a community, experiences what someone in prison does: physical and mental atrophy.

--Pope Francis

QUOTATION: Jesus Delights in You

St. John EudesTherefore, with all my power, I urge every one of you who read these words, and in God's name I adjure you, since our Dear Jesus condescends to take His delight in being with you and speaking to you through prayer, do not deprive Him of His satisfaction, but learn by your own experience that like holy wisdom, His conversation has no bitterness, nor His company any tediousness, but joy and gladness. (Wis. 8, 16).

--St. John Eudes, The Four Foundations of Sanctity

QUOTATION: Spiritual Warfare

Henri NouwenAnyone who wants to fight his own demons with his own weapons is a fool.

--Henri Nouwen

QUOTATION: Disbelief in Hell

Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen
The basic reason why moderns disbelieve in hell is because they really disbelieve in freedom and responsibility. To believe in hell is to assert that the consequences of good and bad acts are not indifferent.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, Preface to Religion

QUOTATION: Conversion

Dorothy Day
Most cradle Catholics have gone through, or need to go through, a second conversion which binds them with a more mature love and obedience to the Church.

--Dorothy Day

Friday, April 19, 2013

QUOTATION: Opposition to the Catholic Faith

St. AugustineI was glad that all this time I had been howling my complaints not against the Catholic faith but against something quite imaginary which I had thought up in my own head…I had not yet discovered that what the Church taught was the truth.

--St. Augustine

Thursday, April 18, 2013

QUOTATION: Six Maxims of Perfection:

Pope John XXIII1. Desire only to be virtuous and holy, and so be pleasing to God.

2. Direct all things, thoughts as well as actions, to the increase, the service and the glory of Holy Church.

3. Recognize that I have been set here by God, and therefore remain perfectly serene about all that happens, not only as regards myself but also with regard to the Church, continuing to work and suffer with Christ, for her good.

4. Entrust myself at all times to Divine Providence.

5. Always acknowledge my own nothingness.

6. Always arrange my day in an intelligent and orderly manner.

--Pope John XXIII

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

QUOTATION: Suffering

St. Alphonsus LiguoriWe must suffer,and all must suffer; be they just, or be they sinners, each one must carry his cross.  He that carries it with patience is saved; he that carries it with impatience is lost.

--St. Alphonsus Liguori, The Holy Eucharist

QUOTATION: Charity Begins with Oneself

St. John of GodHave charity first towards our own souls, cleansing them by confession and penance; then charity towards our neighbors and our brethren, wishing them that which we desire ourselves.

--St. John of God


St. Thomas AquinasNo one can live without delight, and that is why a man deprived of spiritual joy goes over to carnal pleasure.

--St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica, II-II, Q. 35, Art. 4, ad. 2.


St. Jean Vianney, the Cure of ArsIf we are imbued with the love of God prayer will come as natural to us as breathing. But it is not sufficient to pray in haste or to just devote one solitary moment to a hasty prayer. God wishes us to spend in prayer a time sufficiently long to beg for the necessary graces, to give thanks to Him for benefits received, to sigh over our transgressions and to implore His pardon.

--St. Jean Vianney, the Cure of Ars.

QUOTATION: Union of God and Man

Louis de GranadaWhen man stood naked and trembling before his Creator, who could have made him believe that one day his unhappy nature would be united to God in one and the same person? This union was so close that even the supreme moment of the Cross could not sever it. Death dissolved the union between soul and body, but could not separate the Divinity from the humanity, for what Christ had once taken upon Himself for love of us He never abandoned.

Thus was our peace established.

--Louis de Granada, The Sinner's Guide


St. Francis de SalesSay frequently, in the midst of your contradictions and sufferings: This is the path to heaven.

--St Francis de Sales

QUOTATION: Teaching About Final Judgement

Wherefore, I exhort you, when we receive children from the nurse, let us not accustom to old wives’ stories, but let them learn from their first youth that there is a Judgment, that there is a punishment; let it be infixed in their minds. This fear being rooted in them produces great good effects. For a soul that that has learnt from its first youth to be subdued by this expectation, will not soon shake off this fear. But like a horse obedient to the bridle, having the thought of hell seated upon it, walking orderly, it will both speak and utter things profitable; and neither youth nor riches, not an orphan state, not any other thing, will be able to injure it, having its reason so firm and able to hold out against everything.

-St. John Chrysostom, Homilies on 2 Thessalonians, Homily 2.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


Thomas à KempisO Lord, as often as I find myself troubled and dejected, I find that I have departed from your teaching.

--Thomas à Kempis


G.K. ChestertonWe talk, by a sort of habit, about Modern Thought, forgetting the familiar fact that moderns do not think. They only feel, and that is why they are so much stronger in fiction than in facts, why their novels are so much better than their newspapers. The current comment on all these things is … the queerest sort of patchwork of pagan and purely Christian ideas.

--G.K. Chesterton, Illustrated London News, 1930

QUOTATION: Consolation

St. John EudesWhen God allows you to feel the sweetness of His kindness in your devotions, you must be careful not to become attached to this consolation. You must humble yourself at once, considering yourself most unworthy of any consolation, and ready to be stripped of it, to assure Him that you desire to serve and love Him, not for the consolation that He gives, either in this world or in the next, but for love of Himself and merely to please Him.

--St. John Eudes, The Four Foundations of Sanctity

QUOTATION: There Are Only Two Philosophies in Life

Archbishop Fulton J. SheenNever forget that there are only two philosophies to rule your life: the one of the cross, which starts with the fast and ends with the feast. The other of Satan, which starts with the feast and ends with the headache.

--Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, Seven Words of Jesus and Mary: Lessons from Cana and Calvary