Thursday, 30 January 2014


Thursday of the Third Week in Ordinary Time Year 2

Night Office Readings,

First Reading    Genesis 24:1-27.
Second Reading    

The Wedding of Rebecca prefigures
the spiritual wedding of the Church.

There are symbols hidden in the Scriptures for those who know how to interpret them, and great wealth to be found by those who immerse themselves in these texts. The inspired Prophets were artists who drew portraits of the Son of God, and they used symbolism to veil his beauty in their writings. Let those who would see the Son spiritually open the Bible: there, in his splendour, they will find him. 

Thus the fiancée, whom the old servant Eliezer presented to Isaac as his bride, represents the church of the nations. Isaac himself is a symbol of the Son of God, our Lord, the incorruptible Victim. For anyone who seeks to understand, Eliezer symbolises John the Baptist, who also brought about the wedding of his Master through water. Rebecca’s wells represent and foretell the baptism that prepares the bride for her marriage with the Son of God. Abraham is the symbol of the true Father who gave his Son a mysterious bride, chosen from far off among the nations, to make her heir of his wealth. 

You who have understanding, take the book, study it, and recognise the image of the Son hidden in these texts. When one goes over the broad outlines of this history, it is the path of our Lord that stands out. When you listen to the Bible being read, open your ears to the two ways of understanding it; develop the art of distinguishing the two levels of meaning. When the history of Isaac is related literally, learn how to see in it another figurative meaning.­ 

Thus the Son of God used water to celebrate his marriage. By water he wedded the Church and made her his own. By baptism the Bridegroom and the bride were united; they were two and they became only one in the one Spirit, as it is written. It is toward these symbols that Eliezer speeds when he unites the daughter of pagans to the son of promise. The way he travels is a foreshadowing of the true and definitive way opened by John the Baptist. The wedding of Rebecca, a virgin of dazzling beauty, prefigures the spiritual wedding of the Church.

Bishop Jacob of Sarugh, Hom. sur les fiancailles de Rebecca (L’Orient Syrien 3.324-326); Word in Season VII)

From the various extant accounts of Jacob's life and from the number of his known works, we gather that his literary activity was unceasing. According to Barhebraeus (Chron. Eccles. i. 191) he employed 70 amanuenses and wrote in all 760 metrical homilies, besides expositions, letters and hymns of different sorts. Of his merits as a writer and poet we are now well able to judge from P. Bedjan's edition of selected metrical homilies (Paris 1905-1908), containing 146 pieces. They are written throughout in dodecasyllabic metre, and those published deal mainly with biblical themes, though there are also poems on such subjects as the deaths of Christian martyrs, the fall of the idols and the First Council of Nicaea.   

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

3rd Wed, Parable of the Sower

Early Sky in the East
Mass Intro. From: Nivard...
3 Wed January 29: Mark 4:1-20
Those who hear the word and accept it.
   Jesus' parable of the Sower is aimed at the hearers of his word.
   There are different ways of accepting God's word and they produce different kinds of fruit accordingly.
   There is the prejudiced hearer who has a shut mind.
   Then there is the shallow hearer. He or she fails to think things out or think them through; they lack depth. They may initially respond with an emotional reaction; but when it wears off their mind wanders to something else.
   God gives grace to those who hunger for his word that they may understand his will and have the strength to live according to it. 
   Father in heaven, open our eyes to your deeds, and our ears to the sound of your call, that we may understand your will for our lives and live according to it, through Christ our Lord. 
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Tuesday, 28 January 2014

Th Love of the Sacred Heart. Monteith, R. (Robert), 1812-1884. YouTube

R. Monteith

Short Name:
R. Monteith
Full Name:
Monteith, R. (Robert), 1812-1884
Birth Year:
Death Year:
Monteith, Robert, M.A., son of Henry Monteith, M.P., of Carstairs House, Lanark, was b. in 1812, and educated at Trinity College, Cambridge (B.A. 1834, M.A. 1837). He succeeded his father in 1848, and d. March 31, 1884, at Carstairs. His hymn,
I arise from dreams of time [thee]. (Sacred Heart of Jesus), appeared in the Rambler, Sept. 1850, p. 237, entitled "The Sacred Heart. Lines presented to a Lady as a substitute for Shelley's Lines to an Indian air. R. M." (Shelley's “Indian Serenade," written in 1819, begins "I arise from dreams of thee"). It is repeated in the St. Andrew's Catholic Hymn Book, 1863, and others. In the Crown of Jesus Hymn Book, 1862, it begins "I rise."
--John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology, New Supplement (1907)

1. › ... › Forum › Hymn Lyrics - Search Requests
6 13:41
My aunt Una, 92, is hunting for the rest of this hymn:

I rise from dreams of time,
An angel guards my feet,
To the sacred altar throne
Where Jesus' heart doth beat.

A Google search turns up the first line, but not the rest.  Can anyone help?

Posted:  05 Mar 2007 12:55
I rise from dreams of time 

And an angel guides my feet 
To the sacred altar throne 
Where Jesus’ heart doth beat 
Ever pleading day and night 
Thou cannot from us part 
O veiled and wondrous sight 
O love of the Sacred Heart 

The lone lamp softly burns 
And a gentle silence reigns 
Only with a low still voice 
The Holy One complains 
Ever pleading day and night 
Thou cannot from us part 
O veiled and wondrous sight 
O love of the Sacred Heart 

Long, long I’ve waited here 
And though thou heeds not Me 
The heart of God’s own Son 
Beats ever on for thee 
Ever pleading day and night 
Thou cannot from us part 
O veiled and wondrous sight 
O love of the Sacred Heart 

In the womb of Mary mild 
In the cradle of the tree 
Heart of pure undying love 
You lived and died for me 
Ever pleading day and night 
Thou cannot from us part 
O veiled and wondrous sight 
O love of the Sacred Heart

Posted:  24 Jan 2008 23:05
Than kyou very much for this hymn, this was my great grandmothers favourite and i have been searching for a long time  
4 Apr 2011 - Uploaded by lulubritpetition
Lulu, Eddi Reader, Jack Bruce & Edwyn Collins -I Rise From Dreams of Time .... RelaxingHymns On Piano - A Whole Hour of Spiritual Musicby  .

Monday, 27 January 2014

Fr Eamonn Anselm Magrath, Rest in Peace, 25 January, 2014

Nunraw  1946 ─ 1967
Brentwood Diocese 1967 ─ 2013

FROM: William ...
Dear Father Donald,

Thank you for sharing with me the funeral of Fr Anselm. As Fr Abbot Mark's homily concludes, with his passing and that of Fr Stephen last February a chapter in the life of Nunraw closes - and, as it does - so too the old Abbey closes: I find that very poignant. It is almost as if Fr Anselm's funeral comes to mark the close of an era... and the event coincides with the memorial of the Cistercian Founders.

I suppose matters will be progressing with the transfer of the old Abbey to the new owner. Such finality, cutting the ties with the past.

It is perhaps during the Night Office most of all that these changes find their meaning, in the quietness and the stability of the daily life of the Community, in which the love of God shines in the darkness.

Thus, in much sadness, and yet with confidence in the eternal Providence of God.

With my love in Our Lord,

Fr. Anselm 1947
FROM: Donald ...
Dear William,
Thank you of the so many interesting Email not yet caught up with.
Today we celebrated the Solemnity of the Citeaux Fathers.
Yesterday we had the unique funeral of the Monk (Nunraw) and Priest (Brentwood Diocese).
Fr. Mark has just sent me the panegyric - thus with the Attachments and maybe the whole story may piece together.
The family shared with us the Album of Pictures in the Refectory later. 
God love.
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     Fr. Eamonn (Anselm) Magrath
                                14.05.1918 – 13.12.2013
Funeral Homily of Fr Eamonn Anselm Magrath              25 January, 2014

The Gospel (Luke 12: 35-40) tells us to be ready, to wait patiently for the Lord's coming.  I have never known anyone who has waited so patiently to meet his Master as has Fr Eamonn, our Fr Anselm. 

For the benefit of those who are not familiar with the details, Fr Eamonn died on 13th December.  We were expecting a funeral during the Christmas rush.  Then we were told that there would be a delay as it would take another 4 days for official permission to move his remains from England to Scotland.  Shortly after that the undertaker phoned to say that there was a further problem as Fr Eamonn had fallen in hospital before he died. There would therefore have to be a post-mortem.  With Christmas and the holiday period, weeks went by.  The next news was that his body had not yet been returned after the post-mortem.  It took another week or so before the death certificate and other documents were obtained and the journey north possible. 

I wonder if he would have been allowed some exasperation during that wait.  No doubt it increased his desire to be with God.  

In the beginning of Nunraw's history, Fr Eamonn, who took his middle name (Anselm) as his monastic name, came over with the very first of the founders from our mother house at Roscrea, Ireland.  In the early years at Nunraw he became the first Fr Master of the lay brothers.  As the M. C. he had to organise the liturgy for the main ceremonies at the abbey.  He was nothing if not meticulous, as can be seen in the chronicles he kept of the ongoing events at Nunraw.  

Fr. Anselm, hewing of stone
  There are photographs of him laying the stonework in the building of the new abbey.  There were no end to his talents.  He was a gifted carpenter, making, for example, the first of our choir stalls, to which Brother Antony later added in the same style.  Anselm seemed to be everywhere producing what was required for the growing numbers in the community in its heyday.  

While we were waiting for the return of his remains to Nunraw, the image that kept passing before my eyes was that of a bottle, with its message closed inside, thrown into the sea and left to the whims of the currents.  Now, finally, it has come to shore.  He has been found and ready for the remaining short distance to his final resting place.  

Anselm has been waiting a long time for the Master to come.  In the parable in today's gospel, he has been waiting and ready. The Master, as promised, has come.  He has put on his apron and ready to set him down at table and to serve him.  'Good and faithful servant' just about sums up the situation.  All his contributions to the Nunraw community, all the serving and caring among his parishioners in the diocese of Brentwood, have been recognised and can now be suitably acknowledged by his Lord and Master.       
Fr Master of the lay brothers, on his r. Abbot Camillus
Fr Anselm came with the first group to make the foundation at Nunraw.  Fr Stephen Murphy was, I think, the last of the founders to arrive a couple of years after Anselm.  Stephen died almost a year ago.  So, Anselm was both the first here and the last to go of that founding group.  It is a fitting conclusion to one period in the life of our community.  The lives and deaths of these two holy men, who may not have been martyrs, may yet be the seed from which a new generation of monks come to populate these buildings which has already nourished many monks' lives.  We pray that this wish comes true.  
May he rest in peace.                                                    
Homily: Abbot Mark. Saturday 25 January 2014

COMMENT: Cistercian Founders

The plentiful Links

Life of Robert of Mosleme

Alberic receives habit.jpg

The Virgin Mary, patroness of the Order, gives St. Alberic the white Cistercian Cuculla


Insight Page on the Cistercians aradoxplace Italy Spain Britain Photo & History Pages
Master Abbey Builders of the 1100s and 1200s

The early years of the Cistercian Order (this page)


03 Oct 2009  
Scottish Cistercian Trail - Nunraw and Eleven Ancient Abbeys. Introduction: Beginning of Cistercian Monks 1098. To contemplate God as perfectly as it can be done by men living in common, to contemplate God day and night, ...

  1.   Cached
    Melrose Abbey. Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832). Descriptive Poems: III. Places. Bliss Carman, et al., eds. 1904. The World's Best Poetry. VII. Descriptive: Narrative
    Descriptive Poems: III. Places
    Melrose Abbey
    Sir Walter Scott (1771–1832)
    From “The Lay of the Last Minstrel,” Canto II.

  1. WALES   Cached
    Wordsworth's poem, ... FIVE years have past; five summers, with the length Of five long winters! and again I hear
  2. te

Sunday, 26 January 2014

Saints Robert, Alberic and Stephen - Fathers of Cistercian Monks and Nuns

Saints Robert, Alberic and Stephen, Cistercian Founders 
Gospel Matthew 4:12-23.
Homily by Fr. Aelred.

Robert, Alberic, Stephen (A)
1. Today’s  Gospel (Third Sunday in Ordinary Time) gives us an account at the calling of Christ’s first four disciples. They were called and they immediately followed Jesus, leaving behind nets, boats, and parents. These are models for disciples of all times. For the genuine disciple does not merely say. ‘Lord, Lord’, but also does the will of the Father as taught by Jesus.

2. Today we honour these other disciples who also let all when they heard the call of Christ. Sts Robert, Alberic and Stephen, the Founders of the Cistercian Order. Monastic history shows that periodic reforms are normal and necessary. This happened in the French Benedictine abbey of Molesme in 1098 when Abbot Robert  and a group of followers seceded from Molesme. They were looking to distance themselves from the many entanglements and comforts of feudal society and live in greater seclusion and poverty. Above all they were seeking to live according to the Rule of St. Benedict with greater fidelity, as they had promised when they made their monastic vows. They founded the new monastery of Citeaux.

3. Pressure was soon put upon Abbot Robert to return to his former monastery of Molesme. After his departure the community elected Alberic. Alberic was Abbot for ten years and maintained a tranquil atmosphere at the new monastery. But the community lived in considerable material poverty and recruits were slow in coming.

4. After the death of Alberic the monks elected Stephen Harding, an Englishman, as Abbot. Stephen had many gifts of scholarship and practical organisation. His engaging personality attracted numerous disciples. Among them, in 1113, was the future Saint Bernard, accompanied by a large retinue of relations and friends. The new monastic order now rapidly expanded throughout Europe and beyond fostering a spiritual renewal of the Church.

5. This brief sketch of Cistercian origins shows how three men heard the call of Christ to follow Him in a particular monastic way of life, in a more intense life of prayer. But it would be wrong to see monks as having a different aim in life to other Christians. The aim of all, lay and monastic, is to arrive at that fullness of charity St Paul speaks of in 1st Corinthians 13, ‘Love is patient’ and so on. 

6. Speaking about this primacy of love, a monk of the Eastern Church gave this advice to his fellow monks: ‘Console the distressed, and do not make you longing for prayer a pretext for turning away from anyone who asks for your help, for love is greater than prayer.’ So the desire for prayer and closer union with God in our lives should never be used as an excuse to sever contact with those in need, ‘for love is greater than prayer’.

Friday, 24 January 2014

St Francis de Sales, Mass. Fr. Nivard

24 Jan 2014 Early Morning Sky

Friday Yr. II, St Francis de Sales
On Friday, 24 January 2014, 
Nivard ... wrote:

Daily Reading & Meditation, c. Don Schwager

Friday (January 24): Mark 3:13-19
"Jesus appointed twelve to be with him"
In today’s Gospel Jesus chose very ordinary people to be his Apostles. They were non-professionals. They had no wealth or position. Jesus chose them from the common people who did ordinary things. They had no special education, and no social advantages.    
   Jesus wanted ordinary people who could take an assignment and do it extraordinarily well.
   When the Lord calls us to serve, we must not shrug back because we think that we have little or nothing to offer.    
   The Lord takes what we can offer and uses it for building of his kingdom.
   We can apply all this to St Francis de Sales whose Memorial we celebrate today.
   Some people seem to be gentle by nature.
   Others are ‘barrels’ of vinegar!
   Most of us lie between these two extremes.
   We need to work at becoming more gentle and humble each day as did St Francis de Sales.
   Jesus constantly whispers in our ear, “Learn of me for I am meek and humble of heart. Be like me.”
Father, Take our lives and all that we have as an offering of love for you through Christ our Lord.


Francis de Sales. How reading St. Francis de Sales has made me a better priest

January 24  
St. Francis de Sales

Francis was destined by his father to be a lawyer so that the young man could eventually take his elder’s place as a senator from the province of Savoy in France. For this reason Francis was sent to Padua to study law. After receiving his doctorate, he returned home and, in due time, told his parents he wished to enter the priesthood. His father strongly opposed Francis in this, and only after much patient persuasiveness on the part of the gentle Francis did his father finally consent. Francis was ordained and elected provost of the Diocese of Geneva, then a center for the Calvinists. Francis set out to convert them, especially in the district of Chablais. By preaching and distributing the little pamphlets he wrote to explain true Catholic doctrine, he had remarkable success.
At 35 he became bishop of Geneva. While administering his diocese he continued to preach, hear confessions and catechize the children. His gentle character was a great asset in winning souls. He practiced his own axiom, “A spoonful of honey attracts more flies than a barrelful of vinegar.”
Besides his two well-known books, the Introduction to the Devout Life and A Treatise on the Love of God, he wrote many pamphlets and carried on a vast correspondence. For his writings, he has been named patron of the Catholic Press. His writings, filled with his characteristic gentle spirit, are addressed to lay people. He wants to make them understand that they too are called to be saints. As he wrote in The Introduction to the Devout Life: “It is an error, or rather a heresy, to say devotion is incompatible with the life of a soldier, a tradesman, a prince, or a married woman.... It has happened that many have lost perfection in the desert who had preserved it in the world. ”
In spite of his busy and comparatively short life, he had time to collaborate with another saint, Jane Frances de Chantal (August 12), in the work of establishing the Sisters of the Visitation. These women were to practice the virtues exemplified in Mary’s visit to Elizabeth: humility, piety and mutual charity. They at first engaged to a limited degree in works of mercy for the poor and the sick. Today, while some communities conduct schools, others live a strictly contemplative life.


Francis de Sales took seriously the words of Christ, “Learn of me for I am meek and humble of heart.” As he said himself, it took him 20 years to conquer his quick temper, but no one ever suspected he had such a problem, so overflowing with good nature and kindness was his usual manner of acting. His perennial meekness and sunny disposition won for him the title of “Gentleman Saint.”

Francis de Sales tells us: “The person who possesses Christian meekness is affectionate and tender towards everyone: he is disposed to forgive and excuse the frailties of others; the goodness of his heart appears in a sweet affability that influences his words and actions, presents every object to his view in the most charitable and pleasing light.”

How reading St. Francis de Sales has made me a better priest

“Introduction to the Devout Life”, the spiritual classic in which St. Francis de Sales sets forth the life of devotion not so much for the consecrated religious or cleric but for the laity, is surely the most popular work of the Doctor of the Catholic Press. This is one of those very few books worth reading two hundred times and more. It serves as a trustworthy guide to sanctity.
Since my ordination to the priesthood (three and a half years ago), this little “Introduction” for lay people has had an immeasurable impact on my own approach to moral and spiritual theology – reading St. Francis de Sales has made me a better priest.
. . . . . .

Thursday, 23 January 2014

Lumen Fidei: Pope Francis. Day Seven of Christian Unity Week

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity
Day Seven: Together... we belong to Christ
Isaiah envisioned a day when Egyptians and Assyrians would worship together with Israel as God’s people. Christian unity belongs to the design of God for the unity of all humanity, and indeed of the cosmos itself. We pray for the day when we will worship together in one faith and one Eucharistic fellowship.
We are blessed by the gifts of various church traditions. Recognising those gifts in each other impels us towards visible unity.
Our baptism unites us as one body in Christ. While we value our particular churches, Paul reminds us that all who call on the name of the Lord are with us in Christ for we all belong to the one body. There is no other to whom we can say, "I have no need of you" (1 Cor 12:21).
06 Jul 2013
Chapter 2 seeks to understand the relationship between faith and several other aspects—reason, love, truth, and theology. Lumen Fidei shows that truth is necessary for faith so that it can remain grounded. Faith is rooted in ...
For some reason, the writer wished to remove this Blog.
Thanks for his article, I hope he can gain access by the Link.
I loved the illustrations.
Please excuse the delay - it is a first in tracing in the Blog archive.

LUMEN FIDEI  is accessible Online at:
and it has Downloaded with ease.  
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