From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Mon Apr 5 23:34:29 2021
Be converted with a sincere heart
Fix your minds on the passion of our Lord Jesus Christ. Inflamed
with love for us, he came down from heaven to redeem us. For our sake
he endured every torment of body and soul and shrank from no bodily
pain. He himself gave us an example of perfect patience and love. We,
then, are to be patient in adversity. Put aside your hatred and
animosity. Take pains to refrain from sharp words. If they escape your
lips, do not be ashamed to let your lips produce the remedy, since
they have caused the wounds. Pardon one another so that later on you
will not remember the injury. The recollection of an injury is itself
wrong. It adds to our anger, nurtures our sin, and hates what is good.
It is a rusty arrow and poison for the soul. It puts all virtue to
flight. It is like a worm in the mind: it confuses our speech and
tears to shreds our petitions to God. It is foreign to charity: it
remains planted in the soul like a nail. It is wickedness that never
sleeps, sin that never fails. It is indeed a daily death.
--Francis de Paola
April 6th - Blessed Zefirino Agostini
BL. ZEFIRINO AGOSTINI, the elder of two sons, was born on 24 September
1813 in Verona, Italy, to Antonio Agostini and Angela Frattini. Their
father was a doctor and they grew up in a true Christian family. He
was baptized an 28 September 1813 in the Church of SS Nazarius and
Celsus, which would later become his place of work.
After his father's death they were raised by their mother, whose
wisdom and gentleness would make a lasting impression on Zefirino.
Zefirino wanted to be a priest; he attended the local schools and
studied philosophy at the seminary as a day student, always showing
love for his vocation and attention to the problems of his time. He
was ordained on 11 March 1837 by Bishop Grasser of Verona and
celebrated his first Mass in St. Nazarius Church. Here he was a curate
for eight years, in charge of the boys' recreational programme and the
teaching of Christian doctrine.
In 1845 he was named parish priest. Given its size, poverty and
problems, some said his acceptance of this post was "truly heroic".
With deep devotion to God and ardent love for his people, Fr Agostini
could accept people and their sufferings with a fatherly heart and
discern the signs of the times with prophetic vision. His first
commitment was to find time for the Lord and cultivate familiarity
with him in daily prayer.
His openness to God produced an ardent apostolic zeal, which made him tirelessly attentive to all his parishioners. Among his many
activities for the poor and needy, he showed his concern for the
education of women by establishing an after-school programme for girls
and attending to the religious instruction of their mothers. The moral
and material poverty of young girls prompted him to take a special
interest in them. He discovered St. Angela Merici and her ideals. He
spoke enthusiastically about her to young women and celebrated her
feast-day as early as 1855. The Holy Spirit and the need to rescue and
educate girls spurred him to accept an offer made by three young
members of the after-school programme to devote themselves, like St.
Angela, to the neediest.
After patient waiting and much prayer, Fr Agostini realized that
following St. Angela's example was the Lord's will. Trusting in
Providence, although he lacked the means, he succeeded in founding the
Pious Union of Sisters Devoted to St. Angela Merici. Their rule was
approved by Bishop Ricabona in 1856. That same year, on 2 November, he
opened his first charitable school for poor girls. The first women to
assist him lived with their families. After 1860 some chose community
life and Fr Agostini prepared the first rule for the Ursuline
community, which was approved that year. On 24 September 1869 the
first 12 Ursulines made their profession; on 18 November, the
Congregation of Ursulines, Daughters of Mary Immaculate was founded.
Some continued to help in the parish while living at home.
Fr Agostini cared for all with respect seeking nothing but God's will
and the good of souls. Those who knew him described him as humble and persevering full of pastoral zeal. In 1874 he made revealing remark to
his sisters: "Do no be dismayed by toil or suffering, nor by the
meager fruit of your labours. Remember that God rewards not according
to results, but effort". He worked tirelessly for the glory of God, irresistibly drawn to the crucified Lord. He died on 6 April 1896.
Mary was raised to the dignity of Mother of God rather for sinners
than for the just, since Jesus Christ declares that he came to call
not the just, but sinners.
They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength, they
shall.walk and not faint. (Isaiah 40:31)
May I Love You More Dearly
St Richard of Chichester (1197-1253)
Thanks be to You,
my Lord Jesus Christ
For all the benefits
You have bestowed upon me,
For all the pains and insults
You have borne for me.
O most merciful Redeemer,
friend and brother,
May I know You more clearly,
Love You more dearly,
Follow You more nearly.