From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Sun Aug 8 23:48:51 2021
The Right Hand of the Father
"Jesus ascended into heaven. And where is he now? He sits at the
right hand of the Father. Do you know what the right hand means?
The right hand of God means eternal happiness. It means
inestimable, inexpressible, incomprehensible beatitude."
--St. Augustine--Sermon 213, 4
Prayer: Let your right hand save me, O Lord, let it save me, so that I
may stand on your right hand. I ask not health of body but that having
finished the present life I may be found on your right hand among the
--St. Augustine--Commentary on Psalm 59, 7
9 August – St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross OCD
Martyr, Carmelite Nun, Philosopher, Writer, and Lecturer – (born 12
October 1891 at Breslaw, Dolnoslaskie, Germany (now Wroclaw, Poland)
as Edith Stein – gassed on 9 August 1942 in the ovens of Oswiecim
(a.k.a. Auschwitz), Malopolskie, Poland). Canonised on 11 October 1998
by St Pope John Paul II. Patronages – Europe; loss of parents;
converted Jews; Martyrs; World Youth Day. Attributes – Yellow Star of
David on a Discalced Carmelite nun’s habit, flames, a book.
Edith Stein was born on October 12, 1891 – a date that coincided with
her family’s celebration of Yom Kippur, the Jewish “day of atonement.” Edith’s father died when she was just two years old and she gave up
the practice of her Jewish faith as an adolescent.
As a young woman with profound intellectual gifts, Edith gravitated
toward the study of philosophy and became a pupil of the renowned
professor Edmund Husserl in 1913. Through her studies, the
non-religious Edith met several Christians whose intellectual and
spiritual lives she admired.
After earning her degree with the highest honours from Gottingen
University in 1915, she served as a nurse in an Austrian field
hospital during World War I. She returned to academic work in 1916,
earning her doctorate after writing a highly-regarded thesis on the
phenomenon of empathy. She remained interested in the idea of
religious commitment but had not yet made such a commitment herself.
In 1921, while visiting friends, Edith spent an entire night reading
the autobiography of the 16th century Carmelite nun St. Teresa of
Avila. “When I had finished the book,” she later recalled, “I said to myself: This is the truth.” She was baptised into the Catholic Church
on the first day of January, 1922.
Edith intended to join the Carmelites immediately after her conversion
but would ultimately have to wait another 11 years before taking this
step. Instead, she taught at a Dominican school and gave numerous
public lectures on women’s issues. She spent 1931 writing a study of
St. Thomas Aquinas and took a university teaching position in 1932.
In 1933, the rise of Nazism, combined with Edith’s Jewish ethnicity,
put an end to her teaching career. After a painful parting with her
mother, who did not understand her Christian conversion, she entered a Carmelite convent in 1934, taking the name “Teresa Benedicta of the
Cross” as a symbol of her acceptance of suffering.
“I felt,” she wrote, “that those who understood the Cross of Christ should take upon themselves on everybody’s behalf.” She saw it as her vocation “to intercede with God for everyone” but she prayed
especially for the Jews of Germany whose tragic fate was becoming
“I ask the Lord to accept my life and my death,” she wrote in 1939,
“so that the Lord will be accepted by His people and that His kingdom
may come in glory, for the salvation of Germany and the peace of the
After completing her final work, a study of St. John of the Cross
entitled “The Science of the Cross,” Teresa Benedicta was arrested
along with her sister Rosa (who had also become a Catholic) and the
members of her religious community, on August 7, 1942. The arrests
came in retaliation against a protest letter by the Dutch Bishops,
decrying the Nazi treatment of Jews. Edith commented, “I never knew
that people could be like this, neither did I know that my brothers
and sisters would have to suffer like this. … I pray for them every
hour. Will God hear my prayers? He will certainly hear them in their distress.” Prof Jan Nota, who was greatly attached to her, wrote
later: “She is a witness to God’s presence in a world where God is absent.” On 7 August, early in the morning, 987 Jews were deported to Auschwitz. It was too, on 9 August, that Sister Teresa Benedicta of
the Cross, her sister and many other of her people were gassed.
When Edith Stein was beatified in Cologne on 1 May 1987, the Church
honoured “a daughter of Israel”, as St Pope John Paul II put it, who,
as a Catholic during Nazi persecution, remained faithful to the
crucified Lord Jesus Christ and, as a Jew, to her people in loving faithfulness.” St John Paul II canonised her in 1998 and proclaimed
her a co-patroness of Europe the next year.
“Today I stood with you beneath the cross
And felt more clearly than I ever did
That you became our Mother only there.
But those whom you have chosen for companions
To stand with you around the eternal throne,
They must stand with you beneath the Cross,
And with the lifeblood of their bitter pains,
Must purchase heavenly glory for those souls
Whom God’s own Son entrusted to their care.”
--St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross – Good Friday 1938
“Our love of neighbour is the measure of our love of God.
For Christians — and not only for them —
no one is a ‘stranger’.
The love of Christ knows no borders”
--St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross
"For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by
one Man's obedience many will be made righteous." (Romans 5:19)
He did all things well. [Mark 7:37 ] August: Diligence
1. All our good and all our evil certainly lies in the character of
our actions. As they are, so are we; for we are the tree, and they the
fruit, and, therefore, they prove what each one is.
A servant of God, at the point of death, once spoke thus: "Now I know
that totum opus nostrum in operatione consistit--our actions are our
St. Aloysius Gonzaga set down in writing a resolution that he would do
all in his power that everyone of his actions might be good, and bring
him nearer to God.
St. Bonaventure used to excite himself and others to constant
occupation in good works by often repeating this beautiful sentiment:
Every hour that we waste in sloth, we lose a glory equal to the good
works we might have performed in it.