From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Mon May 9 00:04:12 2022
Few Love the Cross of Jesus: (3)
If a man give all his wealth, it is nothing; if he do great
penance, it is little; if he gain all knowledge, he is still far
afield; if he have great virtue and much ardent devotion, he still
lacks a great deal, and especially, the one thing that is most
necessary to him. What is this one thing? That leaving all, he forsake
himself, completely renounce himself, and give up all private
affections. Then, when he has done all that he knows ought to be done,
let him consider it as nothing, let him make little of what may be
great; let him in all honesty call himself an unprofitable servant.
For truth itself has said:
"When you shall have done all these things that are commanded
you, say: 'we are unprofitable servants.'" (Luke 17:10).
Then he will be truly poor and stripped in spirit, and with the
prophet may say: "I am alone and poor." (Ps. 24:16.)
No one, however, is more wealthy than such a man; no one is more
powerful, no one freer than he who knows how to leave all things and
think of himself as the least of all.
--Thomas à Kempis --Imitation of Christ Book 2, Chapter 11
9 May – Blessed Giovanni Benincasa of Montepulciano OSM
Religious Friar of the Servite Order, Hermit, Mystic, Penitent – born
in 1375 at Montepulciano, Siena, Italy and died on 9 May 1426 at
Monticchiello, Italy of natural causes. Patronage – Montepulciano.
Giovanni Benincasa (cousin of Caterina Benincasa birth name of St
Catherine of Siena) was born in Montepulciano in 1375 and fulfilled
his vocation in 1400 by professing his vows as a religious of the
order of the Servants of Mary at the convent of his hometown. He
obtained permission from superiors to lead a solitary life in penance.
After a few months’ stay in the hermitage of Bagni San Filippo at
Monte Amiata, he moved to Monticchiello where the Servants of Mary
owned the plot of land next to the cave, in whose upper entrance he
chose his hermit’s home. Here he spent twenty years in prayer and
penance doing humble work necessary and died there on 9 May 1426, aged 51,revered by all the people.
A dispute arose between the Servite fathers who wanted to move the
body into the convent and the inhabitants of Monticchiello who wanted
it in their church. The “judgement of God” was used – the coffin was hoisted on a cart pulled by white oxen, leaving them the choice. The
oxen went to Monticchiello stopping right in front of the church. The
people attributed many miracles to him and the shrine and remains of
his body were long disputed. In 1600 the Servants of Mary of Florence
came forward to reclaim his relics and obtained them, leaving to the
villagers only one arm as a relic. Countless other diatribes followed
until in 1822 when the body was returned to the community of
Monticchiello where it is still preserved in a valuable urn in the
church of St Leonardo.
Every year the villagers go in procession to the upper entrance of the
cave to pray in the place designated as “the bed of the Blessed,”
where a plaque and a cross (still existing) were walled on the
occasion of the fifth centenary of the death, 9 May 1926.
The most famous miracle of Blessed Benincasa is that of the “footsteps
of the devil” – it is said that the saint was frequently prey to the temptations of the devil who presented himself in the classic
appearance of a goat. With his ascetic strength, Benincasa chased him
away and forced him to leave, taking a leap beyond the deep abyss that overlooks the stream. The devil left his footprints in the living rock
and these are visible not far from the upper entrance.
According to the records of the time, when Blessed Giovanni died, all
the bells of Monticchiello and the nearby districts began to ring by themselves.
His Beatification received formal approval from Pope Pius VIII on 23
December 1829, after the Holy Father issued formal ratification of the
late friar’s local ‘cultus’ – otherwise known as popular and enduring veneration.
“If you know me, then you will also know my Father.
From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” John 14:7
” God does not leave us groping in the dark.
He has shown Himself to us as a man.
In His greatness, He has let Himself become small.”
“What is Faith?
First, faith is simple.
We believe in God – in God,
who is the Beginning
and End of human life.
We believe in a God,
who enters into a relationship
with us human beings,
who is our origin and our future.
Consequently, faith is,
always and inseparably, hope –
the certainty that we have a future
and will not end up as nothing.
And faith is love,
since God’s love is “contagious”.
This is the first thing –
we simply believe in God
and this brings with it,
hope and love.”
--Pope Benedict XVI
Regensburg Homily, Tuesday 12 September 2006
Prudence must precede every action which we undertake; for, if
prudence be wanting, there is nothing, however good it may seem, which
is not turned into evil.
-- St. Basil
If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but
deceives his heart, his religion is vain. Religion that is pure and
undefiled before God and the Father is this: To care for orphans and
widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world.
[James 1:26-27] DRB
Prayer of Petition
O Divine Jesus, Thou hast promised that anything we ask of the Eternal
Father in Thy name shall be granted.
O Eternal Father. In the name of Jesus, for the love of Jesus, in
fulfillment of this promise, and because Jesus has said it, grant us
our petitions for the sake of Jesus, Thy Divine Son. Amen.