• One Goal

    From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Fri Sep 16 01:25:42 2022
    One Goal

    We know we are traveling together. If our pace is slow, go on ahead
    of us. We won't envy you but rather will seek to catch up with you.
    However, if you consider us capable of a quicker pace, run along with
    There is only one goal, and we are all anxious to reach it—some at
    a slow pace and others at a fast pace.
    --St. Augustine-- Sermon on a New Canticle 4, 4

    Prayer. Let everyone's sighs be uttered in longing for Christ. He
    should be the object of our desire since he, he all-beautiful One,
    loves repulsive people so that he might make them beautiful. Let us
    run to him and cry out for him.
    --St. Augustine-- Sermon on John 10, 13

    September 16: - Saint Cyprian of Carthage

    “Whatever a man prefers to God, that he makes a god to himself.”

    Today, September 16, we celebrate the feast day of Saint Cyprian (died
    258), Bishop of Carthage, and Martyr for the Faith. Saint Cyprian is
    remembered for his importance in the development of Christian thought
    and practice, especially in northern Africa. His sermons and writings,
    extant today, continue to inspire us. His principal works, which are
    respected and valued as those of a Church Father, included: On the
    Unity of the Church; On Apostates; a collection of Letters; The Lord's
    Prayer; On the Value of Patience. Saint Jerome said of him: "It is
    superfluous to speak of his greatness, for his works are more luminous
    than the sun."

    Thascius Caecilius Cyprianus was born in Carthage, an African of noble
    birth, and the son of a Roman senator. While little is known of his
    life prior to the year 246, history tells us that he taught rhetoric,
    and was well-respected. In 246, however, Cyprian discovered the truth
    of Christianity through a friend—a priest who had converted late in life—and himself was converted and subsequently consecrated and
    ordained a priest. He immediately gave up all his possessions to those
    in need, and publicly made a vow of chastity to the astonishment of
    those who had known him. Only two years later, following a time of
    great preaching and consolidating of the faith in Carthage, Saint
    Cyprian found himself recognized as Bishop of the city

    Cyprian led his city with vigor and zeal. He was an energetic shepherd
    of souls and a prolific writer, seeming never to tire, and fighting
    for the salvation and conversion of all he encountered. Similarly,
    Saint Cyprian recognized his own sinfulness and weakness, working to
    stamp out his pride over his accomplishments, and his love of the
    pleasures of his former life of frivolity. He defended the unity of
    the Church against schismatic movements in Africa and Italy, and
    greatly influenced the shaping of Church discipline relative to
    reinstating Christians who had apostatized.

    When the persecution of Christians under the direction of Emperor
    Decius began, Saint Cyprian was the object of a search by the pagans
    wanting to disorganize the flock. He fled the city of Carthage,
    securing a hidden retreat, and from there continued to minister to the
    needs of his flock via epistles and the Sacraments. He assured the
    Christian burial of the martyrs suffering under Decius, and arranged
    for the needs of the poor and those stripped of their possessions
    during the persecution. When plague struck, Cyprian came out of hiding
    to minister to the sick and dying. He encouraged Christians everywhere
    to help the sick—not only their fellow Christians, but those who
    persecuted them as well. His fellow priests and bishops encouraged him
    to return to his place of secrecy, for fear he would be captured.

    Saint Cyprian maintained a rigorous discipline of the mind and body,
    fasting, prayer, and penance. He expected the same from others,
    especially those who had apostatized to avoid persecution. Cyprian
    maintained a hard line, backed by Rome, greatly developing the
    Sacrament of Penance as a result. With the succession of emperor
    Valerian to the Roman throne, Saint Cyprian was free to come out of
    hiding. He continued to lead his flock for several years, until he was
    banished by the emperor.

    Saint Cyprian was exiled fifty miles outside the city, and while
    there, learned by a supernatural vision that he was to be martyred.
    Upon hearing the news, he responded, “Thanks be to God,” and was ready
    to return to the city to stand trial when summoned. There, when he
    refused to recant his faith, he was sentenced to death outside the
    city. Saint Cyprian refused, however, to leave, insisting that he be
    martyred surrounded by crowds of faithful. It is said that the
    executioner grew so scared of the public’s reaction to his duty, that
    Cyprian paid him his fee as a means of encouraging him.

    Saint Cyprian was beheaded in 258. His decade of Christian fellowship
    and stewardship had a profound influence on the development of the
    Church in northern Africa, and later, through his writings, across the
    globe. Even his death was a testament to his modeling of the faith,
    with a large number of pagans converting upon the spot. He received a
    public and solemn burial, and was mourned by all of Carthage—Christian
    and pagan alike.

    The feast day of Saint Cyprian is shared with the feast of Pope Saint Cornelius, his dear friend. Below, an excerpt from a letter written by
    Cyprian to Cornelius:

    “Dearest brother, bright and shining is the faith which the blessed
    Apostle praised in your community. He foresaw in the spirit the praise
    your courage deserves and the strength that could not be broken; he
    was heralding the future when he testified to your achievements; his
    praise to the fathers was a challenge to the sons. Your unity, your
    strength have become shining examples of these virtues to the rest of
    the brethren.

    Divine providence has now prepared us. God’s merciful design has
    warned us that the day of our own struggle, our own contest, is at
    hand. By that shared love which binds us closely together, we are
    doing all we can to exhort our congregation, to give ourselves
    unceasingly to fastings, vigils and prayers in common. These are the
    heavenly weapons which give us the strength to stand firm and endure;
    they are the spiritual defenses, the God-given armaments that protect

    Let us then remember one another, united in mind and heart. Let us
    pray without ceasing, you for us, we for you; by the love we share we
    shall thus relieve the strain of these great trials.”
    Short version

    by Jacob

    Saint Quote:
    "There is one God and one Christ and but one episcopal chair,
    originally founded on Peter, by the Lord's authority. There cannot,
    therefore, be set up another altar or another priesthood. Whatever any
    man in his rage or rashness shall appoint, in defiance of the divine institution, must be a spurious, profane and sacrilegious ordinance"
    --St. Cyprian, The Unity of the Catholic Church.

    Bible Quote:
    But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ: and make not provision for the
    flesh in its concupiscences. (Rom. 13:14) DRB

    Mary, Mother of the Unborn
    Jesus, Mary and Joseph, I love you very much, I beg you to spare the
    life of the unborn child that I have spiritually adopted who is in
    danger of abortion. ( Fulton J. Sheen )

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