• On Avoiding Talkativeness (2)

    From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Tue Mar 9 23:35:37 2021
    On Avoiding Talkativeness (2)

    We must watch and pray (Matt. 26:41) that our time may not be spent fruitlessly. When it is right and proper to speak, speak to edify
    (Eph. 4:29).  Evil habits and neglect of spiritual progress are the
    main cause of our failure to guard the tongue (James 3:5). But devout conversation on spiritual matters greatly furthers our spiritual
    progress, especially with those who are heart and soul with us in the
    service of God (Acts 2:42).
    --Thomas à Kempis --Imitation of Christ Bk 1, Ch 10

    10 March – Saint Pope Simplicius

     (?- 483)
    Papal Ascension 25 February 468 – 10 March 483. He was born in Tivoli,
    Italy, the son of a citizen named Castinus. Most of what is known of
    him personally is derived from the Liber Pontificalis. His remains are
    interred in Saint Peter’s Basilica, Vatican City, Rome, Italy.

    After a vacancy of 10 days following the death of Pope Hilarius,
    Simplicius was consecrated on 25 February 468.

    The reign of Simplicius coincided with the official fall of the
    Western Empire, in 476. The Italian peninsula was overrun by
    barbarians and was in a constant state of war. Eventually, the
    Herulis, an East Germanic tribe who formed a kingdom around the middle
    Danube, joined forces with Odoacer and beat the Roman soldiers. The
    weak Western emperor, Romulus Augustus, was deposed. Odoacer became
    king of a new kingdom. Simplicius had been bishop of Rome for eight
    years at this point and surely was concerned over a heretic taking
    command of the empire, considering the ties that had developed between
    church and state. However, Odoacer was an organiser. He saw the way
    the government that had been in power had worked hand in hand with the
    Catholic Church and, for the most part left the Church to rule itself.

    One of the early difficulties Simplicius had was the defense of the
    Council of Chalcedon. Simplicius probably was not even involved in
    this council, which was called in October, 451 by the emperor and,
    reluctantly, by Leo the Great. This council repudiated the Second
    Council of Ephesus and defined the dual nature of Christ, both divine
    and human. In addition, the Council of Chalcedon claimed that the
    Patriarchy of Constantinople was second in standing only to Rome.

    Simplicius found himself on both sides of the support of the council.
    He supported the definition of Christ’s nature. But those against the definition, known as monophysites, had spread like wildfire throughout
    the Levant and Egypt, thus showing a large population arguing about
    the nature of the Lord. Simplicius was also opposed to the elevation
    of the patriarchy of Constantinople. Thus began a tearing away of the
    Eastern church from orthodoxy. The current Eastern emperor, Zeno, was
    more or less orthodox. He was overthrown for a year in 475 by the
    monophysite, Bascilicus. A year later, Zeno was reinstated but this
    time chose to reconcile with monophysitism.  This was not an easy
    situation for the pope. And he did not live to see the outcome.

    The pope clashed with Patriarch Acacius in the jurisdictional dispute
    and the argument almost destroyed the legacy of Chalcedon.

    Aside from this large problem, Simplicius showed himself to be an
    able, effective administrator.  Concerned about his role as she[herd
    to the Western Church, Simplicius appointed Bishop Zeno of Seville as
    a papal vicar. He constructed several churches, at least one of which
    was originally a columned walkway in the city of Rome. One church is
    still extant, St Bibiana’s. A concern this pope had was what to do
    with the churches of the catacombs, which were not used the same way
    as they had the first few hundred years of Church history. He
    appointed priests to say Masses, baptise and offer the Sacrament of
    Penance routinely in the three primary catacomb churches – St Peter’s
    at the Vatican, St Paul’s and St Lawrence Outside the Walls.

    A long illness led to Simplicius’ death on 10 March 483.
    Pope St Simplicius is seen as one who championed orthodoxy and
    promoted papal supremacy.


    Saint Quote:
    O my Jesus, I, a poor, ignorant young man, have become a shepherd in
    Thy sheepfold. . . . Grant that not one of those confided to me be
    lost. . . . Teach me to live, and, if needs be, to die for my people
    that they all may be saved, that they all may love Thy dear Mother! .
    . . Mary, thou who art ever victorious over heresies, pray for all who
    are walking in the paths of accursed error! . . . My Jesus, what
    shall, I, a poor creature, do to lead many souls--yea, all souls--to
    --Saint John Nepomucene Neumann

    Bible Quote:
    "Let thy eyes look straight on, and let thy eyelids go before thy
    steps."  (Prov. 4:25).

    O Lord and Master of My Life
    By Saint Ephrem (306-373)

    Father & Doctor of the Church
    O Lord and Master of my life,
    give me not a spirit of sloth, vain curiosity,
    lust for power and idle talk.
    But give to me, Thy servant,
    a spirit of soberness, humility, patience and love.
    O Lord and King,
    grant me to see my own faults
    and not to condemn my brother.
    For blessed art Thou to the ages of ages.
    O God, be merciful to me a sinner.
    O God, cleanse me, a sinner.
    O God, my Creator, save me
    and for my many sins forgive me!

    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
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  • From Weedy@21:1/5 to All on Tue Mar 8 23:55:08 2022
    On Avoiding Talkativeness (2)

    We must watch and pray (Matt. 26:41) that our time may not be spent fruitlessly. When it is right and proper to speak, speak to edify
    (Eph. 4:29). Evil habits and neglect of spiritual progress are the
    main cause of our failure to guard the tongue (James 3:5). But devout conversation on spiritual matters greatly furthers our spiritual
    progress, especially with those who are heart and soul with us in the
    service of God (Acts 2:42).
    --Thomas à Kempis --Imitation of Christ Bk 1, Ch 10

    March 9th - St. Frances of Rome sees the devils

    St. Frances of Rome, protected by her guardian angel, sees the devils
    who tempt men on earth.
    While one-third of the angels sinned, the other two-thirds persevered
    in grace. One-third of the fallen angels is in Hell tormenting the
    condemned souls. These devils are the ones who freely followed Lucifer
    and deliberately revolted against God. They cannot leave the abyss
    except with the special acquiescence of God, when He decides to punish
    the sins of men with a great calamity. These are the worst among the

    The other two-thirds of the fallen angels inhabit the air and the
    earth. They are the ones who did not take a side in the battle between
    Lucifer and God, but remained silent.

    The devils of the air often instigate storms, winds and thunders to
    frighten souls, causing their wills to weaken and cede to inconstancy,
    thus preparing them to falter in the Faith and to doubt Divine
    Providence. The devils who live on earth among men to tempt us are the
    fallen angels of the lowest choir. The faithful angels of this choir
    are our guardian angels.

    The prince and chief of all devils is Lucifer, who is confined at the
    bottom of the abyss, where he punishes the other devils and the
    condemned men and women. Since he fell from the highest place among
    the angels, the Seraphic choir, he became the worst devil. His
    characteristic vice is pride.

    Below him and under his power are three other princes: First, Asmodeu,
    who represents the vice of impurity and was the head of the Cherubim;
    second, Mammon, who represents the vice of avarice and was the first
    among the Thrones; third, Belzebuth, who represents idolatry, sorcery
    and spells and was the chief of the Dominations. He is over everything
    that is dark and that diffuses darkness over rational creatures.

    By the late Prof. Plinio Corrêa de Oliveira: (died 1995)

    St. Frances of Rome describes Lucifer as the highest Seraphim, and for
    this reason his sin was very grave. You know that the Seraphim
    constitute the highest of the nine choirs of angels. Since he was the
    highest angel in Heaven who revolted, he was thrown into the deepest
    part of Hell.

    There were angels who made the decision to follow Lucifer with a
    special malice and by their own initiative. These went to Hell with
    him and are being tormented by him since he is more powerful than
    they, and because Divine Justice delegated him the task of punishing
    for all eternity those whom he had convinced to follow him in the

    After that, St. Frances tells us, there are three principal demons who
    follow Lucifer’s commands. The first is Asmodeu, who represents the
    vice of the flesh; the second is Mammon, head of the vice of avarice,
    and then Belzebuth, chief of all idolatries and dark works.

    You are seeing that the two principal rebellious angels – Lucifer and
    Asmodeu – are the angels of pride and sensuality. According to our
    conception of History, pride and sensuality are the two driving forces
    of the Revolution. In a certain sense, this description of St. Frances
    confirms it. These angels are in Hell and only rarely does God permit
    them to leave the abyss to punish humanity. I have the impression that
    in our times Hell was opened and these worst of devils are on earth
    trying to accomplish the special task of destroying the Church, just
    as they were also on earth to kill Our Lord Jesus Christ. I know that
    the Catholic Church is immortal, but I think that in our days they are
    here to try to destroy her.

    Then there are the other fallen angels. In the first battle they did
    not want to choose between God and Lucifer. They did not revolt
    outright against God nor did they clearly support His cause. At the
    same time, they did not give straightforward support to the cause of
    Lucifer. They remained in the middle of the road, in a neutral
    position, which at depth meant they had sympathy for Satan. It was for
    this reason that God condemned them. But Divine Justice made their
    chastisement less terrible than that of the other angels. Instead of
    being hurled into Hell, they are in the air and on the earth. After
    the Final Judgment they will go to Hell for all eternity. Therefore,
    during this time between their sin and the Final Judgment, they escape
    the suffering of Hell.

    These “middle-of-the-road” angels are divided into two kinds. First,
    there are the angels who inhabit the air and produce climatic turmoil
    to frighten men on earth. Second, there are the angels on earth who
    belong to the same choir as our guardian angels. They normally do the
    opposite of the guardian angels, that is, instead of protecting
    persons, they try to lead them into the danger of sin. There is a
    constant battle between these two kinds of angels.

    From this, we can learn an important lesson. It is to realize how
    small man is. How minute we are compared to the magnitude of the
    angelical nature. There was a Saint who often saw her guardian angel,
    that is, an angel from the lowest choir in the celestial hierarchy.
    Well, the first time she saw him she was so impressed with the
    appearance of the angel that she thought he was God Himself. She fell
    prostrate to the ground to adore him. He had to stop her and explain
    who he was. This shows us the splendor of a simple guardian angel. Can
    you imagine, then, the splendor of an Archangel, and even more, of a
    Cherubim or a Seraphim?

    How small we are in face of this battle among the angels that is
    taking place around us everywhere and all the time! There are angels
    who come down from Heaven with this or that mission. There are devils
    who come out of Hell to cause a great damage. There are demons who
    infest the air, demons who are working among men. Really we are very
    small in face of this angelic struggle.

    What is our defense against all the plots and evil instigated by these
    devils? We need to apply the warning of Our Lord: be vigilant and pray
    in order not to fall into temptation. And the beginning of this
    vigilance is to believe in the angelical presence, its power, and its
    continual action.

    A Bishop once taught me a principle that is currently admitted among theologians. It is that in any natural temptation a man has, the devil
    adds his action to the natural cause to make the temptation more
    intense. For instance, suppose that one of you feels irritated by
    someone who is bothering you in this crowded meeting. This small
    temptation toward irritation receives a new impulse from the devil,
    who tries to increase the natural irritation and induce one to sin.

    The devil is always acting against us; the guardian angels are always protecting us. We should try to discern the action of the devils and
    ask the protection of our guardian angels more often. We should also
    pray to Our Lady more often. This is to be vigilant against the action
    of the devils.


    Saint Quote:
    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

    Bible Quote:
    Whosoever committeth sin committeth also iniquity. And sin is
    iniquity. And you know that he appeared to take away our sins: and in
    him there is no sin. Whosoever abideth in him sinneth not: and
    whosoever sinneth hath not seen him nor known him. (1 John 3:4-6) DRB

    All Highest, Glorious God
    By St Francis of Assisi (c 1181-1226)

    All highest, glorious God,
    cast Your light into the darkness of our hearts,
    give us true faith, firm hope,
    perfect charity and profound humility,
    so that with wisdom,
    courage and perception, O Lord,
    we may do what is truly Your holy will.

    --- SoupGate-Win32 v1.05
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