Blog Post - April 5th
S. Vincent Ferrer| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection
St. Vincent Ferrer
The polarization in the Church today is a mild breeze compared with the tornado that ripped the Church apart during the lifetime of this saint. If any saint is a patron of reconciliation, Vincent Ferrer is.
Despite parental opposition, he entered the Dominican Order in his native Spain at 19. After brilliant studies, he was ordained a priest by Cardinal Peter de Luna—who would figure tragically in his life.
Of a very ardent nature, Vincent practiced the austerities of his Order with great energy. He was chosen prior of the Dominican house in Valencia shortly after his ordination.
The Western Schism divided Christianity first between two, then three, popes. Clement VII lived at Avignon in France, Urban VI in Rome. Vincent was convinced the election of Urban was invalid though Catherine of Siena (April 29) was just as devoted a supporter of the Roman pope. In the service of Cardinal de Luna, Vincent worked to persuade Spaniards to follow Clement. When Clement died, Cardinal de Luna was elected at Avignon and became Benedict XIII.
Vincent worked for him as apostolic penitentiary and Master of the Sacred Palace. But the new pope did not resign as all candidates in the conclave had sworn to do. He remained stubborn despite being deserted by the French king and nearly all of the cardinals.
Vincent became disillusioned and very ill, but finally took up the work of simply "going through the world preaching Christ," though he felt that any renewal in the Church depended on healing the schism. An eloquent and fiery preacher, he spent the last 20 years of his life spreading the Good News in Spain, France, Switzerland, the Low Countries and Lombardy, stressing the need of repentance and the fear of coming judgment. (He became known as the "Angel of the Judgment.")
He tried, unsuccessfully, in 1408 and 1415, to persuade his former friend to resign. He finally concluded that Benedict was not the true pope. Though very ill, he mounted the pulpit before an assembly over which Benedict himself was presiding and thundered his denunciation of the man who had ordained him a priest. Benedict fled for his life, abandoned by those who had formerly supported him. Strangely, Vincent had no part in the Council of Constance, which ended the schism.
The split in the Church at the time of Vincent Ferrer should have been fatal—36 long years of having two "heads." We cannot imagine what condition the Church today would be in if, for that length of time, half the world had followed a succession of popes in Rome, and half, an equally "official" number of popes in, say, Rio de Janeiro. It is an ongoing miracle that the Church has not long since been shipwrecked on the rocks of pride and ignorance, greed and ambition. Contrary to Lowell's words, "Truth forever on the scaffold, wrong forever on the throne," we believe that "truth is mighty, and it shall prevail"—but it sometimes takes a long time.
“Precious stone of virginity...
Flaming torch of charity...
Mirror of penance...
Trumpet of eternal salvation...
Flower of heavenly wisdom...
Vanquisher of demons.”
(From the litanies of St. Vincent)
Patron Saint of:
Leave It Behind:
This is conversion in the Gospel: leaving everything behind for the sake of the Kingdom-- that is, Jesus Himself -- leaving everything behind to possess the One who is Everything!
Quote by S. Padre Pio:
Pray more incessantly to the most compassionate Heart of Jesus, that He may be pleased to put an end to (whatever trials may assail you).
Divine Mercy Reflection
Reflections on Notebook One: 11-111
This first notebook of Saint Faustina begins her private revelations given from the Heart of Jesus to her. She writes in a beautiful and simple way. Though, as mentioned in the introduction to this book, her actual words are not quoted in these reflections that follow, the messages that she received and articulated are presented.
In truth, her messages are those contained in Sacred Scripture and in the Tradition of our Church. And if you were to read through the lives and teachings of the saints, you would find the same revelations. God has always spoken to us throughout the ages. He speaks the one Message of Truth, and He reveals that Message in love. The revelations to Saint Faustina are one new way that God continues to speak and reveal Himself to us, His sons and daughters.
The reflections in this first chapter, based on the first notebook, are intentionally short and focused. They are a way for you, the reader, to slowly and carefully listen to the Heart of God spoken to this great saint. Read these reflections slowly and prayerfully. Ponder them throughout the day and allow the Lord to speak to You the message He wants to give.
Reflection 95: Trusting in the Mercy of God
If you dropped an object into the middle of the vast ocean you would know, with deep certainty, that this object would get wet. The immensity of the ocean would consume it. So it is with the Mercy of God. It is immense and infinite. Therefore, if you trust in His Mercy, you can have a deep certainty that you will obtain it (See Diary #420).
Do you trust that God will bestow His infinite Mercy upon you? The goal is to be certain of this. We do not arrive at this certainty because of our own goodness; rather, we arrive at it as a result of the unfathomable and infinite Mercy of the Most Holy Trinity.
Lord, I love You and I desire to trust in Your perfect Mercy to the point that there is no doubt in my mind and heart that You will bestow this precious gift. Help me to trust in Your Mercy because of Your infinite goodness. Purify me of all doubt, dear Lord, and help me to trust You more. Jesus, I trust in You.