S. Margaret, Queen and Widow of Scotland| Daily Meditation| Daily Quote by S. Padre Pio| Divine Mercy Reflection
St. Margaret of Scotland
Margaret of Scotland was a truly liberated woman in the sense that she was free to be herself. For her, that meant freedom to love God and serve others.
Not Scottish by birth, Margaret was the daughter of Princess Agatha of Hungary and the Anglo-Saxon Prince Edward Atheling. She spent much of her youth in the court of her great-uncle, the English king, Edward the Confessor. Her family fled from William the Conqueror and was shipwrecked off the coast of Scotland. King Malcolm befriended them and was captivated by the beautiful, gracious Margaret. They were married at the castle of Dunfermline in 1070.
Malcolm was good-hearted, but rough and uncultured, as was his country. Because of Malcolm’s love for Margaret, she was able to soften his temper, polish his manners and help him become a virtuous king. He left all domestic affairs to her and often consulted her in state matters.
Margaret tried to improve her adopted country by promoting the arts and education. For religious reform she encouraged synods and was present for the discussions which tried to correct religious abuses common among priests and lay people, such as simony, usury and incestuous marriages. With her husband, she founded several churches.
Margaret was not only a queen, but a mother. She and Malcolm had six sons and two daughters. Margaret personally supervised their religious instruction and other studies.
Although she was very much caught up in the affairs of the household and country, she remained detached from the world. Her private life was austere. She had certain times for prayer and reading Scripture. She ate sparingly and slept little in order to have time for devotions. She and Malcolm kept two Lents, one before Easter and one before Christmas. During these times she always rose at midnight for Mass. On the way home she would wash the feet of six poor persons and give them alms. She was always surrounded by beggars in public and never refused them. It is recorded that she never sat down to eat without first feeding nine orphans and 24 adults.
In 1093, King William Rufus made a surprise attack on Alnwick castle. King Malcolm and his oldest son, Edward, were killed. Margaret, already on her deathbed, died four days after her husband.
There are two ways to be charitable: the "clean way" and the "messy way." The "clean way" is to give money or clothing to organizations that serve the poor. The "messy way" is dirtying your own hands in personal service to the poor. Margaret's outstanding virtue was her love of the poor. Although very generous with material gifts, Margaret also visited the sick and nursed them with her own hands. She and her husband served orphans and the poor on their knees during Advent and Lent. Like Christ, she was charitable the "messy way."
"When [Margaret] spoke, her conversation was with the salt of wisdom. When she was silent, her silence was filled with good thoughts. So thoroughly did her outward bearing correspond with the staidness of her character that it seemed as if she has been born the pattern of a virtuous life" (Turgot, St. Margaret's confessor).
Those who find obedience demeaning ought to consider the most obedient person in history: Jesus Christ.
Quote by S. Padre Pio:
Let your entire life be spent in resignation (to God's Will), prayer, work, humility, and rendering thanks to the good God.
Divine Mercy Reflection
Reflections on Notebook Two: 112-188
We now enter into Notebook Two of the six notebooks that make up the Diary of Saint Faustina. The reason for having more than one notebook is simply that when one notebook was filled by Saint Faustina she began with a new one. Therefore, there is nothing particularly different from one notebook to the other. However, for the purpose of this current book of daily reflections, each reflection will begin to be lengthened, starting here with Notebook Two, so as to help you, the reader, enter more deeply into the beautiful mysteries of faith and our shared spiritual life that have been revealed in these writings of Saint Faustina.
You are invited once again to take one reflection each day and to ponder it throughout the day. Try to pray the prayer for each reflection each morning, noon and evening. Allow each mystery reflected upon to become a source of wisdom and understanding for you.
Reflection 161: The Singular Love Given to You
When pondering the love and the Mercy of God, it is tempting to see His love in a more general way, as if it were something evenly distributed to all people in the same way. But God’s love for you is something so much more than a general gift to all people. It is deeply personal and singular, being offered specifically for you, out of love for you. God does not see you as one of many; rather, He sees you as a singular focus of His love. Each and every person is loved by God in this singular and unique way. Thus, you are loved as His one precious child for whom He has offered His life. Know that God loves you as you. He knows every detail of your life and pours His grace upon you (See Diary #824).
How aware are you of the unique and singular love God has for you? His love is personal in that you are an object of His burning Heart of Mercy. God is fully capable of loving each and every person in this way, seeing each one as His precious child and loving each person in their uniqueness and even in their sins. Let yourself, today, experience this personal and abundant love of God in your life. It will sustain you in all things and help you to always know that you are loved above all.
Lord, I love You and adore You and thank You for loving me with a perfect love. Help me to receive Your unique gift of love offered to me as Your precious child. May I return this love for You by acknowledging You as my one and only Lord and God. Jesus, I trust in You.