25 02, 2020

Fasting From Facts

2021-12-02T13:06:09+00:00February 25th, 2020|

St Philip Neri fasted habitually, not only in Lent. He ate little and drank little. But he also insisted that mortification of the razionale was more important than mortifying the body. Mortifying the razionale obliges us to flee from the futility of speculations such as the following, touted by the late media pundit Stephen Hawking: "In my opinion, there [...]

31 01, 2020

Family Loyalties

2021-12-02T13:05:10+00:00January 31st, 2020|

"Honour thy father and thy mother." In the practice of our religion our blood family has first call on our commitment, but not in an absolute or unqualified way. There is a danger of making a false god out of family life, thinking that the immediate family is all that matters. We can be so self-engrossed in our own natural [...]

22 10, 2019

Salve Fundator, Pater et Magister

2019-10-23T08:20:16+00:00October 22nd, 2019|

Some saints stand alone. We appreciate their heroism without reference to their antecedents. Think of St Teresa of Calcutta. We recall her loving care for the poorest of the poor before we remember that she was Albanian. Or Padre Pio. We remember that he was a mystic and a stigmatist before we think of which branch of the Franciscans [...]

17 10, 2019

A Long Discipleship

2021-12-02T13:03:27+00:00October 17th, 2019|

Preached by the Father at the Solemn Pontifical Mass of Thanksgiving celebrated by His Eminence, Cardinal Nichols at the London Oratory on Thursday, 17 October. Divine providence helped John Henry Newman to follow Saint Philip's Neri's admonition to those who wished to become holy: be humble and stay low. After The Parting of Friends in 1843, Mr Newman was no [...]

30 07, 2019

Regina cleri, ora pro nobis

2021-12-02T13:00:45+00:00July 30th, 2019|

The Blessed Virgin Mary is personally involved in the unfolding of God’s plans for every single human soul. The Almighty has chosen to involve her in everything to do with the salvation of the human race. Our blessed Lady's ongoing role in the economy of redemption was one of the reasons she was taken to heaven at the end [...]

10 06, 2019

Jesus is Lord

2021-12-02T13:00:31+00:00June 10th, 2019|

In the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost Spirit we are given a glimpse of God's plans for humanity's future. Part of that plan is the merciful reversal of the tragic diversity of human tongues, that curse imposed by heaven when human pride attempted to construct the tower of Babel. At Pentecost, that curse is reversed, and the healing [...]

18 05, 2019

Look Down from Heaven, Holy Father

2021-12-02T13:00:17+00:00May 18th, 2019|

May 26th is the feast of our Holy Father Saint Philip, Apostle of Rome and Founder of the Congregation of the Oratory. On that day in 1595 his soul left this world and was taken to heaven. While still a layman Philip had a life-changing experience in the Roman catacombs. In 1544 on the vigil of Pentecost he was alone [...]

20 04, 2019

Lamentable State of Disorder

2021-12-02T13:00:04+00:00April 20th, 2019|

"…the Divine Baptism, wherewith God visits us, penetrates through our whole soul and body. It leaves no part of us uncleansed, unsanctified. It claims the whole man for God. ….Thus the heart of every Christian ought to represent in miniature the Catholic Church, since one Spirit makes both the whole Church and every member of it to be His [...]

15 03, 2019

Lent with Newman

2021-12-02T12:59:51+00:00March 15th, 2019|

"As time goes on, and Easter draws nearer, we are called upon not only to mourn over our sins, but especially over the various sufferings which Christ our Lord and Saviour underwent on account of them. Why is it, my brethren, that we have so little feeling on the matter as we commonly have? Why is it that we [...]

1 02, 2019

Our Mother Also

2021-12-02T12:59:35+00:00February 1st, 2019|

The Blessed Virgin Mary and St Joseph her spouse most chaste presented the Son of God in the Jewish temple. In thanksgiving they offered a blood sacrifice of two pigeons. With that modest offering the entire sacrificial cultus of the Jewish temple was brought to its proper conclusion, truly speaking. Messiah, the Desire of all nations, had finally come to His [...]

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