Church Fathers, Day 209: St. Gregory the Great says lift up your hearts

Lift up your hearts If you keep your gaze trained on things that are above, says St. Gregory the Great, you’ll be able to walk the right path through your life here on earth. Lift your faithful hearts, dear friends, to the gracious blaze of eternal light, and pay close attention, in adoration of the mysteries given for our salvation, to the things that have been done for you. Love the purity of a chaste life, because Christ is the Son of a virgin. “Ab­stain from the passions of the flesh th … [Read more...]

Church Fathers, Day 182: St. Gregory the Great says the heavens are opened in the Eucharist

The heavens are opened in the Eucharist A medieval legend told how St. Gregory the Great had actually seen a vision of Christ himself in the bread of the Eucharist. But here St. Gregory tells us that we can all see the same thing—not with our eyes, but with our faith. The sacrifice of Christ on the Cross is re-presented for us at every Mass. We must be careful to remember that it is far safer and more secure that we should all do for ourselves, while we are alive, what we would want others t … [Read more...]

Church Fathers, Day 181: St. Gregory the Great tells us to sacrifice ourselves along with the Eucharist

Sacrifice yourself along with the Eucharist St. Gregory the Great tells us that it’s not enough just to be there when the sacrifice is made: we should be sacrificing ourselves, too, imitating the sacrifice on the altar. We should offer to God the daily sacrifice of tears, and the daily sacrifice of his body and blood. For this sacrifice, which in mystery renews to us the death of the Son of God, especially saves our souls from everlasting damnation. Christ is now risen from death, and does n … [Read more...]

Church Fathers, Day One Hundred Twenty-Seven: St. Gregory the Great says trust God’s promises, and take what comes

Trust God’s promises, and take what comes When Jesus was transfigured, says St. Gregory the Great, Peter wanted to live in that glory forever. But the time was not right. We have work to do here before we can live in glory with Jesus forever. The Apostle Peter was excited by the revelation of these mysteries. He despised what was mundane and scorned what was earthly, and he was filled with a sort of frenzied craving for what was eternal. Filled with rapture at the whole vision, he wanted to m … [Read more...]

Church Fathers, Day One Hundred Sixteen: St. Gregory the Great talks about learning good habits

Learn good habits during Lent The Church requires every Christian to fast during Lent. We should take this opportunity, says St. Gregory the Great, to build up good habits of detachment that we can keep up all through the year. As the Easter festival approaches, we keep the greatest and most bind­ing fast. The observation of it is imposed on all the faithful without exception. No one is so holy that he ought not to be holier, or so devout that he might not be more devout. Who in the … [Read more...]

Church Fathers, Day Eighty: St. Gregory the Great directs us to believe what Christ tells you

Believe what Christ tells you In a dialogue with St. Gregory the Great, Peter the deacon seems to prefer to think there is no hell. But we can’t do that, says St. Gregory the Great, without making a liar out of Christ. Peter: Let me ask you: will those who are condemned to hell burn forever, and never have any end of their torments? Gregory: It is certain, without doubt, and very true that, as the good will have no end of their joys, so the wicked will never have any release of their t … [Read more...]