“The only worthwhile striving is after the highest ideals: If you aim for an easy target, your standard will inevitably decline, and no progress is ever made, except through real effort and real suffering.” - Servant of God Fra' Andrew Bertie                                                                                                                                                 "Work as if everything depends on you, pray as if everything depends on God" - Saint Ignatius of Loyola

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FEAST OF BLESSED GERARD MECATTI DE VILLAMAGNA

Next to Saints Hugh and Ubaldesca, Blessed Gerard Mecatti is the most famous of the saints venerated in the Order of Saint John.  Born in 1174, at Villamagna, not far from Florence, he led an admirable life of humility, piety and compassion for the Poor. At an early age, he requested and obtained admission as a "servant d'armes" in our Order, in which he set an example of disinterested charity, giving all he owned to the unfortunate, living by choice in abject poverty. He died in 1245. For more biographical information, especially the wonderful miracle of the cherries at the moment of his death, read here.  

A solitary Knight, the Blessed Gerard Mecatti was able to overcome the greatest enemy of God he had met: himself, through holy silence and humiliation (cf Mgr Ducaud-Bourget). For those of our readers who are reading the recently-published new book 'The Power of Silence' by Robert Cardinal Sarah (see here), it is clear that Blessed Gerard Mecatti is very much a man of our age.  May we learn from his holy example, especially in these times of trouble.
O God, who, following the example of Thine own Son, didst bring blessed Gerard to a life of laborious solitude, grant, we beseech Thee, that by vigour of prayer and penitence, we may be strengthened to live out our Christian duties. Through our Lord Jesus Christ thy Son, who liveth and reigneth with Thee in the unity of the Holy Ghost, one God, world without end. Amen.
Blessed Gerard Mecatti, pray for us.