Am I being the sower that Father Daniel told me to be?

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Jesus on the wall of the senior Home

Jesus on the wall of the senior Home (Photo credit: freestone)

Gift:  Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.

Reading:  He said, “This is how it is with the kingdom of God;* it is as if a man were to scatter seed the land and would sleep and rise night and day and the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how.”  (Mark 4:26-27)

Observation:  Wednesday night, one of our young adults and I went down to the Newman Center at the University to attend the weekly student Mass at 9pm.  I had just finished my Catechist training class and he had just finished choir practice, but I was hoping to make it in time for confession.  I did make it for confession, and Father Daniel’s homily on that day’s gospel was rather unorthodox.  He actually had us discuss what we heard the gospel telling us about the seed that was sown on the path and the rocky ground, etc…After we discussed it in our small groups, we heard him say to all of us that we should be the sower, and stop seeing ourselves as seeds.  Today’s gospel reading is explaining further that we should no longer be looking at where our seed lands, just be sowing it.  Father Daniel specifically told me to be a sower before I left Wednesday night, and I resolved to do so.

Personification:  Love   It is the true nature of love to be spreading the seeds of faith to anyone that may hear it.  I know my little blog does not reach many, but I am thankful to God for the work that he is doing through me here and in our church.

Prayer:  Lord, don’t let me lose sight of the work that you are working through me and let me love you more and more by continuing to spread the good news to everyone who is reading or listening.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of  the holy Spirit…Amen!

How does Mom remember the story?

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Madonna by Raphael, an example of Marian art

Madonna by Raphael, an example of Marian art (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

Reading:  And all spoke highly of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. (Luke 4:22a)

Observation:  As I read the gospel reading from the Mass readings for today, I remembered that I had heard that Luke had gotten part of his gospel from listening to testimony of Mary, the Mother of God.  It should not surprise us then that in his gospel we hear of how people spoke highly of him and were amazed at his gracious words, before they got irritated at the fact that he was just the son of Joseph, the carpenter, and they could not accept what he had said of himself.  It is true for me, that my mother would usually tell a better version of my story than even I remember from growing up, and for that I am truly thankful to have her for a mother.

Personification:  Love  I hope that I can remember to focus on my mother version of the events that make up my life, and only see the bright spots of where God was trying to form me into a disciple.  As for Mary, I hope that I can see her as my spiritual Mother, so I can start to understand what pure love is and how to put the fruit of love on display to the people who I meet today.  I have to give my testimony again tonight at Saint Peter Catholic Church about how I suffered through my girlfriend’s abortion, without having any say in the decision, and as I finish this post I will call my mother to ask her to pray for me.

Prayer:  Hail Mary, full of grace.  The Lord is with you.  Blessed are you among women and blessed is the fruit of your womb, Jesus.  Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death.  Amen.

 

Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand…Jesus!

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3rd quarter of 16th century

3rd quarter of 16th century (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

I was set on fire by the reading today, and I hope that by the grace of God I am used to stoke this fire in the hearts of everyone who reads this today.  For some it will be hard to hear.  I’m sorry for your feelings and I hope that you forgive me.

 

In the gospel for today’s Mass readings, Jesus says the words that are included in my title for today’s post.  This is his reaction to hearing that John the Baptist had been arrested.  (Matthew 4:17). From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say,k “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

 

Also, in the first reading for today’s Mass readings, we hear about the testing of spirits.  In John’s letter he goes so far to say that those that do not believe are the antichrist…Is that you?  You be the judge:

 

Beloved, do not trust every spirit but test the spirits to see whether they belong to God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.a2This is how you can know the Spirit of God: every spirit that acknowledges Jesus Christ come in the flesh belongs to God,b3and every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus* does not belong to God. This is the spirit of the antichrist that, as you heard, is to come, but in fact is already in the world.  (1 John 4:1-3)

 

I am left with one question for anyone who may come across this post…Do you question the real presence of Jesus Christ in the Eucharist?  Do you preach against it, like Catholics are a cannabolistic cult society that believes that eating people’s flesh is somehow sacred?  Do you not understand and thereby plead ignorance and say it must not matter and it must not be necessary to my faith in Jesus?

 

Read John 6:66, and then read the above letter from the same Saint John the evangelist that wrote it…I did, and I am left with the distinct impression that anyone who stands against this teaching is the antichrist!

 

Lord, I pray for all those lost souls that have been led astray by false prophets, I pray that in the spirit of repentance that you will send the holy Spirit down upon us all and keep us faithful to your teaching and your truth.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit…Amen!

 

 

 

 

 

Beloved: Translation – All you who know that you are loved!

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Divine Love…<—- click there to see video and then come back to read below\/

I was given this message this morning…I think it fits perfectly with the Feast of Saint John…He was the beloved disciple…We are called to know this love too…God bless you!

First Reading for today’s Mass for the Feast of Saint John:  (1 John 1:1-4)

Beloved:saint-john-the-apostle1.jpg
What was from the beginning,
what we have heard,
what we have seen with our eyes,
what we looked upon
and touched with our hands
concerns the Word of life –
for the life was made visible;
we have seen it and testify to it
and proclaim to you the eternal life
that was with the Father and was made visible to us?
what we have seen and heard
we proclaim now to you,
so that you too may have fellowship with us;
for our fellowship is with the Father
and with his Son, Jesus Christ.
We are writing this so that our joy may be complete.

The Word of the Lord…

And now, my joy can be complete!  Thanks be to God…Alleluia…Amen!!!

“Repent and believe in the Gospel, for the end is near…Alleluia!!!”

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English: Repent window, Mathon church, near to...

English: Repent window, Mathon church, near to Mathon, Herefordshire, Great Britain. Beneath the left side: Repent ye for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” and the right: “Thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness”. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

 

Reading:  Amen, I say to you, among those born of women there has been none greater than John the Baptist; yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he.* From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven suffers violence,* and the violent are taking it by force.  (Matthew 11:11-12)

 

Observation:  As I sat in our small chapel this morning waiting for the good news to be proclaimed by the leader of our communion service, he says that he is still waiting on the holy Spirit to inspire him to tell him what to say about the gospel for today.  The kingdom of heaven is at hand.  It was an admonition from Jesus to his apostles, and to us today.  If we believe that the kingdom of heaven is at hand, and we are in it, then we are greater than John the Baptist.  Our job is more important than his job, because he was telling of the coming kingdom and we must convince people who it is already here.

 

Personification:  Joy.  I am choosing to display the fruit of joy today,  in anticipation of the 3rd Sunday of Advent, where we are called to rejoice in the coming of our celebration of Jesus’ birth.  Since, tomorrow is not promised, we should show joy to the people who don’t know Jesus now, so they can see the love he has for them through us and the joy that comes from our relationship with God.

 

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner…Amen!

 

Repent…Change your heart!

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Prepare the Way of the Lord

Prepare the Way of the Lord (Photo credit: Fr. Stephen, MSC)

Gift:  Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.

Reading:  He went throughout [the] whole region of the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins.  (Luke 3:3)

Observation:  As I read the gospel reading for Mass today, I was thinking about the way that I would pray for the President to repent of the evil that he has put forth in his HHS mandate that forces men and women of good will, in the United States, to violate their consciences.  At the same time, I was thinking that I should pray that we all repent of the evil in our own sinfulness.  By the grace of God, both of these things will be done for those who love God and are called according to His purpose.

Personification:  Self-Control. Many times when I choose to try to personify the fruit of self-control, I write that I will only be successful if the grace of God saves me from myself.  God’s grace has saved me this morning and I just want to thank Him for it.

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, thank you for saving me from my flesh and preserving me, by your grace, to follow your will and not my own this morning.  Please continue to shine your light in my darkness and allow me to follow you, Jesus, with the continued intercession of Our Mother Mary, even more closely.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit…Amen!

Let’s give glory and honor to God now…

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Vision from Book of Revelation

Vision from Book of Revelation (Photo credit: cliff1066™)

 

Gift:  Knowledge – With the gift of knowledge, we understand the meaning of God’s Revelation, especially as expressed in the life and words of Jesus Christ. A person with knowledge is always learning more about the scriptures and Tradition.

 

Reading:  “Worthy are you, Lord our God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things; because of your will they came to be and were created.”  (Revelation 4:11)

 

Observation:  Although this verse is quoting the 24 elders that fell don in worship of God in John’s Revelation, shouldn’t we all be taking this attitude toward the God who is completing the work of salvation in us.  Rather than try to figure out exactly who the 24 elders are, I decided that giving glory and honor and power that rightly belong to God to Him who is still completing his work of salvation in me, is a better way to spend this post.

 

Personification:  Faithfulness.  It is only by giving up my selfish ambitions to understand the mind of God and following the lead of all the great saints that came before me, by giving glory and honor and power to the God who has saved me, that I can experience the fruit of faithfulness in my life.

 

Prayer:  Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit.  As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end…Amen!

 

 

 

 

Don’t throw the baby-killers out with the bath water!

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Stained glass window of the sacred Heart of Je...

Stained glass window of the sacred Heart of Jesus Christ in the former Mosque (Cathedral) of Cordoba, Spain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Gift: Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.

 

Reading:  For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, deluded, slaves to various desires and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful ourselves and hating one another.  (Titus 3:3)

 

Observation:  So, the title for my post today says it all.  I was recently moved to feel like it was necessary to point out to the world that Planned Parenthood is murdering a generation of our children in the wombs of un-knowing mothers.  However, today’s reading reminds me that I should be more willing to pray for their souls than condemn them for their actions.  Truth is, I have been a part of the attitude in society that says that babies are an inconvenience for most of my life, so if God can convert me, why not them?

 

Personification:  Kindness. You may ask how calling abortionists and their supporters, like Planned Parenthood, baby-killers is displaying the fruit of kindness.  However, I don’t think many abortion supporters are reading my blog at this point, or will they ever, so I think I am safe to say that the title will serve its’ purpose by bringing more people, like me, to a spot where we are praying for them, and not condemning them.

 

Prayer:  Lord, please show your loving kindness to me and all those who believe that legal abortion could ever be seen as a good thing.  My hope is that by my display of the fruit kindness to all people, that you will be able to convert our hearts to follow your commands more closely.  I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit…Amen!

 

 

Reject godless ways and worldly desires…

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Gifts of Fear of the Lord and Piety. Fresco No...

Gifts of Fear of the Lord and Piety. Fresco No. 21, Most Holy Trinity Church, Fulnek, Czechia, Europe. Esperanto: Donacoj de Timo antaŭ Dio kaj Pio. Fresko n-ro 21, kirko de la Plej Sankta Triunuo, Fulnek, Ĉeĥujo, Eŭropo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Gift:  Fear of the Lord (Wonder and Awe) – With the gift of wonder and awe (fear of the lord), we are aware of the glory and majesty of God. A person with wonder and awe knows that God is the perfection of all we desire: perfect knowledge, perfect goodness, perfect power, and perfect love.

 

Reading:  For the grace of God has appeared, saving all and training us to reject godless ways and worldly desires
and to live temperately, justly, and devoutly in this age, as we await the blessed hope, the appearance of the glory of the great God and of our savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to deliver us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for himself a people as his own, eager to do what is good.  (Titus 2:11-14)

 

Observation:  As I read this reading this morning, I was already tormented by thoughts of my sinfulness that I could not shake.  My son came to my rescue on more than one occasion to remind me of the man who God was creating me to be, as a father to my children and a child of God myself.  The truth is, if we are not completely committed to following God in all parts of our life, we will continue to be tempted to fall into sin, when the opportunity to sin presents itself.  This reading reminds me that I must be strong to reject the godless ways that I was raised with, and stay strong against the worldly desires that would consume me, since I have previously accepted some false gods of lust and pride in my life.

 

Personification:  Self-Control.  It is only when I set up all parts of my life to be in union with the will of God, that I know that I will be given the grace to display self-control and overcome any temptation that may present itself.  Rather than linger in this moment of letting my mind wander into my past sinfulness, I choose to make a sincere resolution to convert all parts of my life to following the precepts of God as the church has revealed them to us.

 

Prayer:  Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner…Amen!

 

 

Why not celebrate the Holy Name of Mary?

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Holy Name of Mary

Holy Name of Mary (Photo credit: Lawrence OP)

 

Gift:  The spirit of understanding to enlighten my mind with the light of divine truth.

 

Reading:  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. He destined us in love to be his sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. (Ephesians 1:3-6)

 

Observation:  At Mass this morning we read the ordinary readings, but I felt like we were missing out on something.  I knew I was, but the homily and Mass were amazing, so I knew I was supposed to be there, but I knew that this celebration of the Holy Name of Mary had a special meaning still for me today.  This optional second reading says it all, but the collect prayer for the special feast today will further show why I feel called to share this celebration on my journal today.

 

Personification:  Joy.  It is only through the remembrance of the name of Mary that I see a great cause for joy.  We hear in Luke’s Gospel for today’s Feast Mass that John leapt in Elizabeth’s womb, may I leap. for joy,  when I meet Jesus today.

 

Prayer:  Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that, for all who celebrate the glorious Name
of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
she may obtain your merciful favor.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.