† ""In this life our lot is not to enjoy God, but to do his holy will." — St. Teresa of Avila
✞MEDITATION OF THE DAY✞
"I desire that you know more profoundly the love that burns in My Heart for souls, and you will understand this when you meditate upon My Passion. Call upon My mercy on behalf of sinners; I desire their salvation. When you say this prayer, with a contrite heart and with faith on behalf of some sinner, I will give him the grace of conversion. This is the prayer: 'O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of Mercy for us, I trust in You.' " — St. Faustina Kowalska, p. 186-7 AN EXCERPT FROM Diary of St. Faustina
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(c. 1400 – November 12, 1463)
Saint Didacus' Story
Didacus is living proof that God "chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong."
As a young man in Spain, Didacus joined the Secular Franciscan Order and lived for some time as a hermit. After Didacus became a Franciscan brother, he developed a reputation for great insight into God's ways. His penances were heroic. He was so generous with the poor that the friars sometimes grew uneasy about his charity.
Didacus volunteered for the missions in the Canary Islands and labored there energetically and profitably. He was also the superior of a friary there.
In 1450, he was sent to Rome to attend the canonization of Saint Bernardine of Siena. When many friars gathered for that celebration fell sick, Didacus stayed in Rome for three months to nurse them. After he returned to Spain, he pursued a life of contemplation full-time. He showed the friars the wisdom of God's ways.
As he was dying, Didacus looked at a crucifix and said: "O faithful wood, O precious nails! You have borne an exceedingly sweet burden, for you have been judged worthy to bear the Lord and King of heaven" (Marion A. Habig, O.F.M., The Franciscan Book of Saints, p. 834).
San Diego, California, is named for this Franciscan, who was canonized in 1588. Reflection
We cannot be neutral about genuinely holy people. We either admire them or we consider them foolish. Didacus is a saint because he used his life to serve God and God's people. Can we say the same for ourselves?
Dear Jesus, today I call on you in a special way. Mostly I come asking for favours. Today I'd like just to be in Your presence. Let my heart respond to Your Love.
Lord, you created me to live in freedom. Mostly I take this gift for granted. Inspire me to live in the freedom you intended, with a heart untroubled and with complete trust in You.
I ask how I am within myself today? Am I particularly tired, stressed, or off-form? If any of these characteristics apply, can I try to let go of the concerns that disturb me?
The Word of God
Monday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time (audio)
Reading 1 Ti 1:1-9
Paul, a slave of God and Apostle of Jesus Christ for the sake of the faith of God's chosen ones and the recognition of religious truth, in the hope of eternal life that God, who does not lie, promised before time began, who indeed at the proper time revealed his word in the proclamation with which I was entrusted by the command of God our savior, to Titus, my true child in our common faith: grace and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our savior.
For this reason I left you in Crete so that you might set right what remains to be done and appoint presbyters in every town, as I directed you, on condition that a man be blameless, married only once, with believing children who are not accused of licentiousness or rebellious. For a bishop as God's steward must be blameless, not arrogant, not irritable, not a drunkard, not aggressive, not greedy for sordid gain, but hospitable, a lover of goodness, temperate, just, holy, and self-controlled, holding fast to the true message as taught so that he will be able both to exhort with sound doctrine and to refute opponents.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 24:1b-2, 3-4ab, 5-6 R. (see 6) Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. The LORD's are the earth and its fullness; the world and those who dwell in it. For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers.
R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? or who may stand in his holy place? He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain.
R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. He shall receive a blessing from the LORD, a reward from God his savior. Such is the race that seeks for him, that seeks the face of the God of Jacob.
R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face.
Alleluia Phil 2:15d, 16a R. Alleluia, alleluia. Shine like lights in the world, as you hold on to the word of life. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Lk 17:1-6
Jesus said to his disciples, "Things that cause sin will inevitably occur, but woe to the one through whom they occur. It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea than for him to cause one of these little ones to sin. Be on your guard! If your brother sins, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. And if he wrongs you seven times in one day and returns to you seven times saying, 'I am sorry,' you should forgive him."
And the Apostles said to the Lord, "Increase our faith." The Lord replied, "If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you."
Some thoughts on today's scripture
▪ Jesus tells us that despite our efforts to lead a good life, we are sure to stumble. He understands this and hence his lovely gift of Reconciliation. But he warns us of the great damage we do if we are responsible for causing others to stumble. Our being together should be for our mutual support and not for causing others to be led astray.
▪ Be grateful for all those who, through the grace of God, helped you to live your faith in the shadow of Jesus. Realising our own weakness and realising too how the Lord is so considerate towards us, helps us to be more Christ-like when we need to forgive others.
Jesus you speak to me through the words of the gospels. May I respond to your call today. Teach me to recognise your hand at work in my daily living.
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.
wau.org Catholic Meditations Meditation: Luke 17:1-6
32nd Week in Ordinary Time
If you have faith the size of a mustard seed . . . (Luke 17:6)
"I didn't think I was smart enough to go to college, but my teachers saw things in me that I couldn't see. They helped me discover that I really can succeed!"
Like the young man who made this remark, many of us can identify some achievement that we owe to the encouragement of a friend, spiritual advisor, or some other cheerleader. People like these help us see our potential; they push us to reach beyond our limited vision and accomplish what we thought was impossible.
That's what Jesus is doing for the apostles in today's Gospel. He has just told them to forgive seven times a day—constantly. They respond to this seemingly impossible instruction with willingness and alarm: "Increase our faith" (Luke 17:5). It's as if they're saying, "We know we have some faith, but it's far too small! Give us a greater ability to live according to what we believe."
How does Jesus answer? He tells them not to fixate on how small or inadequate their faith feels. He tells them that though their faith may be just "the size of a mustard seed," they have sufficient faith to do everything he asks, even if it seems impossible (Luke 17:6).
Of course, Jesus wants us to keep growing in faith too. But how does that happen? By using it! The "small" faith that has already been planted in us has powerful potential. But in order to unleash all that potential, we have to act on it, just as Jesus' first disciples learned to do. Remember how he sent them out to announce the kingdom, cure the sick, and expel demons? They went equipped only with their "small" faith and "returned rejoicing"—and maybe a little surprised—at the marvels they had worked in Jesus' name (Luke 10:17).
What about you? God has given you a mission. Is he calling you to do something that feels beyond your level of faith? Repair a long-broken relationship? Pray with someone for healing, and expect a miracle? Don't sell God—or yourself—short! God can use you just as he used the disciples "to accomplish far more than all we ask or imagine" (Ephesians 3:20). Take it one step of faith at a time, and watch what happens.
"Jesus, I want to exercise the faith you have given me. Today I will move forward by ______."
In today's 1st Holy Scripture we heard the Word of the Lord say "For this reason I left you in Crete so that you might set right what remains to be done and appoint presbyters in every town, as I directed you, on condition that a man be blameless...". What remains to be done is in your hands. What will be done? Your will? Or THY will, the thy meaning the Lord's in His prayer. The prayer says "not my will but yours Lord". No longer me, but You! This is the point of the Eucharist...to become more of Him. The more you receive with an open heart...the more He becomes Him in you.
We prayed today " Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face." The LORD's are the earth and its fullness; the world and those who dwell in it. For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers". Keep this Psalm in mind as we here the Word, JESUS, say today that we could tell a tree to be uprooted and planted in the sea. This is the people that really wants to see your face! Today's 5minutos said two men were constantly fighting. The elders in town eventually told one of them that he needed to go see (encounter) God. He went, and came back a different person. But things kept just about the same because the other man had not changed. They told the other man "you too need to go see God". They were able to convince him and went to see Him, he went up the mountain, and saw that God had the face of his enemy. "From there on there was peace...we are made in His image, in our brethren. But it'd be enough to believe for the world to walk in peace. Let us believe without seeing even when God's face is covered in clay and does not smell well. And so our brethren that are soiled by sin, are always in the image and likeness of God."
In comes the Lord of our lives ""Things that cause sin will inevitably occur, but woe to the one through whom they occur. It would be better for him if a millstone were put around his neck and he be thrown into the sea...". He talks about someone being thrown in to the sea. We had just read in the Psalms about His creations and the sea. And then the Lords says ""If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you would say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it would obey you." Again, He speaks about the sea, for the 3rd time today. It would then, take faith to realize that He is asking us to move mountains, and to uproot and throw ourselves into the sea, our dead selves, our sinful selves, because not only has He asked your faith to grow, but asked it to move. You know, they say faith is a gift from God. Do you not believe? I spoke with a loved one last night, and he said how he struggled with faith. All I could do was encourage him, and at one point I said "I bet you don't read my daily reflections (my 30 minute reflections) and I also bet you don't exercise 30 minutes a day". And he said no, he didn't. What's wrong with the picture here? Many things on many fronts. It is better to be faithful to God than to feel full of faith. It is better to keep applying yourself to His Mercy and His strength than to rely on your own. How in the world will you ever be uprooted and thrown into the sea without God? Have FAITH! God is saying HAVE FAITH! Don't you believe? Why don't you believe!?? THis is the Lord asking. Here in the United States, we have a presidential election coming up. Many have thrown their hands up in the air saying "what for? For whom shall I vote? neither one is any good!". The devil has caused great confusion, and does a good job with smoke and mirrors, throwing things into light that is not true light. If you have faith, and you pray the truth will be revealed. I am confident and unafraid (Isaiah12:2), for I live with the truth. I am confident my vote has been not for a particular party, but for life (the unborn) and peace. Now, whether it goes that way or not, I'm living the WAY. I'm showing the way.
For the struggling sinner that wants to give up, I'm going to tell you this "DON'T BE FOOLED!" because once you are fooled you will show your children and friends the foolish way to live...faithless and the faithless can veer more and more until the current takes them under. I told my loved one, "I'm going to keep prodding you and bugging you on the faith". He said Ok, and left. Why am I going to keep bugging? Because I CARE. Because I care I will reveal the TRUTH. I will not talk about you behind your back, I will speak with the truth always, because it sets me free, and not in a closet, not under a table, not under a bushel, but high and plain as day is the light of the sky...the TRUTH. And JESUS IS THE TRUTH and the WAY MY LIFE and yours....