What's the thing you do to create and bring beauty to the world around you? Whatever it is, you can use it to change the world. Think, ask, and offer. That's all it takes. Think about who might benefit from it, ask around, and then offer it. I bet you'll be surprised by how much demand there is for what you can do!
–from Colleen Mitchell
† "O my God, fill my soul with holy joy, courage and strength to serve You. Enkindle Your love in me and then walk with me along the next stretch of road before me." — St. Benedicta of the Cross (Edith Stein)
✞MEDITATION OF THE DAY✞
"The Spirit of God is a spirit of peace, and he speaks and acts in peace and gentleness, never in tumult and agitation. What's more, the motions of the Spirit are delicate touches that don't make a great noise and can penetrate our spiritual consciousness only if we have within ourselves a sort of calm zone of silence and peace. If our inner world is noisy and agitated, the gentle voice of the Holy Spirit will find it very difficult to be heard. If we want to recognize and follow the Spirit's motions, it is of the greatest importance to maintain a peaceful heart in all circumstances." — Fr. Jacques Philippe, p. 37 AN EXCERPT FROM In the School of the Holy Spirit
Dedication of Churches of Saints Peter and Paul
Saint of the Day for November 18
The Story of the Dedication of the Churches of Saints Peter and Paul
St. Peter's is probably the most famous church in Christendom. Massive in scale and a veritable museum of art and architecture, it began on a much humbler scale. Vatican Hill was a simple cemetery where believers gathered at Saint Peter's tomb to pray. In 319, Constantine built a basilica on the site that stood for more than a thousand years until, despite numerous restorations, it threatened to collapse. In 1506, Pope Julius II ordered it razed and reconstructed, but the new basilica was not completed and dedicated for more than two centuries.
St. Paul's Outside-the-Walls stands near the Abaazia delle Tre Fontane, where Saint Paul is believed to have been beheaded. The largest church in Rome until St. Peter's was rebuilt, the basilica also rises over the traditional site of its namesake's grave. The most recent edifice was constructed after a fire in 1823. The first basilica was also Constantine's doing.
Constantine's building projects enticed the first of a centuries-long parade of pilgrims to Rome. From the time the basilicas were first built until the empire crumbled under "barbarian" invasions, the two churches, although miles apart, were linked by a roofed colonnade of marble columns. Reflection
Peter, the rough fisherman whom Jesus named the rock on which the Church is built, and the educated Paul, reformed persecutor of Christians, Roman citizen, and missionary to the gentiles, are the original odd couple. The major similarity in their faith-journeys is the journey's end: both, according to tradition, died a martyr's death in Rome—Peter on a cross and Paul beneath the sword. Their combined gifts shaped the early Church and believers have prayed at their tombs from the earliest days.
I, John, heard a voice from heaven speak to me. Then the voice spoke to me and said: "Go, take the scroll that lies open in the hand of the angel who is standing on the sea and on the land." So I went up to the angel and told him to give me the small scroll. He said to me, "Take and swallow it. It will turn your stomach sour, but in your mouth it will taste as sweet as honey." I took the small scroll from the angel's hand and swallowed it. In my mouth it was like sweet honey, but when I had eaten it, my stomach turned sour. Then someone said to me, "You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings."
Responsorial Psalm Ps 119:14, 24, 72, 103, 111, 131 R. (103a) How sweet to my taste is your promise! In the way of your decrees I rejoice, as much as in all riches.
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise! Yes, your decrees are my delight; they are my counselors.
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise! The law of your mouth is to me more precious than thousands of gold and silver pieces.
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise! How sweet to my palate are your promises, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise! Your decrees are my inheritance forever; the joy of my heart they are.
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise! I gasp with open mouth in my yearning for your commands.
R. How sweet to my taste is your promise!
Alleluia Jn 10:27 R. Alleluia, alleluia. My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Lk 19:45-48
Jesus entered the temple area and proceeded to drive out those who were selling things, saying to them, "It is written, My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves." And every day he was teaching in the temple area. The chief priests, the scribes, and the leaders of the people, meanwhile, were seeking to put him to death, but they could find no way to accomplish their purpose because all the people were hanging on his words.
Some thoughts on today's scripture
▪ As you read this text, realise that Jesus is reminding you that he wishes to meet you in your heart room – your 'house of prayer'. Without realising it, we frequently clutter up that space with less important interests and Jesus has to try and drive them out. It's a great gift to communicate with the Lord and to try and co-operate with him in making space for what really matters in our life.
Conversation requires talking and listening. As I talk to Jesus may I also learn to be still and listen. I picture the gentleness in His eyes and the smile full of love as he gazes on me. I can be totally honest with Jesus as I tell Him of my worries and my cares. I will open up my heart to Him as I tell Him of my fears and my doubts. I will ask Him to help me to place myself fully in His care, to abandon myself to Him, knowing that He always wants what is best for me.
I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.
wau.org Catholic Meditations Meditation: Luke 19:45-48
Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne, Virgin (Optional Memorial)
Every day he was teaching in the temple. (Luke 19:47)
Jesus' final days leading up to his arrest and crucifixion must have felt like a marathon. Morning after morning, he would wake up early to pray on the Mount of Olives and then head to the Temple to teach the people (Luke 21:37).
This time of year can feel like a marathon for us too. We may be working harder or traveling because of the impending holidays. But what if instead of running our race, we join Jesus in his marathon? What if we were to sit before God every morning, just as Jesus did at the Mount of Olives—and just as his listeners did in the Temple?
Every day, before he began ministering, Jesus made sure he spent time with his heavenly Father. "I do nothing on my own," he said, "but I say only what the Father taught me" (John 8:28). Amazing, isn't it? Even Jesus took time to consult God in prayer: to get a sense of what his next steps should be. If Jesus did this, how much more important is it for us to go to God every day for direction and counsel?
In his humanity, Jesus found a physical place to pray: the Mount of Olives. And he found a good time: early in the morning. What a simple model! Setting a specific time for prayer every day may mean rearranging your schedule or getting to bed a bit earlier so that you can have some quiet time in the morning, but it will help you stay consistent. Setting a specific place can help you establish a kind of sanctuary, a place set aside where you can meet the Lord in prayer. Following Jesus' example can help you find God's wisdom and guidance much more easily.
So follow Jesus' example. God delights in your praise and intercession, but he also wants to talk with you. He wants to share in your life. Try to listen for his voice, his direction, and know that he will bless your attempts to follow him. When you think of it this way, "prayer time" becomes so much more than something to check off of your to-do list!
"Jesus, you are the great Teacher. I come to you for strength and direction, as you came before your Father."
The Lord said ""You must prophesy again about many peoples, nations, tongues, and kings." It is our duty as a baptized, priest, prophet, and king. It is awesome to hear that the Word was given to be eaten, and then, commanded to go out and prophecy...it is the Holy Eucharist that tastes so sweat in my mouth, and the wine turned blood turns sour in my stomach, because this is the Truth which is sweet and sour, it is the cross, it is our life with God, not all good at times, but in all, oh so sweet!
We prayed today: "How sweet to my taste is your promise! and "In the way of your decrees I rejoice, as much as in all riches." Sometimes I get insulted, when people say that I am rich. I am insulted because of many fronts. First, I do not suppose to appear rich in materialism. I drive an oldish vehicle daily, I wear clothes that are cheaper than buying at Walmart, and I don't got much on me but a smartphone and a rosary daily. And so, we have to go deeper into the richness people want or see in me...they must desire the LORD! And sharing the Lord is the awesome measure we are called to give, His compassion, and love, and showing the way to love God more!
In comes the Lord of our lives, and righteously angry, "It is written, My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves." Sour. Sour times for the truth had come in. For most of His ministry was sweet, but the sour note made larger eye openers than healing, for this began an inner healing, inside the temple of the Lord...your heart...your spirit. Jeremiah Ch. 7 says "I will do to this house, which bears my name, in which you trust, and to the place which I gave you and your ancestors, exactly what I did to Shiloh. I will cast you out of my sight, as I cast away all your kindred, all the offspring of Ephraim." Isaiah 56 says "For my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples." A cleansing of the heart, a cleansing of the mind, and a cleansing of the soul. For many, like me, a cleansing is needed. I clutter myself with all sorts of thoughts, things to do, things to buy, things to plan, things of activity, things of society, and thoughts come in and out about God, but not an exact time to pray. It is not exacted out of my life. Whips and chords should be made to whip ourselves as we fast and pray. But really, no one would do this, no one would whip themselves when tempted to sin, or begin to sin. And so the Lord has to do this in our lives for us. Sour. But the truth is sweet. My two year old gets very rowdy sometimes, and I have to put him in his place with scolding and time outs and a sort of whipping without physical abuse. When the terrible scourging happens, the child comes to me as a saint, trying to make me happy and oh so perfect.
This is how the Lord is with us...with those whom He loves...He chastises. He loves the Bride, the Holy Church. He loves her so much, that He dies for Her so He can be with Her forever. You are the Church, I am the Church, together we are the Church. So today's is a story of great love, and it is all about JESUS CHRIST KING!!!