When you fall, get back up. Our relationship with Jesus Christ gives us the power to rise again. When we turn to God with a repentant heart, he always helps us up. A man who keeps falling and rising will make more progress than the one who falls and stays down.
-from A 40-Day Spiritual Workout for Catholics
"I see clearly with the interior eye, that the sweet God loves with a pure love the creature that He has created, and has a hatred for nothing but sin, which is more opposed to Him than can be thought or imagined." — St. Catherine of Genoa
✞MEDITATION OF THE DAY✞
"Love is a strong force — a great good in every way; it alone can make our burdens light, and alone it bears in equal balance what is pleasing and displeasing. It carries a burden and does not feel it; it makes all that is bitter taste sweet. ... Nothing is sweeter than love, nothing higher, nothing stronger, nothing larger, nothing more joyful, nothing fuller, nothing better in heaven or on earth; for love is born of God and can find its rest only in God above all He has created. Such lovers fly high, run swiftly and rejoice. Their souls are free; they give all for all and have all in all. For they rest in One supreme Goodness above all things, from Whom all other good flows and proceeds. They look not only at the gifts, but at the Giver, Who is above all gifts." — Thomas à Kempis, p. 108 AN EXCERPT FROM The Imitation of Christ
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Saint Paul Miki And Companions
February 6. A Jesuit Brother and native of Japan, Saint Paul Miki was crucified, along with 25 other Catholics, for preaching his belief in Jesus. Proving that the faith is lived and died for in many lands, the Japanese martyrs take their place along with men and women of many nations. Saint of the Day
Sacred Space Memorial of Saint Paul Miki and Companions, Martyrs
Reading 1 Gn1:1-19
In the beginning, when God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was a formless wasteland, and darkness covered the abyss, while a mighty wind swept over the waters.
Then God said, "Let there be light," and there was light. God saw how good the light was. God then separated the light from the darkness. God called the light "day," and the darkness he called "night." Thus evening came, and morning followed–the first day.
Then God said, "Let there be a dome in the middle of the waters, to separate one body of water from the other." And so it happened: God made the dome, and it separated the water above the dome from the water below it. God called the dome "the sky." Evening came, and morning followed–the second day.
Then God said, "Let the water under the sky be gathered into a single basin, so that the dry land may appear." And so it happened: the water under the sky was gathered into its basin, and the dry land appeared. God called the dry land "the earth," and the basin of the water he called "the sea." God saw how good it was. Then God said, "Let the earth bring forth vegetation: every kind of plant that bears seed and every kind of fruit tree on earth that bears fruit with its seed in it." And so it happened: the earth brought forth every kind of plant that bears seed and every kind of fruit tree on earth that bears fruit with its seed in it. God saw how good it was. Evening came, and morning followed–the third day.
Then God said: "Let there be lights in the dome of the sky, to separate day from night. Let them mark the fixed times, the days and the years, and serve as luminaries in the dome of the sky, to shed light upon the earth." And so it happened: God made the two great lights, the greater one to govern the day, and the lesser one to govern the night; and he made the stars. God set them in the dome of the sky, to shed light upon the earth, to govern the day and the night, and to separate the light from the darkness. God saw how good it was. Evening came, and morning followed–the fourth day.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 104:1-2a, 5-6, 10 and 12, 24 and 35c
R. (31b) May the Lord be glad in his works. Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD, my God, you are great indeed! You are clothed with majesty and glory, robed in light as with a cloak. R. May the Lord be glad in his works. You fixed the earth upon its foundation, not to be moved forever; With the ocean, as with a garment, you covered it; above the mountains the waters stood. R. May the Lord be glad in his works. You send forth springs into the watercourses that wind among the mountains. Beside them the birds of heaven dwell; from among the branches they send forth their song. R. May the Lord be glad in his works. How manifold are your works, O LORD! In wisdom you have wrought them all— the earth is full of your creatures; Bless the LORD, O my soul! Alleluia. R. May the Lord be glad in his works.
Alleluia Mt 4:23
R. Alleluia, alleluia. Jesus preached the Gospel of the Kingdom and cured every disease among the people. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Mk 6:53-56
After making the crossing to the other side of the sea, Jesus and his disciples came to land at Gennesaret and tied up there. As they were leaving the boat, people immediately recognized him. They scurried about the surrounding country and began to bring in the sick on mats to wherever they heard he was. Whatever villages or towns or countryside he entered, they laid the sick in the marketplaces and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak; and as many as touched it were healed.
wau.org Catholic Meditations Meditation: Mark 6:53-56
Saint Paul Miki and Companions, Martyrs (Memorial)
. . . that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak. (Mark 6:56)
It has often been said that the clothes we wear reveal something about who we are. Are we wealthy or not? Meticulous or casual? Flashy or modest? In one sense, this was true during Jesus' time as well, only in a more direct way. That's because all the Jews were expected to dress in a certain distinctive way.
Here's a little background: during the time of Moses, God instructed the people to tie tassels to the corners of their robes. "When you use these tassels," he said, "the sight of the cord will remind you of all the commandments of the Lord and you will do them" (Numbers 15:39). Over time, these tassels acted as both a reminder and as a marker that set the people apart from the Gentiles around them. They became a sign of their Jewish heritage and their commitment to the Lord. It's similar to the way many Christians today wear a cross around their necks.
So it wasn't just a superstitious act when the Jews in Gennesaret laid the sick in the marketplace in the hopes that "they might touch only the tassel" of Jesus' cloak (Mark 6:56). It was an act of faith. It was their way of saying, "Jesus, I believe that you have a special relationship with God. Please set me free!"
This insight can help you understand today's story a bit better. You can imagine the scene, as well as the obstacles these people must have faced. The marketplace was a noisy crowded place, and people didn't usually notice those among them who were suffering. So these sick had no one to help them. They had just one chance at healing—to reach out as Jesus passed by. So they took it. And they were healed. Not only that, but they were reassured of God's love, and they became more convinced that Jesus was the Messiah.
Even though you can't touch Jesus physically today, he wants to give you the same assurance. He wants you to experience the same healing, love, and power that these people experienced. Reach out to him in prayer. Proclaim your belief in him, and watch as he warms your heart.
"Jesus, you are the Messiah! Heal me, and let me experience your love for me."
Genesis 1:1-19 Psalm 104:1-2, 5-6, 10, 12, 24, 35
We heard today "Then God said, "Let there be light," and there was light." What does this mean? It means more than we care to imagine. It means that in the middle of nothing, God came and made something beyond comprehension. It means that the creator has a will, and the will of God eventually has you and me reading this, here and now. The light from Heaven continues to radiate. And what it transmits through this type of radiation is a message called a Gospel, and the mighty wind still traverses this earth.
We prayed today "May the Lord be glad in his works. Bless the LORD, O my soul! O LORD, my God, you are great indeed! You are clothed with majesty and glory, robed in light as with a cloak." There was a point on earth when Jesus was transfigured atop a mountain. His clothes became dazzling white and his face shone like the sun. He fulfilled all the Old Testament and lived out all the Psalms, and continues in union with us bringing Heaven upon earth. It was said in a reflection today that the only reason people believed was because of the healings, while some dismissed them as magic, the Apostles continued the healing, and the healings continue to this day. The light of God's love continues to reveal itself for those in need...
In comes the Lord, and the people recognized Him, He must have been there before, or they were hoping to see Him. And when they saw Him they brought all the sick on mats, and all simply wanted to touche the tassel on the Rabbi's robe, the Master. That would be enough, no prayer greater than simple faith. I have been writing to you while sitting in pain next to a walker. Today, I write to you sitting next to crutches. I believe I am a living and breathing prayer. I live on prayers, your prayers and faith. I am offering myself in faith to God, for your faith to grow, and for peace in a world that seemingly does not want peace, that is, the light. In our country, they riot, they destroy, they hold up signs that say "hate" somewhere on them. Point the finger. The rest of us must remain in the light. Like today's saints, they chose the light, and they were murdered in Japan, for remaining with the light, the truth....Jesus. Those holding signs of hate say they want equality, and women's rights, which means the right to kill, to bring darkness to the world, against the unborn, and against traditional marriage. They say they want to open the country to foreigners, even those that might be murderers, they want no one to check them, to scan them. This is a great symbolism of our times. This is a matter of light and dark. At any given time, we can pivot. My life has been changed. When I crashed and fractured my pelvis, I screamed laying on the ground in anguish and pain and all I remember seeing was bright lights above "JESUS!!!" Help!! There was after that, darkness, a soul suffering. They call our Catholic Faith a couple names, "the Church militant" at one point: The Church, the Mystical Body, exists on this earth, and is called the Church militant, because its members struggle against the world, the flesh and the devil. The Church suffering means the souls in Purgatory. The Church triumphant is the Church in heaven. The unity and cooperation of the members of the Church on earth, in Purgatory, in Heaven is also called the Communion of Saints. Through it all, the light exists. I want you now to answer me one question: When you read the people being brought on mats/stretchers, who were you in the story? Did you see yourself as the sick on the stretcher? Probably...not. Did you see yourself as the people bringing out those on mats? Maybe you thought it'd be nice. Did you ever imagine yourself as the one touching the tassel?
That is to say, did you imagine you could be the one with such great faith? It only took one person to change the world, to illuminate the world, and it was the Son of God. Today, it will only take one person in your world to change your world. It is the Son of God. I was put on a stretcher and I screamed every time people touched me, everything hurt me. The ambulance ride was a bouncing test of pain. And in dark rooms of ICU I witnessed more pain, those in even worse shape than me with tubes all over. After 2 nights I was released on a Sunday to the upper floors but before that, Jesus had offered Himself in Holy Communion someone brought. I was in tears. I am one with the Church militant, the Mystical body, and the suffering, they need us. I want to carry those sick on mats, rather than ignoring them and letting them die. How? I want to know. But it will begin with Jesus. I want to be that person on the mat that reaches to Jesus for healing, because I am in constant need of healing, in my soul. I want to heal and heal others. I want to be that person that surprises Jesus when He feels the power come from Him to me. He will ask "who TOUCHED Me?"
I want to be able to say " I Have Touched Your Most Precious and Sacred Heart!" Because I love you