It can be difficult to tell the difference between beginnings and endings. Perhaps one of the strongest lessons in Jesus's words from the cross is that we must not be as concerned about our time as we are about God's time. In God's time beginnings and endings are one in the same, because God's time is not so much a matter of minutes, hours, and days as it is about a way of living in the world. The way we mark the passage of our life is not the same way that God marks our time. It is when washing the feet of others, the giving of ourselves for the sake of our brothers and sisters, that we live according to God's time.
–from the book: The Last Words of Jesus: A Meditation on Love and Suffering
✞ "I will simply counsel every man and woman to beware of even the very least speck of [pride], which seems to me to be the mere delight and liking of ourselves for anything whatsoever that either is in us or outwardly belongs to us." — St. Thomas More
✞ MEDITATION OF THE DAY "For it was while Eve was yet a virgin that the ensnaring word had crept into her ear which was to build the edifice of death. Into a virgin's soul, in like manner, must be introduced that Word of God which was to raise the fabric of life; so that what had been reduced to ruin by this sex might by the selfsame sex be recovered to salvation. As Eve believed the serpent, so Mary believed the angel. The delinquency which the one occasioned by believing, the other effaced by believing." — Tertullian, p.44 AN EXCERPT FROM Hail, Holy Queen
✞ VERSE OF THE DAY "The Lord is your keeper; the Lord is your shade at your right hand. The sun shall not strike you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all evil; he will keep your life. The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time on and forevermore." Psalm 121:5-8
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Saint Teresa of Los Andes
(July 13, 1900 – April 12, 1920)
Saint Teresa of Los Andes' Story
One needn't live a long life to leave a deep imprint. Teresa of Los Andes is proof of that.
As a young girl growing up in the early 1900's in Santiago, Chile, Juana Fernandez read an autobiography of a French-born saint—Thérèse, popularly known as the Little Flower. The experience deepened her desire to serve God and clarified the path she would follow. At age 19 Juana became a Carmelite nun, taking the name of Teresa.
The convent offered the simple lifestyle Teresa desired and the joy of living in a community of women completely devoted to God. She focused her days on prayer and sacrifice. "I am God's," she wrote in her diary. "He created me and is my beginning and my end."
Toward the end of her short life, Teresa began an apostolate of letter-writing, sharing her thoughts on the spiritual life with many people. At age 20 she contracted typhus and quickly took her final vows. She died a short time later, during Holy Week.
Known as the "Flower of the Andes," Teresa remains popular with the estimated 100,000 pilgrims who visit her shrine in Los Andes each year. Canonized in 1993 by Pope John Paul II, she is Chile's first saint.
The special graces given Saint Teresa reflect the mysterious wisdom of God at work in individuals whether young or old. It appears God has his own logic when it comes to who gets what in the realm of grace. All we can say is; "Praised be the Lord."
The Lord GOD has given me a well-trained tongue, That I might know how to speak to the weary a word that will rouse them. Morning after morning he opens my ear that I may hear; And I have not rebelled, have not turned back. I gave my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who plucked my beard; My face I did not shield from buffets and spitting.
The Lord GOD is my help, therefore I am not disgraced; I have set my face like flint, knowing that I shall not be put to shame. He is near who upholds my right; if anyone wishes to oppose me, let us appear together. Who disputes my right? Let him confront me. See, the Lord GOD is my help; who will prove me wrong?
Responsorial Psalm Ps 69:8-10, 21-22, 31 and 33-34 R. (14c) Lord, in your great love, answer me. For your sake I bear insult, and shame covers my face. I have become an outcast to my brothers, a stranger to my mother's sons, because zeal for your house consumes me, and the insults of those who blaspheme you fall upon me. R. Lord, in your great love, answer me. Insult has broken my heart, and I am weak, I looked for sympathy, but there was none; for consolers, not one could I find. Rather they put gall in my food, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink. R. Lord, in your great love, answer me. I will praise the name of God in song, and I will glorify him with thanksgiving: "See, you lowly ones, and be glad; you who seek God, may your hearts revive! For the LORD hears the poor, and his own who are in bonds he spurns not." R. Lord, in your great love, answer me.
Verse Before the Gospel Hail to your, our King; you alone are compassionate with our errors. OR Hail to you, our King, obedient to the Father; you were led to your crucifixion like a gentle lamb to the slaughter.
Gospel Mt 26:14-25
One of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, "What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?" They paid him thirty pieces of silver, and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over.
On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the disciples approached Jesus and said, "Where do you want us to prepare for you to eat the Passover?" He said, "Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, 'The teacher says, My appointed time draws near; in your house I shall celebrate the Passover with my disciples.'" The disciples then did as Jesus had ordered, and prepared the Passover.
When it was evening, he reclined at table with the Twelve. And while they were eating, he said, "Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me." Deeply distressed at this, they began to say to him one after another, "Surely it is not I, Lord?" He said in reply, "He who has dipped his hand into the dish with me is the one who will betray me. The Son of Man indeed goes, as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed. It would be better for that man if he had never been born." Then Judas, his betrayer, said in reply, "Surely it is not I, Rabbi?" He answered, "You have said so."
wau.org Catholic Meditations Meditation: Matthew 26:14-25
Wednesday of Holy Week
He who has dipped his hand into the dish with me is the one who will betray me. (Matthew 26:23)
What a cryptic saying! Was Jesus really trying to reveal the identity of his betrayer? Or was he simply suggesting that all the apostles would betray him in some way or another? After all, each of them had dipped his hand into the bowl with Jesus at some point during the meal. It was only when Judas spoke up that he was singled out.
Like the twelve, each of us "dips into the bowl" with Jesus whenever we eat his Body and drink his Blood. And like the Twelve, each of us has betrayed the Lord in some way at one time or another in our lives. The chances are that we'll do it again. Why? Because it's part of our fallen nature.
This can sound depressing, but there is good news: We are forgiven. It doesn't matter whether we have committed great sins or small ones. The Pharisees, who were trying hard but had become inflexible, needed forgiveness just as much as the prostitutes and tax collectors, who were notorious sinners. And so do we. Whether we have committed murder or are harboring a grudge against someone, we all need Jesus' sacrifice on the cross to set us free.
What hope we can have, and not just for ourselves, but for each other as well! Every one of us who comes to the table is a forgiven sinner. The next time you are at Mass, take a look around at your brothers and sisters in Christ, and recognize them as your family. You are all "dipping into the bowl" with Jesus. Thank the Lord that you are all covered by his mercy and love.
May this realization bring us to greater unity with each other. Jesus' deepest desire is that we would be one as he and the Father are one. Let's ask him today to teach us to be merciful as he is merciful, so that this longing of his might be fulfilled!
"Thank you, Lord, for your sacrifice on the cross. Make us one as you and the Father are one. Give us humility and compassion for one another as we strive to live for you."
Isaiah 50:4-9 Psalm 69:8-10, 21-22, 31, 33-34
my2cents: The Lord said about 700 years before Christ did this: "I gave my back to those who beat me, my cheeks to those who plucked my beard; My face I did not shield from buffets and spitting." We've a long way to go on following the Lord, when it comes to giving your back and cheeks and not uttering a word.
We pray today "Lord, in your great love, answer me. Insult has broken my heart, and I am weak, I looked for sympathy, but there was none; for consolers, not one could I find. Rather they put gall in my food, and in my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink." Very often I say that the torments of the devil in the garden where attacks on the heart, to dismay and sway away the Lord. Too often I see these insults and attacks on people and they sway away, and most often because they took things as an insult, where pride got in the way. But the Lord wasn't disheartened, he agonized because of the realities he could see thousands of years after His time on earth...the sin of humans today, the atrocity of killing ourselves and the catastrophe caused by the calamity of darkness still in the world. And so He would die for one reason...Love. And all things involved in love whom is the Lord Himself. "I will go forth and show the WAY."
In the Holy Gospel, we hear the Lord's words ""Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me." Among us is a traitor, weak, sick in the spirit, a thief, and a liar, a two faced person, the very word 'hypocrite' wouldn't suffice, because this person is a traitor. And the all knowing God knew this. He knew this person was sinning against God. And still He would dine with them. If you pray the stations, Way of the Cross by Saint Alphonsus De Liguori, and the reproaches, the Lord asks "My people what have I done to you?" He says that He raised us up and we put Him down. Isn't that the betrayer? Suddenly, it isn't looking like Judas is alone, because there with the Lord and dining is a microcosm of the Kingdom. Even in Heaven a traitor, Lucifer, is cast to the netherworld. Why? Even Adam and Eve, the traitors, handed to death by their own doing, cast from bliss, this Heavenly union. Why? There is one thing we should learn from all this: Pride has no room for God.
So people live forgetting. They forget because they do not care enough. The reproaches are lamentations, and for some wailing and grinding of teeth in eternity. Jesus says at the last supper when Offering His Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity when He institutes the Priesthood with these words, "DO THIS IN REMEMBRANCE OF ME". And He said to do this until He returns. So since then, the priests have been faithful. And the action is to bring Jesus into our living world. He would never leave. He would never abandon us. He knows our weakness and He wants us to be fed with Him, an outpouring, a complete giving. So cast to the feet of Jesus your sins, cast out that forgetfulness, that of not caring anymore. The betrayer is among you...and Jesus would die for him .... and you...and me
Thought for today: Where are you at spiritually? Jesus wants to give you an abundant life, through the riches of his love. Indescribable joy, peace, and freedom are the return on investing your heart in Jesus Christ.
Action for today: Take an audit of your spiritual bank account and spend some time surrendering your poverty to the Lord.
Prayer for today: Lord, give me the grace to surrender all of my poverty to you. Give me the riches of your love, help me to follow you as a disciple and give my life to you.
Quote for today: "The wages of sin is death, but the gift of God through Jesus Christ, is eternal life."-Romans 6:23
Be a Hero today – #ShareJesus: Listen to someone's story. Respect them. Love them. Earn the right to be heard, If you already have earned the right, then share the Gospel with someone.