The resurrection of Jesus is not simply a pledge of a new life in the future, but rather an affirmation that the new life Jesus has promised has already begun. St. Paul once urged the new Christians in Corinth to allow God to be "everything in all of you." The resurrection of Jesus shows the type of life toward which God's grace and mercy will always lead each of us—if we allow that.
–from the book Peace and Good
✞ "One just soul can obtain pardon for a thousand sinners." — St. Margaret Mary Alacoque
✞ MEDITATION OF THE DAY "No one who follows Me will ever walk in darkness (Jn 8:12). These words of our Lord counsel all to walk in His footsteps. If you want to see clearly and avoid blindness of heart, it is His virtues you must imitate. Make it your aim to meditate on the life of Jesus Christ. Christ's teachings surpasses that of all the Saints. But to find this spiritual nourishment you must seek to have the Spirit of Christ. It is because we lack this Spirit that so often we listen to the Gospel without really hearing it. Those who fully understand Christ's words must labor to make their lives conform to His." — Thomas á Kempis, p.15 AN EXCERPT FROM The Imitation of Christ
VERSE OF THE DAY "Nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and nothing secret that will not become known. Therefore whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered behind closed doors will be proclaimed from the housetops." Luke 12:2-3
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Blessed James Oldo
(1364 – April 18, 1404)
You've heard rags-to-riches stories. Today, we celebrate the reverse.
James of Oldo was born into a well-to-do family near Milan in 1364. He married a woman who like him, appreciated the comforts that came with wealth. But an outbreak of the plague drove James, his wife, and their three children out of their home and into the countryside. Despite those precautions, two of his daughters died from the plague. James determined to use whatever time he had left to build up treasures in heaven and to build God's realm on earth.
He and his wife became Secular Franciscans. James gave up his old lifestyle and did penance for his sins. He cared for a sick priest, who taught him Latin. Upon the death of his wife, James himself became a priest. His house was transformed into a chapel where small groups of people, many of them fellow Secular Franciscans, came for prayer and support. James focused on caring for the sick and for prisoners of war. He died in 1404 after contracting a disease from one of his patients.
James Oldo was beatified in 1933.
The death of those we love brings a troubling awareness of our own mortality. James had that experience when he gazed into a friend's grave, and it brought him to his senses. He determined to use whatever time he had left to build up treasures in heaven and to build God's realm on earth. Our time is limited, too. We can use it well or foolishly: The choice is ours.
On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people, "Let the whole house of Israel know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified."
Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and they asked Peter and the other Apostles, "What are we to do, my brothers?" Peter said to them, "Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is made to you and to your children and to all those far off, whomever the Lord our God will call." He testified with many other arguments, and was exhorting them, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand persons were added that day.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 33:4-5, 18-19, 20 and 22 R. (5b) The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord. or: R. Alleluia. Upright is the word of the LORD, and all his works are trustworthy. He loves justice and right; of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full. R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord. or: R. Alleluia. See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him, upon those who hope for his kindness, To deliver them from death and preserve them in spite of famine. R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord. or: R. Alleluia. Our soul waits for the LORD, who is our help and our shield. May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us who have put our hope in you. R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord. or: R. Alleluia.
Alleluia Ps 118:24 R. Alleluia, alleluia. This is the day the LORD has made; let us be glad and rejoice in it. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Jn 20:11-18
Mary Magdalene stayed outside the tomb weeping. And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb and saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet where the Body of Jesus had been. And they said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She said to them, "They have taken my Lord, and I don't know where they laid him." When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there, but did not know it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?" She thought it was the gardener and said to him, "Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him." Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabbouni," which means Teacher. Jesus said to her, "Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, 'I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'" Mary went and announced to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and then reported what he had told her.
Peter's words shook his listeners deeply. Jesus, the carpenter from Nazareth, was Israel's long-awaited Messiah—and they had crucified him! What have we done? What's going to happen to us now?
That was Peter's opening. Once he explained who Jesus was, he began to talk about the good news God had promised centuries earlier through the prophet Joel: "Everyone shall be saved who calls on the name of the Lord" ( cf. Joel 3:5; Acts 2:21). Even us? Even the ones who were part of the problem? "Yes," Peter seemed to reply. "Even you."
Peter's words ring out just as clearly to us today. Yes, even you! Everyone who turns to Jesus will receive mercy. That's how gracious and generous he is. No one is excluded. "The promise is made to you and to your children and to all those far off" (Acts 2:39).
This is truly great news. We all need mercy. Even if it's hidden deep in our consciences, we all sense that we have sinned. We all have a sense that we stand guilty before God and are unable to remove that guilt on our own. And so we all wonder, in one way or another, What am I to do?
Peter answered this question quickly and confidently: repent! It's that easy. Just turn to Jesus, and tell him you are sorry for what you have done. Tell him you need his forgiveness. He is loving and merciful, and he will forgive you!
When the people accepted Peter's words, something else happened to them. They weren't just pardoned for their sins; they were also filled with the Holy Spirit. Through baptism, they received God's power to help them live in a new way. The very same thing happens every time we confess our sins—we receive a fresh outpouring of the Spirit.
No one is outside the bounds of Jesus' mercy. Even now, two thousand years after his resurrection, he is ready to pardon you and fill you with his grace.
So the next time you wonder, What am I to do? remember that the promise of mercy is for you. Confess your sins and be set free. Don't ever underestimate the power of the Holy Spirit to bring you new life!
"Jesus, thank you for your promise. Come, Lord, and make me new."
Psalm 33:4-5, 18-20, 22 John 20:11-18
my2cents: "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." It is the Word of the Lord. Why are we in this world? To learn to swim. God sees what we can not. We can't see spirits. We can't see many things. But God can. We see things that aren't there, like fear, hatred, and evil things. But God sees way more. What's more? Everything. And everything is what we want...and God is everything. "The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord." See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him, upon those who hope for his kindness, To deliver them from death and preserve them in spite of famine." All these people that cheered and clapped for the Lord at one time, were nowhere to be seen when He was being crucified. In my cursillo rollo, I tell people that I am tired of the "clappers", they cheer and applaud, but when asked for help, nobody comes. Twice they ask Mary Magdala today ""Woman, why are you weeping?" At first it was the angels, and then it was the Lord. In this world, there is weeping. Blessed are they who weep and mourn, for they will see the Lord. They will be comforted. And woe to those who are happy, full, and rich now, for they live as they do not need the Lord, do not need to see Him. Woe because they will cry without tears and their hearts will be far from God as they were in the world. Blessed are the lambs, the children of God. Our job now is to learn to swim, to realize the Holy Spirit working in our lives. From now on, this is what it will be about, living a life in the Spirit of God. This is what inspires Saint Peter our first pope to do...to stand up in front of thousands and proclaim the risen Lord, and preach repentance and forgiveness and bring waters for people to swim in the gift of the Holy Spirit. Jesus was witnessing the fruit of the Spirit of God. To see the first few thousands begin to repent and convert without Him having to do everything, but is in everything. Now the Holy Spirit would spread like wild fire. This is why He had to die. So too, we must die. So the Spirit will spread. This is true baptism. To renounce the world and accept all of Him. I am happy to be with you in the Spirit. I cherish your friendship. It is everything. A small group making the world of a difference, because Christ is in our heart and soul....