Pope Francis reminds us that we must turn not to worldly responses in the face of fear—to consumerism, violence, self-centeredness—but instead turn to a strong personal experience of Christ in the Spirit. Like the disciples on a boat during the storm, we too will ﬁnd ourselves afraid and confused in this life. But may we reach not for the fear-mongering mentality of worldly wisdom and politics and instead reach out to Christ who shows us the way through the fear toward life and courage. Only then can we defeat the enemy of Christian discipleship, living fearlessly as witnesses of the Gospel in a world so desperately in need of that hope.
—from Dan Horan, OFM, author of God Is Not Fair, and Other Reasons for Gratitude
✞ "Consider God's charity. Where else have we ever seen someone who has been offended voluntarily paying out his life for those who have offended him?" — St. Catherine of Siena
✞ MEDITATION OF THE DAY "I remind you, My daughter, that as often as you hear the clock strike the third hour, immerse yourself completely in My mercy, adoring and glorifying it; invoke its omnipotence for the whole world, and particularly for poor sinners; for at that moment mercy was opened wide for every soul. In this hour you can obtain everything for yourself and for others for the asking; it was the hour of grace for the whole world—mercy triumphed over justice. My daughter, try your best to make the Stations of the Cross in this hour, provided that your duties permit it; and if you are not able to make the Stations of the Cross, then at least step into the chapel for a moment and adore, in the Blessed Sacrament, My Heart, which is full of mercy; and should you be unable to step into the chapel, immerse yourself in prayer there where you happen to be, if only for a very brief instant." — St. Faustina Kowalska, (1572) AN EXCERPT FROM Diary of St. Faustina
✞ VERSE OF THE DAY "As you therefore have received Christ Jesus the Lord, continue to live your lives in him, rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving." Colossians 2:6-7
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Saints Louis Martin and Zélie Guerin
(August 22, 1823 – July 29, 1894; December 23, 1831 – August 28, 1877)
Saints Louis Martin and Zélie Guerin's Story
Born into a military family in Bordeaux, Louis trained to become a watchmaker. His desire to join a religious community went unfulfilled because he didn't know Latin. Moving to Normandy, he met the highly-skilled lace maker, Zélie Guerin, who also had been disappointed in her attempts to enter religious life. They married in 1858, and over the years were blessed with nine children, though two sons and two daughters died in infancy.
Louis managed the lace-making business that Zélie continued at home while raising their children. She died from breast cancer in 1877.
Louis then moved the family to Lisieux to be near his brother and sister-in-law, who helped with the education of his five surviving girls. His health began to fail after his 15-year-old daughter entered the Monastery of Mount Carmel at Lisieux in 1888. Louis died in 1894, a few months after being committed to a sanitarium.
The home that Louis and Zélie created nurtured the sanctity of all their children, but especially their youngest, who is known to us as Saint Thérèse of the Child Jesus. Louis and Zélie were beatified in 2008, and canonized by Pope Francis on October 18, 2015.
In life, Louis and Zélie knew great joy and excruciating sorrow. They firmly believed that God was with them throughout every challenge that married life, parenting, and their occupations presented
Monday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time Lectionary: 449
Reading 1 EZR 1:1-6
In the first year of Cyrus, king of Persia, in order to fulfill the word of the LORD spoken by Jeremiah, the LORD inspired King Cyrus of Persia to issue this proclamation throughout his kingdom, both by word of mouth and in writing: "Thus says Cyrus, king of Persia: 'All the kingdoms of the earth the LORD, the God of heaven, has given to me, and he has also charged me to build him a house in Jerusalem, which is in Judah. Therefore, whoever among you belongs to any part of his people, let him go up, and may his God be with him! Let everyone who has survived, in whatever place he may have dwelt, be assisted by the people of that place with silver, gold, goods, and cattle, together with free-will offerings for the house of God in Jerusalem.'"
Then the family heads of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and Levites– everyone, that is, whom God had inspired to do so– prepared to go up to build the house of the LORD in Jerusalem. All their neighbors gave them help in every way, with silver, gold, goods, and cattle, and with many precious gifts besides all their free-will offerings.
Responsorial Psalm PS 126:1B-2AB, 2CD-3, 4-5, 6
R. (3) The Lord has done marvels for us. When the LORD brought back the captives of Zion, we were like men dreaming. Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with rejoicing. R. The Lord has done marvels for us. Then they said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them." The LORD has done great things for us; we are glad indeed. R. The Lord has done marvels for us. Restore our fortunes, O LORD, like the torrents in the southern desert. Those that sow in tears shall reap rejoicing. R. The Lord has done marvels for us. Although they go forth weeping, carrying the seed to be sown, They shall come back rejoicing, carrying their sheaves. R. The Lord has done marvels for us.
Alleluia MT 5:16
R. Alleluia, alleluia. Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel LK 8:16-18
Jesus said to the crowd: "No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light. For there is nothing hidden that will not become visible, and nothing secret that will not be known and come to light. Take care, then, how you hear. To anyone who has, more will be given, and from the one who has not, even what he seems to have will be taken away."
Meditation: Luke 8:16-18
To anyone who has, more will be given. (Luke 8:18)
When you read these words, do you see yourself as "one who has" or "one who has not"? Most of us tend to focus on the negative rather than the positive. We have a nagging worry that we have not done enough to please God. We think that we need to do more so that we don't lose the little we think we have. But one young man's experience can show us a different answer.
He and his friends were discussing this passage at a college Bible study when something new occurred to him. Instead of focusing on where he might be falling short and what he "had not," he thought he should begin to ponder what he "had"—all that God had already given him. The more he thought about it, the longer the list became.
He felt so moved by God's generosity that he mustered up the faith to ask some of his classmates if there was anything they wanted him to pray for. He even went to the local mall, where he offered to pray with shoppers. To his surprise, many said yes. He prayed for some to know God's love and for others to not be so fearful and for others' family members. In some cases, he even prayed for healings. Even when someone refused his offer, he continued to ask other people—and it paid off. Over time, he learned that a few people had started to feel better or to be more forgiving or to think about going back to church.
Eventually, this young man realized that the "more" God had given him wasn't really for him; it was for him to share.
This principle is not only for adventurous college students. It's true for all of us. Think of all that God has given you: friends and family, a home, food, and clothing. Even if you feel lacking in one of these areas, never forget that he has given you the gift of salvation as well as the Church and the sacraments. He has given you his love and the sure hope of heaven. You are richly blessed indeed! As the truth of God's generosity sinks into your heart, let it propel you to step out in faith. Let it give you the courage to tell just one person today, "God loves you."
"Lord, help me to be as generous with your love as you are."
Ezra 1:1-6 Psalm 126:1-6
my2cents: "whoever among you belongs to any part of his people, let him go up, and may his God be with him!"
We pray today: "The Lord has done marvels for us. Although they go forth weeping, carrying the seed to be sown, They shall come back rejoicing, carrying their sheaves."
Bishop Barren speaks about today's Gospel very clearly: "Friends, today's Gospel is the parable of the lamp, which placed on a lampstand gives light to all. Light obviously isn't for itself. Rather, we see things by it. It illuminates things upon which it shines.
We are light by which people around us come to see what is worth seeing. By the very quality and integrity of our lives, we shed light, illumining what is beautiful and revealing what is ugly. The clear implication is that without vibrant Christians the world is a much worse place. Let me illustrate this principle with an example. One of the most painful truths of the last century is that the weakness of Christian witness allows some of the worst elements in society to flourish.
Think of the rise of the evil powers that created WWII. Christianity had become so weak, so uncompelling, so attenuated that great evil was allowed to flourish. Yes indeed there were a handful of powerful Christian resisters, but let's face it: the overwhelmingly vast majority of Christians either "
Our Lord says "No one who lights a lamp conceals it with a vessel or sets it under a bed; rather, he places it on a lampstand so that those who enter may see the light." I don't see the light all the time. But its got to be! Yes here and there I see flashes, but why not all the time? How is a plant supposed to grow with flashes of light? It needs constant light, don't it?
the 5minutos spanish reflection said today at the end: "A tourist came to a city, and they admired the city and all the temples the churches on seemingly every street the taxi took them through. "The inhabitants of this city really love God" they said to the taxi driver. The taxi driver replied "If they love God, I don't know. But I am sure they do not love one another." What about all this talk about God and love then? In an early part of the 5 minutos, it said that all this talk without action becomes more darkness in what becomes "ridiculous humanism". Jesus says in Mt.10:32 " Everyone who acknowledges me before others I will acknowledge before my heavenly Father. But whoever denies me before others, I will deny before my heavenly Father". Lights always on for safety....for salvation. I just now randomly opened the book The Imitation of Christ by Thomas Kempis and it said: Sometimes you are Happy, at other times sad; now you are at peace, then you are upset; one one time devout, at another spiritually dry; sometimes full of vigor, at other times sluggish; one day elated, the next day gloomy. But those who are wise and have been well instructed in the spiritual life rise above these changing moods, ignoring their inner feelings and on what side the wind of instability blows, so long as the direction of their souls advances toward their desired goal. Thus they can remain stable and unshaken through many changing events, always directing their intention toward ME. 2. The purer your intention is, the greater will be your constancy in weathering these diverse storms. But in many this pure intention is soon dimmed, for they are quick to look for the delightful things which cross their path. It is rare that you will find anyone completely free from the tarnish.... Therefore, your intention must be purified in order to keep it steadfast and simple, directing it to Me despite the various distractions that come between Me and you.