This is the commitment of being a Christian: following Christ in his incarnation. And if Christ is God in his majesty who becomes a humble man even to dying like a slave on the cross and who lives with the poor, that's what our Christian faith should be like. A Christian who doesn't want to live this commitment of solidarity with the poor is not worthy of being called a Christian.
—from the book Through the Year with Oscar Romero: Daily Meditations
†Quote "He who enters into the secret place of his own soul passes beyond himself, and does in very truth ascend to God. Banish, therefore, from thy heart the distractions of earth and turn thine eyes to spiritual joys, that thou mayest learn at last to repose in the light of the contemplation of God." — St. Albert the Great
† Meditation of the Day "St. Augustine says, that to prevent the sheep from seeking assistance by her cries, the wolf seizes her by the neck, and thus securely carries her away and devours her. The Devil acts in a similar manner with the sheep of Jesus Christ. After having induced them to yield to sin, he seizes them by the throat, that they may not confess their guilt; and thus he securely brings them to Hell. For those who have sinned grievously, there is no means of salvation but the confession of their sins." — St. Alphonsus Liguori, p. 138 An Excerpt From
† Verse of the Day
"For through the Spirit, by faith, we eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus . . . the only thing that counts is faith working through love."
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Blessed Adolph Kolping
(December 8, 1813 – December 4, 1865)
The rise of the factory system in 19th-century Germany brought many single men into cities where they faced new challenges to their faith. Father Adolph Kolping began a ministry to them, hoping that they would not be lost to the Catholic faith, as was happening to workers elsewhere in industrialized Europe.
Born in the village of Kerpen, Adolph became a shoemaker at an early age because of his family's economic situation. Ordained in 1845, he ministered to young workers in Cologne, establishing a choir, which by 1849 had grown into the Young Workmen's Society. A branch of this began in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1856. Nine years later there were over 400 Gesellenvereine—workman's societies—around the world. Today this group has over 450,000 members in 54 countries across the globe.
More commonly called the Kolping Society, it emphasizes the sanctification of family life and the dignity of labor. Father Kolping worked to improve conditions for workers and greatly assisted those in need. He and St. John Bosco in Turin had similar interests in working with young men in big cities. He told his followers, "The needs of the times will teach you what to do." Father Kolping once said, "The first thing that a person finds in life and the last to which he holds out his hand, and the most precious that he possesses, even if he does not realize it, is family life."
Blessed Adolph Kolping and Blessed John Duns Scotus are buried in Cologne's Minoritenkirche, originally served by the Conventual Franciscans. The Kolping Society's international headquarters are located across from this church.
Kolping members journeyed to Rome from Europe, America, Africa, Asia, and Oceania, for Father Kolping's beatification in 1991, the 100th anniversary of Pope Leo XIII's revolutionary encyclical "Rerum Novarum"—"On the Social Order." Father Kolping's personal witness and apostolate helped prepare for that encyclical. Reflection
Some people thought that Father Kolping was wasting his time and talents on young working men in industrialized cities. In some countries, the Catholic Church was seen by many workers as the ally of owners and the enemy of workers. Men like Adolph Kolping showed that was not true.
Monday of the Second Week of Advent
Reading 1 Is 35:1-10
The desert and the parched land will exult; the steppe will rejoice and bloom. They will bloom with abundant flowers, and rejoice with joyful song. The glory of Lebanon will be given to them, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon; They will see the glory of the LORD, the splendor of our God. Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak, Say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not! Here is your God, he comes with vindication; With divine recompense he comes to save you. Then will the eyes of the blind be opened, the ears of the deaf be cleared; Then will the lame leap like a stag, then the tongue of the mute will sing.
Streams will burst forth in the desert, and rivers in the steppe. The burning sands will become pools, and the thirsty ground, springs of water; The abode where jackals lurk will be a marsh for the reed and papyrus. A highway will be there, called the holy way; No one unclean may pass over it, nor fools go astray on it. No lion will be there, nor beast of prey go up to be met upon it. It is for those with a journey to make, and on it the redeemed will walk. Those whom the LORD has ransomed will return and enter Zion singing, crowned with everlasting joy; They will meet with joy and gladness, sorrow and mourning will flee.
Responsorial Psalm ps 85:9ab and 10, 11-12, 13-14 R. (Isaiah 35:4f) Our God will come to save us! I will hear what God proclaims; the LORD –for he proclaims peace to his people. Near indeed is his salvation to those who fear him, glory dwelling in our land. R. Our God will come to save us! Kindness and truth shall meet; justice and peace shall kiss. Truth shall spring out of the earth, and justice shall look down from heaven. R. Our God will come to save us! The LORD himself will give his benefits; our land shall yield its increase. Justice shall walk before him, and salvation, along the way of his steps. R. Our God will come to save us!
Alleluia R. Alleluia, alleluia. Behold the king will come, the Lord of the earth, and he himself will lift the yoke of our capacity. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Lk 5:17-26
One day as Jesus was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and Jerusalem, were sitting there, and the power of the Lord was with him for healing. And some men brought on a stretcher a man who was paralyzed; they were trying to bring him in and set him in his presence. But not finding a way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on the stretcher through the tiles into the middle in front of Jesus. When Jesus saw their faith, he said, "As for you, your sins are forgiven."
Then the scribes and Pharisees began to ask themselves, "Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who but God alone can forgive sins?" Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them in reply, "What are you thinking in your hearts? Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven,' or to say, 'Rise and walk'? But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins"– he said to the one who was paralyzed, "I say to you, rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home."
He stood up immediately before them, picked up what he had been lying on, and went home, glorifying God. Then astonishment seized them all and they glorified God, and, struck with awe, they said, "We have seen incredible things today."
Meditation: Isaiah 35:1-10
2nd Week of Advent
Be strong, fear not! Here is your God . . . he comes to save you. (Isaiah 35:4)
God will save his people. That's the reassurance that the prophet Isaiah offers in today's first reading. These words must have given the people of Jerusalem great hope as the advancing army of Assyria cast a shadow of fear over the land.
These words are no less reassuring for us. God will save his people—that includes you. So "be strong, fear not!" (Isaiah 35:4).
Almost everyone experiences anxiety at one point or another. It is especially acute when we are faced with a difficult situation, and we don't know what will happen next. We may believe that God wants to give us his peace, but it still seems far off. So how can we find that peace?
One way is to practice praying for peace. Let's say you are going about your day and an anxious thought comes into your mind. Try to pinpoint the worry, and then talk to the Lord about it. Imagine yourself leaning against Jesus' chest, as the apostle John did at the Last Supper. Tell him what is making you unsettled. Then tell him that you want to lay your anxieties at his feet and leave them there for him to deal with.
Even if prayer doesn't bring immediate peace, it could untangle your thoughts enough to help you think of one step you could take toward solving the issue. It could be as simple as setting a time to talk over your worries with a good friend. Or it could be a complete step-by-step plan that the Holy Spirit puts in your mind.
For example, are you worried about one of your children? Lean against the Lord and ask him to keep her safe. Then try to think about one step that you can take to help her out. Maybe you can write a little note assuring her of your love. Maybe you see that you need to spend more time with her. Maybe you just need to keep praying and trust that God will work in his own way and in his own time. Whatever it is, do it, and watch what happens.
Anxiety is a very real part of life, but with the Lord's help, we can take steps to put it to rest.
"Lord, fill my heart with your peace. Help me to trust you."
Psalm 85:9-14 Luke 5:17-26
2 cents : "Strengthen the hands that are feeble, make firm the knees that are weak,Say to those whose hearts are frightened: Be strong, fear not!" Isn't that our job as the body of Christ? And is this not a command, rather than a question? Is it our job, the job of the Messiah? To be one with Him? To be truly united to the Savior, doesn't it mean that we are interested in His Sacred interests? Rather than our own? If last week, the first week of Advent was to focus on Joy, and now Peace, who then will bring this Joy and Peace to the world? Is it not the Messiah, the Christ? And are you not incorporated to Him in Holy Baptism? Look no further, it is on you, and it is on me. Now, just like it was revealed to me in Mass yesterday "what you come here for is for you, and for you to take out into the world".
Let us pray: "The LORD himself will give his benefits; our land shall yield its increase. Justice shall walk before him, and salvation, along the way of his steps. Our God will come to save us!" Our Lord is the provider. That is how the humble and the poor survive. They rely on God's providence. For God Himself said "I will provide" on the mountain. And He provides nothing more and nothing less than HIMSELF. Jesus. The sacrificial lamb of God. Think Genesis, Abraham, and the only true Son. What more could we desire? And why desire anything less?
In the Holy Gospel, some men took a paralyzed friend to Jesus, and nothing would stop them. These men knew what it would take. In a rescue operation, you must do whatever it takes, even if it means risking your own life. For Jesus says "No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. ". In today's world, there aren't that many rescue people. People of God. True people of God. For many say they are believers, and very few are. These rescue people take people to God. They drag them to His feet. They plead for their children. They never stop. They aren't brave, they are courageous. Isn't it the same? Brave people can be stupid. Courageous people are encouraged, courage takes precedence. Courage is "the ability to do something that frightens one. "she called on all her courage to face the ordeal" strength in the face of pain or grief. What is "brave" then? People who are ready to face and endure danger or pain. Anybody can be brave. Then, it takes courage to be brave. See? Just like wisdom. You can only obtain wisdom through understanding. No? And how can you understand? It is an experience. This is the purpose of life. This experience, this journey, this thing we are called to...faith.
I know who I am writing to. I am writing to normal people, but outstanding people. People interested in the interests of God. All walks of life are here, married, single, lay people and clergy. We are the Body of Christ. Speaking of which, I heard that in New York, the Eucharist turned into the body, blood of Christ, it had been dropped then put into water to dissolve to dispose of. The Bishop ordered it be disposed of still after he was told it was turning into what looked like blood. Some people were upset. Now what? Be mad at the Bishop for making little of something so great? HA HAAA! BUSTED. How many of us do just that? Yet we get mad at the clergy. Every time you take the Eucharist and throw it away yourself by dragging Jesus around in sin, every time you ignore Him, every time He is treated like nothing. Boy, do we do that? Sin does that. That Eucharist, that same Eucharist you take is that blood and vitality for the soul. Are you getting hungry yet? Eucharistic Miracles. I have seen it happen, once at my Cursillo, and once at my own parish. The Eucharist is a piece of flesh held by the priest. It is ALWAYS just that. The flesh of a 33 year old male, from the heart tissue and it thrives without a physical body. And it becomes one with you.
So what of the friends who take friends to Jesus? They are Jesus. They are Eucharistic body.
I sat here and meditated after receiving the Eucharist before writing to you. We want prayers answered how we want and when we want. Or else. Where did humility go? If humility goes, joy goes. If joy goes, peace goes. Who will bring peace and joy now? Jesus.
I love you Jesus.
Jesus lets people trample all over to Him and over Him. We do as we please. How precious the hands that behold the Body of Christ. The Heavens look down with justice to the Divinity of CHRIST
A pic of the blood Eucharist before discarded, I see the Sacred Heart of Jesus. I see an unborn child. I see life. I see the heart of Love. I see the flames of burning love. I see what we always want to see in Him. Sacrifice