The shared experience of her sisters was a vessel of the Holy Spirit's work. Clare saw that the best religious rule comes not from hierarchical directives but from human experience of the Holy Spirit's power working beyond imagining. Such wisdom was the shared treasure of the sisters who, over the course of years, had learned what constituted a form of life that was stable and realistic. Such a rule guaranteed a life of holiness that was joy-filled and self-sacrifice that was generative. Her rule must be invested with the sisterly convictions that the women of San Damiano shared. Indeed, San Damiano functioned as a centrifuge that was drawing all of these sources into a new amalgam of feminine Franciscan practice.
— from the book Light of Assisi: The Story of Saint Clare
by Margaret Carney, OSF
†Saint Quote ""Those whose hearts are pure are the temples of the Holy Spirit." — St. Lucy
†MEDITATION OF THE DAY "True devotion to Our Lady is holy; that is to say, it leads the soul to avoid sin and to imitate the virtues of the Blessed Virgin, particularly her profound humility, her lively faith, her blind obedience, her continual prayer, her universal mortification, her divine purity, her ardent charity, her heroic patience, her angelic sweetness and her divine wisdom. These are the ten principal virtues of the most holy Virgin." — St. Louis De Montfort AN EXCERPT FROM True Devotion to Mary
†VERSE OF THE DAY "Consider how he endured such opposition from sinners, in order that you may not grow weary and lose heart." Hebrews 12:3
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ST. AGNES OF MONTEPULCIANO
St. Agnes of Montepulciano (1268–1317) was born into a noble family in Tuscany. Her birth was announced with strange lights surrounding her dwelling, considered a sign that she was a favored child. At nine years of age she requested to enter the local Franciscan monastery in Montepulciano. Although doing so at her young age was against Church law, she obtained special permission from the pope. She became a model nun, reached a high degree of contemplative prayer, and executed her duties so well that she was chosen to help found and lead a new monastery in Proceno when she was just 15 years old, again with special permission at her young age. She lived there for 20 years and became known as a great mystic and visionary while cultivating a special devotion to the Blessed Sacrament. She became locally famous for her miracles as well as for her austerities. She lived on bread and water, slept on the ground, and used a stone for a pillow. Eventually, Agnes returned to Montepulciano. By request she founded and led an even larger monastery, this time receiving a vision that it should be a convent of Dominican nuns dedicated to the Virgin Mary. Through her prayers she cured the sick, multiplied food, and raised to life a child who had drowned. Her feast day is April 20.
Tuesday of the Third Week of Easter
Lectionary: 274 Reading I
Stephen said to the people, the elders, and the scribes: "You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always oppose the Holy Spirit; you are just like your ancestors. Which of the prophets did your ancestors not persecute? They put to death those who foretold the coming of the righteous one, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become. You received the law as transmitted by angels, but you did not observe it."
When they heard this, they were infuriated, and they ground their teeth at him. But Stephen, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked up intently to heaven and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and Stephen said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." But they cried out in a loud voice, covered their ears, and rushed upon him together. They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him. The witnesses laid down their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Saul. As they were stoning Stephen, he called out, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." Then he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them"; and when he said this, he fell asleep.
Now Saul was consenting to his execution.
31:3cd-4, 6 and 7b and 8a, 17 and 21ab
R. (6a) Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. or: R. Alleluia. Be my rock of refuge,
a stronghold to give me safety. You are my rock and my fortress;
for your name's sake you will lead and guide me. R. Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. or: R. Alleluia. Into your hands I commend my spirit;
you will redeem me, O LORD, O faithful God. My trust is in the LORD;
I will rejoice and be glad of your mercy. R. Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. or: R. Alleluia. Let your face shine upon your servant;
save me in your kindness. You hide them in the shelter of your presence
from the plottings of men. R. Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit. or: R. Alleluia.
R. Alleluia, alleluia. I am the bread of life, says the Lord; whoever comes to me will never hunger. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The crowd said to Jesus: "What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you? What can you do? Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written:
He gave them bread from heaven to eat."
So Jesus said to them, "Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world."
So they said to Jesus, "Sir, give us this bread always." Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst."
Daily Meditation: John 6:30-35
I am the bread of life. (John 6:35)
This past year has been difficult for many reasons, but one of the hardest things for Catholics has been our limited ability to receive Jesus in the Eucharist. At the beginning of the pandemic, many churches closed, and people had to wait quite a while before public Masses were celebrated again. Some people with health conditions may still be unable to attend Mass.
But Jesus is the Bread of Life, and we rely on his presence in the Eucharist to nourish us and help us walk the path of sainthood. Jesus promised to fill our deepest hunger and thirst (John 6:35), so it can feel like a tremendous loss when we must go without this sacrament. But let's look for some of the positive things that God may have brought out of our common trial.
First, it's human nature to begin to take for granted something that is readily available to us. So in being deprived of Communion for a time, we may have realized what a truly amazing gift it is. We may have especially missed it as we were trying to adjust to the "new normal" of the pandemic. Perhaps going forward, we may desire to receive the Eucharist more frequently than we did before.
Second, we may have sought out God's presence in other ways. Perhaps we have begun spending more time in Scripture or in personal prayer. Maybe we were able to go to Adoration, even if it was only by gazing on the Blessed Sacrament through a window. Or we may have felt closer to Jesus as we offered a prayer of spiritual communion.
Finally, we may have grown in our solidarity with brothers and sisters in other parts of the world. Most of us have always had frequent access to the Eucharist, but in many countries, Catholics have to wait weeks or even months to receive it. So in going without Communion for a time, we could draw closer to believers in remote regions or where there are few priests.
Whatever difficulty you face, you can count on Jesus to redeem it; he knows how to bring good out of evil. You can also count on Jesus, the Bread of Life, to be with you in your heart. Even when you can't come to him, he will come to you!
"Father, thank you for the great gift of Jesus in the Eucharist!"
Acts 7:51–8:1 Psalm 31:3-4, 6-8, 17, 21
No one can see God without falling in love with Him, and no one can meet a saint without meeting God in him or her. That is the good news: that in a world dedicated to the will to power, there is no power greater than that of sanctity; and that in a world dedicated to the pursuit of selfish pleasure, there is no pleasure greater than that of unselfish love of God and man. No one can ignore or refute the joy of a saint. — Peter Kreeft from his book How to Destroy Western Civilization
Listen to 2cents Podcast Going4th
my2cents: "Stephen said, "Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." But they cried out in a loud voice, covered their ears, and rushed upon him together. They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him." Wow! Mobs! Riots! Stoning to death! What in the world is going on? What is the cause of all this? Why do people turn into monsters? Right? Why do we turn into monsters? What comes over a mob? They call it "mob mentality". Well, if we start using those words, "herd mentality" and "mob mentality" and "mass hysteria", we begin to simplify things into material terms of feelings, like euphoria and such euphemisms, are hiding of the real facts with mild words or interjections. I believe things go much deeper. A guttural hatred comes into play. A lashing out on someone. We must dive deep into the things...that crucified our Lord. And let's call it what it is...anti-Christ and anti-Life. Let's realize what is at play in the seed of anti-life...darkness, and death, and the leading cause of death...sin, which has always been, from the beginning. We need hope. Let's be persistent in this search. Let's be attentive, that is, tending to the things of Life!
We pray in the Psalms: "Into your hands I commend my spirit; you will redeem me, O LORD, O faithful God. My trust is in the LORD; I will rejoice and be glad of your mercy. Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit." And these Psalms came out of another Jesus, a devoted man of God as he was laying down his life for the Lord, being stoned to death: "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit."Then he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them"; and when he said this, he fell asleep."
And we would all consider this a loss, but an eye witness, a young enemy, Saul, saw this and still was not converted, but was perplexed. Eventually, this seed turned sinner Saul into who we know in the bible as Saint Paul the Evangelist, who wrote many books in the bible. Can you see hope now? In all your little fruitless efforts, can you see how things work with daily white martyrs and red martyrs? You should see that everything God does... is amazing!
In the Gospel of John we hear: "What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you? What can you do? Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written: He gave them bread from heaven to eat." Wow, so really, what sign CAN you do? LOL. In order so that many will believe, or maybe just one person might believe.
These followers demanded signs. And our Lord didn't perform any magic tricks for them to be amused. No. Rather, He gave them truth, in both Word and Flesh. This is called the liturgies, or works, especially in Holy Mass. We go from the little altar of the Word to the great Altar of His Body. This is what differentiates a modern Christian from a Christ eater since the beginning of His followers.
Jesus said to them, "Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." Life has never been the same since our Lord entered the world. There is life. There IS LIFE!
If I let myself get carried away in the world of sensations, all I will see is the party life and doom and gloom and then getting sedated again with some more sensations, until death happens. If I could only turn your soul to Christ, to LIFE, oh how your world would change! Your false and empty laughs would turn into true heart filled joy that would burst forth words like St. Stephen and our Lord as they were dying for the world "Father, forgive them!" WOW! What?? That is amazing love. Can you love like that? Most of us can't even go a day without insulting others, which is the same as stoning others. Why can't we be in the shoes of St. Stephen? Stephen was a mind boggler, healing people, and the Jews couldn't beat him in wisdom. So, they closed their ears and launched an attack. The same thing happens in our world today. What do we do then?
Be faithful to God. If something like that happens to us, it is for greater glory. If you get stoned for God daily, it is for conversions that will happen that you may never know about. So stop freaking out! Stop losing it. Stop the anxiety. It is good. Even though we don't see good, our Lord makes good out of evil intents.
Let us pray: ""Sir, give us this bread always." Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst." Lord, I want the bread, Your bread, Your Body, Your Soul, Your Divinity, Your tremendous Love, Your offering, Your thanksgiving, Your Sacrifice...to be made manifest inside of me, so that the world will be saved, and worship You by the trillions, because you are worthy of every life You created as Your child! I love You, help us love You more and more!
from your brother in Christ our Lord, adrian
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Random online bible verse from a random verse generator:
Whoa Isaiah 30:21 And your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying, "This is the way, walk in it," when you turn to the right or when you turn to the left.
If one day you don't receive these, just visit Going4th.com God Bless You! Peace