Monday, January 5, 2015

Brought To Him

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Minute Meditations

Springboard for Prayer Minute Meditations

St. Francis had moments of self-doubt. He used these as a springboard for prayer rather than as the final word about any situation. Thus he maintained the joy needed to complete the work that God had begun in him.
— from Peace and Good

St. John Neumann

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Perhaps because the United States got a later start in the history of the world, it has relatively few canonized saints, but their number is increasing.

John Neumann was born in what is now the Czech Republic. After studying in Prague, he came to New York at 25 and was ordained a priest. He did missionary work in New York until he was 29, when he joined the Redemptorists and became its first member to profess vows in the United States. He continued missionary work in Maryland, Virginia and Ohio, where he became popular with the Germans.

At 41, as bishop of Philadelphia, he organized the parochial school system into a diocesan one, increasing the number of pupils almost twentyfold within a short time.

Gifted with outstanding organizing ability, he drew into the city many teaching communities of sisters and the Christian Brothers. During his brief assignment as vice provincial for the Redemptorists, he placed them in the forefront of the parochial movement.

Well-known for his holiness and learning, spiritual writing and preaching, on October 13, 1963, John Neumann became the first American bishop to be beatified. Canonized in 1977, he is buried in St. Peter the Apostle Church in Philadelphia.


Neumann took seriously our Lord's words, "Go and teach all nations." From Christ he received his instructions and the power to carry them out. For Christ does not give a mission without supplying the means to accomplish it. The Father's gift in Christ to John Neumann was his exceptional organizing ability, which he used to spread the Good News.

Today the Church is in dire need of men and women to continue in our times the teaching of the Good News. The obstacles and inconveniences are real and costly. Yet when Christians approach Christ, he supplies the necessary talents to answer today's needs. The Spirit of Christ continues his work through the instrumentality of generous Christians.


"All people of whatever race, condition or age, in virtue of their dignity as human persons, have an inalienable right to education. This education should be suitable to the particular destiny of the individuals, adapted to their ability, sex and national cultural traditions, and should be conducive to amicable relations with other nations in order to promote true unity and peace in the world. True education aims to give people a formation which is directed towards their final end and the good of that society to which they belong and in which, as adults, they will have their share of duties to perform" (Vatican II, Declaration on Christian Education, 1, Austin Flannery translation).

Saint of the Day
Lives, Lessons and Feast
By Leonard Foley, O.F.M.; revised by Pat McCloskey, O.F.M.


"Come to me all you who are burdened
and I will give you rest"
Here I am, Lord.
I come to seek your presence.
I long for your healing power.


 Lord, may I never take the gift
of freedom for granted. You gave
me the great blessing of freedom of
spirit. Fill my spirit with Your peace and
Your joy.


Knowing that God loves me unconditionally, I look honestly over the last day, its events and my feelings. Do I have something to be grateful for? Then I give thanks. Is there something I am sorry for? Then I ask forgiveness.

The Word of God

John 1:43-51

  Reading 1 1 Jn 3:22--4:6

We receive from him whatever we ask,
because we keep his commandments and do what pleases him.
And his commandment is this:
we should believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ,
and love one another just as he commanded us.
Those who keep his commandments remain in him, and he in them,
and the way we know that he remains in us
is from the Spirit whom he gave us.

Beloved, do not trust every spirit
but test the spirits to see whether they belong to God,
because many false prophets have gone out into the world.
This is how you can know the Spirit of God:
every spirit that acknowledges Jesus Christ come in the flesh
belongs to God,
and every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus
does not belong to God.
This is the spirit of the antichrist
who, as you heard, is to come,
but in fact is already in the world.
You belong to God, children, and you have conquered them,
for the one who is in you
is greater than the one who is in the world.
They belong to the world;
accordingly, their teaching belongs to the world,
and the world listens to them.
We belong to God, and anyone who knows God listens to us,
while anyone who does not belong to God refuses to hear us.
This is how we know the spirit of truth and the spirit of deceit.

Responsorial Psalm PS 2:7bc-8, 10-12a

R. (8ab) I will give you all the nations for an inheritance.
The LORD said to me, "you are my Son;
this day I have begotten you.
Ask of me and I will give you
the nations for an inheritance
and the ends of the earth for your possession."
R. I will give you all the nations for an inheritance.
And now, O kings, give heed;
take warning, you rulers of the earth.
Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice before him;
with trembling rejoice.
R. I will give you all the nations for an inheritance.

Alleluia See Mt 4:23

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus proclaimed the Gospel of the Kingdom
and cured every disease among the people.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 4:12-17, 23-25

When Jesus heard that John had been arrested,
he withdrew to Galilee.
He left Nazareth and went to live in Capernaum by the sea,
in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali,
that what had been said through Isaiah the prophet
might be fulfilled:

Land of Zebulun and land of Naphtali,
the way to the sea, beyond the Jordan,
Galilee of the Gentiles,
the people who sit in darkness
have seen a great light,
on those dwelling in a land overshadowed by death
light has arisen.

From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say,
"Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand."

He went around all of Galilee,
teaching in their synagogues, proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom,
and curing every disease and illness among the people.
His fame spread to all of Syria,
and they brought to him all who were sick with various diseases
and racked with pain,
those who were possessed, lunatics, and paralytics,
and he cured them.
And great crowds from Galilee, the Decapolis, Jerusalem, and Judea,
and from beyond the Jordan followed him.

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Jesus you speak to me through the words of the gospels. May I respond to your call today. Teach me to recognise your hand at work in my daily living.


Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit,
As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end.

Catholic Meditations

Meditation: Matthew 4:12-17, 23-25


Saint John Neumann, Bishop

When Jesus heard that John had been arrested, he withdrew to Galilee. (Matthew 4:12)

It must have been unsettling for Jesus to hear that John—a humble man whom Jesus called "more than a prophet"—had been imprisoned for his message of repentance. But rather than letting fear paralyze him, Jesus stepped into action, picking up where his forerunner left off: "From that time on, Jesus began to preach and say, 'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand' " (Matthew 4:17).

Jesus' determination tells us that God is never confounded or frustrated in his plans. As soon as one servant is arrested, another takes his place. As soon as one obstacle shows up, a way through appears. This pattern, which repeats itself through all of history, reveals a God who is always at work, bringing his plan to fulfillment. We see it in the succession of the Old Testament prophets as well as in the stories about Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. We see it in the New Testament, in the birth of the Church at Pentecost and the Acts of the Apostles.

Nothing gets in God's way. He is always moving forward, always inviting us to keep moving forward with him. It may be unsettling when we are able to see only pieces of his plan as it unfolds. Even John, as he sat in prison, was unsure. He sent his disciples to ask Jesus, "Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?" (Matthew 11:3). And Jesus did for John what he wants to do for us: he pointed to all that he had done so far as proof of God's handiwork.

A look back at your life probably demonstrates signs of a God at work. Are you anxious about tomorrow? Take a deep breath, and remember that God is hidden around every corner. He sees the future and is already at work there. Do you feel stuck right now? Don't worry. God is working a way out for you. Keep believing and trusting in him. Focus on preparing your heart through prayer to hear and respond to him. In his own time and in his own way, he will "release" you so that you can take the next step in following him. And the next. And the next.

"Lord, my future is in your hands. Lead me forward, step-by-step, as your plan for me unfolds."


1 John 3:22--4:6
Psalm 2:7-8, 10-12

Check out what we read in today's 1st Holy Scripture:
  "YOU BELONG TO GOD, Children"
And before that we had read "we should believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ,
and love one another just as he commanded us."
There is an outside force seeking the ruin of souls, and another seeking the saving of souls and it is working its way through us.  Good news is "YOU BELONG TO GOD".  What is saving is more powerful.  And it is reinforcing, and this is what the Eucharist does in our soul, reinforces what is there, if it is good, then good is reinforced, if it is not good, the bad will be reinforced, and this is why we have to go on our knees before God so that we may be torn down to be reinforced for the good.  
But already, showing up is over half the battle and over half the battle is won by your presence.   Am I talking about going to Church?  Yes and much more, because we read today in the 1st Holy Scripture "Those who keep his commandments remain in him, and he in them...".  Our Lord remains and the Psalms of the Son proclaim today "I will give you all the nations for an inheritance".  You will inherit all nations says God to Jesus and Jesus promises to us an eternal inheritance.  
  We heard of the spark that raised the inheritance to come to fruition in the ministry of our Lord on earth, when Saint John the Baptist was arrested...for speaking the truth and asking all to repent.  What did our Lord say at this moment?  
Children, listen for the Word is of this very day:
  ""Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand."
Grab a hold of your faith.
Being without God first in your life is living a wild life.  Being with God first is living a tamed life.  What can I do with a wild horse that can not be touched?  It will kick and scream at me and bite at me and even try to run me over.  That wild horse my child, that is the world without Jesus.  And the saints are the tame, and even called "lame" by the wild.  Yet what does the term "lame" mean?  It has various meanings, but mostly one that walks unevenly, or is disabled, or has no strength, or is weak, inadequate at best.  So the lame point the finger at themselves, for they walk an unbalanced life, with no strength in faith, actually disabled and weak, inadequate to reach Heaven because as an Arian, they deny the divinity of Christ, or worse, say that He never came, especially in the flesh.  
But I can taste Him.  I can feel Him.  I can feel His love more than anybody else's love.  I can see Him.  I can see His light.  My mission for the passed several years of writing is to tame the wild.  Calm down.  Let go and let God.  Nobody really cares about your life like God does.  All those people you surround yourself with to make you feel good, they are temporal, and God is eternal.
Now don't get me wrong, God commanded today "love one another just as he commanded us." but first He said to believe in Jesus Christ, and believing is loving.  Here you will hear what the world does not teach..> GOD COMES FIRST.
Before you sin, God comes first.
Before you talk, God comes first.
Before you think, God comes first.
Before you act, God comes first.
Before you serve Him, God comes first.

He gives strength to the weak, the weak that pray.

"If you want God to hear your prayers, hear the voice of the poor. If you wish God to anticipate your wants, provide those of the needy without waiting for them to ask you."-- St. Thomas of Villanova

Being afraid is of the devil.  St. John the Baptist was not afraid when being locked up.  He wanted re-affirmation, re-assurance of Christ, and Christ gave it to Him.
Today, if you want re-assurance, then ASK HIM and not anybody else.
Today, if you have doubt, TALK TO HIM.
I was kneeling one day before the Blessed Sacrament, and I prayed for a man having doubts in his vocation.
I heard the Lord say to me "ask him to come visit me so I can talk with him".
I believe some of us become afraid, but that is wild life.  I read a line today that said "for being afraid is the first consciousness of sin's entering in, for he that is made afraid has lost consciousness of self's own heritage with the Son; for we are heirs through Him to that Kingdom that is beyond all that that would make afraid, or that would cause a doubt in the heart of any."

Remember what I capped today, the Word of God, and listen because the Heavens speak...


That means you are His, and it is a calling to repent, believe, never sin, and live tamed, surrendered doing His will in His Kingdom which is at hand, right now before our very eyes.