Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Asking For You

Untitled document

Minute Meditations

Greater Than Evil Minute Meditations

I hear far more people discuss the presence of evil in their lives than they do the supreme power of grace. God is bigger than evil!
— from Tweet Inspiration

St. Angela Merici

Listen to Audio


Angela has the double distinction of founding the first teaching congregation of women in the Church and what is now called a "secular institute" of religious women.

As a young woman she became a member of the Third Order of St. Francis (now known as the Secular Franciscan Order), and lived a life of great austerity, wishing, like St. Francis, to own nothing, not even a bed. Early in life she was appalled at the ignorance among poorer children, whose parents could not or would not teach them the elements of religion. Angela's charming manner and good looks complemented her natural qualities of leadership. Others joined her in giving regular instruction to the little girls of their neighborhood.

She was invited to live with a family in Brescia (where, she had been told in a vision, she would one day found a religious community). Her work continued and became well known. She became the center of a group of people with similar ideals.

She eagerly took the opportunity for a trip to the Holy Land. When they had gotten as far as Crete, she was struck with blindness. Her friends wanted to return home, but she insisted on going through with the pilgrimage, and visited the sacred shrines with as much devotion and enthusiasm as if she had her sight. On the way back, while praying before a crucifix, her sight was restored at the same place where it had been lost.

At 57, she organized a group of 12 girls to help her in catechetical work. Four years later the group had increased to 28. She formed them into the Company of St. Ursula (patroness of medieval universities and venerated as a leader of women) for the purpose of re-Christianizing family life through solid Christian education of future wives and mothers. The members continued to live at home, had no special habit and took no formal vows, though the early Rule prescribed the practice of virginity, poverty and obedience. The idea of a teaching congregation of women was new and took time to develop. The community thus existed as a "secular institute" until some years after Angela's death.


As with so many saints, history is mostly concerned with their activities. But we must always presume deep Christian faith and love in one whose courage lasts a lifetime, and who can take bold new steps when human need demands.


In a time when change is problematic to many, it may be helpful to recall a statement this great leader made to her sisters: "If according to times and needs you should be obliged to make fresh rules and change certain things, do it with prudence and good advice."

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


God is with me, but more,
God is within me, giving me existence.
Let me dwell for a moment on God's life-giving presence
in my body, my mind, my heart
and in the whole of my life.


Lord, you granted me the great gift of freedom.
In these times, O Lord, grant that I may be free
From any form of racism or intolerance.
Remind me, Lord, that we are all equal
in Your Loving eyes.


In God's loving presence I unwind the past day,
starting from now and looking back, moment by moment.
I gather in all the goodness and light, in gratitude.
I attend to the shadows and what they say to me,
seeking healing, courage, forgiveness.

The Word of God


Reading 1 Heb 10:1-10

Brothers and sisters:
Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come,
and not the very image of them, it can never make perfect
those who come to worship by the same sacrifices
that they offer continually each year.
Otherwise, would not the sacrifices have ceased to be offered,
since the worshipers, once cleansed, would no longer
have had any consciousness of sins?
But in those sacrifices there is only a yearly remembrance of sins,
for it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats
take away sins.
For this reason, when he came into the world, he said:

Sacrifice and offering you did not desire,
but a body you prepared for me;
in burnt offerings and sin offerings you took no delight.
Then I said, As is written of me in the scroll,
Behold, I come to do your will, O God.

First he says, Sacrifices and offerings,
burnt offerings and sin offerings,
you neither desired nor delighted in.

These are offered according to the law.
Then he says, Behold, I come to do your will.
He takes away the first to establish the second.
By this "will," we have been consecrated
through the offering of the Body of Jesus Christ once for all.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 40:2 and 4ab, 7-8a, 10, 11

R. (8a and 9a) Here am I Lord; I come to do your will.
I have waited, waited for the LORD,
and he stooped toward me.
And he put a new song into my mouth,
a hymn to our God.
R. Here am I Lord; I come to do your will.
Sacrifice or oblation you wished not,
but ears open to obedience you gave me.
Burnt offerings or sin-offerings you sought not;
then said I, "Behold I come."
R. Here am I Lord; I come to do your will.
I announced your justice in the vast assembly;
I did not restrain my lips, as you, O LORD, know.
R. Here am I Lord; I come to do your will.
Your justice I kept not hid within my heart;
your faithfulness and your salvation I have spoken of;
I have made no secret of your kindness and your truth
in the vast assembly.
R. Here am I Lord; I come to do your will.

Alleluia See Mt 11:25

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth;
you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mk 3:31-35

The mother of Jesus and his brothers arrived at the house.
Standing outside, they sent word to Jesus and called him.
A crowd seated around him told him,
"Your mother and your brothers and your sisters
are outside asking for you."
But he said to them in reply,
"Who are my mother and my brothers?"
And looking around at those seated in the circle he said,
"Here are my mother and my brothers.
For whoever does the will of God
is my brother and sister and mother."

    Listen to audio of this reading

    Watch a video reflection


How has God's Word moved me? Has it left me cold? Has it consoled me or moved me to act in a new way?
I imagine Jesus standing or sitting beside me, I turn and share my feelings with him.


I thank God for these few moments we have spent alone together and for any insights I may have been given concerning the text.

Catholic Meditations

Meditation: Hebrews 10:1-10

View NAB Reading at

Subscriber? Login to view archives.

Saint Angela Merici, Virgin

Behold, I come. (Hebrews 10:7)

Have you ever heard the story about a magical house that appears tiny and plain on the outside, but when you step in, you discover a vast, ornate mansion? They're popular fare in fantasy novels and movies. Today's first reading contains a simple three-word phrase that may seem just as tiny and plain on the outside but is filled with countless treasures on the inside.

Behold, I come. If we pause for a moment to explore this little "house" with just a bit of imagination, we'll discover that these words can go a long way toward summarizing the entire gospel!

Behold. In the verses leading up to this first word, we are introduced to a huge map in which everyone's life plays out. God's creation, which he deeply loves, has fallen into darkness. We can't keep God's law on our own. We can't even atone for our sin. But watch! Behold! God is about to do something about it. Open the door. Come and see.

I. As we walk through the door, it's important to understand who owns this house. Who is this "I"? According to the author, it's Jesus. He is the real author and finisher, the architect and cornerstone of our faith. So this must be God's house. Why is this an important fact? Because at its core, Christianity is not about what we do. It's not about the "house" that we build. It's about what God has already done, is doing now, and will do in the future. It's about his house, his kingdom.

Come. And what has God done? He came to us, personally, not to condemn us but to save us. God with us, born of a virgin, Immanuel! This is the foundation of our faith. What is he doing right now? He is coming to us through the Holy Spirit. He is inviting us to come farther into his Father's mansion, which has many rooms (John 14:2). There are rooms of healing, worship, joy, patience, faith, love—the list goes on.

Behold, I come. Let Jesus' words resound in your heart today. There is so much more to be gleaned from them. There are so many more rooms in this "little house" for you to explore. Let these words become your prayer to him.

"Lord Jesus, thank you for inviting me into your home. Here I come!"


Psalm 40:2, 4, 7-8, 10-11
Mark 3:31-35

There in today's 5 minutos it said at one point "...Being a brother of Jesus is not a question of merit nor blood, but of GRACE: "doing the will of God", is something that is at everbody's reach and inhabits to convert ourselves into "children of God".
In light of what is going on in the world, there is much to behold.  The situation St. Angela Merici found herself is the same today, and the situation that St. Paul speaks about in the first Holy Scripture is the same today, and the Gospel message is the same today as it was over 2,000 years ago. 
In the situation of St. Angela, the families didn't really teach their children about God and or probably didn't care too much, for other things were more pressing.  In the situation of the worshipping and sacrificing animals that St. Paul speaks about, it put emphasis on the sacrifice and not much on the reason, the atonement/unification/reconciliation that God seeks.  Now we are getting deeper and deeper into the will of God.  The Psalms pray for us "Here I am Lord, I come to do YOUR WILL".  And the depths of the message culminate in the life of Christ who is found among his mothers and brothers and sisters.  The situation of our Lord is where He is situated in our lives, where with the emphasis He is put in our lives.  It is the case of the will, and God willed to place Himself among us, as a son, a brother. 
And so we culminate into the will of the Father.  Let's touch up on the will of OUR Father who is in Heaven, and Holy is His name.  I read a quote today that said "Do not be afraid to be holy! Have the courage and humility to present yourselves to the world determined to be holy, since full, true freedom is born from holiness." -St. John Paul II.  The world is afraid to be holy.  Some are afraid for their lives, like the muslims across the world, afraid to be killed for liking the message of Christ, or carrying a bible, a sentence of death.  Yet, how different is it in our part of the world?  People are afraid to be known as a "holy roller", it might damage their reputation and so people say "I'm NOT religious".  Hang in there because the will of the Father is being made known.  Perhaps I can fan the flames of the Spirit in your soul.  Perhaps I can teach you to know the will of the Father.  Let it be known, that His mother and brothers where looking for Him but He said He was already with His mother and brothers and sisters.  That is to say, those that are with Him are in Him and through Him the family of God. 
Have you caught on to the will?  How hard do we make it and say to ourselves "I wonder what God wants me to do for Him?".  The answer is in the pivotal moment of the heart.  The love we have for Him is enough and He will lead the way.  We don't make plans, He makes them with our open heart.  We don't make things happen, He makes things happen, and are allowed to the degree of grace in our lives.  Therefore, if you've found yourself with an opportunity to love and serve our Lord, grab hold and never let go. 
Because Jesus is found with those surrounding themselves with Him.  Last night in friendship group after Holy Rosary, we discussed that some are glowing with the light of the Lord, yet we felt compelled to tell them to let the light that surrounds them come inside their soul.  A brother there said who has been said to glow "I know I can open myself up more but I have this baggage I'm afraid to let go without breaking into emotion".  So much yet so little is keeping us from the will of the come inside our soul.  Yet, He would rather let the world fall apart than losing you ever. 
I dare you to dare yourself into a faith like no other.  I heard someone say at a conference "you can love God like no one else can".  Try to love more.  And then, our Lord will dare to say He is our brother, and son, because His response is "I WILL", and He has....