Monday, August 3, 2015

Bring Them Here

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Minute Meditations

Poor in Spirit

Let us learn to be detached from possessiveness and from the idolatry of money and lavish spending. Let us put Jesus first. --Pope Francis
— from St. Anthony Messenger

St. Peter Julian Eymard
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Born in La Mure d'Isère in southeastern France, Peter Julian's faith journey drew him from being a priest in the Diocese of Grenoble (1834) to joining the Marists (1839) to founding the Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament (1856).

In addition to those changes, Peter Julian coped with poverty, his father's initial opposition to Peter's vocation, serious illness, a Jansenistic overemphasis on sin and the difficulties of getting diocesan and later papal approval for his new religious community.

His years as a Marist, including service as a provincial leader, saw the deepening of his eucharistic devotion, especially through his preaching of Forty Hours in many parishes. Inspired at first by the idea of reparation for indifference to the Eucharist, Peter Julian was eventually attracted to a more positive spirituality of Christ-centered love. Members of the men's community, which Peter founded, alternated between an active apostolic life and contemplating Jesus in the Eucharist. He and Marguerite Guillot founded the women's Congregation of the Servants of the Blessed Sacrament.

Peter Julian Eymard was beatified in 1925 and canonized in 1962, one day after Vatican II's first session ended.



In every century, sin has been painfully real in the life of the Church. It is easy to give in to despair, to speak so strongly of human failings that people may forget the immense and self-sacrificing love of Jesus, as his death on the cross and his gift of the Eucharist make evident. Peter Julian knew that the Eucharist was key to helping Catholics live out their Baptism and preach by word and example the Good News of Jesus Christ.


"The Eucharist is the life of the people. The Eucharist gives them a center of life. All can come together without the barriers of race or language in order to celebrate the feast days of the Church. It gives them a law of life, that of charity, of which it is the source; thus it forges between them a common bond, a Christian kinship" (Peter Julian Eymard).


Daily Prayer - 2015-08-03


I pause for a moment
and reflect on God's life-giving presence
in every part of my body, in everything around me,
in the whole of my life.


I will ask God's help,
to be free from my own preoccupations,
to be open to God in this time of prayer,
to come to know, love and serve God more.


I exist in a web of relationships - links to nature, people, God.
I trace out these links, giving thanks for the life that flows through them.
Some links are twisted or broken: I may feel regret, anger, disappointment.
I pray for the gift of acceptance and forgiveness.

The Word of God


Reading 1 Nm 11:4b-15

The children of Israel lamented,
"Would that we had meat for food!
We remember the fish we used to eat without cost in Egypt,
and the cucumbers, the melons, the leeks,
the onions, and the garlic.
But now we are famished;
we see nothing before us but this manna."

Manna was like coriander seed and had the color of resin.
When they had gone about and gathered it up,
the people would grind it between millstones or pound it in a mortar,
then cook it in a pot and make it into loaves,
which tasted like cakes made with oil.
At night, when the dew fell upon the camp, the manna also fell.

When Moses heard the people, family after family,
crying at the entrance of their tents,
so that the LORD became very angry, he was grieved.
"Why do you treat your servant so badly?" Moses asked the LORD.
"Why are you so displeased with me
that you burden me with all this people?
Was it I who conceived all this people?
Or was it I who gave them birth,
that you tell me to carry them at my bosom,
like a foster father carrying an infant,
to the land you have promised under oath to their fathers?
Where can I get meat to give to all this people?
For they are crying to me,
'Give us meat for our food.'
I cannot carry all this people by myself,
for they are too heavy for me.
If this is the way you will deal with me,
then please do me the favor of killing me at once,
so that I need no longer face this distress."

Responsorial Psalm PS 81:12-13, 14-15, 16-17

R. (2a) Sing with joy to God our help.
"My people heard not my voice,
and Israel obeyed me not;
So I gave them up to the hardness of their hearts;
they walked according to their own counsels."
R. Sing with joy to God our help.
"If only my people would hear me,
and Israel walk in my ways,
Quickly would I humble their enemies;
against their foes I would turn my hand."
R. Sing with joy to God our help.
"Those who hated the LORD would seek to flatter me,
but their fate would endure forever,
While Israel I would feed with the best of wheat,
and with honey from the rock I would fill them."
R. Sing with joy to God our help.

Alleluia Mt 4:4

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
One does not live on bread alone, but by every
word that comes forth from the mouth of God.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 14:13-21

When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist,
he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself.
The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns.
When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.
When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said,
"This is a deserted place and it is already late;
dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages
and buy food for themselves."
He said to them, "There is no need for them to go away;
give them some food yourselves."
But they said to him,
"Five loaves and two fish are all we have here."
Then he said, "Bring them here to me,"
and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass.
Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven,
he said the blessing, broke the loaves,
and gave them to the disciples,
who in turn gave them to the crowds.
They all ate and were satisfied,
and they picked up the fragments left over--
twelve wicker baskets full.
Those who ate were about five thousand men,
not counting women and children.

- - -


Some thoughts on today's scripture

  • Mother Teresa said about Jesus, 'He uses us to be his love and compassion in the world in spite of our weaknesses and frailties.' In this miracle Jesus does not produce food out of nowhere. He takes the little that the apostles have, and he multiplies it a thousand fold.
  • In the miracle of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes, I am reminded that Jesus can provide spiritual nourishment beyond my imagining. There is a mysterious disproportion between what I give and what the Lord makes of it.


Conversation requires talking and listening.
As I talk to Jesus may I also learn to be still and listen.
I picture the gentleness in his eyes
and the smile full of love as he gazes on me.
I can be totally honest with Jesus as I tell him of my worries and my cares.
I will open up my heart to him as I tell him of my fears and my doubts.
I will ask him to help me to place myself fully in his care,
to abandon myself to him,
knowing that he always wants what is best for me.


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: Numbers 11:4-15

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18th Week in Ordinary Time

If this is the way you will deal with me, then please do me the favor of killing me at once, so that I need no longer face this distress. (Numbers 11:15)

If you were to read this quote on its own and tried to guess who said it, chances are you wouldn't think it was Moses. He was a holy hero of the Old Testament; he received the Ten Commandments and saw God face-to-face. He would never dare to speak so disrespectfully to the Lord! But don't forget, Moses was called a "friend" of God (Exodus 33:11). And with friends, you feel free to speak your mind.

Moses showed no pretense. He didn't put on an act. So when the people were complaining and Moses was at the end of his rope, he told God so. He understood God knew him inside and out, so what was the point of putting on a façade? Moses knew he couldn't handle the people's problems himself. So he confidently poured out his feelings to God, as he would to any friend. And because he spoke so freely, God was able to help him.

Now, that doesn't mean we should spend all of our prayer time complaining or rehashing the negative! One good way to find that "sweet spot" between honesty and whining is to consider Psalm 13. David is frustrated with God, feeling cut off from the Lord; but in the end, he finishes with a statement of faith: "How long, Lord? Will you utterly forget me? ... But I trust in your mercy. Grant my heart joy in your salvation" (Psalm 13:1, 6). Even if you feel that your faith is weak, tell the Lord that you still believe in him. Just think how pleased he is when you lean on him, even in the midst of struggle!

So if you're frustrated, let God know. If you're annoyed, don't try to hide it from him. If you're happy, share your joy. But if you're at the end of your rope, tell him. Let go, and trust him to catch you! No matter what your situation is, your best friend listens patiently as you sift through the contents of your heart.

"Thank you, heavenly Father, for your faithfulness, as I sit with you and pour out my heart."


Psalm 81:12-17
Matthew 14:13-21

Today's 5 minutos recounted the following:
  "Don (Senior/Mister) Pedro was a veteran and a humble Christian that lived solely by the blessed company of his Savior and Lord.  He was fixed on a a modest  rail pension.  "Only Never!" he'd always say, "my Lord is with me".  He put the promises of the Lord to the test many times, and his simple faith was never disappointed.  One day he was found in difficulty.  The pension pay was late, now he didn't have any money and at home there was nothing to eat.  As always, he elevated his prayer: "Lord, you know I have nothing to eat today, and I am hungry.  I pray for you to hear your child; you have never left me.  Give me the necessary."  It came time to eat breakfast.  Don Pedro tended his rustic table, sat down, bowed his head and gave thanks for the meal.  He hadn't said 'Amen' when they were banging on the door.  It was a neighbor that was bringing a platter of cooked fish. 'Don't get offended, neighbor, yesterday I went fishing and I brought so much to the house that we have left over and my wife told me 'Juan, take all this to don Pedro, it could be he needs it'.  Don Pedro took the platter and raising his eyes to heaven said "Thank you, Lord!".  The neighbor left thinking "how attentive is don Pedro today, he always calls me Juan in such a dry way, and today he treated me with Lord". 
LOL.  {end of 5 minutos}
There's always something we have to do to cooperate with God's gift...and grace.  Moses had to pray/talk with God, even to the point of saying "I can't handle the stress, I'd rather die".  But God doesn't give us more than we can handle.  God gives us more than we can handle so we can ask for more to handle.  Daunting tasks await me and daunting tests await you.  That is the point of living and learning to depend on God for everything, yet working as if things depended on us.  So many times I've gone and knelt before the Blessed Sacrament "I can't handle this ....".  Sometimes in tears, sometimes in anguish, sometimes with such human feelings that they are overwhelming, almost as if a possession.  And what happens?  God hears His child.  You, and me.  He knows how to love and the tests are ropes to bring us back to Him, or even closer to Him.  The people were getting tired of bread from Heaven, their daily bread.  They wanted more, they wanted meat.  And God sends a bird to if to symbolize the Holy Spirit would provide as a prophecy to come and always be.
The Psalms pray on ""If only my people would hear me, and Israel walk in my ways, Quickly would I humble their enemies;
against their foes I would turn my hand." Sing with joy to God our help.  Yesterday a visiting hermit priest, Fr. John of the Holy Spirit gave a charismatic homily.  He said many interesting things.  And the question is, will they remain interesting or will they form my life?  Like when he said if we are put off by sin or if we like it, or worse, are numb to it, meaning we are dying or dead in the Spirit.  Because ultimately what gives life is the living bread of God!  If you do not believe, then taste and see for yourself.  If only people would hear me, God would humble their enemies.  And who is the enemy? Can you think of your enemy?  Don't have any?  Well, we may have a problem here.  We do have an enemy...the devil.  Yet, too many of us have made friends and pacts with the devil, some even dipping into witchcrafts and soothsayers and card readings and talking with dead (sometimes evil) spirits.  Yet, like Fr. John reminded us "the wages of sin are what?...Death".  And so the opposite could be true.  The opposite of sin is to come to the Lord and talk with the Lord and be one with the Lord, and the wages?  LIfe!  LIfe is precious, life is sweet, life is worth living, and life is learning to love God ever more.  It's not all laughs, but it certainly can be all joy once united with Jesus.
In comes our Lord in the Holy Gospel.  His heart is moved with those walking His way, following Him leaving their lives behind, even their earthly food.  And so what does He do?  Well, just like on the mountain that Abraham was needing a sacrifice, it was named "the Lord provides", our Lord provided with the sacrifice, all they could muster up and give to the Lord.  Are you mustering up?  Question is very important.  Because when we give in Mass, what and how are we giving thanks?  Are you even going?  Are you going to give thanks?  How do you give thanks?  There are several ways to give thanks.  I help alot of people right.  One way I take note of their gratitude is their attitude, one can tell if they are truly grateful or not, truly thankful or not.  Not that it matters to me but it matters for their own good.  The same is with the Lord.  Giving thanks is in our lives, our attitude towards Him and one another.  We need to muster up an attitude of gratitude.  This my friend, this makes a tremendous difference, it forms your faith!  Jesus gave thanks for the 5 bread and two fish.  To whom was He giving thanks?  To the people for offering all they had?  Or to God for the little that was given?  Oooooh, good question huh?  What about funny Don Pedro, he even gave thanks for nothing sitting in front of him at the kitchen table!  "Thank you Lord, I don't have what I think I need, but I want to give you thanks".  What an odd prayer.  Yet, it works.  Giving thanks works.  And so, I learned in an audio lesson on "how to win with people", that we are to appreciate people...simultaneously giving them value.  Same then is for God.  Give Him value?  Is that possible?  YES.  Our lives are given value when we give value.  You see, you can not outgive God, give thanks and He will do all the more.  We also give thanks with our money offerings.  We also give thans with the time we spend with Him helping at Church.  We also give thanks at home and in our daily lives by introducing our thanks to the world, bring the good news of true love from Heaven.
Look.  I have been a bad person.  What has changed me?  Nahh.  It's WHO has changed me.  LOVE.  Mercy made the difference.  God has mercy on what little we have to offer, even if it is a whine every now and then..he offers crackers for that whine, and that cracker is Himself....the bread from Heaven.  If you've never had the Eucharist, the consecrated bread turned into the Body of Jesus, how can I explain the taste?  In a few words?   Hmmm....  It is filling.
Love is filling
I got to stop sinning so I can be filled more.
And the taste?  Sweet, just like Love.  Sweet like, I didn't even ask for it.  Sweet like, "wow this is good" and "you did this for ME!??"

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