Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Crowds were Amazed

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Minute Meditations

Jesus Is Our Light Minute Meditations
In celebrating the birth of Christ, let us carefully consider what his birth reveals about God. This is a God who comes not to condemn but to give life. Once we begin to grasp this life, then the vision of Isaiah, as remarkable as it seems, cannot hold a candle to the light that will shine from us.
— from The Little Way of Advent

Blessed Rafal Chylinski

Born near Buk in the Poznan region of Poland, Melchior showed early signs of religious devotion; family members nicknamed him "the little monk." After completing his studies at the Jesuit college in Poznan, Melchior joined the cavalry and was promoted to officer rank within three years.

In 1715, against the urgings of his military comrades, Melchior joined the Conventual Franciscans in Krakow. Receiving the name Rafal, he was ordained two years later. After pastoral assignments in nine cities, he came to Lagiewniki (central Poland), where he spent the last 13 years of his life, except for 20 months ministering to flood and epidemic victims in Warsaw. In all these places, Rafal was known for his simple and candid sermons, for his generosity, as well as his ministry in the confessional. People of all levels of society were drawn to the self-sacrificing way he lived out his religious profession and priestly ministry.

Rafal played the harp, lute, and mandolin to accompany liturgical hymns. In Lagiewniki he distributed food, supplies, and clothing to the poor. After his death, the Conventual church in that city became a place of pilgrimage for people throughout Poland. He was beatified in Warsaw in 1991.


The sermons preached by Rafal were powerfully reinforced by the living sermon of his life. The Sacrament of Reconciliation can help us bring our daily choices into harmony with our words about Jesus' influence in our life.


During the beatification homily, Pope John Paul II said, "May Blessed Rafal remind us that every one of us, even though we are sinners, has been called to love and to holiness" (L'Osservatore Romano, 1991, vol. 25, number 19).

Daily Prayer - 2015-12-02


I remind myself that I am in your presence O Lord.
I will take refuge in your loving heart.
You are my strength in times of weakness.
You are my comforter in times of sorrow.


"Leave me here freely all alone
In cell where never sunlight shone
should no one ever speak to me
This golden silence makes me free."
Part of a poem written by a prisoner at Dachau concentration camp


How do I find myself today?
Where am I with God? With others?
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

Reading 1 Is 25:6-10a

On this mountain the LORD of hosts
will provide for all peoples
A feast of rich food and choice wines,
juicy, rich food and pure, choice wines.
On this mountain he will destroy
the veil that veils all peoples,
The web that is woven over all nations;
he will destroy death forever.
The Lord GOD will wipe away
the tears from all faces;
The reproach of his people he will remove
from the whole earth; for the LORD has spoken.

On that day it will be said:
"Behold our God, to whom we looked to save us!
This is the LORD for whom we looked;
let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!"
For the hand of the LORD will rest on this mountain.

Responsorial Psalm PS 23:1-3a, 3b-4, 5, 6

R. (6cd) I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.
R. I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
He guides me in right paths
for his name's sake.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
that give me courage.
R. I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
R. I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.
Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
And I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.
R. I shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life.


R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Behold, the Lord comes to save his people;
blessed are those prepared to meet him.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 15:29-37

At that time:
Jesus walked by the Sea of Galilee,
went up on the mountain, and sat down there.
Great crowds came to him,
having with them the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute,
and many others.
They placed them at his feet, and he cured them.
The crowds were amazed when they saw the mute speaking,
the deformed made whole,
the lame walking,
and the blind able to see,
and they glorified the God of Israel.

Jesus summoned his disciples and said,
"My heart is moved with pity for the crowd,
for they have been with me now for three days
and have nothing to eat.
I do not want to send them away hungry,
for fear they may collapse on the way."
The disciples said to him,
"Where could we ever get enough bread in this deserted place
to satisfy such a crowd?"
Jesus said to them, "How many loaves do you have?"
"Seven," they replied, "and a few fish."
He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground.
Then he took the seven loaves and the fish,
gave thanks, broke the loaves,
and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds.
They all ate and were satisfied.
They picked up the fragments left over--seven baskets full.

- - -

Some thoughts on today's scripture

  • Lord, your compassion for all knows no bounds. No one who is brought to you fails to experience your healing touch in one manner or other.
  • Small is beautiful! You use the little resources offered and fill them with abundance. All are fed. May I offer today in freedom and in love all the resources available to me to help alleviate a love starved world.


Sometimes I wonder what I might say if I were to meet you in person Lord.
I think I might say "Thank You Lord" for always being there for me.
I know with certainty there were times when you carried me, Lord.
When it was through your strength I got through the dark times in my life.


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: Matthew 15:29-37

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1st Week of Advent

He broke the loaves and gave them to the crowds. (Matthew 15:36)

Ruth Stull was a woman given to a cause—the natives of Peru. Originally from Ohio, Ruth traveled to Peru to share the gospel with them. It wasn't an easy vocation, and there were times that she must have felt as crumbly as the bread that Jesus held in his hands in today's Gospel reading. But Ruth saw great hope and consolation in this story, not an occasion to worry about herself. "If my life is broken when given to Jesus," she once said, "it is because pieces will feed a multitude, while a loaf will satisfy only a little lad."

What a wonderful perspective! Of course, very few of us are called to share the gospel in a Peruvian jungle, but we have all experienced what it's like to be tested and tried—and divided into many pieces—in the course of doing God's will. Parents experience this as they pour themselves out for their children. Priests experience it as they minister to their many parishioners. Everyone experiences it with the everyday demands of life! We know that we are able to touch so many more people if we allow ourselves to be "broken and scattered" than if we remain safe in our comfort zones.

We all face situations in which we feel fragile or unsure as to whether there is enough of us to go around. But here's the miracle and the paradox. If we can place ourselves in Jesus' hands as we keep moving forward, we'll find his comfort and strength—and we'll end up bearing much more fruit than we ever thought we could.

We may think that we are most suited to help people when we feel strong and capable. And of course we need to take care of ourselves so that we don't become exhausted or dispirited. But many times, it's when we feel weak that God works most powerfully through us.

Ruth Stull learned to "boast most gladly" in her weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9). We can, too.

Today, keep repeating these simple words: "When I am weak within myself, then Jesus will be strong in me." It's not a paradox. It is a simple statement of faith in God's grace and strength.

"Lord, give me the strength to work hard, the peace to survive my demands, and the desire to give myself generously to others."

Isaiah 25:6-10
Psalm 23:1-6

Today's Holy Scriptures began with "On this mountain the LORD of hosts will provide for all peoples".  What did you think when you heard/read these words?  What mountain?  What mountain are they speaking of and how can I get there?  "On THIS mountain" the Lord will provide.  There was a mountain that Abraham had gone up to, to sacrifice his only beloved son Isaac on an altar both father and son were building.  As Abraham picked up his knife, an angel appeared and stopped it.  The boy looked up, got up, saved, and said "then what can we sacrifice?" and Abraham answered "Yahweh-yireh" which means "THE LORD WILL PROVIDE".  So what mountain are you thinking of?  It is an altar place isn't it?  It is a high place isn't it?  It is a mountain Jesus goes to and provides bread abundant, life giving abundant with the little bread we bring isn't it?   It is, and it is more!  His majesty is awesome! we end the scripture in joy "This is the LORD for whom we looked {for salvation}; let us rejoice and be glad that he has saved us!"
The Psalms pray on "You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes", as evil sees you eating with the Lord he says inside "look at you hypocrites!" wishing to death that it could partake of the bread, eat in full Holy Communion with the Lord.  Yet, we travel up the line in humility, waiting to be slaughtered like the son of Abraham, and more like the Son of God!  Humility for life. Then we pray "I Shall live in the house of the Lord all the days of my life".  I shall.  What does that mean?  I shall?  God says thou shalt and it means you shall.  Then we say I shall.  He says things for us to be with Him.  As if to say Thou shalt live with Me, Thy Father.  Will we obey?  Will we seek the mountain?  And who will go to the mountain of the Lord?
JEsus comes in to us today in the Holy Gospel, ""My heart is moved with pity for the crowd, for they have been with me now for three days...".  His heart is moved!  I told the RCIA class (class for adults wanting to learn to be Catholics), I said "the Lord has feelings you know, He gets glad and we can make Him sad...."  don't you think?  Jesus was made human, the Son of God, He felt everything we felt, the loss of a loved one, pity, anger, let us think of Him as a Holy one among us, and so His heart is moved, for they had brought with them the lost, the lame, the blind, the mute.  How many of us are blind (to the Lord)?  How many of us are lame (unable to move for the Lord)?  How many of us are mute (unable to speak for the Lord)?  Because the physical reality is manifested in the spiritual.  Jesus heals, Jesus saves, His name means He Saves.  That is why we are to bring one another to the altar, the mountain, to receive the Lord, to receive healing, and spiritual nourishment.  For humans are not disposable, that is why we are to honor life from its conception.  The only thing that is disposable is sin and we are not sin, we are of Him.  You are HIs and HIs we desire to be and will be! This Altar brings bread and this is fortification for salvation.  And how sad would it be just to save your own self and be alone...what about the rest?  What about Jesus?  His heart is moved, and He provides.  Notice though, He provides when they gave Him all (the little) they had?  We got to learn to give.  Advent is a time of giving.  Learn what it is to give to the Lord and then be prepared to receive much joy.  Because His worth a million years of tears. 
The Lord GOD will wipe away the tears from all faces;
Let us Rejoice and be glad!
Image result for altar mountain Lordadrian
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