Anyone can find what is beautiful and true by living apart from ordinary life. Everyone is enlightened on the mountaintop. The harder choice is to live with the knowing right in the center of your life. In your daily chores. In the middle of a family. In places of commerce. The challenge is to find what is beautiful and true in ordinary life.
-from The Divine Spark
"If you become Christ's you will stumble upon wonder upon wonder, and every one of them true." — St. Brendan of Birr
✞MEDITATION OF THE DAY✞
"Prayer and fasting, worship and adoration, Scripture and sacraments and sacramentals all provide the weapons of our spiritual warfare. With them we go on the offensive against the Evil One. But the virtues provide our defense armor. As Blessed Pope Paul VI once observed, St. Paul 'used the armor of a soldier as a symbol for the virtues that can make a Christian invulnerable.' They are our best defense against his attacks, for they guard our minds and hearts from his deceptions and temptations. A lapse in virtue is in fact a chink in our armor that makes us vulnerable." — Paul Thigpen, p. 57-8 AN EXCERPT FROM Manual for Spiritual Warfare
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Saint John Bosco
January 31. Inspired by Saint Francis de Sales, Saint John Bosco founded the Salesians to continue his work among boys. Then, joining forces with Mary Mazzarello, he helped found the Salesian Sisters. All this during a time when established Religious communities were closing their doors. But Saint John was different; he was a poor man who truly cared for the poor, and people saw that.
Brothers and sisters: Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith. For the sake of the joy that lay before him Jesus endured the cross, despising its shame, and has taken his seat at the right of the throne of God. Consider how he endured such opposition from sinners, in order that you may not grow weary and lose heart. In your struggle against sin you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding blood.
Responsorial Psalm Ps 22:26b-27, 28 and 30, 31-32
R. (see 27b) They will praise you, Lord, who long for you. I will fulfill my vows before those who fear him. The lowly shall eat their fill; they who seek the LORD shall praise him: "May your hearts be ever merry!" R. They will praise you, Lord, who long for you. All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the LORD; All the families of the nations shall bow down before him. To him alone shall bow down all who sleep in the earth; Before him shall bend all who go down into the dust. R. They will praise you, Lord, who long for you. And to him my soul shall live; my descendants shall serve him. Let the coming generation be told of the LORD that they may proclaim to a people yet to be born the justice he has shown. R. They will praise you, Lord, who long for you.
Alleluia Mt 8:17
R. Alleluia, alleluia. Christ took away our infirmities and bore our diseases. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel Mk 5:21-43
When Jesus had crossed again in the boat to the other side, a large crowd gathered around him, and he stayed close to the sea. One of the synagogue officials, named Jairus, came forward. Seeing him he fell at his feet and pleaded earnestly with him, saying, "My daughter is at the point of death. Please, come lay your hands on her that she may get well and live." He went off with him and a large crowd followed him.
There was a woman afflicted with hemorrhages for twelve years. She had suffered greatly at the hands of many doctors and had spent all that she had. Yet she was not helped but only grew worse. She had heard about Jesus and came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak. She said, "If I but touch his clothes, I shall be cured." Immediately her flow of blood dried up. She felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction. Jesus, aware at once that power had gone out from him, turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who has touched my clothes?" But his disciples said to him, "You see how the crowd is pressing upon you, and yet you ask, Who touched me?" And he looked around to see who had done it. The woman, realizing what had happened to her, approached in fear and trembling. She fell down before Jesus and told him the whole truth. He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has saved you. Go in peace and be cured of your affliction."
While he was still speaking, people from the synagogue official's house arrived and said, "Your daughter has died; why trouble the teacher any longer?" Disregarding the message that was reported, Jesus said to the synagogue official, "Do not be afraid; just have faith." He did not allow anyone to accompany him inside except Peter, James, and John, the brother of James. When they arrived at the house of the synagogue official, he caught sight of a commotion, people weeping and wailing loudly. So he went in and said to them, "Why this commotion and weeping? The child is not dead but asleep." And they ridiculed him. Then he put them all out. He took along the child's father and mother and those who were with him and entered the room where the child was. He took the child by the hand and said to her, "Talitha koum," which means, "Little girl, I say to you, arise!" The girl, a child of twelve, arose immediately and walked around. At that they were utterly astounded. He gave strict orders that no one should know this and said that she should be given something to eat.
wau.org Catholic Meditations Meditation: Mark 5:21-43
Saint John Bosco, Priest (Memorial)
Daughter, your faith has saved you. (Mark 5:34)
"Ready or not, here I come!" Watching children play hide-and-seek can be quite entertaining. A "hiding" child will often close his eyes and remain very still, even if his hiding place is in plain view. Little children seem to think that if they can't see the other kids, then the other kids can't see them.
This is kind of how the bleeding woman in today's Gospel approached Jesus—she tried to hide herself. But why would she? Maybe she was ashamed. With her flow of blood, she would have been considered "unclean," and people would have avoided touching her. Maybe she feared being ridiculed by the crowd. Maybe she didn't want to take the risk that Jesus might reject her. After all, he was her last chance!
So she tried to hide in the crowd as she reached out for Jesus. But it seems she didn't hide all that well. Jesus sensed that her touch was different from everyone else's. He could tell that her faith was connecting with his healing power.
Like this woman, we sometimes want to hide from Jesus. Of course we know that it's silly to try, but we do it anyway. Jesus can see our needs, our embarrassment, and our sins just as clearly as we can see that child playing hide-and-seek. He's just waiting patiently for us to uncover our eyes and come to him.
But Jesus doesn't see only our hidden faults. He sees our hidden virtues too. He sees every step of faith, every humble act of service, every silent prayer, and each one is precious to him. Just as he commended this woman's faith in front of the crowd, he commends us when we act in faith. And not only that, but he pours even more grace on us in response.
It can be hard to believe at times, but Jesus really does love you. He really does want to bless you. He already knows what you need, and he's eager to give it to you. So don't hide from Jesus. Don't let fear or shame keep you away. Reach out to him. Proclaim your confidence in his love and power. Then sit quietly and hear him say, "Your faith has saved you" (Mark 5:34).
"Jesus, I don't want to hide from you. Come, and touch me with your healing love."
Hebrews 12:1-4 Psalm 22:26-28, 30-32
The Word of the Lord began today "Since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us while keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus, the leader and perfecter of faith." Witness means martyr, means holy ones laying their lives for the Lord, and we can do this every single day, and thank God for another day, to offer, another life. So get rid of your burdens that clings to us like a parasite, evil spirits, those that you don't think are bad are the worst, because they got you fooled, so suffering, we must approach the Lord. It is a race, I broke my hip last week running a race, but that is how it is when you enter a race, the risk is great, but what happens is, you forget the risk of death, and focus on one thing...let it be safety, and this means...Salvation, JESUS! What an important lesson, nothing else is more important!
We pray today "They will praise you, Lord, who long for you. All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the LORD; All the families of the nations shall bow down before him. To him alone shall bow down all who sleep in the earth; Before him shall bend all who go down into the dust." I explained to my brothers in friendship group last night at my house that there was a most treacherous point, where I felt so alone in the hospital, I had already thought so much of the elderly men I visit at the nursing home, but the physical pain I endured was so great that the low point was hit which said deep inside to the Lord "have you not heard any prayers ??!" The nurse came in when I buzzed for help, she left, and a tall blond older man came in....He brought Jesus, in the Holy Communion. It's as if the Lord continuously says "I Am here!" A couple days ago I was reading/praying liturgy of the hours in spanish and it asked as if the Lord asked me "why are you afraid? Don't you love Me?" It tugged at my heart, "yes Lord.."....how soon I forget.
In comes the Lord, and He goes on to heal a 12 year old girl that is dying, and is interrupted by the healing of a hemorrhaging woman. On this, Bishop Barren says at one point today "The woman touches Jesus—and how radical and dangerous an act this was, since it should have rendered Jesus unclean. But so great is her faith, that her touch, instead, renders her clean. Jesus effectively restores her to full participation in her community.' Remember yesterday's crazy Jim the Gerasene? He restored Jim to the community, ol' Jim was now James perhaps, a man restored to fulfill God's mission. That is what I am looking forward to. To be broken and remolded into someone new...the person...the saint I am meant to be. And I am yours, devoted to writing to you in hopes to inspire you to become a saint, because saints spawn saints. Today's St. John Bosco spawned a young boy follower to be be a saint, and the boy died young, and he spawned more to a life of sainthood. Jesus is all about this setting the world on fire, and He can't wait to mold you too. Do you want to go through what I have? Suffering pains? Perhaps you have been in the ICU, and perhaps you have been locked up, but the secret is in the thanksgiving. I began to feel better once I could mutter 2 words to Christ...."Thank You". This is what Eucharist means, and this is why Jesus always tells people to eat when He heals them from death...Eat LIFE....it is JESUS