Monday, April 10, 2017

Let her keep this

Sharing the Suffering Our thoughts turn to the passion and death of our Lord, and we long to share his pain with him. What is the pain of Jesus? It i

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Sharing the Suffering

Our thoughts turn to the passion and death of our Lord, and we long to share his pain with him. What is the pain of Jesus? It is the pain of loving and not being loved in return. He has loved us with an everlasting love, and what do we give him in return? We allow our minds to be preoccupied with little things and so spend many hours without thinking of Jesus. And yet our hearts and minds, bodies and souls, belong only to him. Let us meditate on the sufferings of Christ each day.

–from Lent with St. Teresa of Calcutta


✞ "Therefore, my brother, scorned as you are by men, lashed as it were by God, do not despair. Do not be depressed. Do not let your weakness make you impatient. Instead, let the serenity of your spirit shine through your face. Let the joy of your mind burst forth. Let words of thanks break from your lips."
— St. Peter Damian

"Who art thou, that thou shouldst be afraid of a mortal man? Today he is, and tomorrow he appears no more. Fear God, and thou shalt have no need of being afraid of man. What can anyone do against thee by his words or injuries? He rather hurts himself than thee, nor can he escape the judgment of God whoever he be. See thou have God before thine eyes and do not contend with complaining words. And if at present thou seem to be overcome, and to suffer a confusion which thou has not deserved, do not repine at this and do not lessen thy crown by impatience."
— Thomas รก Kempis, p.148
Imitation of Christ

"Consider your own call, brothers and sisters: not many of you were wise by human standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noble birth. But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, things that are not, to reduce to nothing things that are, so that no one might boast in the presence of God."
1 Corinthians 1:26-29


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Saint Magdalen of Canossa

Saint of the Day for April 10

(March 1, 1774 – April 10, 1835)

Wealth and privilege did nothing to prevent today's saint from following her calling to serve Christ in the poor. Nor did the protests of her relatives, concerned that such work was beneath her.

Born in northern Italy in 1774, Magdalen knew her mind—and spoke it. At age 15 she announced she wished to become a nun. After trying out her vocation with the cloistered Carmelites, she realized her desire was to serve the needy without restriction. For years she worked among the poor and sick in hospitals and in their homes, and also among delinquent and abandoned girls.

In her mid-twenties Magdalen began offering lodging to poor girls in her own home. In time she opened a school, which offered practical training and religious instruction. As other women joined her in the work, the new Congregation of the Canossian Daughters of Charity–or Canossian Sisters–emerged. Over time, houses were opened throughout Italy.

Members of the new religious congregation focused on the educational and spiritual needs of women. Magdalen also founded a smaller congregation for priests and brothers. Both groups continue to this day.

Magdalen died in 1835. Pope John Paul II canonized her in 1988.


Let us pray to Saint Magdalen for the many young women who are caught up in the sex trafficking epidemic of our day.


Sacred Space
Monday of Holy Week

Reading 1 Is 42:1-7

Here is my servant whom I uphold,
my chosen one with whom I am pleased,
Upon whom I have put my Spirit;
he shall bring forth justice to the nations,
Not crying out, not shouting,
not making his voice heard in the street.
A bruised reed he shall not break,
and a smoldering wick he shall not quench,
Until he establishes justice on the earth;
the coastlands will wait for his teaching.

Thus says God, the LORD,
who created the heavens and stretched them out,
who spreads out the earth with its crops,
Who gives breath to its people
and spirit to those who walk on it:
I, the LORD, have called you for the victory of justice,
I have grasped you by the hand;
I formed you, and set you
as a covenant of the people,
a light for the nations,
To open the eyes of the blind,
to bring out prisoners from confinement,
and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 27:1, 2, 3, 13-14
R. (1a) The Lord is my light and my salvation.
The LORD is my light and my salvation;
whom should I fear?
The LORD is my life's refuge;
of whom should I be afraid?
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
When evildoers come at me
to devour my flesh,
My foes and my enemies
themselves stumble and fall.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
Though an army encamp against me,
my heart will not fear;
Though war be waged upon me,
even then will I trust.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.
I believe that I shall see the bounty of the LORD
in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD with courage;
be stouthearted, and wait for the LORD.
R. The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Verse Before the Gospel
Hail to you, our King;
you alone are compassionate with our faults.

Gospel Jn 12:1-11

Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany,
where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead.
They gave a dinner for him there, and Martha served,
while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with him.
Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil
made from genuine aromatic nard
and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair;
the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil.
Then Judas the Iscariot, one of his disciples,
and the one who would betray him, said,
"Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days' wages
and given to the poor?"
He said this not because he cared about the poor
but because he was a thief and held the money bag
and used to steal the contributions.
So Jesus said, "Leave her alone.
Let her keep this for the day of my burial.
You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me."

The large crowd of the Jews found out that he was there and came,
not only because of him, but also to see Lazarus,
whom he had raised from the dead.
And the chief priests plotted to kill Lazarus too,
because many of the Jews were turning away
and believing in Jesus because of him.

Catholic Meditations
Meditation: John 12:1-11

Monday of Holy Week

The house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. (John 12:3)

Imagine that you are in a serious dating relationship, and you want to purchase a gift for your special someone. You wouldn't just buy the first item you see in the local discount store. You would take your time to find the perfect present. And you wouldn't simply drop off your gift in a plastic bag with a scribbled note. You would wrap it carefully and deliver it in person so that your loved one knows just how important they are to you.

All of these actions are similar to what Mary does in today's Gospel. Her gift of spikenard reveals extravagant devotion, not only because of how much it costs, but because of how she gives it. In an act of adoration and worship, she anoints Jesus' feet. She takes on the position of a household servant, who had the job of washing the feet of guests as they entered. By this extravagant act, she is saying, "Jesus, I love you, and I want to serve you all of my days."

Jesus might have expected this same level of devotion from Judas. He was, after all, one of only twelve men chosen to be Jesus' closest disciples. Judas lived with Jesus for three years; he heard him preach and watched him perform miracles. But somehow Judas lost his devotion. He became so self-absorbed that he could no longer give Jesus anything, least of all his heart. Judas was more interested in what he could get. He was even ready to betray Jesus for a pile of silver coins!

As you pray this week, keep the image of Mary and her extravagant love in mind. Ask the Holy Spirit to give you a deeper sense of worship. Meditate on all the blessings God has given you and ponder his incomparable work of redemption. Lay aside any anxieties about the future or bitter regrets about the past. Just remember that Jesus loves you. Remember that he has redeemed you. Let these truths penetrate your heart so that praise and thanksgiving well up in you. And know that your humble, grateful prayer is like sweet-smelling incense to him!

"Lord, how can I ever thank you for redeeming me and giving me new life?"

Isaiah 42:1-7;
Psalm 27:1-3, 13-14


The Lord said "I formed you, and set you as a covenant of the people, a light for the nations, To open the eyes of the blind,
to bring out prisoners from confinement, and from the dungeon, those who live in darkness".

We prayed today "The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom should I fear?"
In comes the Lord, and is found dining with His resurrected friend and his family. Mary, and many say it was Mary Magdalene, she goes to the feet of Jesus, anointing Him with an extremely expensive oil, as Judas said "100 days worth", that's how much it cost, that's the value men put on the oil, but to Mary, it wasn't enough. Some scream at the Catholics for using Gold to hold the body of Christ on altars, but to me, it is not enough. Some scream at the richness it has, but it is Judas' spirit.

Yesterday, the Holy Spirit inspired me to write some songs. One was in Spanish that said "how can I serve you, how can I help you? Would you like a cup of water, or may I wash your feet?" and it spoke of how back in the old day, in Mexico, you couldn't leave when you gave water to your father, you had to wait there until he was finished, and I remember we had to kiss the hand of the father, in honor and respect. All these things are gone and we should bring them back.
Another song I wrote was of Saint Mary Magdalene. It was a meditational song that spoke of her conversion, of her appreciation, of her life transformation. I have a special place for her in my heart, because I realized not too long ago, that my baptism day is the day she is remembered. It is fitting that today's saint is also named Magdalene.

Martha was probably found worrying about serving, and Judas was worried about the money. Our focus away from the Lord. Jesus our King said to let her do this, because she would be anointing His body at burial. And the smell filled the house.

Today, it is a little dim, because so many martyrs were killed in churches in other parts of the world, killed. They gave with their blood, their lives. Forget the oil, there is no price for life.

Today, how will you be found? Raise up your head to heaven and thank God for life and that you can praise God and love God like no other. Focus on Jesus this week. Turn off the music, negate your body pleasures, make this truly a week apart from the rest of the year...HOLY and it has already started



Thought for today: Do you feel like God is "mad at you" because you're a sinner? Are you doubtful that God loves you personally because of your sin? While God hates sin, He loves you. He knows we are sinners, and that's why He sent His Son to save us. Don't be afraid to show God your sin, because in doing so, God will pick you up and hold you in His arms like a Father, and heal the wounds caused by your sin.

Action for today: Next time you get caught up in the lie of sin, and you feel shameful and want to run and hide, run immediately towards God the Father instead.

Prayer for today: God, help me to know how big your heart is, and how great your mercy is. Be with me when I sin, and help me to run back to your open arms.

Quote for today: "Let no one mourn that he has fallen again and again; for forgiveness has risen from the grave." – St. John Chrysostom

Be a Hero today – #ShareJesus: Ask a friend to pray the Divine Mercy Chaplet with you.