Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Whoever teaches and obeys

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Lord, Speak to My Heart

Dear Lord Jesus, help me to be more attentive to you in my life. Forgive me for the times I have neglected to listen to you speaking to my heart. Help me to make a more concerted effort to be prayerful. Please help me to be mindful about my responsibility in leading others to you and away from sin. Thank you for the gift of my guardian angel whom I desire to pray to more often.

–from the book Our Lady of Fatima: 100 Years of Stories, Prayers, and Devotions


✞ "Cast yourself into the arms of God and be very sure that if He wants anything of you, He will fit you for the work and give you strength."
— St. Philip Neri

"Do not be scared of the word authority. Believing things on authority only means believing them because you have been told them by someone you think trustworthy. Ninety-nine per cent of the things you believe are believed on authority. ... We believe them simply because people who did see them have left writings that tell us about them: in fact, on authority. A man who jibbed at authority in other things as some people do in religion would have to be content to know nothing all his life."
— C.S. Lewis, p. 62
Mere Christianity

"After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, saying, 'Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!'"
Revelation 7:9-10


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Saint Albert Chmielowski

Saint of the Day for June 14

(August 20, 1845 – December 25, 1916)

Born in Igolomia near Kraków as the eldest of four children in a wealthy family, he was christened Adam. During the 1864 revolt against Czar Alexander III, Adam's wounds forced the amputation of his left leg.

His great talent for painting led to studies in Warsaw, Munich, and Paris. Adam returned to Kraków and became a Secular Franciscan. In 1888, when he founded the Brothers of the Third Order of Saint Francis, Servants to the Poor, he took the name Albert. They worked primarily with the homeless, depending completely on alms while serving the needy regardless of age, religion, or politics. A community of Albertine sisters was established later.

Pope John Paul II beatified Albert in 1983, and canonized him six years later.


Reflecting on his own priestly vocation, Pope John Paul II wrote in 1996 that Brother Albert had played a role in its formation "because I found in him a real spiritual support and example in leaving behind the world of art, literature, and the theater, and in making the radical choice of a vocation to the priesthood" (Gift and Mystery: On the Fiftieth Anniversary of My Priestly Ordination). As a young priest, Karol Wojtyla repaid his debt of gratitude by writing The Brother of Our God, a play about Brother Albert's life.

The Liturgical Feast of Saint Albert Chmielowski is June 17.


Wednesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 2 Cor 3:4-11

Brothers and sisters:
Such confidence we have through Christ toward God.
Not that of ourselves we are qualified to take credit
for anything as coming from us;
rather, our qualification comes from God,
who has indeed qualified us as ministers of a new covenant,
not of letter but of spirit;
for the letter brings death, but the Spirit gives life.

Now if the ministry of death, carved in letters on stone, was so glorious
that the children of Israel could not look intently at the face of Moses
because of its glory that was going to fade,
how much more will the ministry of the Spirit be glorious?
For if the ministry of condemnation was glorious,
the ministry of righteousness will abound much more in glory.
Indeed, what was endowed with glory
has come to have no glory in this respect
because of the glory that surpasses it.
For if what was going to fade was glorious,
how much more will what endures be glorious.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 99:5, 6, 7, 8, 9
R. (see 9c) Holy is the Lord our God.
Extol the LORD, our God,
and worship at his footstool;
holy is he!
R. Holy is the Lord our God.
Moses and Aaron were among his priests,
and Samuel, among those who called upon his name;
they called upon the LORD, and he answered them.
R. Holy is the Lord our God.
From the pillar of cloud he spoke to them;
they heard his decrees and the law he gave them.
R. Holy is the Lord our God.
O LORD, our God, you answered them;
a forgiving God you were to them,
though requiting their misdeeds.
R. Holy is the Lord our God.
Extol the LORD, our God,
and worship at his holy mountain;
for holy is the LORD, our God.
R. Holy is the Lord our God.

Alleluia Ps 25:4b, 5a
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Teach me your paths, my God,
and guide me in your truth.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 5:17-19

Jesus said to his disciples:
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets.
I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.
Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away,
not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter
will pass from the law,
until all things have taken place.
Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments
and teaches others to do so
will be called least in the Kingdom of heaven.
But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments
will be called greatest in the Kingdom of heaven."


Meditation: 2 Corinthians 3:4-11
10th Week in Ordinary Time

Our qualification comes from God. (2 Corinthians 3:5)

Akashi Kaikyō Bridge in Japan has the largest central span of any suspension bridge in the world. This elegant structure, which is held up by only two towers and a network of steel cables, can look dangerously fragile, but in reality it is incredibly strong. Although its supports seem so minimal, it can withstand 178 mph winds and earthquakes of up to 8.5 magnitude. Imagine the engineering genius that went into the making of this bridge!

Did you know that you are the result of an even more wondrous feat of engineering? In today's first reading, St. Paul calls our attention to the incredible structure that God has been building in our lives. Everything that we are, everything that we do, all the forces that we withstand—it all gives evidence of how carefully God has crafted our foundation. Like a master builder, he has laid this foundation with great precision and fortified it with his own divine grace. What a marvel you are!

Here's even more marvelous news: God isn't done building you! Through the grace of his sacraments, he continues to make you stronger and steadier. Day after day, he infuses you with the gifts of his Holy Spirit so that you can withstand any gale force winds that might come against you. Through the witness and encouragement of other brothers and sisters in Christ, he continues to teach you how to adapt to the pressures of temptation without snapping or crumbling.

Take some time today to stand back and admire God's handiwork. You are a marvel! You are far stronger than you think, far more flexible than you think, and far more capable than you think. You have "the strength for everything" in Christ, who strengthens you (Philippians 4:13)! So try not to give in to fear when you face challenges today. Instead, stand firm on the foundation God has poured for you. Pray for the situation, not in "self-confidence," but "God-confidence."

Remember, God has given you the perfect structure for the job he has assigned you to do. Christ is with you, he is in you, and he is more than able to work through you.

"Lord, thank you for all you have built in me. Give me confidence to use your gifts."

Psalm 99:5-9
Matthew 5:17-19


Saint Paul says today ".... our qualification comes from God". Because people were basically saying "who died and made you King?". They were saying "I got degrees, and you don't got nothing", and they were saying "I am qualified, and you are not". They were saying then..."I know more than you". But they did not know God. Because God was speaking through Saint Paul and they were not listening. Qualification comes from deep prayer and listening to His subtle voice.

We pray today "Holy is the Lord our God." and "From the pillar of cloud he spoke to them; they heard his decrees and the law he gave them." They heard Him. Would they listen to Him? Or would they renegade, would they complain, would they get tired of this wretched food?

In comes the Lord ""Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill." I've heard of people that don't come to Mass "it's the same ol' same thing over and over". Jesus didn't come to replace but to expand, true leaven does that, He blew it up, the dough is now bread with Him. It is up to you now, if you will keep it flat lined or fluff it up with the Holy Spirit. He enters us in a Holy way, but do we receive Him in a holy way? A grateful way? It becomes then, like C.S. Lewis said today, a matter of authority. Renegades have turned against the Holy Catholic Church in history, called protestants, protesting and dividing, instead of fixing the problems, made them worse, pitting one against the other.

We see that division today all over, it is nothing new. It is as old as time when the first doubt entered the world with the devil in evil. That little doubt launched a great war, a battle for souls. A mother against daughter, a family member against another, turning each other into the law. Instead of teaching by example the role of humility, the opposite comes in, pride, the greatest of evils because it encompasses all other evils.
"Who the heck are you to tell ME what to do?" I heard yesterday a friend talk about a guy at his work said of god and the devil "they are both fools". And I said "then he has made himself king". In this "me-me" world that looks to a mirror with nothing behind it but darkness to see your reflection.

Yes, then, authority is key. Jesus the King died for each one of us. He then took authority of life. He has written the book of life with blood, His precious blood that He offers to this day.
It is a blood of self sacrifice. I told someone else yesterday "you know, I got family members that make fun of me, call me this and that, but I still go to their house and we are the best of friends". You see, it's not about me. It is because I love God that there is friendship and love. Whereas another family member can't stand the other, because they can't forgive...because of pride. So there is animosity, hatred even, and division, no unity.
Authority is wonderful, and C.S. Lewis speaks of the Holy Church where Christ is King and the magisterium has been left to guard the letter of the law...but not the book but what made the book happen...the Blood of Christ.
The source and summit of the Holy Catholic faith is the blood, body, soul, and divinity of our Lord Jesus the Christ.
Who dares take Him?
Who dares live Him?
Who dares die for Him?
Who dares love HIM



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