Friday, October 13, 2017

I Shall Return ...

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Give God the Glory

We have no right to glory in ourselves because of any extraordinary gifts, since these do not belong to us but to God. But we may glory in crosses, afflictions, and tribulations, because these are our own.

—Saint Francis of Assisi, as quoted in the book The Franciscan Saints, by Robert Ellsberg


✞ "Cheerfulness prepares a glorious mind for all the noblest acts."
— St. Elizabeth Ann Seton


"The true reason for which God bestows so many graces upon the humble is this, that the humble are faithful to these graces and make good use of them. They receive them from God and use them in a manner pleasing to God, giving all the glory to Him, without reserving any for themselves. ... It is certainly true that he who is humble is also faithful to God, because the humble man is also just in giving to all their due, and above all, in rendering to God the things that are God's; that is, in giving Him the glory for all the good that he is, all the good that he has and for all the good that he does; as the Venerable Bede says: 'Whatever good we see in ourselves, let us ascribe it to God and not to ourselves.' To give thanks to God for all the blessings we have received and are continually receiving is an excellent means of exercising humility, because by thanksgiving we learn to acknowledge the Supreme Giver of every good. And for this reason it is necessary for us always to be humble before God. St. Paul exhorts us to render thanks for all things and at all times: 'In all things give thanks.' (1 Thess. 5:18). 'Giving thanks always for all things.' (Eph. 5:20). But that our thanksgiving may be an act of humility it must not only come from the lips but from the heart, with a firm conviction that all good comes to us through the infinite mercy of God."
— Rev. Cajetan da Bergamo, p. 87-8
Humility Of Heart

"Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends."
1 Corinthians 13:4-8


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St. Edward the Confessor (1003-1066 A.D.) was a prince born to the King and Queen of England. His family was exiled from the kingdom when the Danish took control of the country in 1016 A.D. Edward spent much of his life in exile, probably in Normandy. Witnessing the folly of worldly ambition, he became attracted to the life of the Church and grew in piety. When opportunity arose he was persuaded to reclaim the throne of England, which he did in 1042 as one of its last Anglo-Saxon kings. The people supported in his rule, and he gained a reputation as a just king committed to the welfare of his subjects. He thwarted invasions, ended unjust taxes, and was profoundly generous to the poor. His reign was marked by peace and prosperity throughout his kingdom. He married a beautiful woman to satisfy the people's desire for a queen, but, having already made a vow of chastity, he obtained his wife's agreement to live together as brother and sister. He was buried in Westminster Abbey, which he built, and after his death many miracles were ascribed to his intercession. This lead to his canonization in 1161, and in 1163 the transferral of his body to a new tomb. This was presided over by St. Thomas Becket, the Archbishop of Canterbury, who found Edward's body to be incorrupt. Edward was called "The Confessor" to distinguish him from St. Edward the Martyr. He is buried behind the high altar in Westminster Abbey. He is the patron of kings, difficult marriages, separated spouses, and the English royal family. His feast day is October 13th.


Friday of the Twenty-seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 Jl 1:13-15; 2:1-2

Gird yourselves and weep, O priests!
wail, O ministers of the altar!
Come, spend the night in sackcloth,
O ministers of my God!
The house of your God is deprived
of offering and libation.
Proclaim a fast,
call an assembly;
Gather the elders,
all who dwell in the land,
Into the house of the LORD, your God,
and cry to the LORD!

Alas, the day!
for near is the day of the LORD,
and it comes as ruin from the Almighty.

Blow the trumpet in Zion,
sound the alarm on my holy mountain!
Let all who dwell in the land tremble,
for the day of the LORD is coming;
Yes, it is near, a day of darkness and of gloom,
a day of clouds and somberness!
Like dawn spreading over the mountains,
a people numerous and mighty!
Their like has not been from of old,
nor will it be after them,
even to the years of distant generations.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 9:2-3, 6 and 16, 8-9
R. (9) The Lord will judge the world with justice.
I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart;
I will declare all your wondrous deeds.
I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, Most High.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.
You rebuked the nations and destroyed the wicked;
their name you blotted out forever and ever.
The nations are sunk in the pit they have made;
in the snare they set, their foot is caught.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.
But the LORD sits enthroned forever;
he has set up his throne for judgment.
He judges the world with justice;
he governs the peoples with equity.
R. The Lord will judge the world with justice.

Alleluia Jn 12:31b-32
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The prince of this world will now be cast out,
and when I am lifted up from the earth
I will draw all to myself, says the Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 11:15-26

When Jesus had driven out a demon, some of the crowd said:
"By the power of Beelzebul, the prince of demons,
he drives out demons."
Others, to test him, asked him for a sign from heaven.
But he knew their thoughts and said to them,
"Every kingdom divided against itself will be laid waste
and house will fall against house.
And if Satan is divided against himself, how will his kingdom stand?
For you say that it is by Beelzebul that I drive out demons.
If I, then, drive out demons by Beelzebul,
by whom do your own people drive them out?
Therefore they will be your judges.
But if it is by the finger of God that I drive out demons,
then the Kingdom of God has come upon you.
When a strong man fully armed guards his palace,
his possessions are safe.
But when one stronger than he attacks and overcomes him,
he takes away the armor on which he relied
and distributes the spoils.
Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.

"When an unclean spirit goes out of someone,
it roams through arid regions searching for rest
but, finding none, it says,
'I shall return to my home from which I came.'
But upon returning, it finds it swept clean and put in order.
Then it goes and brings back seven other spirits
more wicked than itself who move in and dwell there,
and the last condition of that man is worse than the first."


Meditation: Luke 11:15-26
27th Week in Ordinary Time

I shall return to my home from which I came. (Luke 11:24)

We have all experienced it: the frustration of a besetting sin or a difficult relationship dynamic that keeps popping up. Just when we think we've got it licked, a stronger temptation arises, or an upsetting conversation occurs. We suddenly feel as though we're right back where we started. It's no accident. That's just the way the devil works.

Do we need any more proof that the devil never takes a vacation? Satan is relentless. He never stops harassing us and trying to trip us up. He never stops trying to return to his old homes: the weak spots in our character, our habits of sin, the hurts caused by broken relationships.

That's why Jesus cautions us against settling for just being "swept clean and put in order" (Luke 11:25). Yes, baptism washes us clean of original sin, and Confession cleans us up again after we have sinned. But what about the time in between confessions? As relentless as the devil is, he will always be looking for openings to come back and harass us. He will always be alert for a new opportunity to tempt us and draw us away from the Lord.

This is why St. Peter urges us to be "sober and vigilant" (1 Peter 5:8). He knows that our enemy, the devil, "is prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (5:8). How can we be vigilant? By paying attention to the thoughts that arise in our hearts. If anything leads us to become judgmental, resentful, or lustful, we can be sure it's coming from our enemy.

So how do we deal with these devilish tactics? By following St. Paul's example and taking up "the armor of God," especially the "shield" of faith and the "sword" of God's word in Scripture (Ephesians 6:11, 16, 17).

All this talk of the devil can seem frightening, but we can take heart. God hasn't left us defenseless. He has given us all the tools and all the armor we need to guard the "home" of our hearts.

The devil never takes a vacation, so don't make yourself an easy target.

"Father, set me free and strengthen me by your grace. Help me to be vigilant against the wiles of the devil. Lord, I place my life in your hands."

Joel 1:13-15; 2:1-2
Psalm 9:2-3, 6, 8-9, 16



"Blow the trumpet in Zion" says the Lord through the prophet.
It is a day of reckoning. It is a day to recognize that God is here and God is with us. Are we with Him? Yes? Let your yes be heard loud and clear.

We pray today "The Lord will judge the world with justice....
I will give thanks to you, O LORD, with all my heart" God judges with a justice that he has chosen. What we choose makes a great part of it.

And so our Lord speaks to us today "Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters."
In the book of revelation, He says He wants us hot or cold, for the lukewarm will be spit and vomited out, cast from His eternal bliss.

So I dare ask you again, are you with the Lord or not? If there is sin taking hold of your are not. This produces a great need for the Lord in our lives. The greater the sin, the greater the need for Him. The less the sin...well, that's dangerous because we tend to all think "eh, we're ok". and we become lax, we relax in our faith and that leads to a lukewarm life instead of a zealous soul on fire for the LORD!
Never think you are OK and "Saved". Why? Because, only God knows who is ok and saved. This makes for a person then to always strive for holiness and daily righteousness. I am not Ok. I need God every day, every hour, every minute, I can not let go of His hand. I am still learning to walk. To walk His way. The way that gives honor and Glory to God. The way that says " I will suffer so you will live" so we learn not to be served but to serve and give.
This is how to be with HIM, to carry your cross, to do His will. If I ever hear someone say "I am humble" they are not. I rather hear the truth "I am proud" and accept the fact that you need humility. Then I will believe you are trying to give Glory to God! The meek and humble will inherit the earth. And these will be victorious, deserving to serve the Lord even more!

To the one who has, more will be the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away....



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