Wednesday, November 15, 2017

...were they not?


A Faith Like Mary's

Mary is our Mother, and she loves us deeply. Because she is a child of God herself and loves us so very much, she wants us to experience that same joy of being a child of God. She understands how important and powerful his love is, and she knows how profoundly God loves each of us individually and uniquely. She will intercede for us, invoking the Holy Spirit to lead us to God the father.
—from the book Forgiving Mother: A Marian Novena of Healing and Peace by Marge Steinhage Fenelon


✞ "When you sit down to eat, pray. When you eat bread, do so thanking Him for being so generous to you. If you drink wine, be mindful of Him who has given it to you for your pleasure and as a relief in sickness. When you dress, thank Him for His kindness in providing you with clothes. When you look at the sky and the beauty of the stars, throw yourself at God's feet and adore Him who in His wisdom has arranged things in this way. Similarly, when the sun goes down and when it rises, when you are asleep or awake, give thanks to God, who created and arranged all things for your benefit, to have you know, love and praise their Creator."
— St. Basil the Great

"Prayer is more the work of the heart than of the head; it should, therefore, be simple, affective, and sincere. Let not the mind, then, weary itself in seeking for beautiful thoughts and sonorous phrases; we meditate not to prepare a finished sermon, nor to address God with fine rhetoric, but to nourish our soul with reflections which may enlighten and move us, and excite holy and generous resolutions; we make these reflections for ourselves alone, let them, then, be simple as well as pious. In affections, likewise, we seek for the practice of virtue, and not for the pleasures of a refined egotism. Let us never confound our sensible feelings with our will, or mere emotion with devotion. None of these acts need be made with a feverish ardour, nor in a tone of enthusiastic fervor . . . Above all, our prayers should be the faithful echo of our interior dispositions; our affections should express the sentiments which reign in our heart, or which we wish to form there; our petitions should proceed from a real desire; our every resolution should be a firm purpose of the will, and thus our whole soul will be upright and sincere before God."
— Rev. Dom Vitalis Lehodey, p. 99
The Ways of Mental Prayer

"All of these died in faith without having received the promises, but from a distance they saw and greeted them. They confessed that they were strangers and foreigners on the earth."
Hebrews 11:13


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Saint Albert the Great

(1206 – November 15, 1280)

Albert the Great was a 13th-century German Dominican who decisively influenced the Church's stance toward Aristotelian philosophy brought to Europe by the spread of Islam.

Students of philosophy know him as the master of Thomas Aquinas. Albert's attempt to understand Aristotle's writings established the climate in which Thomas Aquinas developed his synthesis of Greek wisdom and Christian theology. But Albert deserves recognition on his own merits as a curious, honest, and diligent scholar.

He was the eldest son of a powerful and wealthy German lord of military rank. He was educated in the liberal arts. Despite fierce family opposition, he entered the Dominican novitiate.

His boundless interests prompted him to write a compendium of all knowledge: natural science, logic, rhetoric, mathematics, astronomy, ethics, economics, politics, and metaphysics. His explanation of learning took 20 years to complete. "Our intention," he said, "is to make all the aforesaid parts of knowledge intelligible to the Latins."

He achieved his goal while serving as an educator at Paris and Cologne, as Dominican provincial, and even as bishop of Regensburg for a short time. He defended the mendicant orders and preached the Crusade in Germany and Bohemia.

Albert, a Doctor of the Church, is the patron of scientists and philosophers.


An information glut faces us Christians today in all branches of learning. One needs only to read current Catholic periodicals to experience the varied reactions to the findings of the social sciences, for example, in regard to Christian institutions, Christian life-styles, and Christian theology. Ultimately, in canonizing Albert, the Church seems to point to his openness to truth, wherever it may be found, as his claim to holiness. His characteristic curiosity prompted Albert to mine deeply for wisdom within a philosophy his Church warmed to with great difficulty.

Saint Albert the Great is the Patron Saint of:

Medical Technicians


Wednesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 Wis 6:1-11

Hear, O kings, and understand;
learn, you magistrates of the earth's expanse!
Hearken, you who are in power over the multitude
and lord it over throngs of peoples!
Because authority was given you by the Lord
and sovereignty by the Most High,
who shall probe your works and scrutinize your counsels.
Because, though you were ministers of his kingdom, you judged not rightly,
and did not keep the law,
nor walk according to the will of God,
Terribly and swiftly shall he come against you,
because judgment is stern for the exalted–
For the lowly may be pardoned out of mercy
but the mighty shall be mightily put to the test.
For the Lord of all shows no partiality,
nor does he fear greatness,
Because he himself made the great as well as the small,
and he provides for all alike;
but for those in power a rigorous scrutiny impends.
To you, therefore, O princes, are my words addressed
that you may learn wisdom and that you may not sin.
For those who keep the holy precepts hallowed shall be found holy,
and those learned in them will have ready a response.
Desire therefore my words;
long for them and you shall be instructed.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 82:3-4, 6-7
R. (8a) Rise up, O God, bring judgment to the earth.
Defend the lowly and the fatherless;
render justice to the afflicted and the destitute.
Rescue the lowly and the poor;
from the hand of the wicked deliver them.
R. Rise up, O God, bring judgment to the earth.
I said: "You are gods,
all of you sons of the Most High;
yet like men you shall die,
and fall like any prince."
R. Rise up, O God, bring judgment to the earth.

Alleluia 1 Thes 5:18
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
In all circumstances, give thanks,
for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 17:11-19

As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem,
he traveled through Samaria and Galilee.
As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him.
They stood at a distance from him and raised their voice, saying,
"Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!"
And when he saw them, he said,
"Go show yourselves to the priests."
As they were going they were cleansed.
And one of them, realizing he had been healed,
returned, glorifying God in a loud voice;
and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him.
He was a Samaritan.
Jesus said in reply,
"Ten were cleansed, were they not?
Where are the other nine?
Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?"
Then he said to him, "Stand up and go;
your faith has saved you."


Meditation: Luke 17:11-19

Saint Albert the Great, Bishop and Doctor of the Church (Optional Memorial)

He fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. (Luke 17:16)

The Greek word for "thanked" in this passage is one of the most important words in our life of faith. What is this word? Euchariston. That's right. The word that we get "Eucharist" from.

The whole of the Mass is our way of saying "Thank you" to Jesus. "Thank you for saving us." "Thank you for giving us your Spirit." "Thank you for the Church." "Thank you for every good gift you have ever given us." It is one long, extended act of thanksgiving!

During the penitential rite, we thank Jesus for his mercy, even as we confess that we have sinned. Picture yourself standing before the Lord, hearing him say, "Neither do I condemn you." How could you help but sing his praises? How could you help but cry out, "Glory to God in the highest!"

At the end of each of the readings, we respond, "Thanks be to God!" or "Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ!" We thank the Lord for speaking words of life to us, words that have the power to pierce our hearts and lift us up to heaven. We thank him for all the stories from Scripture that tell us about God's wonderful deeds—stories that tell us how much he wants to do in our own lives.

During the offertory, we offer him bread and wine, but we also offer him our lives in gratitude for the gift of his life. We are imitating the psalmist, who asked, "How can I repay the Lord for all the great good done for me? I will raise the cup of salvation" (Psalm 116:12-13).

When we receive Jesus in Communion, we are telling him how grateful we are for offering himself on the cross and for offering himself to us on the altar. We are so thankful for this act of love that we long to receive him—body and blood, soul and divinity—into our very being. We are so moved by his generosity that we want to be with him always.

We have a generous, loving, and merciful God. He has given us every good and perfect gift, especially the gift of himself in the Eucharist. Let's bow down in worship and proclaim our thanks to him!

"All glory and honor is yours, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit! Thank you for all you have given us!"

Wisdom 6:1-11
Psalm 82:3-4, 6-7


The Lord said:
"To you, therefore, O princes, are my words addressed that you may learn wisdom and that you may not sin. For those who keep the holy precepts hallowed shall be found holy..."

We prayed today "Rise up, O God, bring judgment to the earth. I said: "You are gods, all of you sons of the Most High; yet like men you shall die,
and fall like any prince." Shall there be a peace like you want, or a peace like God wants? Shall there be no more struggles or strife, or shall there be the double edged sword to cut through the muck that is in the world? And what is the muck made of? Certainly, the opposite of thanksgiving.

And so our Lord asks today ""Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine?" They say that nowadays the youth or the last generation has been one that believes they are owed something. "You owe me a cell phone" and "you owe me a free house or car". If they don't have it, they are mad at the world. I've been helping these people buy a car. It blows up in a year. The next year, I help them again. Engine blows up (head gasket). The following year again and again. This year, this week actually, I told them, "you know, this is the last car I'll help you get, because I don't believe I'm really helping you guys" and what I mean is that they are not taking care of it, and on the same note, they must not appreciate it as if they suffered for it. When someone gives you something you don't work for, you don't appreciate. Perhaps this is why there is suffering in the world.
And you? Are you grateful? Most would say yes. I can't answer that for you, because I can't even answer it for me. Even yesterday as I kind of jogged with my baby boy around the house I was thinking how good I feel now, healed of my broken hip. A miracle. How can I give thanks to God? Miracles upon miracles. And you know what miracle is the strangest? Nothing.

The miracle of nothing is the strangest miracle of all. When nothing happens, meaning all is well. You have your senses, your fingers, your lungs, your mind. Yet, who is grateful and ecstatic about it? Who can appreciate some great faith? Like, mercy? Like....the love of God? I see two kinds of people:
1.) The kind that wants to be grateful
2.) The kind that don't know they should be grateful
The kind that wants to be grateful....want to be holy.
The kind that don't know they should be, desire nothing of holiness.
Therefore....where are you desires?
What are your thoughts and actions aiming towards? Heaven?
In 10 days will be the 25th of November. People who see me are probably wondering why I'm letting my beard grow out, looking rather scraggly. Well, truth be told, its because I always fast before a special day, like Easter or Christmas, the day we celebrate our Lord's birth. But, after reading Blessed Sister Anne Emerich's book about the Blessed Virigin Mary, she states our Lord was born on the 25th of November, and the 3 Kings visited Him on the 25th of December, paying homage and giving gifts. And so, I am focusing on the day of our Lord, pretty much the day of Thanksgiving. Because our Lord is the Eucharist and the Eucharist means thanksgiving.

Bishop Barren says today in the end "What is so important about worship? To worship is to order the whole of one's life toward the living God, and, in doing so, to become interiorly and exteriorly rightly ordered. To worship is to signal to oneself what one's life is finally about. Worship is not something that God needs, but it is very much something that we need."
Does God need our thanks? Does He need our souls in Heaven? Does He need our worship? Yeah...not really. He can carry on just fine.

BUT, do WE need to give thanks? YES!
Do WE need to worship? YES!
Do we need our souls in Heaven? YES!
The truth is, there is really 1 out of 10 that realizes they need to give thanks. That one is saved.
Will that one be you?

My conundrum is that I want 100% to be saved, 10 out of 10.

In order for that to happen, a sacrifice has to be made....and Jesus sacrfices Himself in the Eucharist. And me? Will I even sacrifice my sins? Will I crucify them? Will I desire to be one with Christ? The Eucharist is all about this and more. The Eucharist is dumbfounding and perplexing and at the same time amazing. It is true because you cannot explain God. If you do, then you are an atheist or an evil spirit. Because to say you know God is to say you know everything and more....just like Lucifer turned Satan, ungrateful at best for acknowledging our creator.
I know I'm going long here, but the truth is, my conversion has centered and thrived itself in the Eucharist. Conversion? A cradle catholic was converted? Yes. From cold to hot. From a drifter to being anchored. And this conversion must be ongoing and so I thrive and strive for daily reception of the Eucharist which hardens what is inside. And I desire my faith to be solidified in Christ and for what?

For you



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