Tuesday, January 9, 2018

A New Teaching

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Guidance of Angels

Saint John Vianney taught that we should imitate the angels in their consciousness of the presence of God. In his "Sermon on Holy Communion," he said, "We ought to ask the Blessed Virgin, the angels, and the saints to pray for us that we may receive the good God as worthily as it is possible for us to receive Him."

Ponder these words and pray that your own guardian angel will enlighten you and guide you on the path to heaven. Here is a simple prayer:

Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God's love commits me here. Ever this day be at my side, to light and guard, to rule and guide. Amen.

—from the book Our Lady of Fatima: 100 Years of Stories, Prayers, and Devotions by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle


✞ Holy Say:
"Christ made my soul beautiful with the jewels of grace and virtue. I belong to Him whom the angels serve."
– St. Agnes

"With creation, God does not abandon his creatures to themselves. He not only gives them being and existence, but also, and at every moment, upholds and sustains them in being, enables them to act and brings them to their final end. Recognizing this utter dependence with respect to the Creator is a source of wisdom and freedom, of joy and confidence: 'For you love all things that exist, and detest none of the things that you have made; for you would not have made anything if you had hated it. How would anything have endured, if you had not willed it? Or how would anything not called forth by you have been preserved? You spare all things for they are yours, O Lord, you who love the living' (Wisdom 11:24-26)."
— (CCC, 301)
Catechism of the Catholic Church

"In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God."
Romans 8:26-27


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Saint Adrian of Canterbury

(d. January 9, 710)

Though Saint Adrian turned down a papal request to become Archbishop of Canterbury, England, Pope Saint Vitalian accepted the rejection on the condition that Adrian serve as the Holy Father's assistant and adviser. Adrian accepted, but ended up spending most of his life and doing most of his work in Canterbury.

Born in Africa, Adrian was serving as an abbot in Italy when the new Archbishop of Canterbury appointed him abbot of the monastery of Saints Peter and Paul in Canterbury. Thanks to his leadership skills, the facility became one of the most important centers of learning. The school attracted many outstanding scholars from far and wide and produced numerous future bishops and archbishops. Students reportedly learned Greek and Latin and spoke Latin as well as their own native languages.

Adrian taught at the school for 40 years. He died there, probably in the year 710, and was buried in the monastery. Several hundred years later, when reconstruction was being done, Adrian's body was discovered in an incorrupt state. As word spread, people flocked to his tomb, which became famous for miracles. Rumor had it that young schoolboys in trouble with their masters made regular visits there.

Saint Adrian spent most of his time in Canterbury not as bishop, but as abbot and teacher. Often the Lord has plans for us that are obvious only on hindsight. How often have we said no to something or someone only to end up in much the same place anyway. The Lord knows what's good for us. Can we trust Him?


Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 306

Reading 1 1 SM 1:9-20

Hannah rose after a meal at Shiloh,
and presented herself before the LORD;
at the time, Eli the priest was sitting on a chair
near the doorpost of the LORD's temple.
In her bitterness she prayed to the LORD, weeping copiously,
and she made a vow, promising: "O LORD of hosts,
if you look with pity on the misery of your handmaid,
if you remember me and do not forget me,
if you give your handmaid a male child,
I will give him to the LORD for as long as he lives;
neither wine nor liquor shall he drink,
and no razor shall ever touch his head."
As she remained long at prayer before the LORD,
Eli watched her mouth, for Hannah was praying silently;
though her lips were moving, her voice could not be heard.
Eli, thinking her drunk, said to her,
"How long will you make a drunken show of yourself?
Sober up from your wine!"
"It isn't that, my lord," Hannah answered.
"I am an unhappy woman.
I have had neither wine nor liquor;
I was only pouring out my troubles to the LORD.
Do not think your handmaid a ne'er-do-well;
my prayer has been prompted by my deep sorrow and misery."
Eli said, "Go in peace,
and may the God of Israel grant you what you have asked of him."
She replied, "Think kindly of your maidservant," and left.
She went to her quarters, ate and drank with her husband,
and no longer appeared downcast.
Early the next morning they worshiped before the LORD,
and then returned to their home in Ramah.

When Elkanah had relations with his wife Hannah,
the LORD remembered her.
She conceived, and at the end of her term bore a son
whom she called Samuel, since she had asked the LORD for him.

Responsorial Psalm 1 SAMUEL 2:1, 4-5, 6-7, 8ABCD
R. (see 1) My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.
"My heart exults in the LORD,
my horn is exalted in my God.
I have swallowed up my enemies;
I rejoice in my victory."
R. My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.
"The bows of the mighty are broken,
while the tottering gird on strength.
The well-fed hire themselves out for bread,
while the hungry batten on spoil.
The barren wife bears seven sons,
while the mother of many languishes."
R. My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.
"The LORD puts to death and gives life;
he casts down to the nether world;
he raises up again.
The LORD makes poor and makes rich;
he humbles, he also exalts."
R. My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.
"He raises the needy from the dust;
from the dung heap he lifts up the poor,
To seat them with nobles
and make a glorious throne their heritage."
R. My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior.

Alleluia SEE 1 THES 2:13
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Receive the word of God, not as the word of men,
but as it truly is, the word of God.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel MK 1:21-28

Jesus came to Capernaum with his followers,
and on the sabbath he entered the synagogue and taught.
The people were astonished at his teaching,
for he taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes.
In their synagogue was a man with an unclean spirit;
he cried out, "What have you to do with us, Jesus of Nazareth?
Have you come to destroy us?
I know who you are–the Holy One of God!"
Jesus rebuked him and said, "Quiet! Come out of him!"
The unclean spirit convulsed him and with a loud cry came out of him.
All were amazed and asked one another,
"What is this?
A new teaching with authority.
He commands even the unclean spirits and they obey him."
His fame spread everywhere throughout the whole region of Galilee.


Meditation: (Psalm) 1 Samuel 2:1, 4-8

The tottering gird on strength. (1 Samuel 2:4)

Today's first reading and psalm give us before and after snapshots of Hannah that can help us understand how dramatically God changed her heart—she went from weeping bitterly to joyfully proclaiming God's faithfulness. But what happened in between? Hannah tells us herself: "The tottering [unstable] gird on [are clothed in] strength"—strength from God (1 Samuel 2:4).

"That's easy for Hannah to say," we might think. "God answered her prayer." It's true: God gave Hannah a son after years of childlessness. But look carefully, and you'll see that Hannah changed before she conceived Samuel. After a few words from Eli, Hannah's despair began to lift, and she could eat and drink again. The next morning, she returned to worship with her husband, free from grief. God had girded her with his strength even while she waited for the answer to her prayer.

What a hopeful image for us! We all have times of "tottering," when our faith feels weak. But just as with Hannah, God stands ready to strengthen us and steady us with his peace. All he asks is that we lean on him and let him fill us with his grace. Perhaps Hannah can show us the way.

First, Hannah persevered. Year after barren year, she went with her husband to offer sacrifice and beg the Lord for a child. Like Hannah, we can persevere in seeking the Lord and his strength—even when we question whether anything will come of it. We can believe that his grace is girding us, even when we don't feel it.

Second, Hannah was honest with God. She didn't bury her anxiety and put on a pious show. She poured out her complaint and admitted her unhappiness. What does this teach us? Just like Hannah, we can feel free to tell God exactly how we are feeling. He won't be surprised or put off. He sees it all anyway! He may not always grant our requests, but he will always give us his peace. And God's peace will give us the strength to trust him, even in our challenges.

So bring Jesus your concerns, your doubts, and your fears. Persevere, and be honest with him. Let him tell you what Eli told Hannah: "Go in peace" (1 Samuel 1:17).

"Jesus, I need your strength today. Come, and fill me with your peace."

1 Samuel 1:9-20
Mark 1:21-28



We heard "Hannah rose after a meal at Shiloh, and presented herself before the LORD...".
Notice this presentation. Notice where...this happens in the temple.
Let us go there.

Let us pray: " My heart exults in the Lord, my Savior. "He raises the needy from the dust;" If you believe. Jesus cried out, "Whoever believes in me does not believe in me only, but in the one who sent me." Gospel of John. In another part in Mark we heard: "Immediately the boy's father cried out and said, "I do believe; help my unbelief." God hears silent heart prayers. Do you believe? I do. What else does He hear going on in your heart? Your temple?

Let us go there.

"...He taught them as one having authority and not as the scribes." Isn't it a different sermon or homily when the priest is emphatic instead of monotonous? A visiting priest, Monsignor Bridges was being emphatic. He was teaching as if one with authority, indeed, when a priest administers the Holy Sacraments it is with total Authority. The Holy Catholic Church is the one with authority, when it comes to exorcisms, this is the place to come. Yet, an exorcist once said that a good confession is worth a thousand exorcisms.

In the Holy Temple Jesus demanded an evil spirit to leave. What kind of evil spirit lays at your church? At your home? At your temple.

Let us go there.
Inside of you there is a whole lot of things going on constantly vying for your attention. Constantly seeing if there is an in, or an inn, therefore a place to live, maybe for a night...leading to a lifetime. I bought a "smart bulb" for my house to run with voice activation. I put it on a dark corner of our living room. I commanded with my voice for it to turn on and it did. As I walked by it, the next day, with the new light on, I noticed cobwebs, and dirty spots I'd never seen before. This is an analogy of the light of Christ, what light can do in your life. You will see how dirty things really were. Now you can clean up. Confession does give light. A good one brings light into the confessional room. LOL, this weekend me and my wife went to confess and I walked in on an ongoing confession, because they had no curtains this time on the door and I saw only the priest's legs and vestments behind the confessional wall. I told the people in line "woops! now I got another thing to confess!" I had failed to see the light, the red light at that!

This visitation to the temple to cleanse this temple, it was edifying. It is reconciliation that is reconstructive, just what Jesus comes to do in the temple. From here, things are born...great things like Samson, conceived after praying. Like Mary bore the Son of God in her prayer, she was already devoting her whole consecrated life and more came.

You see, you have this huge life that wants to do great things for God.
Only thing to do now is to do it. This is what I tell everyone...start now, start saying yes. Reconstruction begins now and it all becomes new and joy. A love to life forever awaits...



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