Tuesday, April 3, 2018

Go To My Brothers

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Just Show Up

It may sound simplistic, but it is one of the most important things that has ever happened to my prayer life: Just show up. Even if prayer is nothing more than a box to be checked off in our day, checking that box off is better than not doing it.

It is what we do in our other relationships, is it not? We do not always want to do the things we do or feel tremendous joy fulfilling our responsibilities to our friends and family. But we do them anyway. We call our friends every once in a while; make dinner for the family; ask our neighbor how she is doing. Why? Because relationships are built purely on those who show up and try to make it work. What we have may not be what we want, but it will never grow if we are never around to let it.

—from Called: What Happens After Saying Yes to God
franciscan media


"Even on the cross He did not hide Himself from sight; rather, He made all creation witness to the presence of its Maker. Then, having once let it be seen that it was truly dead, He did not allow that temple of His body to linger long, but forthwith on the third day raised it up, impassible and incorruptible, the pledge and token of His victory. "
— St. Athanasius of Alexandria

"We firmly believe, and hence we hope that, just as Christ is truly risen from the dead and lives for ever, so after death the righteous will live for ever with the risen Christ and he will raise them up on the last day. Our resurrection, like his own, will be the work of the Most Holy Trinity."
— (CCC, 989)
Catechism of the Catholic Church

"Ah, my Lord God! You made the heavens and the earth with your great power and your outstretched arm; nothing is too difficult for you. ... Great and mighty God, whose name is Lord of hosts, great in counsel, mighty in deed, whose eyes are fixed on all the ways of mortals, giving to all according to their ways, according to the fruit of their deeds."
Jeremiah 32:17-19


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St. Richard of Chichester (1197-1253), also known as St. Richard de Wyche, was born in Worcestershire, England to a land-owning squire. His father died when he was young, causing the family to suffer hardship for many years. The situation became dire enough for Richard to suspend his studies to take over the family estates and make them profitable again. He went on to Oxford to study for the priesthood, and was so poor that he and two companions shared a set of clothes which they took turns wearing to class. He obtained degrees at the universities in Paris and Bologna before being appointed as the Chancellor of Oxford University. Richard became well-known for his learning and sanctity. As a result he next became Chancellor for the Archbishop of Canterbury, St. Edmund Rich, to whom he was a faithful companion and advisor. Years later St. Richard was ordained the Bishop of Chichester. In this position he entered into power struggles with King Henry III, who withheld his diocesan revenues and blocked his access to the cathedral. St. Richard had many accomplishments as bishop, including establishing greater order and reverence to the liturgy, vigorously defending the rights of the Church, assisting the poor and the oppressed, and preaching a crusade against the Saracens at the request of the Pope. He died of fever surrounded by his closest friends at about 56 years of age. He was buried in the Chichester Cathedral and his shrine became a popular place of pilgrimage before being destroyed by King Henry VIII. St. Richard's feast day is April 3rd.


Tuesday in the Octave of Easter

Reading 1 Acts 2:36-41

On the day of Pentecost, Peter said to the Jewish people,
"Let the whole house of Israel know for certain
that God has made him both Lord and Christ,
this Jesus whom you crucified."

Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart,
and they asked Peter and the other Apostles,
"What are we to do, my brothers?"
Peter said to them,
"Repent and be baptized, every one of you,
in the name of Jesus Christ, for the forgiveness of your sins;
and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.
For the promise is made to you and to your children
and to all those far off,
whomever the Lord our God will call."
He testified with many other arguments, and was exhorting them,
"Save yourselves from this corrupt generation."
Those who accepted his message were baptized,
and about three thousand persons were added that day.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 33:4-5, 18-19, 20 and 22
R. (5b) The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Upright is the word of the LORD,
and all his works are trustworthy.
He loves justice and right;
of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
See, the eyes of the LORD are upon those who fear him,
upon those who hope for his kindness,
To deliver them from death
and preserve them in spite of famine.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.
Our soul waits for the LORD,
who is our help and our shield.
May your kindness, O LORD, be upon us
who have put our hope in you.
R. The earth is full of the goodness of the Lord.
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia Ps 118:24
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
This is the day the LORD has made;
let us be glad and rejoice in it.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Jn 20:11-18

Mary Magdalene stayed outside the tomb weeping.
And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb
and saw two angels in white sitting there,
one at the head and one at the feet
where the Body of Jesus had been.
And they said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?"
She said to them, "They have taken my Lord,
and I don't know where they laid him."
When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there,
but did not know it was Jesus.
Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?
Whom are you looking for?"
She thought it was the gardener and said to him,
"Sir, if you carried him away,
tell me where you laid him,
and I will take him."
Jesus said to her, "Mary!"
She turned and said to him in Hebrew, "Rabbouni,"
which means Teacher.
Jesus said to her, "Stop holding on to me,
for I have not yet ascended to the Father.
But go to my brothers and tell them,
'I am going to my Father and your Father,
to my God and your God.'"
Mary went and announced to the disciples,
"I have seen the Lord,"
and then reported what he had told her.


Meditation: Acts 2:36-41

What are we to do? (Acts 2:37)

What happens to you when you hear a typical homily at Mass?

On the one hand, you might get fired up. In your excitement, you make a big gesture like signing up for a new program at church, or you promise yourself that you will pray one hour every day. But you can't sustain the commitment. Your enthusiasm fades over time.

On the other hand, you might walk away thinking, "That was a good homily" or "That was an interesting point," but forget about it before the day is over. That kind of response can certainly cool off any inspiration you might have experienced.

How can you get beyond these "too hot" and "too cold" reactions to respond in a way that's "just right"? Start small. Try focusing on just one takeaway point. You don't have to digest every reading plus the entire homily. Just find one statement—or even one word—that resonates with you, and hold onto it.

In today's first reading, we see this principle played out. There was a lot going on that morning. Not only was it the Jewish feast of Pentecost, but the Holy Spirit was working many signs and wonders through the apostles. Then came Peter's long, excited proclamation of the gospel. It was an inspiring message, to be sure, but it was also a lot to digest.

When the people finally got a chance to catch their breath, they asked, "What are we to do" with all that we are seeing and hearing? (Acts 2:37). And Peter responded by giving them one simple action step: "Repent and be baptized" (2:38). That's all they needed. They didn't have to grasp every theological point he was making. They didn't have to scrutinize every line of his logic. They didn't have to analyze the rushing wind and tongues of flame. They just had to accept God's invitation.

The same Holy Spirit that was at work that day is alive and working in your life today. So when you hear the Scriptures or when you listen to a homily, expect the Spirit to move you, too. Don't leave Mass or your prayer without an action step. Take one point with you as you move into your day, and watch how the Lord uses it to speak to your heart.

"Lord, help me to find just the 'right way' to respond to you today."

Psalm 33:4-5, 18-20, 22
John 20:11-18



Saint Peter proclaims "repent and be baptized" and then says ""Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." At one point, Our Lord had said in Luke chapter 11: " this generation will be charged with the blood of all the prophets that has been shed since the foundation of the world, 51from the blood of Abel to the blood of Zechariah, who was killed between the altar and the sanctuary. Yes, I tell you, all of it will be charged to this generation.
52Woe to you experts in the law! For you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering." Because they had not accepted God. They were completely closed to the Holy Spirit. Death loomed. The destruction of their version of God came to be...the temple they worshiped, and not what was inside. Venerable Fulton Sheen said that while dying on the cross one criminal hanging on a cross yelled at Jesus ""Are You not the Christ?" he said, "Save Yourself and us!" , meanwhile the other criminal on the other cross said "remember me"; Meaning that one wants healing and salvation, but not Jesus. I see this in our world today. People love miracles and healings...but what about Jesus?

"Upright is the word of the LORD, and all his works are trustworthy. He loves justice and right; of the kindness of the LORD the earth is full." Many people in the world see the Bible as a "good book" on morals and ethics and that's about it. They never found Jesus in the bible, if they ever really read it, if they ever really asked the Holy Spirit to show them Jesus. I invited a guy to bible study, a business owner, he reached on his table and said "I've read the bible", and I said something like "ok, well? you want to join us?". He never did. Its as if people think the bible is enough. It is not. Many people read it and find nothing in it. Some are opposite, they say the bible is everything, and fail to live Jesus. Perhaps this is why you are here need encouragement. I am encouraged by the blood of martyrs. It cost much blood to be here today, reading His cost the blood of Jesus.

In comes the Holy Word, the Word of Eternal Life. Mary is crying at the tomb, just like when Blessed Mother Mary had lost Jesus in the temple when he was a boy, for 3 days. Mary Magdalene is crying. How can someone love Jesus so much? There were no men there crying. Just Mary Magdalene. I've wondered more and more about her, especially since a few years ago, I decided to find out what day I was baptized, and it is on the Feast Day of Mary Magdalene. I thought, "wow, I get baptized on a day of a woman that had suffered much and was healed much, and loved our Lord very much". She was truly grateful. How do I explain this love? Maybe like a dog, a beaten stray dog that is starving to death and wonders to your door, and you feed it and love it, and it stays, and wants more of your food and love and then becomes the most faithful and loyal dog. Even the dogs deserve scraps. But Jesus gave more than that. He loved when nobody else would. It's like this: the people you love, no matter how much they say they love you, can not possibly love you like Jesus. It is impossible to be loved more than Him. He is the very source of love. So Jesus said one word that healed her wailing heart..."Mary". Her soul woke up. She had peace in her heart again. She was scared of falling back and into darkness of the world. But Jesus said "Mary". What a beautiful name right? My mom's name was chosen by the day she was born "The Most Holy Name of Mary", in Mexico, her name is "Maria Dulces Nombres". (Mary Sweet Name). God chose this name for His own mother. It is a common name. Like Joseph. But Mary, Jesus said "Mary". I love Mary. That's what the name sounded like to Mary Magdalene. Nuns, religious sisters, they "Marry" Jesus. They become devoted to Jesus as their spouse, tending to Him, and tending with Love and compassion. This is the love of Mary Magdalene. She says "TEACHER!" Who loves their teacher like that? She runs to embrace Him like a child. Jesus has to tell her "stop holding on to me" and "'I am going to my Father and your Father,
to my God and your God.'" Our Father. Our God.
Jesus walks this earth after death, and then ascends.
Jesus speaks now in our hearts.
You have come this far to hear the Lord speak to you.
This is how you will hear Him:
Seeking Him deep inside your heart.
There is your connection to Him.
Listen. Sometimes it costs tears to reach inside.
Sometimes it takes considerable effort in prayer, to be still.
Jesus arose from the Garden.
To show life and give life.
And off He goes. "Go meet Me" He says.
Our Lord is constantly on the move. Love is an action. The Eternal Word.



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