Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Shine Before Others....

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Do You Truly Believe God Loves You?

One of the most grave and disturbing things I have encountered as a priest is the number of people that do not believe God loves them. Far too many people think that they must first prove their love to God before God will extend himself to them. Every time I meet people shocked by the truth that God loves them, it breaks my priestly heart. How could they not know that God loves us in his Son, even while we were yet (and are still) sinners?

—from Prayer Everywhere: The Spiritual Life Made Simple


"Viva Cristo Rey! — Long live Christ the King!"

— Blessed Miguel Pro

Meditation of the Day

"To love God's will in consolations is a good love when it is truly God's will we love and not the consolation wherein it lies. Still, it is a love without opposition, repugnance, or effort. Who would not love so worthy a will in so agreeable a form? To love God's will in His commandments, counsels, and inspirations is the second degree of love and it is much more perfect. It carries us forward to renounce and give up our own will, and enables us to abstain from and forbear many pleasures, but not all of them. To love suffering and affliction out of love for God is the summit of most holy charity. In it nothing is pleasant but the divine will alone; there is great opposition on the part of our nature; and not only do we forsake all pleasures, but we embrace torments and labors."

— St. Francis de Sales, p. 76

An Excerpt From Finding God's Will for You

Verse of the Day

"For who is God, but the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God? The God who has girded me with strength has opened wide my path. He made my feet like the feet of deer, and set me secure on the heights. He trains my hands for war, so that my arms can bend a bow of bronze. You have given me the shield of your salvation, and your help has made me great. You have made me stride freely, and my feet do not slip."

2 Samuel 22:32-37


click to read more


Blessed Jolenta (Yolanda) of Poland

(c. 1235 – June 11,1298)

Jolenta was the daughter of Bela IV, King of Hungary. Her sister, St. Kunigunde, was married to the Duke of Poland. Jolenta was sent to Poland where her sister was to supervise her education. Eventually married to Boleslaus, the Duke of Greater Poland, Jolenta was able to use her material means to assist the poor, the sick, widows, and orphans. Her husband joined her in building hospitals, convents, and churches so that he was surnamed "the Pious."

Upon the death of her husband and the marriage of two of her daughters, Jolenta and her third daughter entered the convent of the Poor Clares. War forced Jolenta to move to another convent where despite her reluctance, she was made abbess.

So well did Jolenta serve her Franciscan sisters by word and example, that her fame and good works continued to spread beyond the walls of the cloister. Her favorite devotion was the Passion of Christ. Indeed, Jesus appeared to her, telling her of her coming death. Many miracles, down to our own day, are said to have occurred at her grave.

Jolenta's story begins like a fairy tale. But fairy tales seldom include the death of the prince and never end with the princess living out her days in a convent. Nonetheless, Jolenta's story has a happy ending. Her life of charity toward the poor and devotion to her Franciscan sisters indeed brought her to a "happily ever after." Our lives may be short on fairy tale elements, but our generosity and our willingness to serve well the people we live with lead us toward an ending happier than we can imagine.


Reading 1 1 KGS 17:7-16

The brook near where Elijah was hiding ran dry,
because no rain had fallen in the land.
So the LORD said to Elijah:
"Move on to Zarephath of Sidon and stay there.
I have designated a widow there to provide for you."
He left and went to Zarephath.
As he arrived at the entrance of the city,
a widow was gathering sticks there; he called out to her,
"Please bring me a small cupful of water to drink."
She left to get it, and he called out after her,
"Please bring along a bit of bread."
She answered, "As the LORD, your God, lives,
I have nothing baked;
there is only a handful of flour in my jar
and a little oil in my jug.
Just now I was collecting a couple of sticks,
to go in and prepare something for myself and my son;
when we have eaten it, we shall die."
Elijah said to her, "Do not be afraid.
Go and do as you propose.
But first make me a little cake and bring it to me.
Then you can prepare something for yourself and your son.
For the LORD, the God of Israel, says,
'The jar of flour shall not go empty,
nor the jug of oil run dry,
until the day when the LORD sends rain upon the earth.'"
She left and did as Elijah had said.
She was able to eat for a year, and Elijah and her son as well;
the jar of flour did not go empty,
nor the jug of oil run dry,
as the LORD had foretold through Elijah.

Responsorial Psalm PS 4:2-3, 4-5, 7B-8
R. (7a) Lord, let your face shine on us.
When I call, answer me, O my just God,
you who relieve me when I am in distress;
Have pity on me, and hear my prayer!
Men of rank, how long will you be dull of heart?
Why do you love what is vain and seek after falsehood?
R. Lord, let your face shine on us.
Know that the LORD does wonders for his faithful one;
the LORD will hear me when I call upon him.
Tremble, and sin not;
reflect, upon your beds, in silence.
R. Lord, let your face shine on us.
O LORD, let the light of your countenance shine upon us!
You put gladness into my heart,
more than when grain and wine abound.
R. Lord, let your face shine on us.

Alleluia MT 5:16
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Let your light shine before others
That they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel MT 5:13-16

Jesus said to his disciples:
"You are the salt of the earth.
But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned?
It is no longer good for anything
but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world.
A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden.
Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket;
it is set on a lampstand,
where it gives light to all in the house.
Just so, your light must shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds
and glorify your heavenly Father."


Meditation: Matthew 5:13-16

Your light must shine before others. (Matthew 5:16)

Everyone loves to see a rainbow etched in the sky right after a rainstorm. The prism effect of colors splashed across a line of clouds never ceases to amaze us. Science tells us that it is actually white light from the sun that separates into a spectrum of colors as it passes through water in the atmosphere.

Today's Gospel speaks of Jesus' light as one that "must shine before others" in a way that glorifies his heavenly Father (Matthew 5:16). Imagine the light of Christ as that white light. When his light touches us, each of us displays a slightly different color, and together we, the Church, become like a beautiful rainbow painted across the sky.

It's such a beautiful image, but many of us tend to think that we have nothing to offer—no light to shine. If that's how you feel, let's look at a possible remedy.

Nothing can help overturn discouraging thoughts like remembering who you are in Christ. No matter how you are doing—whether you are feeling healthy or ill, energetic or exhausted, close to God or far from him—Jesus is still in you and with you. In the same way that a father loves his child, God loves you simply for who you are. He is committed to you, and he will never leave you.

What does this mean? That you really are part of his beautiful rainbow—by virtue of his presence in you. So you can reject any thought that tries to tell you that other people may possess great gifts—but not you. You can reject any thought that tries to convince you that God's light won't shine through you until you are perfect. Nobody's perfect!

Spiritual writer Caryll Houselander once put it this way: "Sometimes it may seem to us that there is no purpose to our lives, that going day after day for years to this office or that school or factory is nothing else but waste and weariness. But it may be that God has sent us there because but for us Christ would not be there. If our being there means that Christ is there, that alone makes it worthwhile."

You are part of God's beautiful rainbow. This is the truth. So go out and let that rainbow shine!

"Lord, help me shine my 'Christ light' today."

1 Kings 17:7-16
Psalm 4:2-5, 7-8



From Bishop Barron:

"Friends, in today's Gospel Jesus uses the images of salt and light to show how we are to bring salvation to the world. In our rather privatized and individualistic culture, we tend naturally to think of religion as something for ourselves designed to make our lives richer or better. Now there is a sense in which that is true, but on the biblical reading, religiosity is like salt, light, and an elevated city: it is meant not for oneself, but for others.

Perhaps we can bring these two together by saying that we find salvation for ourselves precisely in the measure that we bring God's life to others. The point is that we followers of Jesus are meant to be salt, which effectively preserves and enhances what is best in the society around us. We effectively undermine what is dysfunctional in the surrounding culture.

We are also light by which people around us come to see what is worth seeing. By the very quality and integrity of our lives, we shed light, illuminating what is beautiful and revealing what is ugly. The clear implication is that, without vibrant Christians, the world is a much worse place. "

We are for others...that's what we are good encouraged to this life of love!



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