Thursday, July 26, 2018

To see what you see . . .

Like   Tweet   Pin   +1  

Take a Saint to Walmart

Prayer should come naturally to us. Punctuating my driving or walking by lifting my mind and heart to God makes it so much more engaging. I think there would be no road rage if we all drove on the lookout for something that would move us to prayer. I know it has made me a much more patient and more charitable driver. My friend Jodi takes a saint with her whenever she goes to Walmart. You will be surprised how these simple acts of piety will change you.

—from Prayer Everywhere: The Spiritual Life Made Simple


"You are rewarded not according to your work or your time but according to the measure of your love."
— St. Catherine of Siena

"We are the holy Church. But I do not say 'we' as though to indicate only we who are here, you who have just been listening to me. I mean all of us who are here and by the grace of God faithful Christians in this church, that is, in this city; all those in this region, in this province, across the sea, all those in the whole world. Such is the Catholic Church, our true mother, the true spouse of so great a husband."
— St. Augustine, p. 87
Augustine Day by Day

When they bring you before the synagogues, the rulers, and the authorities, do not worry about how you are to defend yourselves or what you are to say; for the Holy Spirit will teach you at that very hour what you ought to say.
Luke 12:11-12


click to read more


Saints Joachim and Anne

(b. 1st century)

Saints Joachim and Anne's Story
In the Scriptures, Matthew and Luke furnish a legal family history of Jesus, tracing ancestry to show that Jesus is the culmination of great promises. Not only is his mother's family neglected, we also know nothing factual about them except that they existed. Even the names Joachim and Anne come from a legendary source written more than a century after Jesus died.

The heroism and holiness of these people however, is inferred from the whole family atmosphere around Mary in the Scriptures. Whether we rely on the legends about Mary's childhood or make guesses from the information in the Bible, we see in her a fulfillment of many generations of prayerful persons, herself steeped in the religious traditions of her people.

The strong character of Mary in making decisions, her continuous practice of prayer, her devotion to the laws of her faith, her steadiness at moments of crisis, and her devotion to her relatives—all indicate a close-knit, loving family that looked forward to the next generation even while retaining the best of the past.

Joachim and Anne—whether these are their real names or not—represent that entire quiet series of generations who faithfully perform their duties, practice their faith, and establish an atmosphere for the coming of the Messiah, but remain obscure.

This is the "feast of grandparents." It reminds grandparents of their responsibility to establish a tone for generations to come: They must make the traditions live and offer them as a promise to little children. But the feast has a message for the younger generation as well. It reminds the young that older people's greater perspective, depth of experience, and appreciation of life's profound rhythms are all part of a wisdom not to be taken lightly or ignored.

Saints Joachim and Anne are the Patron Saints of:

Saint Anne is the Patron Saint of:
Women in Labor


Memorial of Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Reading 1 Jer 2:1-3, 7-8, 12-13

This word of the LORD came to me:
Go, cry out this message for Jerusalem to hear!

I remember the devotion of your youth,
how you loved me as a bride,
Following me in the desert,
in a land unsown.
Sacred to the LORD was Israel,
the first fruits of his harvest;
Should any presume to partake of them,
evil would befall them, says the LORD.

When I brought you into the garden land
to eat its goodly fruits,
You entered and defiled my land,
you made my heritage loathsome.
The priests asked not,
"Where is the LORD?"
Those who dealt with the law knew me not:
the shepherds rebelled against me.
The prophets prophesied by Baal,
and went after useless idols.

Be amazed at this, O heavens,
and shudder with sheer horror, says the LORD.
Two evils have my people done:
they have forsaken me, the source of living waters;
They have dug themselves cisterns,
broken cisterns, that hold no water.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 36:6-7ab, 8-9, 10-11
R. (10a) With you is the fountain of life, O Lord.
O LORD, your mercy reaches to heaven;
your faithfulness, to the clouds.
Your justice is like the mountains of God;
your judgments, like the mighty deep.
R. With you is the fountain of life, O Lord.
How precious is your mercy, O God!
The children of men take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They have their fill of the prime gifts of your house;
from your delightful stream you give them to drink.
R. With you is the fountain of life, O Lord.
For with you is the fountain of life,
and in your light we see light.
Keep up your mercy toward your friends,
your just defense of the upright of heart.
R. With you is the fountain of life, O Lord.

Alleluia See Mt 11:25
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth;
you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 13:10-17

The disciples approached Jesus and said,
"Why do you speak to the crowd in parables?"
He said to them in reply,
"Because knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven
has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted.
To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich;
from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away.
This is why I speak to them in parables, because
they look but do not see and hear but do not listen or understand.
Isaiah's prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says:

You shall indeed hear but not understand,
you shall indeed look but never see.
Gross is the heart of this people,
they will hardly hear with their ears,
they have closed their eyes,
lest they see with their eyes
and hear with their ears
and understand with their hearts and be converted
and I heal them.

"But blessed are your eyes, because they see,
and your ears, because they hear.
Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people
longed to see what you see but did not see it,
and to hear what you hear but did not hear it."


Meditation: Matthew 13:10-17

Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Memorial)

To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away. (Matthew 13:12)

It's interesting the way God created us, isn't it? He designed our bodies in such a way that the more we use them, the better they'll perform. For instance, we all have approximately the same number of brain cells, but the number of pathways between these cells increases based upon how much our brains are stimulated. Similarly, our muscles grow stronger with exercise and weaken with disuse.

Our faith works in much the same way, as we can see from Jesus' explanation of his parables. Those who "have" it will receive more. But what is it that these people "have"? A heart open to the gospel and willing to trust in Jesus. Those who "have not" have closed their hearts and turned from the grace that God is offering to them. No one is taking anything from them; they have chosen to give it up.

How we treat the gift of faith is up to us—and that truth may scare us a little. So much depends on us!

If this is how you think, try looking at faith as an opportunity and not a risk. To live by faith is to allow God to keep changing you into his image and likeness. If you take Jesus at his word, he promises you will grow "rich," not financially, but spiritually. Think of all the saints who started out with only a mustard seed of faith but ended up changing the world. Really, we risk losing a lot more if we don't take any risks of faith!

Most of us are dealing with at least one challenging situation. Maybe a relationship has gone sour, but you're afraid to make the first move and seek forgiveness. Perhaps you want to pray with a friend for healing, but you're nervous about his response. Or maybe you want to go to Confession, but you are afraid of how you will be received. These are the times when Jesus says, "Step out of the boat! It may look like there is nothing underneath, but I will hold you up."

"Lord, help me to trust in you more deeply. Give me the courage to exercise my faith."

Jeremiah 2:1-3, 7-8, 12-13
Psalm 36:6-11


"Go, cry out this message for Jerusalem to hear!" Cry out that the people of God have turned their backs on Him...their own Savior. For their own good, cry out this message. Repent! God is calling. Calling on you to be the herald of the news called the Good. That is what evangelize means, to be an angel, a messenger. They say you won't get into Heaven until you are like an angel. Only then are you recognized. You must be God's angel. You must be what is inside. All that is necessary is provided. You soil. His water and seed. Everything makes sense. Now go! Now grow! I think I heard a in a new video by Fr. Mike Schmitz, saying that so long as we are alive, we are growing,ever changing. I think the name of the video was "becoming flexible to God's will".

Let us pray: "With you is the fountain of life, O Lord. For with you is the fountain of life, and in your light we see light. Keep up your mercy toward your friends, your just defense of the upright of heart." How precious is mercy! How precious is mercy to you? A retired couple, great pro-lifers,recently wrote to me, and said that the husband was let go of his beloved job he held for over 30 years faithful. The wife said she was afraid he was going to trim their trees down to the trunk! Had nothing else to do now. But suddenly, a job offered more money, and he only had to work one week. Say what? You tell me God is not faithful now. He sees the faithful. He knows what you need. They say now they plan on visiting their grandchildren with the time off and finances. But it is not a matter of finances, but something to step back and see. God is in control. Our part...faithfulness to Him...above all.

In comes our Lord: " knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven
has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted."
Is it fair that some people will not get the message? Oh, it has been given, but they will not receive! Why? Because, it is not needed. They don't want it, therefore, they do not need it. There are though, a select few that will receive, and keep propagating the message until in others it is finally received. Just because some choose darkness doesn't mean there is no light. You and I have been chosen to be the light for those in our world. You are to be that hope. No matter what they do, you hold on to charity, and you desire mercy. Mercy is precious. Mercy is everything. Mercy is ardently desired in purgatory. Mercy is not so desired on earth. And so, we are the church militant. Battleground at ground zero. How to be triumphant? How to wield the sword of truth? You handle it with humility. The Word will endure forever.
"Gross is the heart of this people," engrossed may I say, engrossed with the world and all its lures and distractions and ways of living. He goes on:

"they will hardly hear with their ears," I'm taking antibiotics for an ear infection, I have cotton in my ears, I hear echoes and distortions, it is mind boggling, I focus so much on trying to listen, but it is just so hard. What is the infection that causes us to be deaf to God's word? It is what is engrossing, that what makes us turn our backs to our Lord. He goes on:
"they have closed their eyes,
lest they see with their eyes" They say Lazarus is around the corner. The starving, ailing and hurting man is just around the corner. But we can not see him. We can not see Him. Last Friday, I visited that abandoned friend in the nursing home, that one abandoned by his wife after a stroke. He was alone, as usual, just as the other blind friend in another nursing home. Alone. You know what it reminds me of? The Blessed Sacrament in church. Alone. Most of the time alone. Abandoned. We fail to see Him because we don't look for Him, we don't GO to see Him. He goes on:
"and hear with their ears
and understand with their hearts and be converted and I heal them." First conversion. Then healing. The first thing to realize is our sickness. The first step is to acknowledge our offense. Then you can begin the healing and restoration process. And mercy is all you desire. Jesus is all you desire. Nothing else, nothing more.

If a parable is perplexing, it is meant to be so, especially for those that can not accept the message. Many people call the bible names, and say it is full of contradictory statements that contradicts itself. Point the finger. The rest point back. If you do not understand it, it is because you are not willing to accept what it offers. Salvation. Humility. To have God above everything else.
A parable paraphrases what is happening in our lives. The seeds. The prodigal son. These stories are real life happenings. They are call to conversions, to come to Him, to be more like angels.
And wow, does He love angels. Myriads and myriads of flowers are His fragrance. Mother Teresa said to those who want abortions "how can you say there are too many children? It is like saying...there are too many flowers!"



Powered by
GoDaddy Email Marketing ®