Wednesday, September 12, 2018

⛪Behold, your reward . ..

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The Sea of God's Boundless Love

In the weakness and frailty of our lives, we can turn to God with the confidence of children and enter into communion with him. In the face of so many wounds that hurt us and could harden our hearts, we are called to dive into the sea of prayer, which is the sea of God's boundless love, to taste his tenderness.

—from the book Believe in Love: Inspiring Words from Pope Francis


"Make friends with the angels, who though invisible are always with you. Often invoke them, constantly praise them, and make good use of their help and assistance in all your temporal and spiritual affairs."
— St. Francis de Sales

"Great things are done through grace, and one attribute of the great things which grace enables the soul to do is their lastingness, their continuance, their permanent life and strength, as years roll past. I say, the works of grace are permanent."
— Bl. John Henry Newman, p. 184
The Quotable Newman


On September 12th the Church venerates the Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary because of her unique privilege as the holiest of creatures, the Mother of God, and the Queen of Heaven and Earth. Her name is therefore a royal one of the highest order, and as such should be given the greatest honor after that of her Divine Son, Jesus Christ. Instituted in 1513, the feast commemorates all the privileges given to Mary by God, and all the graces we have received through her intercession and mediation.

"Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
Philippians 4:6-7


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Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary

This feast is a counterpart to the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus; both have the possibility of uniting people easily divided on other matters.

The feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary began in Spain in 1513 and in 1671 was extended to all of Spain and the Kingdom of Naples. In 1683, John Sobieski, king of Poland, brought an army to the outskirts of Vienna to stop the advance of Muslim armies loyal to Mohammed IV of Constantinople. After Sobieski entrusted himself to the Blessed Virgin Mary, he and his soldiers thoroughly defeated the Muslims. Pope Innocent XI extended this feast to the entire Church.

Mary always points us to God, reminding us of God's infinite goodness. She helps us to open our hearts to God's ways, wherever those may lead us. Honored under the title "Queen of Peace," Mary encourages us to cooperate with Jesus in building a peace based on justice, a peace that respects the fundamental human rights of all peoples.


Wednesday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 1 Cor 7:25-31

Brothers and sisters:
In regard to virgins, I have no commandment from the Lord,
but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord's mercy is trustworthy.
So this is what I think best because of the present distress:
that it is a good thing for a person to remain as he is.
Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek a separation.
Are you free of a wife? Then do not look for a wife.
If you marry, however, you do not sin,
nor does an unmarried woman sin if she marries;
but such people will experience affliction in their earthly life,
and I would like to spare you that.

I tell you, brothers, the time is running out.
From now on, let those having wives act as not having them,
those weeping as not weeping,
those rejoicing as not rejoicing,
those buying as not owning,
those using the world as not using it fully.
For the world in its present form is passing away.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 45:11-12, 14-15, 16-17
R. (11) Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear,
forget your people and your father's house.
So shall the king desire your beauty;
for he is your lord, and you must worship him.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
All glorious is the king's daughter as she enters;
her raiment is threaded with spun gold.
In embroidered apparel she is borne in to the king;
behind her the virgins of her train are brought to you.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
They are borne in with gladness and joy;
they enter the palace of the king.
The place of your fathers your sons shall have;
you shall make them princes through all the land.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.

Alleluia Lk 6:23ab
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Rejoice and leap for joy!
Your reward will be great in heaven.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 6:20-26

Raising his eyes toward his disciples Jesus said:
"Blessed are you who are poor,
for the Kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are you who are now hungry,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who are now weeping,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man.

Rejoice and leap for joy on that day!
Behold, your reward will be great in heaven.
For their ancestors treated the prophets
in the same way.

But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
But woe to you who are filled now,
for you will be hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will grieve and weep.
Woe to you when all speak well of you,
for their ancestors treated the false
prophets in this way."


Meditation: 1 Corinthians 7:25-31

The Most Holy Name of Mary (Optional Memorial)

The time is running out. (1 Corinthians 7:29)

Because he believed that the Second Coming of Jesus was imminent, St. Paul lived with a sense of urgency. He was convinced that "time is running out" (1 Corinthians 7:29). But Paul's urgency was not directed only to that unknown time we call Judgment Day. He also directed it to the way we spend our time each day.

Like today, most people in Paul's day were married. Paul knew that married couples spend the majority of their time on their families. He was fully aware of this when he asked people to stay single so that they had more time to live for the Lord (1 Corinthians 7:27). He was also fully aware of the demands of marriage when he said, "Let those having wives act as not having them" (7:29).

It's helpful to know that Paul was not against marriage. He was interested in everyone going to heaven; that's where he focused his attention. And so he urged everyone, whether married or single, to always be ready to meet Jesus. As Jesus had taught, he wanted to make sure that no one was caught "by surprise" because they were caught up in the concerns of the world (Luke 21:34).

We know that Paul was absolutely wrong about his prediction. The world didn't end during his lifetime. But at the same time, Paul was absolutely right. We should all strive to live carefully. We should all ask ourselves, If Jesus were to come today, would I be ready to meet him?

Legend has it that when St. Francis of Assisi was asked this very question, he replied that he would just keep working in his garden. Francis felt that he was ready for Jesus; there was no need to panic.

What would you do if you knew Jesus were to come today? Would you go on with your current plans? Or would you rush to Confession or try to resolve a broken relationship or try to get in some eleventh-hour prayer?

In another letter, Paul called the Second Coming a "blessed hope" (Titus 2:13). May we all come to a similar view. May we all adopt Paul's sense of urgent excitement as we wait in joyful hope for the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ!

"Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!"

Psalm 45:11-12, 14-17
Luke 6:20-26



Saint Paul reminds us "I tell you... the time is running out."
Before you know it, this episode of life is over, toddler years, gone, childhood years, gone, teenager years, gone, adult years going and gone. It would be righteous and prudent to discern the times. Discern and invest. How much are you investing in your future? What are you investing? Life passes and for some rapidly. Saint Paul is right...time is ticking.

Let us pray: "Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear. Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear, forget your people and your father's house.
So shall the king desire your beauty; for he is your lord, and you must worship him." Forget your people? Say whaaat? Forget your father's house?? WHAT? Is it too much to ask to take your real Father's hand? To go to His house? Is it too much to ask to love Him above all?

In comes our Lord: ""Blessed are you who are poor, for the Kingdom of God is yours." When we think of poor, we tend to think of the homeless people, right? Is that the only people God wants? Certainly not, he wants them and more. Not all poor people want to be poor. You see? Some desire all the riches of the world. And not all rich people got there desiring it that way. Some desire to be poor. So who will have the Kingdom of God? Those who have it in their hearts already. Investments. The future that is already at hand. Someone said "tell me how you spend your Sunday and I'll tell you how you'll spend eternity". As of right now, I'd like to refute that statement. Because it is a Way of life. Saint Paul calls for a complete metanoia as he experienced, a complete change of life, mind, heart, and soul. For some, it happens instantly, like Saul to Paul. For some it takes years of considerable effort. For some, the idea, the intention is great, but not great enough to obtain, strive for....the Kingdom. The Kingdom is not merely a place my friend. The Kingdom "is at hand". It's right here and now. It's happening, it is a happening. It is a state of Being. For God is Being. Jesus is "at hand" and being.

Take heart, Jesus speaks:
"Blessed are you who are now hungry, for you will be satisfied." Hungry for Him, His face, His everything.

"Blessed are you who are now weeping, for you will laugh." Suffering and sacrificing for Him, makes all the difference.

"Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude and insult you, and denounce your name as evil on account of the Son of Man." Hardly you will hear you are hated because of Jesus, but in a twisted truth you are being hounded and chased so you will no longer believe. A friend told me yesterday that his new found life is taken to friends and they say "oh, so you're a Christian now huh?" and they are ready to laugh and reject.

The world is not ready for Jesus.
Never has been.
Never will be.
For He is completely Good.
He doesn't fit, He is rejected.
How often is He rejected by a good man daily? Some say at least 7 times per day. Can He be totally accepted? If you are poor, and empty, and ready...then perhaps He will be accepted.

But if you are rich, full, and not ready, then He will be rejected.

Work for the Lord but work for Love and with Love, and to get Love you must give Love
Blessed Mother, pray that we may love as you have loved



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