Wednesday, November 14, 2018

⛪ Stand Up And...

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Learn to Savor Life

We need to reawaken the art and discipline of what it means to "taste and savor." Instead of swallowing our food almost whole, we may have to ruminate upon it as we ought to do with a favorite text. When a dish is as delightful to see as it is to eat, it ought not to embarrass us to ask for a second helping. Rather than rushing to leave the table, we may discern that slower eating is as necessary for bodily nourishment as slower reading is for spiritual enlightenment.

—from the book Table of Plenty: Good Food for Body and Spirit


"You never go away from us, yet we have difficulty in returning to You. Come, Lord, stir us up and call us back. Kindle and seize us. Be our fire and our sweetness. Let us love. Let us run."
— St. Augustine

"Much that is true of human relationships is also true of our relationship with God. Human relationships of friendship or marriage need time, attention, and care for them to continue and to grow. The same is true of our relationship with God. We have been called to union but we need to respond. As we turn to God in conversion or in a deeper awakening, besides turning away from deliberate sin—which deforms the soul, blocks the relationship and offends the Person who has sacrificed His life for us—we need to positively build the relationship by paying attention to the One who loves us. Prayer is at root simply paying attention to God."
— Ralph Martin, p. 121
Fulfillment of all Desire

"And this is the boldness we have in him, that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have obtained the requests made of him."
1 John 5:14-15


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Blessed John Licci (1400-1511) was born to a poor peasant farmer near Palermo, Sicily. His mother died in childbirth, and his father was forced to leave his infant alone at home while he worked in the fields. One day a neighbor woman heard the baby's cries and, in compassion, brought the child into her home to care for him. When she laid the baby on the bed next to her paralyzed husband, he was miraculously cured of his disease. Mr. Licci was unhappy with the woman's meddling and brought his son back into his home. However, when he did so, his neighbor's paralysis returned. Mr. Licci took this as a sign that God wanted the couple to help him care for his son. This was the first of many miracles John Licci would perform throughout his life. He joined the Dominican Order in 1415 and was a friar for 96 years, the longest period known for any religious to wear the habit. His miracles include the multiplication of building materials used for a convent he founded, miraculously feeding a poor widow and her six children, raising a dead boy to life, and curing three people whose heads had been crushed in accidents. Consequently, he has been designated the patron saint of head injuries. He is the longest-living saint in the Catholic Church, dying at the age of 111. St. John Licci's feast day is November 14th.


Wednesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 Ti 3:1-7

Remind them to be under the control of magistrates and authorities,
to be obedient, to be open to every good enterprise.
They are to slander no one, to be peaceable, considerate,
exercising all graciousness toward everyone.
For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, deluded,
slaves to various desires and pleasures,
living in malice and envy,
hateful ourselves and hating one another.

But when the kindness and generous love
of God our savior appeared,
not because of any righteous deeds we had done
but because of his mercy,
he saved us through the bath of rebirth
and renewal by the Holy Spirit,
whom he richly poured out on us
through Jesus Christ our savior,
so that we might be justified by his grace
and become heirs in hope of eternal life.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 23:1b-3a, 3bc-4, 5, 6
R. (1) The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
In verdant pastures he gives me repose;
Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
He guides me in right paths
for his name's sake.
Even though I walk in the dark valley
I fear no evil; for you are at my side
With your rod and your staff
that give me courage.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
You spread the table before me
in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.
Only goodness and kindness follow me
all the days of my life;
And I shall dwell in the house of the LORD
for years to come.
R. The Lord is my shepherd; there is nothing I shall want.

Alleluia 1 Thes 5:18
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
In all circumstances, give thanks,
for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Lk 17:11-19

As Jesus continued his journey to Jerusalem,
he traveled through Samaria and Galilee.
As he was entering a village, ten lepers met him.
They stood at a distance from him and raised their voice, saying,
"Jesus, Master! Have pity on us!"
And when he saw them, he said,
"Go show yourselves to the priests."
As they were going they were cleansed.
And one of them, realizing he had been healed,
returned, glorifying God in a loud voice;
and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him.
He was a Samaritan.
Jesus said in reply,
"Ten were cleansed, were they not?
Where are the other nine?
Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks to God?"
Then he said to him, "Stand up and go;
your faith has saved you."


Meditation: Titus 3:1-7

When the kindness and generous love of God our savior appeared . . . (Titus 3:4)

Often, a proofreader will read a text backwards. This forces the eyes to slow down and notice each word individually. If we modify it just a bit, this technique can help us read and ponder the Scriptures more carefully and prayerfully.

Take today's first reading, for example. There is so much here that explains God's eternal love and his plan for us that we might miss if we read it too quickly. So let's try reading it "backwards."

The last line of the text talks about our becoming "heirs in hope of eternal life" (Titus 3:7). This is the foundation of everything God has done for us! He created us to be with him forever and to inherit all of his spiritual riches. This intention of his has never changed. Even in our darkest sins, he still longs for us to be with him.

With this truth in our hearts, we find it easier to embrace the line just before it: "That we might be justified by his grace" (Titus 3:7). If you want to be with God forever, you need to embrace his salvation. You need his grace to set you free from sin. You don't have to be afraid of your past, for there is no condemnation, only hope.

Continuing back, we read these words: ". . . through Jesus Christ our savior" (Titus 3:6). Everything points to Jesus. If we fix our eyes on him, we can't help but come to love him. Seeing his perfection and his glory, we will want to surrender our lives to him and receive his healing, his freedom, and his Spirit.

Speaking of the Spirit, the next line tells us that God has "richly poured" him out on us (Titus 3:6). Our generous Father is always offering us a share in his life. He wants nothing more than to fill us with his divine life, which only his Spirit can provide.

Now, as you read back through this passage in its original order, ask the Spirit to move these truths from your head to your heart. Remember, his word is not just letters on paper. It's living and active!

"Holy Spirit, I want to know Jesus more. Help me to receive the abundant life you have for me in your word. Open my heart and fill me."

Psalm 23:1-6
Luke 17:11-19


2 cents :
"Remind them to be under the control of magistrates and authorities,to be obedient...exercising all graciousness toward everyone." And so we are in obedience as the church under the Magisterium, subject to authority. At least, as Catholics we are. But there is a spirit of rebelliousness. There is a spirit that says we don't really need to follow orders. It is a spirit of dissension on many levels and all levels in lay and clergy. It is then, an evil spirit, yet is our tendency to sin. Yet we live in a fallen world. For this, we need grace. We need to be graceful. I sat just about all day yesterday in an emergency room, one of our guys was struck by a chain that busted and went through a dozer window and broke his shin, lots of pain. Very strange. Then they took him from one hospital to another bigger one. I went to follow the ambulance but had to stop at a gas station. I grabbed a quick bite, and I ate in front of the doors of that busy store. Every single person I noticed, I watched carefully. One common thing I admired about our people, a bit of gracefulness. Each person held the door for the next, I'm sure some said thank you, although I could not hear. I was listening to the rest of the audio book on An Exorcist Explains the Demonic. At the prison retreat, we gave a last few words to the prisoners, I was the last to talk in an informal meeting and I left them with these words; "a grateful soul is a holy soul". This left many pondering deeply as they got in line to leave.


Let us pray: "The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want. In verdant pastures he gives me repose; Beside restful waters he leads me;
he refreshes my soul." He leads my soul. He refreshes it. He can. He very well may. If we so much as desire it. If we so much as lay our head on His bosom as Saint John did at the table. Indeed, we pray on "You spread the table before me in the sight of my foes;
You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows.' He gives what is necessary to continue. Let us continue with Him.


In comes our Lord: "Ten were cleansed, were they not? Where are the other nine? ". EXACTLY. In my life of tending to His sheep, I very often ask myself the very same question. Where are the other 9? Of 10 magnificent miracles I've witnessed, I've not noticed thankfulness on the majority of these people's lives. I have not noticed a change. I have not noticed a transformation. The miracle was taken for granted. A life was spared. Yet, not a minute or a dollar has been spared in gratitude. Why? I don't know why we are innately ungrateful. Back to the tendency to sin. I honestly don't know how to be thankful either though. I try my heart out. For everything I'm I asked I try to say yes to the Lord. That's nice. Right? Not really. I got a comment a while back "Adrian, you do so much for the church". Not too nice of a comment. Yes I do a bit, but that doesn't matter. HUH? Yeah, the heart is what matters. I'd be a resounding gong if I didn't have love. I wish I would've heard "Adrian, you really love the Lord don't you?" Then, with tears, I would've said "I try". And that would've been a good comment. You see? Gratefulness turns into love. Thanksgiving turns into love. My life becomes one of love. I can not lie, of all the daily Masses I frequent, I've only had a handful of experiences where my heart burns for the Lord. But I go anyways. Love is not a feeling. Love is a choice. Love is a cross. So what about ungrateful souls? These lepers in Jesus' time were walking dead. Literally, left for dead, avoided, cast out and away, and not too many decades ago, they were even being dumped on a Hawaiian Island, where a saint went to tend to them, contracted the disease and died with them and for them. Jesus did it. Why would He come to earth, contract death and be exposed to sin? To defeat it. An antibody needs the agent to defeat. Latch on and conquer. Why? God is grateful, Jesus is grateful, the Holy Spirit is grateful. Can you imagine in Heaven, ungratefulness? It is cast out.

Now think thanksgivign. Think Eucharist. Think God's body. Think transformation.
What I want to see is holy people. I see nice people.
I want to see more giving thanks. They say modern kids don't know how to be grateful. Is it their fault? Not all. We show them how to be ungrateful. The schools. The church. The movies. The community. I don't see things showing kids how to be grateful. I see ignorance. Of the truth. Of the Eucharist. Of thanksgiving. I see self sacrifice going by the wayside.

Great Adrian. You identified the problem. Can you tell me how to be grateful then?
Be Holy. As your Father is Holy.

And I mean "SUPER HOLY". The retreat we did was named after a saint that said "I don't just want to be a saint, I want to be the greatest of saints". He was imprisoned in the holocaust era. He took the place of a family man that was chosen to be killed.

See how saints work? In Germany, in Hawaii, and in your very spot! Who will take the place of another sinner?
Who would die for the sinner?
Who would die for the stranger?

I'll tell is Love.
Love has a name.
God has named us and is calling us, His flock, His creation, all His, for greater Love



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