Saturday, March 9, 2019

⛪ Leaving everything behind ⛪

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God Is Within Us

If something is completely foreign to you, you're normally bored by it or do not even notice it. We cannot deeply experience, much less desire union with, something that is foreign to us. So God planted a little bit of God inside of us—and all things. It seduces us into even more universal love and life. Some might call it the Holy spirit, some might call it the soul, some might simply speak of inner resonance. The point is that a force of love can move from God to us and back again.

—from the book Yes, And...: Daily Meditations


clickable: The Following is from MorningOffering


"Realize it, my brethren; —every one who breathes, high and low, educated and ignorant, young and old, man and woman, has a mission, has a work. We are not sent into this world for nothing; we are not born at random; . . . God sees every one of us; He creates every soul, He lodges it in the body, one by one, for a purpose. He needs, He deigns to need, every one of us. He has an end for each of us; we are all equal in His sight, and we are placed in our different ranks and stations, not to get what we can out of them for ourselves, but to labor in them for Him. As Christ has His work, we too have ours; as He rejoiced to do His work, we must rejoice in ours also."
— Blessed John Henry Newman

"When one is given the Spirit of wisdom, one is able to perceive God's fingerprints upon the wonders of the world. One is able to see the pattern God has established in history (world history, faith history, and even our own personal history). This should leave us with a sense of comfort, for it means that life is not chaotic. God has a plan."
— Rev. Jude Winkler, OFM, p.62
Daily Meditations with the Holy Spirit

"Do not love the world or the things in the world. The love of the Father is not in those who love the world; for all that is in the world—the desire of the flesh, the desire of the eyes, the pride in riches—comes not from the Father but from the world. And the world and its desire are passing away, but those who do the will of God live forever."
1 John 2:15-17


click to read more



St. Frances of Rome (1384-1440) was born to a noble family in Rome. As a young girl her desire to become a nun was refused by her father, who instead arranged her marriage at the age of 12. St. Frances accepted this as God's will for her life. She was married for 40 years and had children, two of whom died from the plague. In her time Rome was at war and the city was in chaos from political disarray and widespread disease. St. Frances responded by converting her home into a hospital. She drove with a wagon into the streets and collected the sick and stranded in order to care for them. She miraculously cured many people, and also began the city's first orphanage. She inspired many women to join her in this life of prayer and good works, and eventually founded a congregation of lay oblates attached to the Benedictine monastery known as the Oblates of St. Frances of Rome. After her husband's death she entered religious life as the group's superior. One of the great mystics of her time, she dictated 97 visions and was visibly guided by her guardian angel throughout her life. St. Frances of Rome is the patron saint of many causes, including motorists, pilots, women, widows, and against plague and the death of children. On her feast day many priests bless cars due to her patronage of cars and drivers. Her feast day is March 9th.


Looking at the exemplary life of fidelity to God and devotion to her fellow human beings which Frances of Rome was blessed to lead, one cannot help but be reminded of Saint Teresa of Calcutta, who loved Jesus Christ in prayer and also in the poor. The life of Frances of Rome calls each of us not only to look deeply for God in prayer, but also to carry our devotion to Jesus living in the suffering of our world. Frances shows us that this life need not be restricted to those bound by vows.
Saint Frances of Rome is the Patron Saint of:



Saturday after Ash Wednesday

Reading 1 Is 58:9b-14

Thus says the LORD:
If you remove from your midst oppression,
false accusation and malicious speech;
If you bestow your bread on the hungry
and satisfy the afflicted;
Then light shall rise for you in the darkness,
and the gloom shall become for you like midday;
Then the LORD will guide you always
and give you plenty even on the parched land.
He will renew your strength,
and you shall be like a watered garden,
like a spring whose water never fails.
The ancient ruins shall be rebuilt for your sake,
and the foundations from ages past you shall raise up;
"Repairer of the breach," they shall call you,
"Restorer of ruined homesteads."

If you hold back your foot on the sabbath
from following your own pursuits on my holy day;
If you call the sabbath a delight,
and the LORD's holy day honorable;
If you honor it by not following your ways,
seeking your own interests, or speaking with malice
Then you shall delight in the LORD,
and I will make you ride on the heights of the earth;
I will nourish you with the heritage of Jacob, your father,
for the mouth of the LORD has spoken.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 86:1-2, 3-4, 5-6
R. (11ab) Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.
Incline your ear, O LORD; answer me,
for I am afflicted and poor.
Keep my life, for I am devoted to you;
save your servant who trusts in you.
You are my God.
R. Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.
Have mercy on me, O Lord,
for to you I call all the day.
Gladden the soul of your servant,
for to you, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
R. Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.
For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving,
abounding in kindness to all who call upon you.
Hearken, O LORD, to my prayer
and attend to the sound of my pleading.
R. Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth.

Verse Before the Gospel Ez 33:11

I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked man, says the Lord,
but rather in his conversion, that he may live.

Gospel Lk 5:27-32

Jesus saw a tax collector named Levi sitting at the customs post.
He said to him, "Follow me."
And leaving everything behind, he got up and followed him.
Then Levi gave a great banquet for him in his house,
and a large crowd of tax collectors
and others were at table with them.
The Pharisees and their scribes complained to his disciples, saying,
"Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?"
Jesus said to them in reply,
"Those who are healthy do not need a physician, but the sick do.
I have not come to call the righteous to repentance but sinners."


Meditation: Isaiah 58:9-14

Saint Frances of Rome, Religious (Optional Memorial)

The Lord will guide you always and give you plenty even on the parched land. (Isaiah 58:11)

Those who invest in stocks or corporations do so in order to make a certain percentage of money on top of what they first invested. In the financial world, this is known as an "ROI"—a Return on Investment.

This concept from the world of business and high finance can help us understand a key spiritual principle: God rewards us when we invest our time and effort in him. In today's first reading, the prophet Isaiah explains that those who spend time caring for the needy and honoring the Sabbath will be rewarded with a "spring whose water never fails" (58:11). That's like having an infinite return on investment!

But Isaiah isn't talking only about the time we invest in doing; he is also asking us to spend time resting, or keeping the Sabbath holy.

It's easy to think that Sunday is a good time to catch up on work and other projects. But God promises that if you take time to step back from your own endeavors on the Sabbath, he will renew you. If you can find a way to put aside your to-do list—even if it's just for a couple of hours—he will make up the difference in ways you might not expect. You'll discover the divine irony that doing less actually results in greater gains!

So what can you expect to happen if you set aside a portion of each Sunday this Lent to rest in the Lord? Perhaps by slowing down and relaxing, you'll find it easier to sense the Lord's presence. Maybe you'll discover that you have more time to sit down with your spouse or a child or friend, and learn more about what's on their heart. Then when you come to the end of the day, you might feel more grateful because you have been able to see more clearly the many ways God has blessed you.

Sharp investors are always on the lookout for a solid return, but they know there is always a risk involved in any transaction. And that's precisely where this analogy breaks down. There is no risk with the Lord. Anyone who invests in him—especially on his day of rest—is guaranteed to reap a wonderful return. That's how faithful God is!

"Lord, help me to honor the Sabbath this Lent by resting with you."

Psalm 86:1-6
Luke 5:27-32



A person who does not cultivate mortification will not be a man of prayer; if a person, a community, or a congregation loses the spirit of mortification, it loses the foundation of prayer. How necessary it is, then, to foster the habit of denying our whims for natural satisfaction and comfort. Without insistence on the practice of mortification, our natural appetite for satisfaction awakens and makes its demands.
—Fr. Gabriel of St. Mary Magdalen, O.C.D.
from The Way of Prayer: A Commentary on Saint Teresa's Way of Perfection


Food For The Poor (clickable)


"Then light shall rise for you in the darkness, and the gloom shall become for you like midday..." IF. There's that peculiar and pivoting word that is a decision. Most computer programs hinge on this. "If" then, on or off, yes or no.

If, the following is true, then the light shall come:
1.) If you remove from your midst oppression
2.) If you remove false accusation AND malicious speech
3.) If you bestow your bread on the hungry and satisfy the afflicted.

Think Justice. Think Holiness. Think Purity. The decision is ultimately yours, through the most awesome gift of free will to be His.


Let us pray: "Teach me your way, O Lord, that I may walk in your truth. For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in kindness to all who call upon you. Hearken, O LORD, to my prayer and attend to the sound of my pleading." There's a peculiar thing about teaching, it is by far most beneficial when it is hands on for both student and teacher. The abstract then becomes concrete. What is not of this world...comes into this world.


In comes our Lord in the Holy Gospel: " "Follow me."
That's all He said to Levi. Levi arose. Levi came to his feet and took the Lord's hand. "I will follow you". I will not ask any questions. When Blessed Mother Mary said yes, she didn't ask any further questions after she was told how she would conceive since she was a forever virgin consecrated to God. She said yes, I will the Father's will. She had already succumbed to His will before His will entered her life, her holy and precious life.

Watch what our Lord says next:
"Those who are healthy do not need a physician, but the sick do."
I have come to seek the lost. I have come for the 1 and left the 99.
"I have not come to call the righteous to repentance but sinners."
Where do saints come from? Do they just drop down from Heaven like angels? Nope. Saints come from homes like yours. And more often from faithful homes. You may be living next to a saint, at least the full potential is there. God sees this. We fail to see what He sees. God sees hope where we do not. When we give up after a lifetime of strife, He says "we are just getting started". His time is not our time. Our time is not even ours. Everything is His. So the Holy Church becomes Holy through God's grace. Church is a place for sinners to come, pray, repent, and believe and arise to God's call....Follow Me.

From Bishop Barron today:
"Friends, in today's Gospel Jesus tells Matthew, "Follow me." The call of Jesus addresses the mind, but it is meant to move through the mind into the body, and through the body into the whole of one's life, into the most practical of moves and decisions. "Follow me" has the sense of "apprentice to me" or "walk as I walk; think as I think; choose as I choose." Discipleship entails an entire reworking of the self according to the pattern and manner of Jesus.

Upon hearing the address of the Lord, the tax collector, we are told, "got up and followed him." The Greek word behind "got up" is anastas, the same word used to describe the resurrection (anastasis) of Jesus from the dead. Following Jesus is indeed a kind of resurrection from the dead, since it involves the transition from a lower form of life to a higher, from a preoccupation with the temporary goods of this world to an immersion in the goodness of God.

Those who have undergone a profound conversion tend to speak of their former life as a kind of illusion, something not entirely real. Thus Paul can say, "It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me"; Thomas Merton can speak of the "false self" that has given way to the authentic self; and, perhaps most movingly, the father of the prodigal son can say, "This son of mine was lost and has been found; he was dead and has come back to life."

Reflect: What do you need to "leave behind" to really follow Jesus? "


click to hear the bible verse


Random Bible Verse
2 Peter 3:8 (Listen)

8 But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.

Thank You Jesus

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