Tuesday, April 9, 2019

⛪Many Came to Believe ⛪

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A Redeeming God

Think of the Gospel story of Jesus and Lazarus. Jesus treats him exactly the same way that God, the Father, treats Jesus: Jesus is deeply and intimately loved by his Father and yet his Father doesn't rescue him from humiliation, pain, and death. In his lowest hour, when he is humiliated, suffering, and dying on the cross, Jesus is jeered by the crowd with the challenge: "If God is your father, let him rescue you!" But there's no rescue. Instead Jesus dies inside the humiliation and pain. God raises him up only after his death. This is one of the key revelations inside the cross: We have a redeeming, not a rescuing, God.

—from the book The Passion and the Cross by Ronald Rolheiser


clickable: The Following is from MorningOffering

†Saint Quote
"The Eucharist is the Sacrament of Love; It signifies Love, It produces love. The Eucharist is the consummation of the whole spiritual life."
— St. Thomas Aquinas

"We may have become careless in being faithful to our spiritual commitments such as attendance at daily Mass, our daily time of prayer, spiritual reading, and so on. Or we may have become careless in valuing the gifts God gives us, or in rejecting or dallying with temptation. Or we may have begun to allow distractions, entertainments, and engagement in worldly activities to deaden our hunger for God . . . Dryness experienced as a result of negligence, lukewarmness, and infidelity—and whatever stage of the downward spiral it may have led to—have only one solution: repentance. This dryness is self-induced; the solution to it is to return to fidelity in our spiritual practices."
— Ralph Martin, p.166
The Fulfillment of All Desire

O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! ... For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be the glory forever. Amen.
Romans 9:33,36


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Bl. Katarzyna Celestyna (Catherine Celestine) Faron (1913-1944) was born in Zabrzez, Poland. At the age of five she was orphaned and raised by pious, childless relatives. Desiring the religious life, she entered the Congregation of the Sisters Servants of Mary Immaculate in 1930. She served in the community as a kindergarten teacher and catechist. After the breakout of World War II she became the leader of her religious house, ran an orphanage, and helped the poor. She was eventually arrested by the Gestapo, charged with conspiracy against the Nazis, and sent to the Auschwitz concentration camp on the feast of Epiphany in 1943, where she was assigned to manual labor digging ditches. She praised God in all her suffering and resigned herself to following his will. Due to the poor conditions she developed typhoid fever and tuberculosis. Because she completed the nine First Fridays devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, she trusted that she wouldn't die without Holy Communion, as Our Lord promised. On December 8, 1943, the feast of the Immaculate Conception, she received Holy Communion as viaticum which was secretly brought to the camp by a prisoner priest. While on her deathbed she prayed intensely for various intentions on a rosary made of bread. According to witnesses she offered her sufferings for the conversion of a priest who had fallen away from the Church, who later did return to the true Faith. Bl. Katarzyn finally died from her illness on Easter morning. She is one of the 108 beatified Polish Catholic Martyrs killed during World War II by Nazi Germany. Her feast day is April 9th.


Tuesday of the Fifth Week of Lent

Reading 1 Nm 21:4-9

From Mount Hor the children of Israel set out on the Red Sea road,
to bypass the land of Edom.
But with their patience worn out by the journey,
the people complained against God and Moses,
"Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in this desert,
where there is no food or water?
We are disgusted with this wretched food!"

In punishment the LORD sent among the people saraph serpents,
which bit the people so that many of them died.
Then the people came to Moses and said,
"We have sinned in complaining against the LORD and you.
Pray the LORD to take the serpents away from us."
So Moses prayed for the people, and the LORD said to Moses,
"Make a saraph and mount it on a pole,
and whoever looks at it after being bitten will live."
Moses accordingly made a bronze serpent and mounted it on a pole,
and whenever anyone who had been bitten by a serpent
looked at the bronze serpent, he lived.

Responsorial Psalm Ps 102:2-3, 16-18, 19-21

R. (2) O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
O LORD, hear my prayer,
and let my cry come to you.
Hide not your face from me
in the day of my distress.
Incline your ear to me;

in the day when I call, answer me speedily.
R. O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
The nations shall revere your name, O LORD,
and all the kings of the earth your glory,
When the LORD has rebuilt Zion
and appeared in his glory;
When he has regarded the prayer of the destitute,
and not despised their prayer.
R. O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.
Let this be written for the generation to come,
and let his future creatures praise the LORD:
"The LORD looked down from his holy height,
from heaven he beheld the earth,
To hear the groaning of the prisoners,
to release those doomed to die."
R. O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you.

Verse Before the Gospel

The seed is the word of God, Christ is the sower;
all who come to him will live for ever.

Gospel Jn 8:21-30

Jesus said to the Pharisees:
"I am going away and you will look for me,
but you will die in your sin.
Where I am going you cannot come."
So the Jews said,
"He is not going to kill himself, is he,
because he said, 'Where I am going you cannot come'?"
He said to them, "You belong to what is below,
I belong to what is above.
You belong to this world,
but I do not belong to this world.
That is why I told you that you will die in your sins.
For if you do not believe that I AM,
you will die in your sins."
So they said to him, "Who are you?"
Jesus said to them, "What I told you from the beginning.
I have much to say about you in condemnation.
But the one who sent me is true,
and what I heard from him I tell the world."
They did not realize that he was speaking to them of the Father.
So Jesus said to them,
"When you lift up the Son of Man,
then you will realize that I AM,
and that I do nothing on my own,
but I say only what the Father taught me.
The one who sent me is with me.
He has not left me alone,
because I always do what is pleasing to him."
Because he spoke this way, many came to believe in him.


Meditation: John 8:21-30

5th Week of Lent

When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will realize that I am. (John 8:28)

When Moses lifted up the bronze serpent, the people who gazed on it saw two things. First, they got a graphic look at their own sins. Grumbling, blaming, and complaining are as deadly as serpents. They slither their way between people and interfere with God's ability to take care of them. Second, they got a look at God's mercy. Whoever looked at the bronze serpent was instantly healed.

In the same way, when we gaze at Jesus lifted up on the cross, we see ourselves and Jesus more clearly.

Looking at the cross, we can see ourselves as capable of wounding people by our indifference, our selfishness, and our pride. We see that we can be like Pilate as we wash our hands of responsibility for the needy. We are the soldiers mistreating the people we don't respect. We are the mob, easily swayed by the fad or feeling of the moment, rejecting anyone who seems out of step. We are the would-be followers running away at the first sign of trouble. We are the faithful friends, helpless and disconsolate, immobilized by fear. We see how our own actions have caused the pain that Jesus is experiencing as he hangs on the cross, suffering for our sins.

But that's not all. Gazing at the cross, we also see a God who became man because he loves us. We see Jesus looking at each of us with great tenderness and compassion. We hear him promising forgiveness and eternal life to anyone who turns to him in repentance. We see a Messiah who loves us unconditionally, who loves us enough to endure and conquer not only our sins but death itself.

Spend some time in front of a crucifix today, either at home or in church. Don't worry about whether you have anything to say to Jesus. Just kneel there, and gaze at him in wonder and gratitude. Have the courage to look at whatever he reveals about yourself, but don't stop there. Keep on gazing until you feel his love driving out your sin and bringing you into the presence of Jesus, your brother and Redeemer.

"Thank you, Lord, for loving me enough to be lifted up on the cross."

Numbers 21:4-9
Psalm 102:2-3, 16-21



For the sake of the world, for our own sakes, and for the sake of God, we desperately need, as individuals and as a Church, not to behave as if what we have in the way of spiritual or material goods is due to our own merit or a result of our own will or strength. Rather, it is the pure grace of God
—Ralph Martin
from Fulfillment of All Desire


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"...whoever looks at it after being bitten will live."

Look at what? Our sin? Our faults? Who likes to face our sins and our faults? Many rather hide them. But they hurt. They hurt us. Sin hurts. Faults hurt. The slightest of sin can begin to eat at you inside, depending on your consciousness. Only the light can illuminate the darkness. For that, we need Christ our Lord.

Let us pray: "O Lord, hear my prayer, and let my cry come to you. The nations shall revere your name, O LORD, and all the kings of the earth your glory,
When the LORD has rebuilt Zion and appeared in his glory; When he has regarded the prayer of the destitute, and not despised their prayer." Did Jesus rebuild Zion? Did He appear in His Glory? Or are we still awaiting the new Zion and His Glory? The Jews still wait. But we can say, yes, if God appears, his glory has appeared. Only, it was an appalling sight....just look at what we did to Him on the cross. People ask Catholics why we wear crucifixes. Some protestants don't like crucifixes, for various reasons. Some say we are keeping Him crucified. Some say He is no longer on the cross. Some just don't want to look at pain and suffering...that is why they choose death, rather than sin and suffering. But just because you close your eyes won't mean the sun will stop shining.


Our Lord appears before giving glory to God on the cross. And He said to us "... if you do not believe that I AM, you will die in your sins."
Moses had a serpent made of bronze put on a staff for all to see. And it was said that " whenever anyone who had been bitten by a serpent looked at the bronze serpent, he lived." How does a look heal? Can looks heal? Now lets look at the bronze crucifix.

20160831 091547

The church where I was baptized in Colorado was said to have been burned down and they pointed the finger to satanic groups and so forth. It was devastating. The church had to be rebuilt. And to tell you the truth, it is a beautiful little church. A parishioner built a crucifix, see the picture. The bronze body of our Lord hangs there, suspended in time and in eternity. There is light all around, before and after. But God remains. Does it bring healing to you? To know that Jesus, your Lord, your brother, your friend loves you so much He died for you? He is ultimately, your Father. Remember the out of body experience I had? My soul knew that was my Father, Our Father.

In exorcisms, a crucifix is present. Exorcists ask that you keep a blessed crucifix in your home, even in every room if possible. There is power in the cross, but only if there is a reason...Jesus. Jesus makes things powerful. Love is potent. It is a force to be reckoned with. When people looked at the horrible enemy, they got to face their fears. They got to see what they brought up on themselves. We bring things upon ourselves with our very own sins. That is basically all we can offer to God. But we are stingy even with our sins. Why? Are we afraid? What are we afraid of? Transformation? Holiness? Because God does not shame us...the devil does. When we look to a crucifix, we should not see shame, but healing, mercy, and salvation. What do you see on the cross? I see God with outstretched arms...Our Father. "No matter what....I Love You", He says. Love wins. Just read the Holy Scriptures that testify to the great I AM.

"You belong to what is below, I belong to what is above. You belong to this world, but I do not belong to this world." If the world loved Jesus, it wouldn't be the way it is...lifeless. The culture of death wants more deaths, only a few are loved. The unborn are not loved. The elderly and the sick are not loved. For them, they are given a doze of "I don't love you". A lethal injection. Are you like that? Before you are quick to answer, think of a person who has severely hurt you in your life. Can you look at them in the eye and say "I love you" ? And if you say yes, can you look at Jesus in the eye and honestly say "I love you"? And before you are quick to say yes...have an examination of your conscience. Before we look to Jesus on the cross for help. Before we take His body in the Eucharist. We must rightly put ourselves in our place. Healing was restoration. I will obey. I will not complain. I will not sin anymore. I will not be rebellious. I will not seek to be authoritative when it comes to Him who is our almighty creator.
So God uses the bad to turn into Good with His healing agent. The antibody is formed but needs the bad to make it work. Give Him your sins. Watch what He can do. He will make you confident and unafraid to be totally His. Not embarrassed anymore to say
Tell Him. And He will hear a heart that is true....


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AMAZING Random verse...

Random Bible Verse
1 John 4:7-8 (Listen)

7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Thank You Jesus

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