Saturday, April 13, 2019

⛪From That Day On ⛪

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Love Frees Us

Selfishness leads nowhere and love frees. Those who are able to live their lives as a gift to give others will never be alone and will never experience the drama of the isolated conscience. Jesus says something remarkable to us: "Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." Love always takes this path: to give one's life.

—from the book The Hope of Lent: Daily Reflections from Pope Francis by Diane M. Houdek


clickable: The Following is from MorningOffering

†Saint Quote

"You must make a sound and firm resolution to submit yourselves totally to His will and, with a lively and steadfast faith, to receive from Him what you have to do for love of Him. And in this (whatever may happen) to persevere with constancy to the very end."
— St. Angela Merici

"I worry some of you still have not really met Jesus—one to one—you and Jesus alone. We may spend time in the chapel—but have you seen with the eyes of your soul how He looks at you with love? Do you really know the living Jesus—not from books but from being with Him in your heart? Have you heard the loving words He speaks to you? Ask for the grace; He is longing to give it. Until you can hear Jesus in the silence of your own heart, you will not be able to hear Him saying 'I Thirst' in the hearts of the poor. Never give up this daily intimate contact with Jesus as the real living person—not just the idea."
— Saint Mother Teresa, p.129-30
Manual for Eucharistic Adoration

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your might. Keep these words that I am commanding you today in your heart. Recite them to your children and talk about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise. Bind them as a sign on your hand, fix them as an emblem on your forehead, and write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates."
Deuteronomy 6:5-9


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Bl. Margaret of Castello (1287–1320) was born to noble Italian parents who were awaiting the birth of the child of their dreams. Instead, they bore a daughter who was blind, dwarfed, lame, and hunchbacked. Margaret's parents were horrified by the physical appearance of their newborn child, so they hid her and kept her existence secret. A servant had her baptized and named her Margaret, meaning, "Pearl." When she was six years of age she was nearly discovered, so that her father confined her to a cell inside the wall of a church with her necessities given through a window. The parish priest took it upon himself to educate Margaret. She lived in this way until age sixteen, when her parents took her on pilgrimage to a shrine famous for miraculous healings. There they prayed earnestly for their daughter to be cured of her deformities, which they loathed. When no cure came, her parents abandoned her in the streets and returned home, never to see her again. Margaret begged for food and was helped by the town's poor who took turns sheltering her in their homes. She became a Dominican Tertiary and took up the work of serving the sick, dying, and imprisoned. Margaret was known for her great joy, sanctity, and profound mystical experiences. She died at the age of 33, and hundreds of miracles were credited to her intercession both before and after her death. Her body is incorrupt. She is the patron against poverty, and of the disabled, handicapped, and unwanted. Her feast day is April 13th.


Saturday of the Fifth Week of Lent

Reading 1 Ez 37:21-28

Thus says the Lord GOD:
I will take the children of Israel from among the nations
to which they have come,
and gather them from all sides to bring them back to their land.
I will make them one nation upon the land,
in the mountains of Israel,
and there shall be one prince for them all.
Never again shall they be two nations,
and never again shall they be divided into two kingdoms.

No longer shall they defile themselves with their idols,
their abominations, and all their transgressions.
I will deliver them from all their sins of apostasy,
and cleanse them so that they may be my people
and I may be their God.
My servant David shall be prince over them,
and there shall be one shepherd for them all;
they shall live by my statutes and carefully observe my decrees.
They shall live on the land that I gave to my servant Jacob,
the land where their fathers lived;
they shall live on it forever,
they, and their children, and their children's children,
with my servant David their prince forever.
I will make with them a covenant of peace;
it shall be an everlasting covenant with them,
and I will multiply them, and put my sanctuary among them forever.
My dwelling shall be with them;
I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Thus the nations shall know that it is I, the LORD,
who make Israel holy,
when my sanctuary shall be set up among them forever.

Responsorial Psalm Jeremiah 31:10, 11-12abcd, 13

R. (see 10d) The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
Hear the word of the LORD, O nations,
proclaim it on distant isles, and say:
He who scattered Israel, now gathers them together,
he guards them as a shepherd his flock.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
The LORD shall ransom Jacob,
he shall redeem him from the hand of his conqueror.
Shouting, they shall mount the heights of Zion,
they shall come streaming to the LORD's blessings:
The grain, the wine, and the oil,
the sheep and the oxen.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.
Then the virgins shall make merry and dance,
and young men and old as well.
I will turn their mourning into joy,
I will console and gladden them after their sorrows.
R. The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.

Verse Before the Gospel Ez 18:31

Cast away from you all the crimes you have committed, says the LORD,
and make for yourselves a new heart and a new spirit.

Gospel Jn 11:45-56

Many of the Jews who had come to Mary
and seen what Jesus had done began to believe in him.
But some of them went to the Pharisees
and told them what Jesus had done.
So the chief priests and the Pharisees
convened the Sanhedrin and said,
"What are we going to do?
This man is performing many signs.
If we leave him alone, all will believe in him,
and the Romans will come
and take away both our land and our nation."
But one of them, Caiaphas,
who was high priest that year, said to them,
"You know nothing,
nor do you consider that it is better for you
that one man should die instead of the people,
so that the whole nation may not perish."
He did not say this on his own,
but since he was high priest for that year,
he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation,
and not only for the nation,
but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God.
So from that day on they planned to kill him.

So Jesus no longer walked about in public among the Jews,
but he left for the region near the desert,
to a town called Ephraim,
and there he remained with his disciples.

Now the Passover of the Jews was near,
and many went up from the country to Jerusalem
before Passover to purify themselves.
They looked for Jesus and said to one another
as they were in the temple area, "What do you think?
That he will not come to the feast?"


Meditation: Ezekiel 37:21-28

Saint Martin I, Pope and Martyr (Optional Memorial)

My dwelling shall be with them. (Ezekiel 37:27)

We all know what it's like to make room in our homes for a new arrival, whether a new baby, a child returning from college, or an ailing parent. We rearrange furniture, do some extra cleaning, and maybe redecorate—usually with some anxiety about the coming change in our lives.

In today's first reading, Ezekiel is speaking of God's plan to bring Israel back from exile. God's glorious presence will return to the Temple, and he will live with his people. Do you think they were all ready for him to come back? From the sound of it, probably not. Fortunately, however, God promises to help with the rearranging, cleaning, and even rebuilding. He promises to be with them to restore them and redeem them and cleanse them from their sins. He will even make his home with them.

Doesn't this sound remarkably similar to Jesus' promise of the Holy Spirit, who "remains with you, and will be in you" (John 14:17)? It should! After all, this is the same Holy Spirit who spoke through Ezekiel. The same Holy Spirit who restored Israel is living in and among us. Of course, he works in and through the Church. But he is also at work in your heart. Cleansing? Yes. Restoring? Yes. Redeeming? Yes. Rearranging? Yes!

So ask yourself what he is working on right now. He might be helping you rebuild a broken relationship. Or helping you open your heart more to his grace. He might be shining his light on some area of darkness in your heart that needs to be dealt with. Or comforting you and encouraging you through a difficult period.

You are a temple of the Holy Spirit. Don't forget that, especially when you struggle with discouragement or frustration. If condemning thoughts are swirling around your mind right now, cling to that truth. Take a moment or two to quiet your heart, and turn to the Holy Spirit. Make room for him today. Ask him to help you hear his voice of encouragement and inspiration. As you turn to him and prepare your heart, notice all the ways he gives you his peace and his wisdom.

"Holy Spirit, I welcome you into my heart. Come and restore me, Lord!"

(Psalm) Jeremiah 31:10-13
John 11:45-56



Now is the time to go to confession. Get rid of your sins. When the priest raises his hand in absolution over you, the blood of Christ is dripping from his fingers.
—Archbishop Fulton Sheen
from A Voice from Calvary



from Bishop Barron Today:
Friends, in today's Gospel, the Pharisees plot to kill Jesus because he raised Lazarus. We see here a particular form of opposition—namely, scapegoating. René Girard identified the scapegoating mechanism as basic to the maintenance of order in most human communities. When tensions arise among people due to competitive desire, scapegoats—usually outsiders—are automatically singled out, and upon them is cast the collective anxiety of the group.

The leaders of the nation are seeking to isolate and eliminate Jesus because they are anxious to soothe tensions among the people. The author of John's Gospel stresses this dimension when he puts in the mouth of Caiaphas the words: "You do not understand that it is better for you to have one man die for the people than to have the whole nation destroyed."

But, in Jesus, the true God will undermine this officially sanctioned scapegoating by becoming the scapegoat himself.

Reflect: Jesus willingly takes on the role of scapegoat, but for a different reason. How did he fulfill Caiaphas' declaration that "it is better for you to have one man die for the people"?


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Thank You Jesus

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