Monday, May 13, 2019

⛪ Whoever Enters Through...⛪

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The Little Visionaries

The Lord often surprises us in his choice of messenger. He uses the humble, the weak, the small. Often, he chooses children to bear his message of hope and peace. In Fatima, he chose Lucia dos Santos, age ten, and her younger cousins, brother and sister Francisco, nine, and Jacinta Marto, seven. These three simple yet faithful children, all from Catholic farm families, were good children from humble backgrounds. Yet, by God's grace, their lives—and ours—were forever changed. Because of heaven's designs on their hearts, they all experienced deeper conversions of heart

—from the book Our Lady of Fatima: 100 Years of Stories, Prayers and Devotions by Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle


†Saint Quote
"For there are three ways of performing an act of mercy: the merciful word, by forgiving and by comforting; secondly, if you can offer no word, then pray - that too is mercy; and thirdly, deeds of mercy."
— St. Faustina Kowalska

"We will never be free of trials and temptations as long as our earthly life lasts. For Job has said: 'Is not the life of human beings on earth a drudgery?' (Job 7:1). Therefore, we should always be on our guard against temptations, always praying that our enemy, the devil, 'who never sleeps but constantly looks for someone to devour.' (1 Pet 5:8), will not catch us off guard. No one in this world is so perfect or holy as not to have temptations sometimes. We can never be entirely free from them. Sometimes these temptations can be very severe and troublesome, but if we resist them, they will be very useful to us; for by experiencing them we are humbled, cleansed, and instructed. All the Saints endured tribulations and temptations and profited by them, while those who did not resist and overcome them fell away and were lost. There is no place so holy or remote where you will not meet with temptation, nor is there anyone completely free from it in this life; for in our body we bear the wounds of sin—the weakness of our human nature in which we are born."
— Thomas รก Kempis, p. 31
Imitation of Christ


On May 13, 1917, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to three shepherd children as they were grazing their sheep in Fatima, Portugal. Their names were Lucia, Francisco, and Jactina. She appeared "brighter than the sun, shedding rays of light clearer and stronger than a crystal goblet filled with the most sparkling water and pierced by the burning rays of the sun." The Virgin Mary identified herself as Our Lady of the Rosary. She taught the children to recite the rosary daily, to pray for the conversion of sinners, to make small sacrifices as penance in reparation for sin, and to honor her Immaculate Heart. She also prophesied about the World Wars, showed the children a frightening vision of hell, warned of the spread of ideological errors from Russia, and asked that the Holy Father solemnly consecrate Russia to her Immaculate Heart in union with the world's bishops. Our Lady appeared at Fatima on the 13th day of the month from May to October of that year. The final apparition was the well-documented celestial phenomena of the "Miracle of the Sun" witnessed by tens of thousands of people, believers and unbelievers alike. After investigation, the apparition at Fatima was declared worthy of belief by the Catholic Church. The feast of Our Lady of Fatima is May 13th.

"The good person out of the good treasure of the heart produces good, and the evil person out of evil treasure produces evil; for it is out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks."
Luke 6:45


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Our Lady of Fatima

Between May 13 and October 13, 1917, three Portuguese children–Francisco and Jacinta Marto and their cousin Lucia dos Santos–received apparitions of Our Lady at Cova da Iria near Fatima, a city 110 miles north of Lisbon. Mary asked the children to pray the rosary for world peace, for the end of World War I, for sinners, and for the conversion of Russia.

Mary gave the children three secrets. Following the deaths of Francisco and Jacinta in 1919 and 1920 respectively, Lucia revealed the first secret in 1927. It concerned devotion to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The second secret was a vision of hell. When Lucia grew up she became a Carmelite nun and died in 2005 at the age of 97.

Pope John Paul II directed the Holy See's Secretary of State to reveal the third secret in 2000; it spoke of a "bishop in white" who was shot by a group of soldiers who fired bullets and arrows into him. Many people linked this vision to the assassination attempt against Pope John Paul II in St. Peter's Square on May 13, 1981.

The feast of Our Lady of Fatima was approved by the local bishop in 1930; it was added to the Church's worldwide calendar in 2002.

The message of Fatima is simple: Pray. Unfortunately, some people—not Sister Lucia—have distorted these revelations, making them into an apocalyptic event for which they are now the only reliable interpreters. They have, for example, claimed that Mary's request that the world be consecrated to her has been ignored. Sister Lucia agreed that Pope John Paul II's public consecration in St. Peter's Square on March 25, 1984, fulfilled Mary's request. The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith prepared a June 26, 2000, document explaining the "third secret."

Mary is perfectly honored when people generously imitate her response "Let it be done to me as you say" (Luke 1:38). Mary can never be seen as a rival to Jesus or to the Church's teaching authority, as exercised by the college of bishops united with the bishop of Rome.


Monday of the Fourth Week of Easter

Reading 1 Acts 11:1-18

The Apostles and the brothers who were in Judea
heard that the Gentiles too had accepted the word of God.
So when Peter went up to Jerusalem
the circumcised believers confronted him, saying,
'You entered the house of uncircumcised people and ate with them."
Peter began and explained it to them step by step, saying,
"I was at prayer in the city of Joppa
when in a trance I had a vision,
something resembling a large sheet coming down,
lowered from the sky by its four corners, and it came to me.
Looking intently into it,
I observed and saw the four-legged animals of the earth,
the wild beasts, the reptiles, and the birds of the sky.
I also heard a voice say to me, 'Get up, Peter. Slaughter and eat.'
But I said, 'Certainly not, sir,
because nothing profane or unclean has ever entered my mouth.'
But a second time a voice from heaven answered,
'What God has made clean, you are not to call profane.'
This happened three times,
and then everything was drawn up again into the sky.
Just then three men appeared at the house where we were,
who had been sent to me from Caesarea.
The Spirit told me to accompany them without discriminating.
These six brothers also went with me,
and we entered the man's house.
He related to us how he had seen the angel standing in his house, saying,
'Send someone to Joppa and summon Simon, who is called Peter,
who will speak words to you
by which you and all your household will be saved.'
As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them
as it had upon us at the beginning,
and I remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said,
'John baptized with water
but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.'
If then God gave them the same gift he gave to us
when we came to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ,
who was I to be able to hinder God?"
When they heard this,
they stopped objecting and glorified God, saying,
"God has then granted life-giving repentance to the Gentiles too."

Responsorial Psalm Ps 42:2-3; 43:3, 4

R.(see 3a) Athirst is my soul for the living God.
R. Alleluia.
As the hind longs for the running waters,
so my soul longs for you, O God.
Athirst is my soul for God, the living God.
When shall I go and behold the face of God?
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
R. Alleluia.
Send forth your light and your fidelity;
they shall lead me on
And bring me to your holy mountain,
to your dwelling-place.
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
R. Alleluia.
Then will I go in to the altar of God,
the God of my gladness and joy;
Then will I give you thanks upon the harp,
O God, my God!
R. Athirst is my soul for the living God.
R. Alleluia.

Alleluia Jn 10:14

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the good shepherd, says the Lord;
I know my sheep, and mine know me.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Jn 10:1-10

Jesus said:
"Amen, amen, I say to you,
whoever does not enter a sheepfold through the gate
but climbs over elsewhere is a thief and a robber.
But whoever enters through the gate is the shepherd of the sheep.
The gatekeeper opens it for him, and the sheep hear his voice,
as he calls his own sheep by name and leads them out.
When he has driven out all his own,
he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him,
because they recognize his voice.
But they will not follow a stranger;
they will run away from him,
because they do not recognize the voice of strangers."
Although Jesus used this figure of speech,
they did not realize what he was trying to tell them.

So Jesus said again, "Amen, amen, I say to you,
I am the gate for the sheep.
All who came before me are thieves and robbers,
but the sheep did not listen to them.
I am the gate.
Whoever enters through me will be saved,
and will come in and go out and find pasture.
A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy;
I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly."


Catholic Meditations
Meditation: John 10:1-10

Our Lady of Fatima (Optional Memorial)

. . . so that they might have life . . . more abundantly. (John 10:10)

"But I already have life," you might argue. True, and yet there is more. With Jesus there is always more. Whatever degree of "life" you experience today, there's more waiting for you. Thoughts and temptations may try to convince you otherwise, but Jesus is clear. He came to this earth, in fact, so that you would experience rich, overflowing life. Rich, in grace and gifts from God your Father; overflowing, in God's love that fills your heart and spills out to people around you.

This abundant life is already yours through the Spirit you received in Baptism, so why not experience it? Here are a few ways you can discover it.

You can know this abundant life in your thoughts. You don't have to be a slave to negative or critical thoughts. Jesus came so that you might think the best of yourself and other people, even those who have hurt you. Perhaps it means praying, "Father, forgive" hundreds of times a day. Or "Holy Spirit, help me know how you think" repeatedly. It might mean trying to focus your mind on God's goodness, not about who has hurt you, or on what God has promised you rather than any troubles that might happen.

You can know abundant life in your words too. Your words can influence the atmosphere around you; they can heal, comfort, encourage, and impart wisdom. Try telling yourself, "My prayers are powerful" or "Jesus lives in me." A simple statement such as "What a good daughter you are" might encourage someone caring for an ailing parent. Words like these, words of grace and truth, pleasant and insightful, can flow out of your mouth as Jesus' love fills your heart. And of course, there's much grace in knowing when to keep quiet.

Jesus also came so that your actions might flow out of his abundance. The smallest actions—taking soup to a sick friend or mowing a neighbor's lawn—bear fruit, even if you never see it. When you take a moment to comfort someone, you are bringing Christ, and his abundant life, to them. When you spend a few minutes in prayer before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament, you are receiving even more of that life so that you can keep sharing it with other people.

Jesus always has more to give you!

"Thank you, Lord, for giving me abundant life."

Psalm 42:2-3; 43:3-4



Entertainment and consumption have practically become the point of life in our modern culture. Without time for serious thought processes, we are losing the ability to think deeply. We don't even have time to wonder, 'What is the meaning of it all?' Do we possess our possessions, or do they possess us? Do we consume pleasures and entertainment, or do they consume us?
—Jeanette Flood
from Eight Ways of Loving God


"God has then granted life-giving repentance to the Gentiles too."
The Lord is not stingy, at all. He is not for a reserved clique. For a time He had the Jews follow His law, it took some thousands of years to learn to rely on Him. But something happened to the people He called. Leadership became twisted. The law became more than man. So the Son of Man became the law itself. Humility would be the new law. Pure as its form was from the beginning. He simply came to cleanse, not just one...but all. So that we may have life more abundant.

We pray today: "Send forth your light and your fidelity; they shall lead me on
And bring me to your holy mountain, to your dwelling-place. Athirst is my soul for the living God." The light shows the way, and the wrong way. It is not to judge to show the way. It is to show simply, the choice of life offered. And life is a thousand times more in Heaven than it is here. They say life in the hereafter is for real, and everything here is not so much felt as it is there. The pains, the smells, the intuition. Thoughts are revealed just by being thought. It is not the same as here, it is so much more...


In comes our Lord to show the light and says today of us sheep "...he walks ahead of them, and the sheep follow him, because they recognize his voice." So often people are called, but they do not reply. They do not walk His way because they do not recognize the voice. I'd like to say I do, but I think I too become hard of hearing. It is one thing though, to not recognize His will, and another to simply not recognize His voice. His will is for the greater good. His voice is the Holy Spirit in action, daily upon our lives. I told my 9th graders to watch for confirmation in our life. I gave an example of how I say things and then are confirmed in the bible explanation videos or things that were said. Watch for confirmation. It is the voice of God speaking. Be on guard for His will is clearly revealed in this way.

Our Lord said 4 final things today:
"Whoever enters through me will be saved", so how do we enter through Jesus? Enter His life. Enter His Sacraments. Enter through the blood and water, baptism and confirmation. Be Holy as He is Holy.

"and will come in and go out and find pasture." And life will be abundantly offered, greener pastures? No, much more pasture, a world eye has not seen. If you think the imagination is crazy, there is way more than is imaginable. God is amazing.

"A thief comes only to steal and slaughter and destroy". In our utilitarian world, people use each other. For the wrong. Desire for the wrong. And the ends and the means are wrong. Just look at abortion and euthanasia. Just look at how people use each other, like dictators, "my way or the highway". No my friend, we are more than that, we must follow the light of humility.

"I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly." What happens if you seek holiness and purity and become a more prayerful person, full of mercy? You become a more abundant food for the world. You become a light for plants to grow in. Suddenly, it is not so much abundance for yourself as it is for others. Strange right? But your soul wouldn't have it any other way...because it is no longer about you....


hear it read


Random Bible Verse1
Hebrews 13:15 (Listen)

15 Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of lips that acknowledge his name.

Thank You Jesus

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