Tuesday, February 25, 2020

⛪ . . What Were You Arguing . .⛪

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Lent Is about Being Faithful

A lot can happen in forty days and forty nights. More useful things will happen if we enter into this period of sweet discipline with open hearts and minds, with conscious attention. It's not about succeeding, however, but it's about simply being faithful. That's when the most interesting, enlivening things happen. It is then that our sense of God is opened, transforming everything.

—from the book Sensing God: Learning to Meditate during Lent by Laurence Freeman, OSB


Saint Quote

"Who except God can give you peace? Has the world ever been able to satisfy the heart?"
— St. Gerard Majella

"This is the difference between a journey on earth, and that which leads to Heaven. For in the former, not only may we stop without fear of going backward, but rest is necessary that we may sustain our strength to the journey's end; however, in the latter journey which leads to perfection, our growth in strength is proportionate to our advance, inasmuch as the inferior appetites which throw all possible obstacles in our path to Heaven, grow gradually weaker while our good inclinations acquire new strength. Thus as we advance in piety, our early difficulties fade into the background, and a certain delight, with which God sweetens the bitterness of this life, increases in our souls. Going cheerfully on from virtue to virtue, we finally reach the summit of the mountain."
— Dom Lorenzo Scupoli, pp. 117-18
The Spiritual Combat


Veneration of the Holy Face of Jesus has its beginning during Christ's Passion, making it one of the oldest devotions in the Christian tradition. St. Veronica, as a sign of her love and compassion, offered Our Savior a veil to wipe the blood and sweat from his face as he carried his cross on the way to his crucifixion. In reward for her charity and compassion, Jesus left an impression of his Holy Face upon the veil. This meeting of Jesus and St. Veronica is forever memorialized in the Stations of the Cross. According to tradition, St. Veronica later entrusted the veil to St. Clement, a disciple of St. Peter who became the third Bishop of Rome. For the next three centuries the Holy Veil was kept in the Roman catacombs during the early persecutions of the Church. Veronica's Veil was later moved to the Basilica of St. Peter in Rome where it remains today. It is displayed annually from the relic niche above her statue in St. Peter's Basilica on the fifth Sunday of Lent. Shrove Tuesday (the day prior to Ash Wednesday) is the traditional feast day of the Holy Face of Jesus.

"Thus says God, the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people upon it and spirit to those who walk in it: I am the Lord, I have called you in righteousness, I have taken you by the hand and kept you; I have given you as a covenant to the people, a light to the nations, to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness."
Isaiah 42:5-7

St. Walburga (710-777 A.D.) was born near Devonshire, England, the daughter of St. Richard the Pilgrim (a Saxon king) and the sister of Sts. Willibald and Winebald. When she was eleven her father and brothers went on pilgrimage to the Holy Land, while her father placed her in a convent famous for its holiness. She was well educated according to her rank, became a nun, and lived there for twenty-six years. Her uncle, St. Boniface, then brought her to what is now Germany to help him evangelize that country and establish the Church there. In this missionary activity she joined her brothers who were also laboring for the faith in that country, one as an abbot, the other as a bishop. Because of her education she was able to document the travels of her brother in the Holy Land, and for this work she became the first female author of England and Germany. She was known as a miracle worker and healer both in her life and after her death. St. Walburga's relics have the miraculous property of exuding oil to which many cures have been ascribed through the centuries. St. Walburga is the patron saint of sailors, mariners, and farmers, and against hydrophobia, famine, coughs, rabies, plague, and storms. St. Walburga's feast day is February 25th.


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Bl. Thomas Maria Fusco (1831-1891) was born to a noble and pious family in Italy, the seventh of eight children. He was orphaned at an early age and raised by his uncle, a priest, who oversaw his education. He had a deep love for the faith, especially to the Passion of Christ and Our Lady of Sorrows. He became a priest at the age of 24 and opened a school in his own home. He later became an itinerant missionary throughout southern Italy. After traveling for a number of years he opened another school, this time to train priests on how to be good confessors. He also founded the Priestly Society of the Catholic Apostolate to support the missions, which gained papal approval. During his work with the poor he discerned a call to start a new religious order of sisters, the Daughters of Charity of the Most Precious Blood, to minister to orphaned children. In addition to all of this, Fusco was also a parish priest, a confessor to a group of cloistered nuns, and a spiritual father to a lay group at the nearby Shrine of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. He died of liver disease at the age of 59. He was beatified by Pope St. John Paul II in 2001. His feast day is February 24.


Blessed Sebastian of Aparicio

Sebastian's roads and bridges connected many distant places. His final bridge-building was to help men and women recognize their God-given dignity and destiny.

Sebastian's parents were Spanish peasants. At the age of 31, he sailed to Mexico, where he began working in the fields. Eventually he built roads to facilitate agricultural trading and other commerce. His 466-mile road from Mexico City to Zacatecas took 10 years to build and required careful negotiations with the indigenous peoples along the way.

In time Sebastian was a wealthy farmer and rancher. At the age of 60, he entered a virginal marriage. His wife's motivation may have been a large inheritance; his was to provide a respectable life for a girl without even a modest marriage dowry. When his first wife died, he entered another virginal marriage for the same reason; his second wife also died young.

At the age of 72, Sebastian distributed his goods among the poor and entered the Franciscans as a brother. Assigned to the large (100-member) friary at Puebla de los Angeles south of Mexico City, Sebastian went out collecting alms for the friars for the next 25 years. His charity to all earned him the nickname "Angel of Mexico."

Sebastian was beatified in 1787 and is known as a patron of travelers.

According to the Rule of Saint Francis, the friars were to work for their daily bread. Sometimes, however, their work would not provide for their needs; for example, working with people suffering from leprosy brought little or no pay. In cases such as these, the friars were allowed to beg, always keeping in mind the admonition of Francis to let their good example commend them to the people. The life of the prayerful Sebastian drew many closer to God.
Blessed Sebastian of Aparicio is the Patron Saint of:



Tuesday of the Seventh Week of Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 342
Reading 1

Jas 4:1-10

Where do the wars and where do the conflicts among you come from?
Is it not from your passions that make war within your members?
You covet but do not possess.
You kill and envy but you cannot obtain;
you fight and wage war.
You do not possess because you do not ask.
You ask but do not receive, because you ask wrongly,
to spend it on your passions.
Do you not know that to be a lover of the world means enmity with God?
Therefore, whoever wants to be a lover of the world

makes himself an enemy of God.
Or do you suppose that the Scripture speaks without meaning when it says,
The spirit that he has made to dwell in us tends toward jealousy?
But he bestows a greater grace; therefore, it says:
God resists the proud,
but gives grace to the humble.

So submit yourselves to God.
Resist the Devil, and he will flee from you.
Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you.
Cleanse your hands, you sinners,
and purify your hearts, you of two minds.
Begin to lament, to mourn, to weep.
Let your laughter be turned into mourning
and your joy into dejection.
Humble yourselves before the Lord
and he will exalt you.

Responsorial Psalm

55:7-8, 9-10a, 10b-11a, 23

R. (23a) Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you.
And I say, "Had I but wings like a dove,
I would fly away and be at rest.
Far away I would flee;
I would lodge in the wilderness."
R. Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you.
"I would wait for him who saves me
from the violent storm and the tempest."
Engulf them, O Lord; divide their counsels.
R. Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you.
In the city I see violence and strife,
day and night they prowl about upon its walls.
R. Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you.
Cast your care upon the LORD,
and he will support you;
never will he permit the just man to be disturbed.
R. Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you.


Gal 6:14

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
May I never boast except in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ,
through which the world has been crucified to me and I to the world.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Mk 9:30-3

Jesus and his disciples left from there and began a journey through Galilee,
but he did not wish anyone to know about it.
He was teaching his disciples and telling them,
"The Son of Man is to be handed over to men
and they will kill him,
and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise."
But they did not understand the saying,
and they were afraid to question him.

They came to Capernaum and, once inside the house,
he began to ask them,
"What were you arguing about on the way?"
But they remained silent.
For they had been discussing among themselves on the way
who was the greatest.
Then he sat down, called the Twelve, and said to them,
"If anyone wishes to be first,

he shall be the last of all and the servant of all."
Taking a child, he placed it in their midst,

and putting his arms around it, he said to them,
"Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me;
and whoever receives me,
receives not me but the One who sent me."


Catholic Meditations
Meditation: James 4:1-10

7th Week in Ordinary Time

God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. (James 4:6)

Some years ago, a parish priest and one of his deacons had a heated and open disagreement in front of many members of their parish. They eventually worked out their differences, and after fully reconciling, they decided to stand up in front of the congregation and explain that they had forgiven each other. They also asked everyone to forgive them for their poor example and for disrupting the unity of their church. When a visitor witnessed this unusual reconciliation, she was so moved by it that she decided to come to that same church again. She kept coming, and eventually, she joined the parish and decided to become involved. Forgiveness is a powerful force for good!

It took a lot of humility for the pastor and deacon not only to reconcile but to do so publicly. But as James says in today's first reading, "God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble" (4:6). These two men became a living witness to God's grace in action. They showed their fellow parishioners that we all need God's grace to fight our natural inclination toward pride and stubbornness. They showed what happens when we ask for God's grace to approach someone in humility and ask that person to forgive us.

But what if we have already asked forgiveness of someone and it didn't go well? Do we just walk away? Our pride may tell us we've done all we could. But if we ask God for the grace to seek reconciliation again, he might surprise us. He might help us find a more creative way to approach the person. Or perhaps we discover a blind spot in our own thinking that is an obstacle to reconciliation. Even if all we do is pray more earnestly for the other person involved, we may find our hearts softened toward them.

Is there someone you need to reconcile with, especially someone you've approached before? Tomorrow is Ash Wednesday. As part of your Lenten journey, ask God to prepare your heart to reconcile with that person. No doubt you'll be amazed at what God will do with this prayer!

"Jesus, as Lent draws near, grant me the grace I need to seek reconciliation and healing in this relationship."

Psalm 55:7-11, 23
Mark 9:30-37



Christians gathered together for worship may find themselves praising God like the blind men exploring the elephant. One person is touched by God's tenderness, another by His majesty, another by His beauty, still another by His simplicity. In our shared, varied worship, we are a little like a living psalmody, sounding the range of loves we creatures offer in response to the one, perfect love our Creator offers us.
—Leah Libresco
from Building the Benedict Option


"God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble."
I ask, why don't you confess your sins to your priest? If you are like me, pretty active in the parish, you know your priest, your Father. But to confess to Him what I've done!? My thoughts!? My deviant temptations? Does he really need to know all that? If God knows everything, why does my priest need to know...
Now let's talk about pride. Now let's explain why we can't go to our priest. We are afraid. We are afraid of what "he will think about me". Right? We are afraid his mentality and our image will change if he knows my deepest and nastiest secrets. Now pride comes into play.

But isn't it an act of humility to come clean? To be sincere? Most priests are impressed with a lay person's humility, and this may prompt them to be humble themselves, or so we would hope humility works in such a way. Now true humility begins to show up.


Today we pray: "Throw your cares on the Lord, and he will support you. Cast your care upon the LORD, and he will support you; never will he permit the just man to be disturbed." Cast your cares on Him. Cast your worries and your loves on Him. I prayed a unique Novena this year, and it was called the Surrender Novena. 9 Days of having to cast my cares upon the Lord. And you know what? It WORKED! I learned a valuable lesson about trusting and letting go.


Two things our Lord said today: "The Son of Man is to be handed over to men and they will kill him,
and three days after his death the Son of Man will rise." He spoke in the third person perspective. He referred to Himself as The Son of Man. And then He said: "If anyone wishes to be first, he shall be the last of all and the servant of all." And they say that the crucified Christ is an image of the suffering servant. And, the Lamb of God, the Paschal Mystery. He went first, like a slave. He mounted the torture device. He said...yes. Nobody else that humble.

""Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me."
The image of a child comes to play in all this talk about torture and humility. Why? Why does God talk about receiving a child in His name? Today, children are often neglected and rejected and even put to death. That pride still taking place. They say if you are for abortion to any degree, you must accept death to the being up to birth, and some lawmakers say, "leave the child to die if the mother doesn't want it". And there they lay on the table, rejected. But Jesus says to receive a child in His name. Accept the so called "burden". Something spectacular happens. You will cease to exist, but the child will persist. And that child carries you on. This is the story of Genesis. This is the story about God and wo-man, that creation which is you and I.

God loves us, and Lent calls us to a greater love. I write with you with a pen of love. Accept a child in His name. We are all children of God. Humility is being asked of us all. Receive then....CHRIST

Lord, help us learn the proper steps to humility...a life of Heaven


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Random Bible verse from an online generator:
John 8:36
36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.


If one day you don't receive these, just visit my website, surely you'll find me there. God Bless You! Share the Word. Share this, share what is good

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