Tuesday, April 7, 2020

⛪ . .You Cannot Follow Me. . .⛪

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Jesus Can Teach Us about Grief

The last time Jesus goes up to Jerusalem, very shortly before being arrested and crucified, he bursts into tears when looking over the city of Jerusalem. Let us ask Jesus in this place to teach us about grief. How many times do we groan and cry, even if the tears are not real, for things that are not very significant in life! It seems that when some good things are taken away from us, or we fail to reach the goals we had set, it is the end of the world for us. It seems we are missing out on life, but often it does not involve anything essential. And yet we do not experience the same suffering when we see that communion with the Lord, for us or for others, is compromised. The word passion has two shades of meaning, both of which are good. Passion is certainly a kind of suffering, a sorrow, but passion is also an inner stirring that can lead us to something else. Jesus demonstrates to us here both aspects of this word: his passion of love for the Father and for the salvation of human beings leads him to undergo a passion of suffering. Our Christian life should imitate Jesus in this: to be so passionate about God and salvation that we accept the suffering of giving up our goals and projects and what we believe to be right in order to adhere to his will. Jesus taught us that in the Our Father: "May your will be done." Through his weeping, Jesus purifies our desires and helps us turn back to what is truly essential.

—from the book Encountering Jesus: A Holy Land E by Vincenzo Peroni


†Saint Quote
"At each step we can admire the grandeur, the power, the goodness of God. How bountifully He provides for all our wants—I would even say for our pleasures!"
— St. Théodore Guérin

O clement, O loving, O sweet Mother Mary, We, your children of every nation, Turn to you in this pandemic. Our troubles are numerous; our fears are great. Grant that we might deposit them at your feet, Take refuge in your Immaculate Heart, And obtain peace, healing, rescue, And timely help in all our needs. You are our Mother. Pray for us to your Son. Amen.

My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the most Blessed Sacrament. I love You above all things and I desire to receive You into my soul. Since I cannot now receive You sacramentally, come at least spiritually into my heart. I embrace You as if You were already there, and unite myself wholly to You. Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

"Do not look for the faults of your friend. Do not repeat the shortcomings of your neighbors in your talk. You are not the judge of creation. You do not have dominion over the earth. If you love righteousness, admonish your soul and yourself. Be the judge of your own sins, and chastise your own transgressions."
— St. Ephrem the Syrian
A Year with the Church Fathers


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Saint John Baptist de La Salle

(April 30, 1651 – April 7, 1719)
Complete dedication to what he saw as God's will for him dominated the life of John Baptist de La Salle. In 1950, Pope Pius XII named him patron of schoolteachers for his efforts in upgrading school instruction. As a young 17th-century Frenchman, John had everything going for him: scholarly bent, good looks, noble family background, money, refined upbringing. At the early age of 11, he received the tonsure and started preparation for the priesthood, to which he was ordained at 27. He seemed assured then of a life of dignified ease and a high position in the Church.

But God had other plans for John, which were gradually revealed to him in the next several years. During a chance meeting with Monsieur Adrien Nyel, he became interested in the creation of schools for poor boys in Rheims, where he was stationed. Though the work was extremely distasteful to him at first, he became more involved in working with the deprived youths.

Once convinced that this was his divinely appointed mission, John threw himself wholeheartedly into the work, left home and family, abandoned his position as canon at Rheims, gave away his fortune, and reduced himself to the level of the poor to whom he devoted his entire life.

The remainder of his life was closely entwined with the community of religious men he founded, the Brothers of the Christian School (also called Christian Brothers or De La Salle Brothers). This community grew rapidly and was successful in educating boys of poor families, using methods designed by John. It prepared teachers in the first training college for teachers and also set up homes and schools for young delinquents of wealthy families. The motivating element in all these endeavors was the desire to become a good Christian.

Yet even in his success, John did not escape experiencing many trials: heart-rending disappointment and defections among his disciples, bitter opposition from the secular schoolmasters who resented his new and fruitful methods, and persistent opposition from the Jansenists of his time, whose moral rigidity and pessimism about the human condition John resisted vehemently all his life.

Afflicted with asthma and rheumatism in his last years, he died at age 68 on Good Friday, and was canonized in 1900.

Complete dedication to one's calling by God, whatever it may be, is a rare quality. Jesus asks us to "love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength" (Mark 12:30b, emphasis added). Paul gives similar advice: "Whatever you do, do from the heart…" (Colossians 3:23).
Saint John Baptist de La Salle is the Patron Saint of:



Tuesday of Holy Week
Lectionary: 258
Reading 1

Is 49:1-6

Hear me, O islands,
listen, O distant peoples.
The LORD called me from birth,
from my mother's womb he gave me my name.
He made of me a sharp-edged sword
and concealed me in the shadow of his arm.
He made me a polished arrow,
in his quiver he hid me.
You are my servant, he said to me,
Israel, through whom I show my glory.

Though I thought I had toiled in vain,
and for nothing, uselessly, spent my strength,
Yet my reward is with the LORD,
my recompense is with my God.
For now the LORD has spoken
who formed me as his servant from the womb,
That Jacob may be brought back to him
and Israel gathered to him;
And I am made glorious in the sight of the LORD,
and my God is now my strength!
It is too little, he says, for you to be my servant,
to raise up the tribes of Jacob,
and restore the survivors of Israel;
I will make you a light to the nations,
that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.

Responsorial Psalm

71:1-2, 3-4a, 5ab-6ab, 15 and 17

R. (see 15ab) I will sing of your salvation.
In you, O LORD, I take refuge;
let me never be put to shame.
In your justice rescue me, and deliver me;
incline your ear to me, and save me.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
Be my rock of refuge,
a stronghold to give me safety,
for you are my rock and my fortress.
O my God, rescue me from the hand of the wicked.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
For you are my hope, O LORD;
my trust, O God, from my youth.
On you I depend from birth;
from my mother's womb you are my strength.
R. I will sing of your salvation.
My mouth shall declare your justice,
day by day your salvation.
O God, you have taught me from my youth,
and till the present I proclaim your wondrous deeds.
R. I will sing of your salvation.

Verse Before the Gospel

Hail to you, our King, obedient to the Father;
you were led to your crucifixion like a gentle lamb to the slaughter.


Jn 13:21-33, 36-38

Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified,
"Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me."
The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant.
One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved,
was reclining at Jesus' side.
So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant.
He leaned back against Jesus' chest and said to him,
"Master, who is it?"
Jesus answered,
"It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it."
So he dipped the morsel and took it and handed it to Judas,
son of Simon the Iscariot.
After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him.
So Jesus said to him, "What you are going to do, do quickly."
Now none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him.
Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him,
"Buy what we need for the feast,"
or to give something to the poor.
So Judas took the morsel and left at once. And it was night.

When he had left, Jesus said,
"Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him.
If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself,
and he will glorify him at once.
My children, I will be with you only a little while longer.
You will look for me, and as I told the Jews,
'Where I go you cannot come,' so now I say it to you."

Simon Peter said to him, "Master, where are you going?"
Jesus answered him,
"Where I am going, you cannot follow me now,
though you will follow later."
Peter said to him,
"Master, why can I not follow you now?
I will lay down my life for you."
Jesus answered, "Will you lay down your life for me?
Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow
before you deny me three times."


Today's Meditation: John 13:21-33, 36-38

Will you lay down your life for me? (John 13:38)

At some point, you may have watched a movie or television show that involved time travel, such as Back to the Future or Doctor Who. The plot often includes a hero who knows what's going to happen in the future and travels through time to avert some terrible calamity. It usually takes a lot of creativity to come up with a story like that because of course, time travel is impossible. Still, there is a real-life "hero" who knows our future and who is committed to helping us experience the best future possible: Jesus.

Just look at the Last Supper. Jesus knows that Judas is going to betray him and is destined for a tragic end (John 13:21-27; 17:12). He also knows that Peter will fail him as well but that Peter will repent and become even more zealous (13:36-38). But notice how Jesus treats these two men: he washes their feet and then shares his last meal with both of them. He wants to make sure that neither of them experiences rejection or condemnation from him, only love.

Jesus knows everything about our future too. He knows that we'll have some big successes and some big failures. But he never gives up on us. That can bring us great confidence and security because it shows that we don't have to figure everything out perfectly or do everything just right. Because Jesus sticks with us, there is always hope for us and for our loved ones. As the psalmist prays, "Behind and before you encircle me and rest your hand upon me. . . . My days were shaped, before one came to be" (139:5, 16).

The first Holy Week is not just something that happened long ago. Its effects extend to the present day and on into the future—a future that only Jesus knows. And through it all, he is still with you. His love and grace are still available for you. Perhaps you've been away from him for a long time. Or perhaps you feel the need to walk more closely with him. Whatever your past, whatever your future, wherever you are today, Jesus is there too. So reach out to him and accept his incredible mercy.

"Lord, thank you that you never, ever give up on me. Help me to never give up on you!"

Isaiah 49:1-6
Psalm 71:1-6, 15, 17



I shall spend every moment loving. One who loves does not notice her trials; or perhaps more accurately, she is able to love them. I shall do everything for Heaven, my true home. There I shall find my Mother in all the splendor of her glory. I shall delight with her in the joy of Jesus himself in perfect safety.
—St. Bernadette


"The LORD called me from birth, from my mother's womb he gave me my name."
From your mother's womb, you were decreed special. They say in Heaven, you will not be known by your earthly name, for God has already chosen your name. What will it be? Whence you find out, life will never be the same...ever. Wouldn't you like to know now though? What is the name Our Father chose for you? It's a surprise waiting to happen, but certain things must happen before.


We prayed today: "For you are my hope, O LORD; my trust, O God, from my youth.
On you I depend from birth; from my mother's womb you are my strength. I will sing of your salvation."
Once you were a child, and you learned to depend on someone. And you depended on them without you even asking, and they would provide. Think about your relationship now with Our Father. You've woken up and have you realized He gave you light and air so without you even asking? Life and prayer, means light and air. When you were a child, you'd ask for something you wanted. You wouldn't always get what you wanted. Sometimes you were even heart broken about it. I remember one time, our priest, Msgr. Frances Frey God rest his soul, he bought a little school bus to drive all the altar boys around. He came by my house, he was taking all the boys to a swimming trip. The altar boys were my friends. My parents told me they wouldn't let me go that day. Already they were hearing the negative news about priests. Father Frey arrived, opened the little door, and I stood there and had to tell him I couldn't go on this one. I think he saw my sad face, and he said ok, he respected my parents' decision and they all drove off. I don't know why I remember that story. I guess I always wondered where they went and how it went, all the fun they probably had. I do remember going with them for weeks on long trips across the country. We were his boys, his aim was to raise future priests. One of us almost made it to the priesthood, but today is in prison. Life has many twists and temptations.


Jesus was deeply troubled and testified,
"Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me."
And they looked to each other "not me is it?". Why? Why the doubt my child? Why? Why would you doubt yourself? Because you know you are susceptible to human frailty, aren't you? You know you have vulnerabilities, and you know you cannot trust yourself. This is where God comes in, to breach the gap.

Randomly opening the book "Imitation of Christ" it says to us on following Christ our model:
" NO ONE who follows me will ever walk in darkness (Jn 8:12). These words of our Lord counsel all to walk in His footsteps. If you want to see clearly and avoid blindness of heart, it is His virtues you must imitate. Make it your aim to meditate on the life of Jesus Christ. 2. Christ's teachings surpasses that of all the Saints. But to find this spiritual nourishment you must seek to have the Spirit of Christ. It is because we lack this Spirit that so often we listen to the Gospel without really hearing it. Those who fully understand Christ's words must labor to make their lives conform to His. "
We heard " Judas took the morsel and left at once. And it was night." It was dark. He went into the dark with the morsel...that morsel of Christ, and he'd betray Christ. Think Eucharist. Think of how we receive Him and go into darkness. How can this happen? It happens to a soul that is not properly disposed to God's abundant grace. Think confessions. Think repentance. Think of what is weighing on your soul right now. Think of taking it to the foot of the cross. And there kneel. And as you kneel, don't look up. And as you kneel, looking down prostrating, thinking of the horrible gift you bring to Christ, open your eyes, but don't look up. And see a blood drop land in front of you. That is a sign of mercy. That is what it costs for you to be forgiven. Think of all these last years of anguish and anxiety you've experienced, think of all the things you could've done but never did, think of the times you should've given, but you didn't. Don't close your eyes, look at that blood drop of Jesus, and another drip falls, and another. Don't close your eyes. Look! IT'S YOUR FATHER'S Blood. The blood is before us. Every time you close your eyes, you go into the dark. Judas eventually kisses Jesus with a kiss of death. And with that, kisses his own death. The measure with which you measure. We don't know that Judas took the morsel and threw it away in the dark, do we? We didn't hear that he ate it and savored it or gave thanks for it.

Think of us now...have we been spinning our wheels spiritually? Getting nowhere?

Jesus speaks as the Father: "My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, 'Where I go you cannot come,' so now I say it to you." He didn't say brothers, or friends, he said MY CHILD! My children, and you too my child, right now where I am at you cannot come...until the appointed time and calling. They immediately asked what all people asked "where are you going?"
It is Holy week.
Where is Jesus going anyway?
Some say He was going crazy.
Some say He was going to leave them for good.
That's what they said. But we know what happens. He goes ahead of us, as the first fruits of God, to redo and undo what Adam and Eve did. He went back into the womb, through Mary, and back to the origins of Man. He created what everyone thought was impossible, and impassible, the way through the darkness of death brought about by sin.

Holy week is upon us my child.
I heard while writing to you, that a man needed 4 days off, from Thursday to Sunday, why? Because, he said he and his family were going to be locked up praying fervently these days for the whole world. Believe it or not, his name is Jesus, I forgot his last name, I think Espinoza....meaning of thorns. Please pray for us! Please, every prayer is so much needed, and for what? That we may come out of this darkness, of anxiety, spinning our wheels, of getting nowhere, and to come into the light of Christ, a whole new life, a light to all nations.

Jesus asked today:
my child, will you lay down your life for Me?


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Random Bible verse from an online generator:

Colossians 2:6–7
Alive in Christ

6 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7 rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.


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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