Wednesday, May 20, 2020

⛪ . "For This Reason.." .⛪




Faith Builds on Love

Faith builds on a totally positive place within, however small. It needs an interior "Yes" to begin, just as the "Yes" of Mary began the entire process of salvation. God needs just a mustard seed-sized place that is in love, that is open to grace, that is thrilled, that has found something wonderful. We've got to go back and build from that "Yes" place—or faith is not faith. That's why real faith is always rare. But God uses all of us, with our mixed motives. We have been given, not only the conclusion, but also the way to get there. We have been shown how to fight hate without becoming hate ourselves. We have been given a Companion and a Friend, not only a good idea. We have been given joy in the midst of failure, not only a way of winning or being right. Gospel people are basically indestructible.

—from The Wisdom Pattern: Order, Disorder, Reorder by Richard Rohr, OFM


†Saint Quote
"The stillness of prayer is the most essential condition for fruitful action. Before all else, the disciple kneels down."
— St. Gianna Molla

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.

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.

"God gives prayer growth precisely according to our degree of readiness for it. He forces no one. According as we are more or less receptive, He bestows more or less depth of communion. In the same manner, five hundred people in a parish church all hear the same sound waves during the homily, but they profit from it exactly as they are or are not disposed for the message. Jesus taught the same truth in his parable of the sower: from the word of God some hearers yield nothing at all, while others yield thirty or sixty or a hundredfold."
— Fr. Thomas Dubay, p. 114
Fire Within

"The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight."
Proverbs 9:10


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Saint Bernardine of Siena
Saint of the Day for May 20
(September 8, 1380 – May 20, 1444)

Most of the saints suffer great personal opposition, even persecution. Bernardine, by contrast, seems more like a human dynamo who simply took on the needs of the world.

He was the greatest preacher of his time, journeying across Italy, calming strife-torn cities, attacking the paganism he found rampant, attracting crowds of 30,000, following Saint Francis of Assisi's admonition to preach about "vice and virtue, punishment and glory."

Compared with Saint Paul by the pope, Bernardine had a keen intuition of the needs of the time, along with solid holiness and boundless energy and joy. He accomplished all this despite having a very weak and hoarse voice, miraculously improved later because of his devotion to Mary.

When he was 20, the plague was at its height in his hometown of Siena. Sometimes as many as 20 people died in one day at the hospital. Bernardine offered to run the hospital and, with the help of other young men, nursed patients there for four months. He escaped the plague, but was so exhausted that a fever confined him for several months. He spent another year caring for a beloved aunt whose parents had died when he was a child, and at her death began to fast and pray to know God's will for him.

At 22, he entered the Franciscan Order and was ordained two years later. For almost a dozen years he lived in solitude and prayer, but his gifts ultimately caused him to be sent to preach. He always traveled on foot, sometimes speaking for hours in one place, then doing the same in another town.

Especially known for his devotion to the Holy Name of Jesus, Bernardine devised a symbol—IHS, the first three letters of the name of Jesus in Greek—in Gothic letters on a blazing sun. This was to displace the superstitious symbols of the day, as well as the insignia of factions: for example, Guelphs and Ghibellines. The devotion spread, and the symbol began to appear in churches, homes and public buildings. Opposition arose from those who thought it a dangerous innovation. Three attempts were made to have the pope take action against him, but Bernardine's holiness, orthodoxy, and intelligence were evidence of his faithfulness.

General of the Friars of the Strict Observance, a branch of the Franciscan Order, Bernardine strongly emphasized scholarship and further study of theology and canon law. When he started there were 300 friars in the community; when he died there were 4,000. He returned to preaching the last two years of his life, dying while traveling.

Another dynamic saint once said, "…I will not be a burden, for I want not what is yours, but you…. I will most gladly spend and be utterly spent for your sakes" (2 Corinthians 12:14). There is danger that we see only the whirlwind of activity in the Bernardines of faith—taking care of the sick, preaching, studying, administering, always driving—and forget the source of their energy. We should not say that Bernardine could have been a great contemplative if he had had the chance. He had the chance, every day, and he took it.
Saint Bernardine of Siena is the Patron Saint of:

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Wednesday of the Sixth Week of Easter
Lectionary: 293
Reading 1

Acts 17:15, 22—18:1

After Paul's escorts had taken him to Athens,
they came away with instructions for Silas and Timothy
to join him as soon as possible.

Then Paul stood up at the Areopagus and said:
"You Athenians, I see that in every respect
you are very religious.
For as I walked around looking carefully at your shrines,
I even discovered an altar inscribed, 'To an Unknown God.'
What therefore you unknowingly worship, I proclaim to you.
The God who made the world and all that is in it,
the Lord of heaven and earth,
does not dwell in sanctuaries made by human hands,
nor is he served by human hands because he needs anything.
Rather it is he who gives to everyone life and breath and everything.
He made from one the whole human race
to dwell on the entire surface of the earth,
and he fixed the ordered seasons and the boundaries of their regions,
so that people might seek God,
even perhaps grope for him and find him,
though indeed he is not far from any one of us.
For 'In him we live and move and have our being,'
as even some of your poets have said,
'For we too are his offspring.'
Since therefore we are the offspring of God,
we ought not to think that the divinity is like an image
fashioned from gold, silver, or stone by human art and imagination.
God has overlooked the times of ignorance,
but now he demands that all people everywhere repent
because he has established a day on which he will 'judge the world
with justice' through a man he has appointed,
and he has provided confirmation for all
by raising him from the dead."

When they heard about resurrection of the dead,
some began to scoff, but others said,
"We should like to hear you on this some other time."
And so Paul left them.
But some did join him, and became believers.
Among them were Dionysius,
a member of the Court of the Areopagus,
a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

After this he left Athens and went to Corinth.

Responsorial Psalm

148:1-2, 11-12, 13, 14

R. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
R. Alleluia.
Praise the LORD from the heavens;
praise him in the heights.
Praise him, all you his angels;
praise him, all you his hosts.
R. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
R. Alleluia.
Let the kings of the earth and all peoples,
the princes and all the judges of the earth,
Young men too, and maidens,
old men and boys.
R. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
R. Alleluia.
Praise the name of the LORD,
for his name alone is exalted;
His majesty is above earth and heaven.
R. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
R. Alleluia.
He has lifted up the horn of his people;
Be this his praise from all his faithful ones,
from the children of Israel, the people close to him.
R. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.
R. Alleluia.


Jn 14:16

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
I will ask the Father
and he will give you another Advocate
to be with you always.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Jn 16:12-15

Jesus said to his disciples:
"I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.
But when he comes, the Spirit of truth,
he will guide you to all truth.
He will not speak on his own,
but he will speak what he hears,
and will declare to you the things that are coming.
He will glorify me,
because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.
Everything that the Father has is mine;
for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine
and declare it to you."


Today's Meditation: Acts 17:15, 22–18:1

Paul stood up at the Areopagus. (Acts 17:22)

Paul was standing in the center of the civilized world. The Areopagus was a hub of Greek social, cultural, and political life. People teemed in and around the pagan shrines and altars that filled the area. So when the elders invited Paul to defend his preaching there, he gladly took the opportunity. He had the chance to open a path between the gospel and the pagan world. What would he say?

Let's start by seeing what he doesn't do. He doesn't begin by condemning them or focusing on how far they are from God. Instead, he acknowledges the good things he sees. These people are very religious. They are interested in shrines and altars because they are aware of the divine influence in their lives.

Next, he notes they have some uncertainty because they have set up an altar to "an unknown god" (Acts 17:23), and he uses the uncertainty as a lead-in to introduce them to Jesus. Paul tells them that instead of multiple gods, there is only one. He is the Lord of heaven and earth, the maker of all things.

He even quotes their poetry and applies it to God: "In him we live and move and have our being. . . . For we too are his offspring" (Acts 17:28). He shows cultural understanding but puts their endless search for God in the perspective of the Christian faith. In all of this, Paul is able to look beyond their idolatry to see the true desires of their hearts.

Paul's approach can help you relate to people around you. It can help when you're watching the news or disheartened by the negativity you see online. Look for what may be going on behind hurting hearts and try to identify the positive in the situation. Take what is familiar to someone and expand upon it. Each person is loved by God, and if they are far from him, he wants nothing more than to draw them back.

Even though God condemns sin, he always wants to save the sinner. This truth motivated Paul's preaching, and it can help you grow in compassion. It can help you find common ground instead of shutting the door right off the bat. And you never know what God can do with an open door!

"Lord, help me to be like Paul!"

Psalm 148:1-2, 11-14
John 16:12-15



Man not only should possess the fruits of the earth, but also the very soil, inasmuch as from the produce of the earth he has to lay by provision for the future. Nature must have given to man a source that is stable and remaining always with him. And this stable condition of things he finds solely in the earth and its fruits.
— Pope Leo XIII
from Rerum Novarum


"'For we too are his offspring. Since therefore we are the offspring of God..."
Offspring of God? Something special, no? Whereas the world wants you to believe you are made of nothing and for nothing, God calls us His. Not unknown...but known.


We pray today: "He has lifted up the horn of his people; Be this his praise from all his faithful ones, from the children of Israel, the people close to him. Heaven and earth are full of your glory.".
What is the horn of His people? Horns mean something in scripture. They are spoken about all the way to the book of Revelation. Rev 17:
"The ten horns you saw are ten kings who have not yet received a kingdom, but who for one hour will receive authority as kings along with the beast. 13They have one purpose and will give their power and authority to the beast. 14They will wage war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will triumph over them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers."


In comes the Lamb of God, into our lives today:
"...when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth."
When will the Spirit of truth come? It will come, He will come, when you invoke Him. Just like calling upon the Holy Name of Jesus, the most powerful name and prayer in the world. The Holy Spirit comes, invoked, and provoked to move, and we act as that agent...that horn. That mouthpiece by which God speaks.

"He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you." He is the vine. We are the branches. We give of what is His. Whether time, talent, treasures, our very lives...loves.
By this we glorify Him. That we know Him, Love Him, and serve Him. Does He need robots to do things, slaves, worthless beings? No. He needs obedient children that love Him back. There are too many that are not thankful. Too many of us that do not know how to love Him in return. How do you love Him who is invisible. He is not. He lives, moves, and speaks in the world. Do you want him to be a person just like any other? Of course not. That would be a degradation to His Holy Face. Therefore, we are fashioned from Him, and in Him we live.

"Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you."
What did He give us? Only the best part of Himself. The Spirit of Truth.
And we are back where we began. Offspring of the truth.

Heavenly Father, you gave us the love of your life, Jesus, and in Him you spoke to us, one person in the whole entire world, and Jesus has imparted on us the love of His life...His Spirit. In Him we have life from Heaven. Lord, help us cherish Jesus, Holy Spirit, help us love Jesus with that same love from Heaven you are bestowing on us. Let us not ask how, but do it now. Love you and our neighbor and in the neighbor love you....


Random Bible verse from an online generator:

Ecclesiastes 7:8

8 Better is the end of a thing than its beginning,

and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.


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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