Monday, October 19, 2020

⛪. I Shall Tear Down My . ⛪




Trust the Heartfelt Questions

The scope of every life is indeed defined by the questions we choose to live into, and if we are blessed to live long enough, we will inevitably end up shaped like a question mark. Since quest is also the start of every question, it is questions, not answers, that are the surest guideposts for any journey of faith —which necessarily means moving into the unknowable. Always trust the open, heartfelt question that lays bare the soul to unknowing. Whether they are simplistic or sophisticated, handle answers with care, for they often reflect and display, for all the world to see, the broad sweep of our ignorance. Perhaps, for this reason, wisdom teachers use stories, ballads, parables, or poems. Such lyrical musings open spaces for fresh appreciations and diverse perspectives. They foster fascination and expose imagination to wider fields of understanding, laced with mystery, which always leads us down and out to face yet another, more penetrating question.

—from the book Wandering and Welcome: Meditations for Finding Peace by Joseph Grant


†Saint Quote
"The secret of happiness is to live moment by moment and to thank God for what He is sending us every day in His goodness."
— St. Gianna Molla

"Above all, it is necessary to ask of God every morning the gift of perseverance, and to beg of the Blessed Virgin to obtain it for you, and particularly in the time of temptation, by invoking the name of Jesus and Mary as long as the temptation lasts. Happy the man who will continue to act in this manner, and shall be found so doing when Jesus Christ shall come to judge him. 'Blessed is that servant, whom, when his Lord shall come, he shall find so doing' (Matt. 24:46)."
— St. Alphonsus De Liguori, p. 167
The Sermons of St. Alphonsus Liguori

"For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that be the will of God, than for doing evil. For Christ also suffered for sins once, the righteous for the sake of the unrighteous, that he might lead you to God."
1 Peter 3:17-18a


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St. Isaac Jogues (1607–1646) was born in France to a middle-class family, and at the age of 17 entered a Jesuit seminary where he displayed a talent for writing and teaching. He was ordained in January of 1636 at the age of 29, and three months later was sent as a missionary priest to the rugged wilderness of New France (now Canada) to work among the Huron and Algonquin Native American tribes. Despite the hardship of life in the wilderness, Isaac experienced great spiritual joy in his mission. One day, six years into his work, he was captured by a Mohawk-Iroquois war party. He was enslaved and ritually tortured, in addition to being malnourished and inadequately clothed. His hands were severely mutilated and many of his fingers destroyed, which prevented his ability to say Mass. He continued to preach the faith and was named Ondessonk, "the indomitable one," by his Mohawk captors. After over a year in captivity he escaped with the help of Dutch settlers. He went back to France where he was honored as a "living martyr." He obtained special permission from the pope to say Mass with his mutilated hands. Instead of continuing his life in peace, St. Isaac was zealous to return to his mission field. He returned to New France, and by that time a peace treaty was arranged between the warring native tribes allowing him to work among the Mohawks. However, when they suffered a crisis of crop failure and epidemic disease, the Mohawks blamed the Christians for sorcery and attacked the settlers. St. Isaac Jogues died after being tomahawked in the head, and his body was thrown into the Mohawk River. He is the patron of the Americas and Canada. Isaac Jogues earned the name "Apostle of the Mohawks" for his work. New York state's first Catholic baptismal record was due to his priestly ministry. He and his companions were the first martyrs of the North American continent officially recognized by the Church. His feast day is October 19th.


Memorial of Saints John de Br├ębeuf and Isaac Jogues, Priests, and Companions, Martyrs

Lectionary: 473
Reading 1

EPH 2:1-10

Brothers and sisters:
You were dead in your transgressions and sins
in which you once lived following the age of this world,
following the ruler of the power of the air,
the spirit that is now at work in the disobedient.
All of us once lived among them in the desires of our flesh,
following the wishes of the flesh and the impulses,
and we were by nature children of wrath, like the rest.
But God, who is rich in mercy,
because of the great love he had for us,
even when we were dead in our transgressions,
brought us to life with Christ (by grace you have been saved),
raised us up with him,
and seated us with him in the heavens in Christ Jesus,
that in the ages to come
he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace
in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
For by grace you have been saved through faith,
and this is not from you; it is the gift of God;
it is not from works, so no one may boast.
For we are his handiwork, created in Christ Jesus for good works
that God has prepared in advance,
that we should live in them.

Responsorial Psalm

PS 100:1B-2, 3, 4AB, 4C-5

R. (3b) The Lord made us, we belong to him.
Sing joyfully to the LORD all you lands;
serve the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful song.
R. The Lord made us, we belong to him.
Know that the LORD is God;
he made us, his we are;
his people, the flock he tends.
R. The Lord made us, we belong to him.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving,
his courts with praise.
R. The Lord made us, we belong to him.
Give thanks to him; bless his name, for he is good:
the LORD, whose kindness endures forever,
and his faithfulness, to all generations.
R. The Lord made us, we belong to him.


MT 5:3

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Blessed are the poor in spirit;
for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


LK 12:13-21

Someone in the crowd said to Jesus,
"Teacher, tell my brother to share the inheritance with me."
He replied to him,
"Friend, who appointed me as your judge and arbitrator?"
Then he said to the crowd,
"Take care to guard against all greed,
for though one may be rich,
one's life does not consist of possessions."

Then he told them a parable.
"There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest.
He asked himself, 'What shall I do,
for I do not have space to store my harvest?'
And he said, 'This is what I shall do:
I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones.
There I shall store all my grain and other goods
and I shall say to myself, "Now as for you,
you have so many good things stored up for many years,
rest, eat, drink, be merry!"'
But God said to him,
'You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you;
and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?'
Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself
but is not rich in what matters to God."


Daily Meditation: Ephesians 2:1-10

We are . . . created in Christ Jesus for good works that God has prepared in advance. (Ephesians 2:10)

"God has a plan for your life." It's a phrase we hear all the time. But what does it mean for us?

We often think it's all about specifics: we want assurances about the future, to know what particular thing we should do next. But the Catechism, in its very first paragraph, takes a broader view: "God, infinitely perfect and blessed in himself, in a plan of sheer goodness freely created man to make him share in his own blessed life" (1). In other words, God cares about our everyday decisions, but his central desire is to bring us into his presence and fill us with his life and his love. The specifics we tend to be preoccupied with are only part of this bigger goal.

Our first reading today can help us see this big picture. God's plan is always for our salvation. It is always to bring us to life in Christ, even when sin has cut us off from him, even when we are following the ways of the world and our own desires (Ephesians 2:4-5). That's because God is rich in mercy and lovingly raises us up to life with Christ (2:6). He makes it possible for us to live in faith so that his deepest desire—our becoming like Christ—can unfold.

We want answers, and God wants our love. We want out of our challenging situations, and God wants to walk through them with us. We want specific directions, and God wants to set up guardrails for us and then finds a way to draw us back if we make bad choices. Because he has one goal in mind: making us ready for the heavenly life he has promised us.

So is it God's plan that my daughter gets into her dream college—or doesn't? Or that I get a promotion at work—or don't? Or that my spouse struggles with illness—or lives to a ripe old age? Of course, he doesn't cause suffering or sickness. But he does work through all of these situations. He wants to use every detail of our lives—our circumstances, our relationships, our triumphs, and our disappointments—to help us live fully. That's God's good plan!

"Lord, I want to grow closer to you!"

Psalm 100:1-5
Luke 12:13-21



Prayer increases the strength and spiritual unity of the family, helping the family to partake of God's own strength. This visitation of the Holy Spirit gives rise to the inner strength of families, as well as the power capable of uniting them in love and truth.
— St. John Pual II
from his Letter to Families


"For we are his handiwork, created in Christ Jesus for good works that God has prepared in advance, that we should live in them."
We are created. That is a problem for some who don't believe. We are a creation of the Creator, whom we call Father. Did your parents plan you? Were you a planned creation? Sometimes yes, many times no. We don't all know dates and times of creation. We have estimates and guesses. But it has all been through the divine will from Heaven that you are alive and reading what He has in store for His creation. It is a creation that has a name, not a number. Worldly people assign numbers. God has names. These are His works. Ones of unfathomable love. And some have been granted faith. And some find faith. And some live and die for faith. And here you are being led to a greater faith.


We pray: "Know that the LORD is God;
he made us, his we are; his people, the flock he tends. The Lord made us, we belong to him." The worldly lures whisper in our ears "you are alone". They are hellish thoughts. When our Lord said Himself "I will never leave you, even if your mother forsakes you". He ascended saying "I AM with you always". And how! He sent His Holy Spirit. That is AMAZING. You are not alone my child.


Our Lord ended today by saying to us: "Thus will it be for the one who stores up treasure for himself but is not rich in what matters to God."
What matters to God. It is a command. It is not a question. What matters to God our Father.

The poor brother wanted inheritance money. I've heard of horror stories of siblings squabbling for inheritance. Some fight for houses, cars, money, and in old Mexico some family was fighting for cows! So you have two fighting, one won't let go, and the other won't let go. Both were holding on to earthly, that is, temporal matters above all, instead of what matters to God. What matters to God? As a father of 8 children, what matters in my household is obedience. This is the economia, the economics, the dealings of my household. I lay down the law, and when everyone is following the law, everyone is happy. When someone is not following the law, there is trouble. Someone is rocking the boat. Usually it's a younger kid that hasn't learned the law appropriately, usually some wild child that hasn't had the law instilled into his or her heart. And so it is with the children of God. We are to teach one another the law, the will of Our Father. When one kid wants their way, there is trouble. That is, to usurp the law, to bypass, to say the law does not pertain to them.

And so our Lord teaches us in the parable about what matters. A man after God's own heart is what matters. Why would you want God's heart? In a Eucharistic miracle, the Eucharist bleeds, and then when left out for adoration, a lighted heart began to appear pulsing. Do you want the heart of God? It is found in the Eucharist. And then we build up our heart, a lighted heart that begins pulsing and radiating light. Because that is what light does, right? It is a radiance? Light is amazing. How can you see light in the darkness? I'm thinking of my blind friend in the nursing home. How does light reach him? It reaches him through people. Although, now, he hasn't seen loved ones because of pandemics keeping us away from each other, he still reaches out. I got a call this morning "he wants you to give him a call".

I know what the call is.
It is Jesus.
And He needs something.
And it is going to demand something of me that I will have to make time for.
Do you understand the matter?

God is calling, asking of your time, but isn't it His?
Think Prayer. Think Sacrifice.
God is calling through the needy.
It may be a child acting up that needs a lesson, or some kind of attention, or it may be the poor, or it may be the imprisoned at home or beyond.

What can you do?

Respond to what matters to our Father.

Lord, help us respond, and to learn to let go, and let the other be more loved than I...


Random Bible verse from online generator:
Mt 18 5:6
"Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, 6 but whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin,1 it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened around his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea.


If one day you don't receive these, just visit
God Bless You! Peace

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