Eating is not only an individual delight but also, and mainly, a communal experience. Family reunions mean sharing story after story around the table. The food served becomes the backdrop for a renewal of mutual concerns remembered and new events announced. Those of us who have to travel for business may need to eat alone, but may not relish doing so. Travelers often end up at a local hangout not only to order a beer but to find a bartender or other patrons to converse with. Breaking bread with a friend is why I baked that loaf in the first place. A dinner scheduled to last for perhaps two hours can put us in a zone of leisure that seems to go on without our knowing how so much time has passed.
—from the book Table of Plenty: Good Food for Body and Spirit by Susan Muto
†Saint Quote "Behold Jesus Christ crucified, Who is the only foundation of our hope; He is our Mediator and Advocate; the victim and sacrifice for our sins. He is goodness and patience itself; His mercy is moved by the tears of sinners, and He never refuses pardon and grace to those who ask it with a truly contrite and humbled heart." — St. Charles Borromeo
† MEDITATION OF THE DAY "My daughter, know that My Heart is mercy itself. From this sea of mercy, graces flow out upon the whole world. No soul that has approached Me has ever gone away unconsoled. All misery gets buried in the depths of My mercy, and every saving and sanctifying grace flows from this fountain." — St. Faustina Kowalska, (1777) AN EXCERPT FROM Diary of St. Faustina
† VERSE OF THE DAY "By this "will," we have been consecrated through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all." Hebrews 10:10
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St. Clement of Rome (d. 100 A.D.), also known as Pope St. Clement I, is considered the first Apostolic Father of the Church. He is mentioned by name in the Bible by the Apostle Paul in Philippians 4:3. St. Clement is also said to be one of the band of seventy followers of Jesus' ministry as described in the Gospels. Clement was a disciple of St. Peter and was ordained by him, and became the fourth Bishop of Rome. Of his life and death little is known, but he has left one definite writing: a letter to the Church in Corinth, Greece. The Basilica of St. Clement is one of the earliest parish churches of Rome and was built on the site of his home. Pope St. Clement I is the patron saint of mariners, sailors, marble-workers, stone-cutters, and sick children. His feast day is celebrated on November 23rd.
Saint of the Day Blessed Miguel Agustín Pro
(January 13, 1891 – November 23, 1927) Audio file
"¡Viva Cristo Rey!"—Long live Christ the King!—were the last words Pro uttered before he was executed for being a Catholic priest and serving his flock.
Born into a prosperous, devout family in Guadalupe de Zacatecas, Mexico, Miguel entered the Jesuits in 1911, but three years later fled to Granada, Spain, because of religious persecution in Mexico. He was ordained in Belgium in 1925.
Father Pro immediately returned to Mexico, where he served a Church forced to go "underground." He celebrated the Eucharist clandestinely and ministered the other sacraments to small groups of Catholics.
He and his brother Roberto were arrested on trumped-up charges of attempting to assassinate Mexico's president. Roberto was spared, but Miguel was sentenced to face a firing squad on November 23, 1927. His funeral became a public demonstration of faith. Miguel Pro was beatified in 1988.
When Fr. Miguel Pro was executed in 1927, no one could have predicted that 52 years later the bishop of Rome would visit Mexico, be welcomed by its president, and celebrate open-air Masses before thousands of people. Pope John Paul II made additional trips to Mexico in 1990, 1993, 1999, and 2002. Those who outlawed the Catholic Church in Mexico did not count on the deeply rooted faith of its people, and the willingness of many of them, like Miguel Pro, to die as martyrs.
Monday of the Thirty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time
Rv 14:1-3, 4b-5
I, John, looked and there was the Lamb standing on Mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty-four thousand who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads. I heard a sound from heaven like the sound of rushing water or a loud peal of thunder. The sound I heard was like that of harpists playing their harps. They were singing what seemed to be a new hymn before the throne, before the four living creatures and the elders. No one could learn this hymn except the hundred and forty-four thousand who had been ransomed from the earth. These are the ones who follow the Lamb wherever he goes. They have been ransomed as the first fruits of the human race for God and the Lamb. On their lips no deceit has been found; they are unblemished.
Ps 24:1bc-2, 3-4ab, 5-6
R.(see 6) Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. The LORD's are the earth and its fullness; the world and those who dwell in it. For he founded it upon the seas and established it upon the rivers. R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? or who may stand in his holy place? He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain. R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face. He shall receive a blessing from the LORD, a reward from God his savior. Such is the race that seeks for him, that seeks the face of the God of Jacob. R. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face.
Mt 24:42a, 44
. Alleluia, alleluia. Stay awake! For you do not know when the Son of Man will come. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
When Jesus looked up he saw some wealthy people putting their offerings into the treasury and he noticed a poor widow putting in two small coins. He said, "I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest; for those others have all made offerings from their surplus wealth, but she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood."
Daily Meditation: Luke 21:1-4
He noticed a poor widow putting in . . . more than all the rest. (Luke 21:2, 3)
"Show me the money!" That line from a 1990s movie quickly became a popular catchphrase. In other words, money talks. This was just as popular a mindset in Jesus' time as it is now. But Jesus was different. While the clinking coins attracted the attention and admiration of the Jewish leaders, he was not impressed. He saw the hearts of the contributors, not the amount they were giving. Rather than admiring their impressive sums, he was impressed by a poor widow's humble offering.
In her lowly attire and with her meager offering, this woman may have been practically invisible to everyone else in the Temple that day. But Jesus saw her. Perhaps that was because her humble trust that God would care for her reminded him of his heavenly home. It's like the way you would feel if you were on a trip on the other side of the world and bumped into someone who spoke your language. In a similar way, Jesus found a kindred spirit in this woman.
This story shows us that faith and humility are the surest way to Jesus' heart. He longs to see in us what is at the center of his own life—the generosity and trust in God's provision that enabled him to go to the cross for us.
This is what it means to be a kindred spirit with Jesus. It means trusting in his Father and offering ourselves to him and his people in whatever ways we can. It means not holding back on our money, our time, or our love when opportunities to give present themselves. It means believing that God will help provide for us if we decide to give just a little more than we have in the past. It means showing Jesus the "money" of a heart given over to him in trust and faith.
So ask God today to give you a heart like this poor widow and like Jesus himself. Believe that whatever you offer to him in faith and trust, he can turn into a heavenly treasure—even two small coins!
"Jesus, may you recognize in me what you saw in this poor widow."
Revelation 14:1-5 Psalm 24:1-6
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Violence of the tongue is very real—sharper than any knife, wounding and creating bitterness that only the grace of God can heal. — St. Teresa of Calcutta from Love: A Fruit Always in Season
my2cents: "On their lips no deceit has been found; they are unblemished." What's on your lips? What comes out of the lips? What's in your heart is what comes out.
Lord we need you in our heart, with no room for anything else.
We pray: "Who can ascend the mountain of the LORD? or who may stand in his holy place? He whose hands are sinless, whose heart is clean, who desires not what is vain. Lord, this is the people that longs to see your face." If I asked you a question, that I've been asking myself all morning today, would you answer it truly? The question asks: "Do you really want to know who you are....before God?" And the question brings up the chasm cast by sin. I notice that the most poisonous, like the spider, they are recluse. Reclusive, and unable to come to the Lord. And if you cross them wrong, you will get poison. Deadly poison. Notice how they speak hatred and use violence, senseless as they call others....useless. How do you stand before our Lord? For one thing, none of us should stand before Him, but kneel after Him. Lest we believe we are something great, yet full of lies that you never knew about you. I'm speaking for myself. I'm speaking about spiritual pride. I'm speaking of being a Pharisee.
In today's Holy Gospel, our Lord said "I tell you truly, this poor widow put in more than all the rest... she, from her poverty, has offered her whole livelihood." What a weird line to hear when they say "put your money where your mouth is". I like what a priest once said about money, "they are like little life certificates, because you spent so much of your life to make that money" and so it is like offering that to God.
This is a good time to think about tithing, and giving in Church is absolutely necessary. But many do not see this as necessary. I know a guy that says "I give in other ways". I knew another guy that used to be in ministry and he believed "what I do for the church is more than what I need to donate, as a matter of fact, they owe me". Common denominator? A lack of charity. A lack of true giving. They were in a sense, blowing a trumpet to me. That is why Revelation speaks about horns. Horns are the loudspeakers that blow a message. And the numbers there- in speak about what they are about. I digress. Our Lord spoke about the poor widow, and pointed out that she gave her whole livelihood. What does this mean? It means everything, really. It means, she trusted in God more than anyone else. It means she didn't trust in herself or in the money. She trusted that God would provide and she saw the temple would be made more beautiful with all she had to give.
Do you trust like that? Do you love like that? Can you give like that? Can you trust like that? It is very strange. That man that doesn't give to the church, he gives much less than not giving money. He doesn't give a hoot. How can I say that? He speaks ill of the priest too. Once I asked him to consider going to confession and I opened a can of worms, and vile hatred started in my direction. I meant no harm, I meant for healing, because he suffers violent episodes of debilitating pains that make him recluse to his home in the dark. Do you see how this works? You must give, in order to receive. Once I noticed we were going through financial troubles, and I immediately knew what had happened...we had stopped giving in Church accidentally sort of. I met a man in daily Mass a week or two ago. I could tell he was tattooed all the way to the neck. He told me he just got out of prison. I told him "look, you'll have to bless God if you want to be blessed". Now, I have a problem with my own words, because it would appear that what I say is for convenience. Or is it a truth? Give to God. Bless God. Not out of obligation, like so many of us who give of our scraps. But to give out of true love, that is faith, and trust. That is, to give where it hurts to give. Like mercy. Like forgiveness. Like giving, even though you don't feel like it. Like forgiving when you get slapped for nothing. Accused for nothing. Cursed for nothing. Insulted for nothing. Like, giving when you don't got much to give. How much are you to give? I almost want to hesitate on what I am going to say, but it needs to be said: Look at Jesus. OUCH! That kinda hurts. He gave it all.
Lord, you have set yourself as an eternal sign and offering, giving forever what we will need forever...mercy and grace. I can't live without it. I can't breathe without it. I'm blind without it, and I am a fool without it. Please send us mercy and grace to our hearts that cannot look up to see the truth offering.
Random Bible verse from online generator Jeremiah 23:23–24 "Am I a God at hand, declares the LORD, and not a God far away? 24 Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the LORD.
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