Monday, January 11, 2021

⛪. come AFTER me . ⛪


Growing in Mindfulness

Is there a method for cultivating mindfulness? Yes, there are many methods. The one I have chosen is gratefulness. Gratefulness can be practiced, cultivated, learned. And as we grow in gratefulness, we grow in mindfulness. Before I open my eyes in the morning, I remind myself that I have eyes to see, while millions of my brothers and sisters are blind—most of them on account of conditions that could be improved if our human family would come to its senses and spend its resources reasonably, equitably. If I open my eyes with this thought, chances are that I will be more grateful for the gift of sight and more alert to the needs of those who lack that gift.

—from the book The Way of Silence: Engaging the Sacred in Daily Life
by Brother David Steindl-Rast


†Saint Quote
"Love takes up where knowledge leaves off."
— St. Thomas Aquinas

"You judge me, O Lord, for, although no one 'knows the things of a man but the spirit of man which is in him,' there is something further in man which not even that spirit of man which is in him knows. But you, Lord, who made him, know all things that are in him. Although I despise myself before your sight, and account myself but dust and ashes, yet I know something of you which I do not know about myself. In truth, 'we see now through a glass in a dark manner,' and not yet 'face to face.' ... Let me confess, then, what I know about myself. Let me confess also what I do not know about myself, since that too which I know about myself I know because you enlighten me. As to that which I am ignorant of concerning myself, I remain ignorant of it until my 'darkness shall be made as the noonday in your sight.'"
— St. Augustine, p. 197
The Confessions of Saint Augustine

"Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father."
Matthew 5:16


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Pope St. Hyginus (d. 142 A.D.) was born in Athens, Greece, and became the ninth successor to the Chair of St. Peter. He reigned as pope for four years from about 138-142 A.D. Many of the details of his life have not been preserved, although various actions are credited to him: defending the Catholic faith against the Gnostic heresy which spread in Rome; beginning the practice of including godparents at infant baptisms to help the newborn child receive a Christian upbringing; and decreeing that all churches must be consecrated. Pope St. Hyginus is buried near the tomb of St. Peter on Vatican Hill. It is uncertain whether he became a martyr under the persecutions of Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius. His feast day is January 11.


Monday of the First Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 305
Reading I

Heb 1:1-6

Brothers and sisters:
In times past, God spoke in partial and various ways
to our ancestors through the prophets;
in these last days, he spoke to us through the Son,

whom he made heir of all things
and through whom he created the universe,

who is the refulgence of his glory,

the very imprint of his being,

and who sustains all things by his mighty word.

When he had accomplished purification from sins,

he took his seat at the right hand of the Majesty on high,

as far superior to the angels

as the name he has inherited is more excellent than theirs.
For to which of the angels did God ever say:

You are my Son; this day I have begotten you?
Or again:

I will be a father to him, and he shall be a Son to me?
And again, when he leads the first born into the world, he says:

Let all the angels of God worship him.

Responsorial Psalm

97:1 and 2b, 6 and 7c, 9

R. (see 7c) Let all his angels worship him.
The LORD is king; let the earth rejoice;

let the many isles be glad.

Justice and judgment are the foundation of his throne.
R. Let all his angels worship him.
The heavens proclaim his justice,

and all peoples see his glory.
Let all his angels worship him.
R. Let all his angels worship him.
Because you, O LORD, are the Most High over all the earth,

exalted far above all gods.
R. Let all his angels worship him.


Mk 1:15

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
The Kingdom of God is at hand;
repent and believe in the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Mk 1:14-20

After John had been arrested,
Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the Gospel of God:
"This is the time of fulfillment.
The Kingdom of God is at hand.
Repent, and believe in the Gospel."

As he passed by the Sea of Galilee,
he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting their nets into the sea;
they were fishermen.
Jesus said to them,
"Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men."
Then they left their nets and followed him.
He walked along a little farther
and saw James, the son of Zebedee, and his brother John.
They too were in a boat mending their nets.
Then he called them.
So they left their father Zebedee in the boat
along with the hired men and followed him.


Daily Meditation: Mark 1:14-20

Then they left their nets and followed him. (Mark 1:18)

It's baffling. Jesus is walking along the seaside and invites a few men to follow him—and they do. Why? Would you leave your job and family to follow a stranger? This short description of Jesus gathering disciples in today's Gospel may be deceptively simple—it obviously leaves out some details.

Perhaps Simon, Andrew, James, and John already knew Jesus, or at least knew about him. They could have heard him preaching, or maybe they had already spent some time talking with him. Perhaps they were curious about this miracle worker who insisted that the kingdom of God was at hand. Maybe they were looking for a break from their grueling jobs. Following Jesus might have seemed adventurous—a chance to see even more miracles. They could have thought this adventure would be short-term and not a journey that would change their lives forever.

There's one thing we can assume: these four fishermen had no idea what was in store for them. There would be many amazing revelations. But there would also be rejection, misunderstanding, and sacrifice. If they had known all this at the beginning, they might well have stayed in their fishing boats.

Thank God they didn't have the big picture yet! Can you imagine a Church without St. Peter? Or the message that God is love without the story of St. John? It's a good thing that the cost of discipleship unfolded gradually for them and never overshadowed the excitement and joy they first experienced.

Jesus is calling you too. Every day he reaches out to you through your prayer and Scripture reading and through your encounters with people. When you hear that call—especially if it's challenging—remember these four apostles. Remember their faith-filled response.

Remember too who it is you are following: your Savior and Redeemer. His ways may be mysterious and his will may be hard to understand, but he wants nothing more than to bring you into his kingdom. So don't be afraid to leave behind whatever nets may be ensnaring you. Follow him, today and always.

"Jesus, help me to hear and answer your call today."

Hebrews 1:1-6
Psalm 97:1-2, 6-7, 9



Man was created for a certain end. This end is to praise, to reverence and to serve the Lord his God and by this means to arrive at eternal salvation
— St. Ignatius of Loyola
from The Spiritual Exercises


"And again, when he leads the first born into the world, he says: Let all the angels of God worship him."
Angels announced His birth. Angels announced before and after and to this day. How do angels speak to us today? In evangelization they speak, with the root word being ANGEL. Hos does it feel when an angel speaks? Most that confront a real angel are faced with something terrible. Most accounts in the bible, encounters with angels are said to have the subject in fear. One said he wrestled with an angel, and that one's name was changed to Israel. Israel was then meant to mean "the people of God". Why do we wrestle with the message? Why are so many restless? It is a confounding message. But we are called to worship Him. The confounding thing is that Jesus our Lord is supreme over all angels. And then he becomes a human being, to reign supreme over all human beings, but even more...


We pray today: "The heavens proclaim his justice, and all peoples see his glory. Let all his angels worship him."
What is the beauty of Heaven? Justice. Due worship. Faithfulness. Purity. Sincerity. An indelible mark. We are marked for Him. Chosen for Him. Baptism marks the way, and Confirmation lets you live the way. And Holy Eucharist is His body to edify, fortify...the WAY.


The first thing our Lord says today is: "This is the time of fulfillment. The Kingdom of God is at hand. Repent, and believe in the Gospel."
The Kingdom has arrived. Now YOU, my child, repent. Repent of your sinful ways, sinful thoughts, sinful everything. When you repent, you will believe. Or do you need to believe first in order to repent? It is rare that a great miracle changes hearts, but it does happen. More often, the norm, is to repent, and then ordinary miracles begin to happen. Ash Wednesday comes to mind. Repent and Believe. And the Gospel means the Good News. The message. The ev-ANGEL-ization.

The last thing we heard He said to us today was ""Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men."
Yesterday we resumed our RCIA, class for adults to become Catholic. We left the class with a last question asking basically, what makes you uneasy about the teachings? Of what's being asked of you? The students, two couples, didn't really have an answer, they seemed willing to accept teachings. And so I probed. I began to speak hard things, taking jabs at their hearts, because none were married by the church, and the Eucharist readings came to mind, Him being the Body, true Body and blood. And then I asked "did I make you feel uneasy? Still no. I asked my teenage students too, last week online. "Tell me, you "Billy", what do you think about what's given to us on the altar in Mass? I asked for a sincere answer. And what he said was the exact truth that about 70% of Catholics believe....that it is NOT the real body of Christ, just a symbol up there. I thanked him for his honest answers, but immediately told him that answer is exactly what most believe, but is not the real truth. So we make up lies and believe lies. I told my adults, "you cannot be a Cafeteria Catholic, picking and choosing what to believe, it's the WHOLE thing in the Eucharist", take it or leave it. Receiving the Eucharist is the most intimate you can be with Jesus. Therefore, we must be most sincere and open to Him. Otherwise, you will mock him like having an affair, intimacy outside of Holy Marriage.
When our Lord says "Follow Me", it is not a time to veer from the Way. It is a calling to Live His Way, His Life, this very moment, and this very day. Will you follow Me? Does this make you uncomfortable? Before you are quick to say yes, think about it. The adults are ready for the rite of the elect, the engagement process begins. Think about it before you are quick to dive in. Do you know where Jesus is going? First the cross, then He goes to set free those in hell and then among us, and then, finally Heaven. Can you take the chalice? It's easy to go drink His blood, but not easy to drink the promise of true Love.
It's easy to SAY a prayer, like the Our Father, but it is not easy to pray a real prayer, meditating on every word and meaning. It's easy for me to get up and sing a song, without meaning or knowing what I am saying. It's harder to mean every word in prayer. This is what happened at the tower of Babylon. Everyone was blabbering, building a tower to self, not to God. Our Lord will knock us off our horses like St. Paul for a reason. He will destroy the tower for a reason. He will destroy the temple for a reason. He will strip you for a reason. Just as He was stripped. This means we are following Him. Have faith. I'm writing to you because He is asking me to. If you are sad, then realize as you look down, at the world, that's what makes you sad. Hate the world. WHOA! Strong message again? Am I making you feel uncomfortable? I'm taking a jab for a reason. The world already calls you a hater for not following their ways.

Have faith my child. Take courage. Our Lord has conquered the world. You've only to be the light. As a matter of fact, I made a video a few days ago about turning on the light. As Dr. Brant Pitre explains, our works are our light. At the end of the video you see love in action. BE THE LIGHT in the dark. click for video

Lord, you know I love You. How can You ask me repeatedly? I will feed your sheep. I will tend to the lamb. The Lamb of God!!!

from your brother in Christ our Lord,

Random online bible verse:
Revelation 3:20
20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me.


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God Bless You! Peace

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