Thursday, February 4, 2021

⛪no food, no sack, no money . . ⛪


Prayer as an Act of Solidarity

Throughout my life, I have focused on prayer as a symbol of solidarity, because prayer is grounded in the profound interdependence of life. Our prayers of gratitude remind us that no one is self-sufficient. Our gifts and talents emerge from our relationships —the persons and institutions that have supported us, as well as the earth's bountiful providence—that inspire and undergird any achievement on our part. From this perspective, the self-made person is the most pitiable precisely because they, in their lonely individualism, think they can go it alone without any help from God or their fellow creatures. This sense of self-sufficiency collapses when we face a health crisis, death of a life companion, a professional setback, a pandemic, or the realities of aging and mortality. Prayer links us with all creation. Our gratitude inspires relationship and connection. Recognizing that we are truly one in spirit and flesh with all creation, we are inspired to move from self-interest to global concern. We discover that in an interdependent universe, others have been the answers to our prayers, coming along at the right time to provide comfort and counsel, and that we can be the answer to others' prayers, sharing the gifts we have received so that others might flourish in body, mind, spirit, and relationships.

—from the book Walking with Francis of Assisi: From Privilege to Activism
by Bruce Epperly


†Saint Quote
"When one has nothing more to lose, the heart is inaccessible to fear."

— St. Théodore Guérin

"In the spiritual life there are two great principles which should never be forgotten: Without grace we can do nothing; with it we can do all things. Sometimes it anticipates our desires; ordinarily, God waits till we ask for it. This is a general law thus expressed by Our Lord: 'Ask, and it shall be given to you.' Prayer is, therefore, not only a precept, it is a necessity. God places the treasure of His graces at our disposal, and its key is prayer. You desire more faith, more hope, more love; 'ask, and it shall be given to you.' Your good resolutions remain sterile, resulting always in the same failures: 'ask, and it shall be given to you'. Precepts are numerous, virtue painful, temptation seductive, the enemy ruthless, the will weak: 'ask, and it shall be given to you.'"
— Rev. Dom Vitalis Lehodey p. xv
The Ways of Mental Prayer

"For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, "Abba, Father!" The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs, heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ, if only we suffer with him so that we may also be glorified with him."
Romans 8:15-17


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St. Jane of Valois (1464-1505) was born to French King Louis XI and Charlotte of Savoy. Much of her life was marked by neglect and emotional abuse. Her father resented her because she was a sickly and deformed female child. He sent her away to a remote country home where she was carelessly raised before being married off at the age of nine to her cousin, the Duke of Orléans. Her husband likewise despised and publicly humiliated her, and their marriage was never consummated. Jane had a devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary from a young age, especially in the mystery of the Incarnation. One day Our Lady appeared to Jane and told her that in the future she would found a religious community. Through her veneration of the Blessed Mother, Jane found the strength to be a loyal and devoted wife during her painful twenty-two year marriage. When her husband became king, he had their marriage annulled. This left Jane free to found the Order of the Annunciation dedicated to imitating Mary's virtues, as Our Lady foretold. She also gave her Order the duty of constant prayer for the souls of her father and husband who both mistreated her. St. Jane of Valois' feast day is February 4th.


Thursday of the Fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 326
Reading I

Heb 12:18-19, 21-24

Brothers and sisters:
You have not approached that which could be touched
and a blazing fire and gloomy darkness
and storm and a trumpet blast
and a voice speaking words such that those who heard
begged that no message be further addressed to them.
Indeed, so fearful was the spectacle that Moses said,
"I am terrified and trembling."
No, you have approached Mount Zion
and the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem,
and countless angels in festal gathering,
and the assembly of the firstborn enrolled in heaven,
and God the judge of all,
and the spirits of the just made perfect,
and Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant,
and the sprinkled Blood that speaks more eloquently
than that of Abel.

Responsorial Psalm

48:2-3ab, 3cd-4, 9, 10-11

R. (see 10) O God, we ponder your mercy within your temple.
Great is the LORD and wholly to be praised

in the city of our God.
His holy mountain, fairest of heights,

is the joy of all the earth.
R. O God, we ponder your mercy within your temple.
Mount Zion, "the recesses of the North,"

the city of the great King.
God is with her castles;

renowned is he as a stronghold.
R. O God, we ponder your mercy within your temple.
As we had heard, so have we seen

in the city of the LORD of hosts,
In the city of our God;

God makes it firm forever.
R. O God, we ponder your mercy within your temple.
O God, we ponder your mercy

within your temple.
As your name, O God, so also your praise

reaches to the ends of the earth.
Of justice your right hand is full.
R. O God, we ponder your mercy within your temple.


Mk 1:15

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


Mk 6:7-13

Jesus summoned the Twelve and began to send them out two by two
and gave them authority over unclean spirits.
He instructed them to take nothing for the journey but a walking stick
–no food, no sack, no money in their belts.
They were, however, to wear sandals but not a second tunic.
He said to them,
"Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave from there.
Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you,
leave there and shake the dust off your feet
in testimony against them."
So they went off and preached repentance.
The Twelve drove out many demons,
and they anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.


Daily Meditation: Hebrews 12:18-19, 21-24

You have approached . . . the assembly of the firstborn enrolled in heaven. (Hebrews 12:22, 23)

A great deal has been written about the importance of birth order in a family: the assertive eldest child, the spoiled youngest child, the outgoing middle child. Or the only child who receives his parents' undivided attention. However, things are different in God's family. No matter how many sons and daughters he has, every one of us is equally loved. Every one of us is the most important.

Traditionally, the firstborn inherited the father's title, lands, and wealth. But that's not the case in the kingdom of God. Every one of us—including you—can lay claim to "the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones" (Ephesians 1:18). Everyone can approach God in prayer and expect to be heard. This means that, like the apostles in today's Gospel, you can be God's representative, a bearer of his peace wherever you go.

So what is it like being part of this heavenly assembly? How do we experience these blessings as we gather as Christ's beloved body here on earth?

Primarily, we are marked by confidence. We can be secure in God's love for us. We don't need to compete with each other or jockey for that position. This means we can live and worship in harmony, voices blending rather than trying to distinguish themselves from the crowd. We can step forward to serve without worrying that we will fail. And we can respectfully step aside to let someone else freely exercise their gifts in their own unique way. We can ask Jesus to help us see how deeply he treasures each brother and sister.

So when your first thought is "What, her?" or "Really, him?" or even "Who, me?" practice saying "Of course!" Never forget that each one of us is special to our heavenly Father.

"Lord, thank you for setting your amazing love on me."

Psalm 48:2-4, 9-11
Mark 6:7-13



To live well is nothing other than to love God with all one's heart, with all one's soul, and with all one's effort.
— St. Augustine


"Indeed, so fearful was the spectacle that Moses said, "I am terrified and trembling."
What holy words are these. "I fear the Lord". What wonderful works are these. "I tremble before Him who brought me to being." All the commandments begin to hinge on the only words recorded at the encounter of our God. What are you trembling and fearing right now? I know there are many things we can fear, but we ought to fear only one thing...our God. Moses then, has encountered holiness and the encounter has moved him to holiness. This is the rightful fear that we ought to seek when we seek His Holy face. And we heard "... Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and the sprinkled Blood that speaks more eloquently than that of Abel." Abel? Abel's blood? That blood speaks? Yes, innocent blood, but even more than the blood of Christ...pure, and pure light. One day, all the blood of the innocents will cry out, and that day will reach the ears of our Lord. These voices are muted in society all over the world. For if at one time it was the crime of one nation, now it has engulfed the whole world. It is the crime that will pay its due in time. Unless...we hear the quiet gentle knock.


We pray: "O God, we ponder your mercy
within your temple. As your name, O God, so also your praise reaches to the ends of the earth. Of justice your right hand is full." We ponder within HIS temple. Today "women's rights activists" call out crying and screaming "my body, my choice!". Who gave you that body, and that free will? Everything will return to where it came from. If from dirt, to dirt. If from evil, to evil. If from holiness, to holiness. My job is to help you see and hear, taste, and touch the heart of our Father.


One thing our Lord said today, and it goes deep and forever: "Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave from there. Whatever place does not welcome you or listen to you, leave there and shake the dust off your feet in testimony against them."

We prayed the Psalm in Mass on Sunday "If today you hear His voice, harden not your heart". When our Lord sends His disciples, He sends them on a mission, with the lightest clad, no dead weight to carry, and only He shall provide.

Question: "Who opens the door?" Apparently, it was those who had a need, or desire, a humble heart even. For then and only then were there healings. Only then were demonic spirits driven out. Only then came the Holy Spirit into their home. And our body is a temple, and together we make the temple of the Lord. How does that work? I don't know, it just does!

Question #2: "Who does not open the door?". Apparently it is those who have no need. They are "good", they respond "I'm good" and waive them off good bye. "I don't need your Jesus" they say. And so He is shown the door, out of schools, out of work, out of homes. How come? It's called being full of it. A technical term is "auto-sufficient" and self sufficient, meaning self reliant, and self everything else. This kind of person has no need, not even if they are hurt or in need of healing, they believe they have their own answers to all the world and worldly problems with their thoughts, and philosophy. These are the common atheists, pagans, and get this...lukewarm Christians. They only call when it benefits them. They only begin to open their minds when everything else they relied on...fails. There's a supposed statistic, that this makes up about 84% of Catholics. It is gross. It is what makes for vomit in the book of Revelation, when our Lord says He wants us either hot or cold, but not lukewarm. I hate it when I cool off into sin. That is Dante's hell, a frozen place where you cannot move. In this cold place, your faith is cool (not in a good way). So cool, you forget to pray. So cool you seem more drawn to inward sin. So cool that your relationship with our Lord seems to fade. That's what I see in an auto-sufficient society. And when it happens to one, it happens to another, because we are inexplicably bound. But you my beloved, you must make a return. You have heard the knock. Now you come out and become a knocker, a healer, an important body member of our Lord, the kind that will be sacrificed...and in doing so, become a fragrant offering to our God and Father and King.

Lord, may we become more keen to Your voice, Your touch, Your sight, and in doing so, become Your very light for the world!

from your brother in Christ our Lord,


Random online bible verse:

2 Corinthians 7:1
Since we have these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from every defilement of body1 and spirit, bringing holiness to completion in the fear of God.


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God Bless You! Peace

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