†Saint Quote ""Thou hast made us for thyself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it finds its rest in thee." — St. Augustine
†MEDITATION OF THE DAY "The invitation to lift up our hearts at the most important part of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is an invitation by Jesus through the voice of the priest to give our hearts to the Father, as He gave His life for us. We prepare to make our hearts and lives a total self-gift to the Father as Jesus made Himself a total gift to the Father for us on the Cross." — Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila AN EXCERPT FROM Meditations Before Mass
†VERSE OF THE DAY "Faith is the realization of what is hoped for and evidence of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1
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ST. ELEUTHERIUS THE ABBOT
St. Eleutherius (d. 585 A.D.) was a monk living in Spoleto, Italy. Little is known of his early life. He became the Abbot of St. Mark's Abbey and was well-known as a man of simplicity and penance. He also demonstrated the gift of miracles and exorcism, and raised a dead man to life. After he healed a boy from demonic possession and saw that the child was afterwards left unharmed, St. Eleutherius made a remark to this effect: "Since the child is among the servants of God, the devil dares not approach him." Then the boy, who came to live at St. Mark's Abbey to be educated by the monks, became possessed again. St. Eleutherius repented of his vain and presumptuous remark, and the whole monastery underwent a penitential fast before the devil would leave the boy for the final time. St. Eleutherius was a friend of Pope St. Gregory the Great, the latter having called upon the saint to pray for him in his illness. St. Eleutherius died in Rome in 585 A.D. His feast day is September 6th.
Monday of the Twenty-third Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 437 Reading I
Brothers and sisters: I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ on behalf of his Body, which is the Church, of which I am a minister in accordance with God's stewardship given to me to bring to completion for you the word of God, the mystery hidden from ages and from generations past. But now it has been manifested to his holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory. It is he whom we proclaim, admonishing everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone perfect in Christ. For this I labor and struggle, in accord with the exercise of his power working within me.
For I want you to know how great a struggle I am having for you and for those in Laodicea and all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged as they are brought together in love, to have all the richness of assured understanding, for the knowledge of the mystery of God, Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
R. (8) In God is my safety and my glory. Only in God be at rest, my soul,
for from him comes my hope. He only is my rock and my salvation,
my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed. R. In God is my safety and my glory. Trust in him at all times, O my people!
Pour out your hearts before him;
God is our refuge! R. In God is my safety and my glory.
R. Alleluia, alleluia. My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
On a certain sabbath Jesus went into the synagogue and taught, and there was a man there whose right hand was withered. The scribes and the Pharisees watched him closely to see if he would cure on the sabbath so that they might discover a reason to accuse him. But he realized their intentions and said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up and stand before us." And he rose and stood there. Then Jesus said to them, "I ask you, is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?" Looking around at them all, he then said to him, "Stretch out your hand." He did so and his hand was restored. But they became enraged and discussed together what they might do to Jesus.
Daily Meditation: Colossians 1:24–2:3
I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake. (Colossians 1:24)
Why did Paul rejoice in his sufferings? Not because of the suffering itself, of course, but because he was convinced that it had benefited the Colossians. And he was right! All of Paul's labors and struggles were worth it because through him and his preaching, the believers in Colossae were growing in their embrace of the gospel.
We all know what it's like to sacrifice and suffer for the benefit of another person. Parents constantly do it for their children. So do people caring for an elderly parent or a spouse with disabilities. Or those serving their parish in a ministry that is time-consuming. When things get tough, it can be hard to feel any joy. We might feel only exhaustion or frustration instead. So how can we find the joy that Paul talks about here? Is it even possible?
It helps when we can see fruit coming out of our sacrifices, like when we see a child graduate or a parish ministry begin to flourish. Perhaps that's how Paul felt when he heard about the community of Christians in Colossae. Clearly, despite their problems, they believed in Jesus and were living as brothers and sisters in the Lord.
But what about when we don't see any immediate benefits? Can we still rejoice? Or what if we're sick, and our suffering seems pointless and unnecessary? That's where faith comes in. No suffering has to feel pointless; we can use it as motivation to pray for the needs of other people. We can trust that offering up our trials to the Lord as an act of intercession will bear fruit—even if we don't see it ourselves. And that can lead, if not exactly to joy, then at least to consolation and encouragement.
So if you are suffering in some way and can't seem to find your joy, try to remember to turn your hardship into intercession: for another person, for a cause dear to your heart, even for the worldwide Church. You may never know all the good you have done through your prayers, but one day in heaven, you'll be able to see everyone you have blessed. And on that day, you will rejoice!
"Jesus, may all my sacrifices bear fruit for you and your glory!"
Psalm 62:6-7, 9 Luke 6:6-11
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From Saint Paul: "But now it has been manifested to his holy ones, to whom God chose to make known the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; it is Christ in you, the hope for glory."
Have you seen the face of Christ lately? I look at it daily before writing to you. But have you seen it lately? Have you seen it in the face of a fellow Christian? What does it look like? In some, it looks serious, and seriously troubled. Some, it looks sad. And in some, it seems it doesn't care. Very few put on the face of the real Christ, with true hope, therefore, true joy. What "Christ in me" is showing today?
We pray in the Holy Psalms: "Only in God be at rest, my soul,
for from him comes my hope. He only is my rock and my salvation,
my stronghold; I shall not be disturbed.
In God is my safety and my glory."
As Saint Augustine said "Our Hearts are restless until they rest in Thee" Lord.
When I speak to people that do not go to church, that is, showing a true relationship with Christ, I do not sense fulfillment, I sense rather, uneasiness, anxiety, or just an emptiness that is inexplicable. Only when we find everything in Christ, we will be filled, fulfilled, and amazed.
In the Holy Gospel according to Luke, we heard: "But he realized their intentions and said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up and stand before us." And he rose and stood there. Then Jesus said to them, "I ask you, is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?" Looking around at them all, he then said to him, "Stretch out your hand." He did so and his hand was restored. But they became enraged and discussed together what they might do to Jesus."
So, put yourself in the story. You are withered. And our Lord sees you withered, and basically invalid, seen as a nobody, and worse, suffering from "some unknown" sin and evil, which was often the blame for physical maladies and infirmities (and disease). Albeit, it can be the case that evil takes physical manifestation through ailments, but it is not always the case. Yet, our Lord asks you to stand up before everyone. And He asks if it is good to do good on the Sabbath, the Lord's day. They refused to answer. And our Lord commands you to stretch out your hand, your withered body, to stand erect, to be healed from the inside out.
And what did we hear? They were enraged that Jesus healed you.
Who are they? They are the ones who have no ears. They have no eyes. They cannot see, nor hear. They go by feelings and are not led by the Holy Spirit. But you, you are healed inside, now you can praise in the temple with THEM. Now you are not shunned. Now you are favored and loved by God! Now you can work! Now you can shake people's hands! Now you can hold Jesus tightly. This is the reason for a true healing. The light is shown in the dark. Their vile pride is brought to broad daylight, their thoughts, their awful attitudes. But the meek shall inherit the earth...and this means humility.
When you want healing from the inside, Jesus says "Come here before all". This means Holy Confession. The priest stands in the name of all in the church and there you will be healed in front of all. Now you can become a holy roller, and a little saint. Things that others hate about someone trying to be good now, to do good on the Lord's day, rather than...evil, sinful, prideful, and against His Holy will.
Let's pray: Lord, You are amazing. I look at a sunset and You amaze me. I look at a clouds gathering the Sun and it pierces them with Your Light and I am amazed. The thunderstorms will soon give way to Your light. The darkness will not last. And the Light gives us hope. You are that Light. I want to bask in Your light forever. Where there hope shines forever, joy lives on forever...and an eternity for thanksgiving exists. And we revolve around You always...as the creation You created us to be!
from your brother in Christ, Adrian
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Random bible verse generator:
19 God is not man, that he should lie,
or a son of man, that he should change his mind.
Has he said, and will he not do it?
Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?
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