†Saint Quote ""You change your life by changing your heart." — St. Benedict of Nursia
†Meditation of the Day "Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself." — C. S. Lewis, p. 205 An Excerpt From Mere Christianity
†Verse of the Day "He said to them, "Go into the whole world and proclaim the gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned."" Mark 16:15-16
click to read more
St. Francis of Assisi
St. Francis (1181-1226) was born in Assisi, Italy, to a wealthy cloth merchant. He was a spoiled child given to pleasure, fine dress, liberal spending, and worldliness. Handsome and courteous, he was a favorite among the nobility. As a chivalrous young knight he took part in a battle between the Italian city-states and became a prisoner of war in Perugia. After his release he became seriously ill, and while reflecting on his wanton life he had a profound conversion experience. He gave up his frivolous life, cut off his family ties, and embraced a life of extreme penance and poverty in such a dramatic manner that it caused many to think he had gone mad. While praying before a crucifix in the church of San Damiano in Assisi he received a call from Christ to rebuild the Church, "which had fallen into ruin." St. Francis followed Christ in a radical manner by patterning his new life after the example of the Apostles in the most literal way possible: he dressed as a poor peasant, worked odd jobs for food, and went through the countryside preaching repentance, love of Jesus, and peace. His joyful, radical way of life attracted followers, and with them he founded the Order of Friars Minor and the Poor Clares. His order was approved by the Holy See in 1210 and grew rapidly. Two years before his death he became the first known saint to receive the stigmata. His holiness was so widely attested that only two years after his death the Church proclaimed him a saint. St. Francis of Assisi is the patron saint of peace, ecology, the environment, animals, Italy, merchants, and families. His feast day is October 4th
Memorial of Saint Francis of Assisi
Lectionary: 461 Reading I
Jon 1:1–2:1-2, 11
This is the word of the LORD that came to Jonah, son of Amittai:
"Set out for the great city of Nineveh, and preach against it; their wickedness has come up before me." But Jonah made ready to flee to Tarshish away from the LORD. He went down to Joppa, found a ship going to Tarshish, paid the fare, and went aboard to journey with them to Tarshish, away from the LORD.
The LORD, however, hurled a violent wind upon the sea, and in the furious tempest that arose the ship was on the point of breaking up. Then the mariners became frightened and each one cried to his god. To lighten the ship for themselves, they threw its cargo into the sea. Meanwhile, Jonah had gone down into the hold of the ship, and lay there fast asleep. The captain came to him and said, "What are you doing asleep? Rise up, call upon your God! Perhaps God will be mindful of us so that we may not perish."
Then they said to one another, "Come, let us cast lots to find out on whose account we have met with this misfortune." So they cast lots, and thus singled out Jonah. "Tell us," they said, "what is your business? Where do you come from? What is your country, and to what people do you belong?" Jonah answered them, "I am a Hebrew, I worship the LORD, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the dry land."
Now the men were seized with great fear and said to him, "How could you do such a thing!– They knew that he was fleeing from the LORD, because he had told them.– They asked, "What shall we do with you, that the sea may quiet down for us?" For the sea was growing more and more turbulent. Jonah said to them, "Pick me up and throw me into the sea, that it may quiet down for you; since I know it is because of me that this violent storm has come upon you."
Still the men rowed hard to regain the land, but they could not, for the sea grew ever more turbulent. Then they cried to the LORD: "We beseech you, O LORD, let us not perish for taking this man's life; do not charge us with shedding innocent blood, for you, LORD, have done as you saw fit." Then they took Jonah and threw him into the sea, and the sea's raging abated. Struck with great fear of the LORD, the men offered sacrifice and made vows to him.
But the LORD sent a large fish, that swallowed Jonah; and Jonah remained in the belly of the fish three days and three nights. From the belly of the fish Jonah prayed to the LORD, his God. Then the LORD commanded the fish to spew Jonah upon the shore.
Jonah 2:3, 4, 5, 8
R. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord. Out of my distress I called to the LORD,
and he answered me; From the midst of the nether world I cried for help,
and you heard my voice. R. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord. For you cast me into the deep, into the heart of the sea,
and the flood enveloped me; All your breakers and your billows
passed over me. R. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord. Then I said, "I am banished from your sight!
yet would I again look upon your holy temple." R. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord. When my soul fainted within me,
I remembered the LORD; My prayer reached you
in your holy temple. R. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord.
R. Alleluia, alleluia. I give you a new commandment: love one another as I have loved you. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
There was a scholar of the law who stood up to test Jesus and said, "Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus said to him, "What is written in the law? How do you read it?" He said in reply, "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself." He replied to him, "You have answered correctly; do this and you will live."
But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Jesus replied, "A man fell victim to robbers as he went down from Jerusalem to Jericho. They stripped and beat him and went off leaving him half-dead. A priest happened to be going down that road, but when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side. Likewise a Levite came to the place, and when he saw him, he passed by on the opposite side. But a Samaritan traveler who came upon him was moved with compassion at the sight. He approached the victim, poured oil and wine over his wounds and bandaged them. Then he lifted him up on his own animal, took him to an inn, and cared for him. The next day he took out two silver coins and gave them to the innkeeper with the instruction, 'Take care of him. If you spend more than what I have given you, I shall repay you on my way back.' Which of these three, in your opinion, was neighbor to the robbers' victim?" He answered, "The one who treated him with mercy." Jesus said to him, "Go and do likewise."
Daily Meditation: Luke 10:25-37
You have answered correctly, do this and you will live. (Luke 10:28)
You almost wish that this scholar of the law would have stopped while he was ahead. He had correctly identified the greatest commandments—love God with your whole being and love your neighbor as yourself. Everything was going well. Even Jesus approved!
But then he pressed on. Luke tells us it was because "he wished to justify himself" (10:29). He was testing the limits of the commandment: how far did he have to go in order to be justified? Exactly who qualifies as this "neighbor" he was expected to love?
Did Jesus sigh or roll his eyes? We don't know. What we do know is that Jesus took this opportunity to tell a parable to illustrate that his command to love has no limits. Loving your neighbor includes taking care of a stranger. It includes helping someone you think of as an enemy. It includes risking yourself for someone caught on the "margins."
The scholar seemed to want to soften the law and exempt himself from any obligation to some of his more needy, or less "acceptable," neighbors. But let's not be too quick to point fingers at him. We have probably all wondered what is the least we need to do to get by. Or maybe we've tried to limit the commandments so that they don't require quite so much sacrifice.
That's why Jesus tells us how far we should go in order to follow his law of love. But how do we do that? How do we imitate the good Samaritan? By paying attention to the people "at the side of the road." We can begin with the people right in front of us. Instead of passing over them, we can be sensitive to their needs—even the ones who bother us or drain our patience. If we can do just that, we'll begin to experience the Spirit expanding our hearts.
It might sound challenging, but remember that the Spirit lives in you to help you live in God's love. Loving God puts you in touch with his limitless mercy. And that mercy provides the fuel for you to open your heart and your hands to the neighbors who most need your love.
"Jesus, help me to embrace your limitless mercy. Teach me how to love."
Jonah 1:1–2:2, 11 (Psalm) Jonah 2:3-5, 8
Listen to 2cents
From Today's Holy Scripture: "This is the word of the LORD that came to Jonah, son of Amittai: "Set out for the great city of Nineveh, and preach against it; their wickedness has come up before me." But Jonah made ready to flee to Tarshish away from the LORD." How many times have I attempted to run away from the Lord? Have you ever left the church? Have you ever attempted to leave? Many have, and they say that in Christianity, the second largest denomination is fallen away Catholics. So, yes, many do fall away.
But take heart, even Jonah tried to runaway, but something happens, something brings many back. Many say they miss the Presence of God. Some are forced back like Jonah. Jonah desired the destruction of the sinful city, for them to turn to the Lord, but God said to ask them to repent.
The same goes for you and me. Repent, and ask others to repent. Jonah realized the call. And soon he'd realize, that it was good, because God is good. Mercy is amazing.
We pray in Psalms: "Out of my distress I called to the LORD, and he answered me; From the midst of the nether world I cried for help, and you heard my voice. You will rescue my life from the pit, O Lord."
Have you ever cried for help? I have. Should I be embarrassed to say that I have cried? If you were there, you too would have cried. There is healing in crying at times. And the healing comes when God hears your prayer. Your Guardian angel hears your prayers. And these prayers are important. Jesus cried. And the angel appeared to comfort Him. And then..strength follows to meet whatever is to come...now we speak grace, fortitude, everything needed to face the world head on.
Our Lord speaks: "You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your being, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself." He replied to him, "You have answered correctly; do this and you will live." But because he wished to justify himself, he said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?" Jesus replied, "A man fell victim to robbers...."
And then we realize who the neighbor is. It wasn't the priest, nor the Levite, but a Samaritan, not one of their own. Love neighbor. Love those that are not of your own. For this is what God Himself has done. What good is it to just love your own...you may not really love them! I often wondered why my anti-Catholic brother in law, who now divorced my sister, why he didn't try to convert me really to his denomination. Did he really not care about me or even God that much? You see...the stronger wins. Whatever is stronger in your life will win. Think about what you want to be stronger in. Here, I am to point you to our Lord. Stick with Him because He wins. Love wins. It is written in the Holy Scripture from beginning to end...have faith, love wins, and God is True Love.
Lord God, my neighbor is slipping away into an oblivion. And here I am dining sumptuously of the Body of Christ at His table. Why can't I share this body of Christ? Why can't we all be like St. Francis of Assisi and give everything up for the love of You my dear Lord and Savior?
Only when I cry, and I am beat down, and in great need am I willing to turn to You and surrender my all. I need Jesus then, I am stranded on the side of the road of life. I want to be the neighbor You asked me to be. May I see Your holy face in everyone in need, especially in the most undesirables.
St. Francis, pray for us.
from your brother in Christ, Adrian
click to hear
Random bible verse generator:
Phil 1 29
29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake,
If one day you don't receive these, just visit Going4th.com God Bless You! Peace