†Saint Quote ""The life of the body is the soul; the life of the soul is God." –St. Anthony of Padua
†Today's Meditation "Francis [de Sales] insists that true devotion must touch every area of our life. True devotion is not just a matter of spiritual practices but of bringing all our life under the lordship of Christ. Francis is known for his slogan: 'Live, Jesus! Live, Jesus!' What he means by this is an invitation to Jesus to 'live and reign in our hearts forever and ever' . . . In other words, for Francis, to live the devout life is to reach the point in our love for God and neighbor that we eagerly ('carefully, frequently, and promptly') desire to do His will in all the various ways in which it is communicated to us: in the duties of our state in life, in the objective teaching of God's Word, in opportunities and occasions presented to us, in response to our interior inspirations." — Ralph Martin, p. 107
An Excerpt From Fulfillment of All Desire, p107
†Daily Verse "He has showed you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" –Micah 6:8
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St. Canute IV of Denmark
St. Canute IV of Denmark (1042 – 1086 A.D.), also known as Canute the Holy, was one of thirteen sons born to the king of Denmark. Canute later succeeded his brother to the throne and reigned as king from 1080 to 1086. He was a devout Catholic, a zealous propagator of the faith, and a brave warrior, in addition to being a man of prayer, penance, austerity, and charity towards the poor and weak among his people. The happiness of his people and the interests of the Church were his motivation, often putting him in opposition to the aristocracy. He fought against the barbarian nations and worked to strengthen the power of the monarchy, but some of his laws were unpopular and caused unrest among the people. Canute sought to expand Denmak's territory and believed he had a claim to the English throne. In 1085 he gathered his fleet and planned an invasion of England to overthrow William the Conquerer, a plan which was never realized. Instead, a revolt broke out against Canute, causing him to take refuge inside St. Alban's Priory in Odense. Canute, his brother, and seventeen of his men were pursued and killed by rebels in front of the altar. He was named a martyr for the faith, and many miracles were reported at his tomb. He was canonized in the year 1101, the first Danish saint. St. Canute is the patron saint of Denmark. His feast day is January 19.
Wednesday of the Second Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 313 Reading I
1 Sm 17:32-33, 37, 40-51
David spoke to Saul: "Let your majesty not lose courage. I am at your service to go and fight this Philistine." But Saul answered David, "You cannot go up against this Philistine and fight with him, for you are only a youth, while he has been a warrior from his youth."
David continued: "The LORD, who delivered me from the claws of the lion and the bear, will also keep me safe from the clutches of this Philistine." Saul answered David, "Go! the LORD will be with you."
Then, staff in hand, David selected five smooth stones from the wadi and put them in the pocket of his shepherd's bag. With his sling also ready to hand, he approached the Philistine.
With his shield bearer marching before him, the Philistine also advanced closer and closer to David. When he had sized David up, and seen that he was youthful, and ruddy, and handsome in appearance, the Philistine held David in contempt. The Philistine said to David, "Am I a dog that you come against me with a staff?" Then the Philistine cursed David by his gods and said to him, "Come here to me, and I will leave your flesh for the birds of the air and the beasts of the field." David answered him: "You come against me with sword and spear and scimitar, but I come against you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel that you have insulted. Today the LORD shall deliver you into my hand; I will strike you down and cut off your head. This very day I will leave your corpse and the corpses of the Philistine army for the birds of the air and the beasts of the field; thus the whole land shall learn that Israel has a God. All this multitude, too, shall learn that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves. For the battle is the LORD's and he shall deliver you into our hands."
The Philistine then moved to meet David at close quarters, while David ran quickly toward the battle line in the direction of the Philistine. David put his hand into the bag and took out a stone, hurled it with the sling, and struck the Philistine on the forehead. The stone embedded itself in his brow, and he fell prostrate on the ground. Thus David overcame the Philistine with sling and stone; he struck the Philistine mortally, and did it without a sword. Then David ran and stood over him; with the Philistine's own sword which he drew from its sheath he dispatched him and cut off his head.
144:1b, 2, 9-10
R. (1) Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! Blessed be the LORD, my rock,
who trains my hands for battle, my fingers for war. R. Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! My refuge and my fortress,
my stronghold, my deliverer, My shield, in whom I trust,
who subdues my people under me. R. Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! O God, I will sing a new song to you;
with a ten-stringed lyre I will chant your praise, You who give victory to kings,
and deliver David, your servant from the evil sword. R. Blessed be the Lord, my Rock!
See Mt 4:23
R. Alleluia, alleluia. Jesus preached the Gospel of the Kingdom and cured every disease among the people. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus entered the synagogue. There was a man there who had a withered hand. They watched Jesus closely to see if he would cure him on the sabbath so that they might accuse him. He said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up here before us." Then he said to the Pharisees, "Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?" But they remained silent. Looking around at them with anger and grieved at their hardness of heart, Jesus said to the man, "Stretch out your hand." He stretched it out and his hand was restored. The Pharisees went out and immediately took counsel with the Herodians against him to put him to death.
Daily Meditation: Mark 3:1-6
[They] immediately took counsel . . . to put him to death. (Mark 3:6)
In today's Gospel, Jesus heals a man with a withered hand while his opponents—some Pharisees and Herodians—condemn him for violating the Sabbath. Instead of glorifying God and rejoicing at the man's restoration, they "immediately took counsel" to put Jesus to death (Mark 3:6). What a strange reaction to a healing!
This story of God's healing power and human resistance to him holds many lessons for us.
First, we can see ourselves in the man with the withered hand. He was probably limited in his ability to take care of himself or provide for his family. Mark doesn't indicate whether he had injured his hand or if he was born with that limitation. Perhaps he blamed God for his condition. Similarly, we may have parts of us that are symbolically "withered" or out of shape and keep us from functioning as we ought. Jesus wants to heal and restore us so that we can live as God intends for us.
Second, we should pay attention to the Pharisees and Herodians. Even worse than the man's condition, you might say that they suffered from "withered hearts." The long-awaited Messiah stood right before them, yet all they could see was someone who violated their regulations. Their assumptions about the Sabbath made them indifferent to the man's suffering. Even worse, they placed conditions on God and rejected Jesus' attempts to soften their hearts.
Nobody's heart gets withered overnight. Like these men, we also can resist God's ways and slowly close ourselves off to God. Through lack of contact with the Lord and by listening only to our own desires and to worldly philosophies, we allow our hearts to grow calloused and cold. We can even do all the "right" things and yet wither away inside. Our hardened hearts distort our empathy for people who are suffering and move us to reject God's efforts to heal them—and us.
Whether it is our hands or hearts that are withered, God wants to bring us love and healing. And the good news is that Jesus has authority over this and every other part of our lives. He can restore us to freedom and wholeness.
"Change my heart, O God."
1 Samuel 17:32-33, 37, 40-51 Psalm 144:1-2, 9-10
From today's 1st Holy Scripture: "David answered him: "You come against me with sword and spear and scimitar, but I come against you in the name of the LORD of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel that you have insulted. Today the LORD shall deliver you into my hand..."
So many trust in their wealth, their power, in themselves basically...but David trusted in the name of the Lord of hosts. And this is the attitude we are to have...all I have is this, and this I will use in the name of the Lord, for God's glory.
We pray in Psalms: "Blessed be the Lord, my Rock! Blessed be the LORD, my rock, who trains my hands for battle, my fingers for war. Blessed be the Lord, my Rock!"
In the storms I am facing right now, I'm clenching hard to the rock, because the winds, clashing of waves in the dark right now are attempting to pull me and my family apart, and how? It is an all out attack on the faith. How can we clench to the rock of salvation? I'm reaching, grasping, praying, as my dad is gasping for air in this pandemics, and we just lost my uncle to this yesterday and more are falling to it.
These times are for falling on our knees, turning to our Lord. We've had our family business have two wrecks in the last few days, and I've been getting evil messages on my phone, and I'm grasping, with my fingers, holding onto dear life myself...I cannot let go of the Rock, my refuge, to where shall we go? To who shall we go? A Muslim convert said that all their lives they depended on someone and if that person let them down, the whole world would collapse, but when she found Christ, now they depend on our Lord, and everything is different, you don't depend on someone earthly for everything. We are then, entrenched on the Rock, the Lord has set the cornerstone, and we are living stones of the Holy Temple of God.
Our Lord speaks in the Holy Gospel: "He said to the man with the withered hand, "Come up here before us." Then he said to the Pharisees, "Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath rather than to do evil, to save life rather than to destroy it?"
The Pharisees had lost the sense of good, as is evident in what happens next. Our Lord heals no matter the circumstance, a man who had one chance at salvation...and He wills it, saves and restores him, and this would cost our Lord's life. So when we look at the cross and see our Lord upon a suffering death, remember all the miracles, remember what they cost...All His Love. Because God our Father has sent All His Love to us. Christ is still among us, and how do we treat Him, do we believe Him? Do we follow Him? Do we truly seek Him? Is it easy to seek Him or to find Him?
Perhaps not, but our Good Shepherd has keen ears who can hear our prayers of the heart.
Let's pray: Lord, Father, God, How little we know of How great You Are. How little we realize the amazing things You have given us. Firstly, Yourself dearest Lord, upon the cross. Secondly, Yourself Lord, in the Holy Eucharist. Thirdly, Yourself Lord, in the Holy Sacraments that follow, like confession. There is sacrifice waiting. There is Love waiting. Lord help us repent, let the whole world repent, and perhaps this pandemonium pandemic will relent. Let us turn to you in truth. Let us know that we are Yours and Yours we wish to be.
from your brother in Christ, Adrian
We continue to pray for healing of this covid pneumonia, in the name of our Lord, give us strength, give my dad strength and faith and grace. Holy Lord God of Hosts, hear our prayers.
P.S.S. If you know of someone with symptoms, better get checked asap, time is of the essence. If you are older or weaker, consider getting vaccinated. There is no fooling around here. The threat is real, this is the time to trust in the Lord, help each other cling to the Rock.
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2 Timothy 1:8–9
8 Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God, 9 who saved us and called us to1 a holy calling, not because of our works but because of his own purpose and grace, which he gave us in Christ Jesus before the ages began,2
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