Monday, February 21, 2022

† ".How Long Will I Be.. ."


†Saint Quote
""Put aside your hatred and animosity. Take pains to refrain from sharp words. If they escape your lips, do not be ashamed to let your lips produce the remedy, since they have caused the wounds. Pardon one another so that later on you will not remember the injury. The recollection of an injury is itself wrong. It adds to our anger, nurtures our sin and hates what is good. It is a rusty arrow and poison for the soul. It puts all virtue to flight."
–St. Francis of Paola

†Today's Meditation
"God's delays are mysterious; sorrow is sometimes prolonged for the same reason for which it is sent. God may abstain for the moment from healing, not because Love does not love, but because Love never stops loving, and a greater good is to come from the woe. Heaven's clock is different from ours."
—Fulton J. Sheen, p. 357

An Excerpt From
Life of Christ

†Daily Verse
"Now this is the message that we have heard from him and proclaim to you: God is light, and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say, 'We have fellowship with him,' while we continue to walk in darkness, we lie and do not act in truth. But if we walk in the light as he is in the light, then we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of his Son Jesus cleanses us from all sin."
–1 John 1:5-7


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St. Peter Damian

St. Peter Damian (1007-1072 A.D.) was born in Ravenna, Italy, the youngest of a large and noble yet poor family. After his birth his mother initially refused to nurse him due to the strain he would put on the family, and he nearly died. He was later orphaned and suffered from extreme poverty. One brother adopted him, but neglected him and treated him like a slave. Another brother, a priest, recognizing that Peter had great intelligence, took him in and provided for his education. Peter excelled in his studies and in religious piety. By the time he was twenty-five he became a professor famous for his work in theology and canon law. Bothered by the distractions of university life, at twenty-eight he left his position to become a Benedictine monk and to lead a quiet life of fervent prayer and self-mortification. He lived during a time of great corruption in the Church, and became heavily involved in the controversies and crises of the day, advocating for reform and greater discipline in religious life. He was an influential figure, a friend and adviser to both popes and emperors, and was made a bishop and cardinal. Due to his academic prowess and prolific theological writings, St. Peter Damian was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1823. His feast day is February 21.


Monday of the Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 341
Reading I

Jas 3:13-18

Who among you is wise and understanding?
Let him show his works by a good life

in the humility that comes from wisdom.
But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts,
do not boast and be false to the truth.
Wisdom of this kind does not come down from above
but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.
For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist,
there is disorder and every foul practice.
But the wisdom from above is first of all pure,
then peaceable, gentle, compliant,
full of mercy and good fruits,
without inconstancy or insincerity.
And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace
for those who cultivate peace.

Responsorial Psalm

19:8, 9, 10, 15

R. (9a) The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.
The law of the LORD is perfect,

refreshing the soul;
The decree of the LORD is trustworthy,

giving wisdom to the simple.
R. The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.
The precepts of the LORD are right,

rejoicing the heart;
The command of the LORD is clear,

enlightening the eye.
R. The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.
The fear of the LORD is pure,

enduring forever;
The ordinances of the LORD are true,

all of them just.
R. The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.
Let the words of my mouth and the thought of my heart

find favor before you,

O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.
R. The precepts of the Lord give joy to the heart.


See 2 Tm 1:10

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Mk 9:14-29

As Jesus came down from the mountain with Peter, James, John
and approached the other disciples,
they saw a large crowd around them and scribes arguing with them.
Immediately on seeing him,
the whole crowd was utterly amazed.
They ran up to him and greeted him.
He asked them, "What are you arguing about with them?"
Someone from the crowd answered him,
"Teacher, I have brought to you my son possessed by a mute spirit.
Wherever it seizes him, it throws him down;
he foams at the mouth, grinds his teeth, and becomes rigid.
I asked your disciples to drive it out, but they were unable to do so."
He said to them in reply,
"O faithless generation, how long will I be with you?
How long will I endure you? Bring him to me."
They brought the boy to him.
And when he saw him,
the spirit immediately threw the boy into convulsions.
As he fell to the ground, he began to roll around

and foam at the mouth.
Then he questioned his father,
"How long has this been happening to him?"
He replied, "Since childhood.
It has often thrown him into fire and into water to kill him.
But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us."
Jesus said to him,
"'If you can!' Everything is possible to one who has faith."
Then the boy's father cried out, "I do believe, help my unbelief!"
Jesus, on seeing a crowd rapidly gathering,
rebuked the unclean spirit and said to it,
"Mute and deaf spirit, I command you:
come out of him and never enter him again!"
Shouting and throwing the boy into convulsions, it came out.
He became like a corpse, which caused many to say, "He is dead!"
But Jesus took him by the hand, raised him, and he stood up.
When he entered the house, his disciples asked him in private,
"Why could we not drive the spirit out?"
He said to them, "This kind can only come out through prayer."


Daily Meditation: Mark 9:14-29

Have compassion on us and help us. (Mark 9:22)

Imagine today's scene: a father reaches out to Jesus' disciples because he needs a miracle. A crowd gathers. The disciples huddle around his son and command an evil spirit to leave. And then . . . nothing. Maybe someone from the crowd comments on their lack of power, and it touches off a heated debate. And all the while, hope fades from the dad's face.

Isn't it sad how this desperate plea for healing turned into an argument? The situation called for action, but the disciples became ensnared in a debate. It's no wonder that when Jesus arrived and asked why they were arguing, they didn't respond.

Now look at how Jesus entered this man's world: with a question showing compassion. "How long has this been happening to him?" (Mark 9:21). He reassured the man that everything was possible through faith, then cast out the evil spirit. Finally, he reached down to gently grasp the boy's hand and help him to his feet.

What a contrast! The disciples got caught up in a dispute, but Jesus showed only love. Love made the difference then, and it still does today! Every day we encounter people who need to experience Jesus' love for them. They need to see that he cares for them. And they need to see it through us.

Think of how God reveals his love to you. He doesn't just direct you from the comfortable distance of heaven. He enters into your world and helps you. As a man, Jesus walked into the desperate situations of the people he wanted to reach. He felt the pains, hungers, and needs we all feel, and he won our salvation in his own body.

Today, Jesus is inviting you to join him in entering the lives of the people he wants to reach. Is there anyone he might be pointing out to you? Be available to that person. Be ready with an encouraging word. Be ready to walk alongside them and be a part of their lives. Do this, and you will be showing Christ to another one of his children.

"Lord Jesus, lead me to the people whose lives I can touch with your love."

James 3:13-18
Psalm 19:8-10, 15


From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"But the wisdom from above is first of all pure,
then peaceable, gentle, compliant, full of mercy and good fruits, without inconstancy or insincerity."

Yesterday I was leading an adult faith group, and towards the end I shared a story, that I had seen a great light during Divine Mercy prayers with my dad in the hospital, to which I saw a great light enter and it came to hover over my dad and immediately my soul, spirit shriveled away from the light as if I were averse to the light, as if I were trying to get away from such an intense light, almost as if a demon in me was shrieking away, but my thoughts and feeling were, "get away from me, I am not worthy". After a bit the great pure intense light then went away, and we finished prayers. And the ordeal has left me with many questions. Was this our Lord? What was He doing? And, why in the world was I feeling I could not be in His presence? I become worried about my purity. I worry that for as righteous and holy that I strive to be...I am not pure enough to be in His prescence; light to light.


We pray in Psalms:
"The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever; The ordinances of the LORD are true, all of them just."
And we also discussed the fear of the Lord. I explained to them, that a holy fear of the Lord is opposite of what most think. A holy fear is to be amazed by God, so amazed by His love that you would fear to turn away from Him because He is so great, because He loves so much. And so, a holy fear becomes a holy love. I told everyone at my dad's vigil prayers, the rosary I led in a full church, that in the bible it says that we are given faith, hope, and love, and the greatest of these is love. I told them I was afraid I did not have enough faith to save my dad. That all my hopes were shot down, time and time again throughout the suffering ordeal, weeks in the hospital. But the greatest Love remains and it remains alive. My love for God, and my love for dad.


Our Lord speaks in the Holy Gospel:
"Jesus said to him,
"'If you can!' Everything is possible to one who has faith."
Then the boy's father cried out, "I do believe, help my unbelief!"

During this ordeal, I also prayed to God, "help me believe! help my disbelief!". I was praying for faith of a child. And I told people this is what I was praying for. Because a pure faith can move mountains. And they told me to be careful what I prayed for, because some of these gifts will put you through the ringer. And here I am, my tears are rung out, I am alone in my office, my dad is not walking in as he would normally come in, saying good morning, and tackling the day to day operations.
Supposedly now I gotta do the thousand things he'd do for everyone. I don't see how I could. I am not he.
But I was told that his blood runs through me. And I can. I was told to remember his words. I was told to remember core values. I was reminded...that God is with us.

And so our Lord enters the scene, where they couldn't heal the possessed boy. He asks for faith from the boy's father and from the disciples. Where there is no faith, he asks for faith.

Someone told me to try to comfort me during class yesterday, "faith doesn't mean you get everything you want".

I said "I know, but at the moment, you want God to hear your prayers, I know everything is up to Him".

Even last night, I was pondering a conundrum; how can I pray God's will be done? What about intercessions? What's the point of just praying over someone sick and dying "Lord let your will be done" and not pray "Lord please heal this person". I guess the answer is not one or the other, but both and. And it goes like this: "Lord, I pray that this cup, this chalice, may pass me, but not my will be done but yours."
Now that I was writing all this, I know the Holy Spirit is speaking to me, and answering my deepest questions.

And so it reveals God's truth when He told His disciples who couldn't heal the boy. "This kind of healing only comes through prayer" and fasting. And such is proved in my case while writing to you: I have settled my soul to ask Him to enter. I have asked Him to write to us. And I have become an instrument of His grace. And He reveals the eternal truth to us when He says:
I AM with you always, until the end of age.

Let's pray:
Lord, Heavenly Father,
thank You for allowing us to hear Your message.
May it become words of everlasting life for all of us.
A life with You in Heaven, a love and fire that burns pure forever.

from your brother in Christ,

People asking how I'm doing. There's two things that I've noticed. There's those who text or call to say "call me if you need anything" and there's those who just bring in things and themselves into our lives, like food, and keeping company. Without asking. The first one is ok, but I really like the second one though. True love in action, not just words. Actions speak volumes.

I'm afraid I've been the first kind to others "I'm here, call me if you need something I've said". Almost as if I offer empty words. I'm learning what love means. My dad was the kind that showed love with his life, not with words. His heart spoke. I pray it continues through me. The Father's love continues.


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Random bible verse generator:

1 Kings 8:56
"Blessed be the LORD who has given rest to his people Israel, according to all that he promised. Not one word has failed of all his good promise, which he spoke by Moses his servant.


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God Bless You! Peace

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