†Saint Quote "We must not wish anything other than what happens from moment to moment, all the while, however, exercising ourselves in goodness. And to refuse to exercise oneself in goodness, and to insist upon simply awaiting what God might send, would be simply to tempt God." –St. Catherine of Genoa
†Today's Meditation "When needed, Mary provides for the defense and salvation of her children extraordinary graces and wonderful miracles. What wonders have caused, sustained, spread everywhere, a confidence among Christian people! What striking proofs of her protection the Church recalls to our memory in solemn feasts and devout practices, enriched by precious indulgences! What titles Christians give her to testify to their gratitude, 'Help of Christians, health of the sick, comfort of the afflicted, refuge of sinners, gate of heaven, our life, our sweetness, our hope!' What a multitude of people gather to the places where she is most honored, where she obtains the most assistance to those who call on her! What prayers and acts of thanksgiving are offered at the foot of her altars! In our days, what conquests have been made by Our Lady of Victories! What favors have been bestowed on all hearts devoted to the heart of Mary!" —St. Ignatius of Loyola, p. 156
An Excerpt From Manual for Marian Devotion
†Daily Verse "But to you who hear I say, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. To the person who strikes you on one cheek, offer the other one as well, and from the person who takes your cloak, do not withhold even your tunic. Give to everyone who asks of you, and from the one who takes what is yours do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you." –Luke 6:27-31
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St. Athanasius of Alexandria
St. Athanasius (296-373 A.D.) was born in Alexandria, Egypt, to noble Christian parents. He received an excellent education in theology, philosophy, rhetoric, and law, which he directed to the service of God. He made great progress in both wisdom and virtue, and made a spiritual retreat in the Egyptian desert with St. Anthony the Great. St. Athanasius became the Bishop of Alexandria and served in that role for 46 years. He tirelessly and courageously devoted most of his life to defeating the Arian heresy, which denied the divinity of Christ. When the majority of his fellow bishops were Arian heretics, which threatened the integrity of the whole Church, Athansius stood firmly and almost single-handedly against their error using his philosophical knowledge, theological wisdom, rhetorical skill, and strength of spirit. Despite having the support of several popes, he suffered great trials, scandals, and persecutions at the hands of his doctrinal enemies, and spent much of his life in exile. He was a participant in the Council of Nicea in 325 A.D. and did much of the theological work which supported the condemnation of the Arian heresy and the formulation of the Nicene Creed. St. Athanasius is known as one of the greatest champions of Catholic doctrine to have ever lived, earning the title, "Father of Orthodoxy." St. Athanasius was later declared a Doctor of the Church. His feast day is celebrated on May 2nd.
Memorial of Saint Athanasius, Bishop and Doctor of the Church
Lectionary: 273 Reading I
Stephen, filled with grace and power, was working great wonders and signs among the people. Certain members of the so-called Synagogue of Freedmen, Cyreneans, and Alexandrians, and people from Cilicia and Asia, came forward and debated with Stephen, but they could not withstand the wisdom and the Spirit with which he spoke. Then they instigated some men to say, "We have heard him speaking blasphemous words against Moses and God." They stirred up the people, the elders, and the scribes, accosted him, seized him, and brought him before the Sanhedrin. They presented false witnesses who testified, "This man never stops saying things against this holy place and the law. For we have heard him claim that this Jesus the Nazorean will destroy this place and change the customs that Moses handed down to us." All those who sat in the Sanhedrin looked intently at him and saw that his face was like the face of an angel.
119:23-24, 26-27, 29-30
R. (1ab) Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord! or: R. Alleluia. Though princes meet and talk against me,
your servant meditates on your statutes. Yes, your decrees are my delight;
they are my counselors. R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord! or: R. Alleluia. I declared my ways, and you answered me;
teach me your statutes. Make me understand the way of your precepts,
and I will meditate on your wondrous deeds. R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord! or: R. Alleluia. Remove from me the way of falsehood,
and favor me with your law. The way of truth I have chosen;
I have set your ordinances before me. R. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord! or: R. Alleluia.
R. Alleluia, alleluia. One does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
[After Jesus had fed the five thousand men, his disciples saw him walking on the sea.] The next day, the crowd that remained across the sea saw that there had been only one boat there, and that Jesus had not gone along with his disciples in the boat, but only his disciples had left. Other boats came from Tiberias near the place where they had eaten the bread when the Lord gave thanks. When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, "Rabbi, when did you get here?" Jesus answered them and said, "Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him the Father, God, has set his seal." So they said to him, "What can we do to accomplish the works of God?" Jesus answered and said to them, "This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent."
Daily Meditation: Acts 6:8-15
His face was like the face of an angel. (Acts 6:15)
Stephen was under no illusions. He knew that his accusers had only one goal: to find an excuse to justify putting him to death. The verdict had already been rendered. Stephen was going to die that day.
So how did he face death? With "the face of an angel" (Acts 6:15).
You'd think he might be fearful or anxious. But he wasn't. You'd think he might have had his own "Gethsemane" moment as Jesus did, but Scripture doesn't recount anything like that. You might even think he spent his last hours trying to escape his predicament. But he didn't. In fact, all that Scripture tells us is that he launched into a lengthy defense of his preaching that inflamed his accusers even more.
Why was Stephen so peaceful and radiant? Because death had no power over him. He knew it wasn't the end. Rather, it was the gateway to eternal life. In a vision, he even saw Jesus—risen from the dead—awaiting him on the other side of the grave (Acts 7:55-56).
Stephen stands at the head of a long line of martyrs who faced death with courage, grace, and even good humor. There's St. Lawrence (225–258). As he was being burned alive, he said, "Turn me over; I'm done on this side." There's also St. Thomas More (1478–1535), who, about to be beheaded, adjusted his beard and told his executioner, "It would be a pity if that were cut; it hasn't committed treason." And there's the Korean martyr, St. Andrew Kim Taegon (1821–1846), who said, "My immortal life is about to begin!"
Stephen and his successors show us that Jesus truly has destroyed death—for everyone who believes! As St. Paul said, nothing, not even death, "will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord" (Romans 8:39).
Of course, it's only natural to fear something as mysterious as death. But that fear doesn't have to control us. It doesn't have to dictate our choices or cloud our hearts. It can actually send us back to the Lord, where we can hear him say to us, "Do not be afraid . . . , for your Father is pleased to give you the kingdom" (Luke 12:32).
"Praise to you, Jesus, victor over sin and death!"
Psalm 119:23-24, 26-27, 29-30 John 6:22-29
From today's 1st Holy Scripture: "Stephen, filled with grace and power, was working great wonders and signs among the people."
Here you have a man working beautiful things in the life of humankind, perhaps with miracles and moving people to greater faith and joy in a newfound resurrection. And the world wanted him dead, those who want to control the world, and those who want control are of darkness. Think of how much you'd like to be in control...well, I'm sorry, but all we can do is submit ourselves to God's control. What does this mean? Do what He says...said Mother Mary upon the first Miracle, and upon loving Him with Her whole being.
We pray in Psalms: "Remove from me the way of falsehood, and favor me with your law. The way of truth I have chosen; I have set your ordinances before me. Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord!"
And so we talk the talk, but can we do the walk...like Christ? Enough has been said. Enough arguing has been done for the last 2,000 years. Who can really do this whole Christ thing? Can a family do so? What about a split up family? Can an orphan do the Christ thing? Some priests are questionable on the Christ thing...but not all. Most are trying just like the rest of us, but they will only be made more holy to the degree the rest of us are holy and help them to a higher level. You see, if you want to be holy, make others holy. If you want peace, then you become the peace. If you want grace...then...let's talk about it! LOL, then walk the walk of grace.
In today's Gospel we heard: ""Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you."
We partake of the Holy Eucharist, a small piece of unleavened bread that is consecrated into the Body Soul and Divinity of our Beloved Lord, Jesus Christ. Is my body able to be physically filled with that? Is my body able to be spiritually healed by this? There have been some saints that live off the Eucharist physically...alone. This is not for the faint of heart. You see, the Eucharist becomes everything to the degree you allow Him to be everything.
So tell me, what are you working for? What are you working so hard for every day? Should it not be for salvation? Shall it not be for the greater glory of God in Heaven? Do you feel like you are doing nothing? Do you feel like you are spinning your wheels? Are you stuck in a rut?
On what day will you decide that you should work for God alone?
Does this mean becoming a secluded religious clergy member? Not all can do that! Or can we live solely for God? What are you working for? What are you living for?
I've had to refocus my concentrations lately, as I was getting more and more suppressed with stress and worries of daily work. I noticed how most of my prayers began about work, and then family, and the church if any at all. I had my Trinity upside down. Prayers should be first about our life with God the Father, and then family, and then work and everyone else. But if God is first? My neighbor is possibly holding Christ and His message and blessings.
Who do you work for?
IT IS CHRIST
from your brother in Christ, Adrian
P.S. My dad's sister passed away suddenly yesterday. Her son, my cousin, is facing the last weeks of his life with brain tumors. It's been hard times for my loved ones. Pray for her soul Maria Nieves Sanches, and her son Cheo. Lord have mercy on our souls.
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Random bible verse generator:
WOW Proverbs 16:8 8 Better is a little with righteousness
than great revenues with injustice.
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