†Saint Quote "Quote of the Day "What great faith our Lord Jesus Christ asks of us—and how just that is. Do we not owe him such faith? It looks impossible to us, but Jesus is Master of the impossible." –Blessed Charles de Foucauld
†Today's Meditation "No human motive should lead us to pray: neither routine, nor the habit of doing as others do, nor a thirst for spiritual consolations. No, we should go to prayer to render homage to God. It is not, however, a common-place visit of propriety, nor a conversation without any precise object; we want to obtain from Him some definite spiritual good, such or such progress in the uprooting of some vice, in the acquisition of some virtue. We have, therefore, a purpose upon which we are bent, and all our considerations, affections, petitions, and resolutions should combine for its attainment. God is there, surrounding us and penetrating us; but we were not, perhaps, thinking of this. We must, therefore, withdraw our powers from the things of the earth, gather them together, and fix them upon God; thus it is we place ourselves in His presence. Naturally, we approach Him by saluting Him with a profound and humble act of adoration. In presence of so much greatness and holiness, the soul perceives herself to be little and miserable; she humbles herself, purifies herself by an act of sorrow; apologizes for daring to approach a being of so lofty a majesty. Powerless to pray as she should, she represents her incapacity to God, and begs the Holy Ghost to help her to pray well." —Rev. Dom Vitalis Lehodey, p. 91
An Excerpt From The Ways of Mental Prayer
†Daily Verse "He is 'the stone rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone.' There is no salvation through anyone else, nor is there any other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved." –Acts 4:11-12
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St. Judith of Prussia
St. Judith of Prussia (13th c.), also known as St. Jutta, was born to a wealthy family in Thuringia in what is now Germany. She desired to model her life after another noble saint from her country, St. Elizabeth of Hungary, who lived in the previous century. Judith was married at age fifteen to a man of equal rank, and together they raised a family. Despite their great wealth, Judith desired that they should live in a simple way and share their fortune generously with the poor. Her husband was at first displeased with her because he desired a lifestyle according to their means and rank. However, Judith persevered and eventually won him over to join her in a life of greater humility and piety. Her husband later died while on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land, leaving Judith to raise her children alone. Once her children were grown, she rid herself of her costly clothes, jewelry, and other possessions and joined the Third Order of St. Francis. She committed herself to serving the poor and the sick, for which she incurred mockery due to her noble rank in society. In the final years of her life she relocated to Prussia to live as a hermitess in a simple hut. There she spent her days in prayer and penance for the conversion of the pagan Prussians. After she died many miracles occurred at her grave, and she became the patron saint of Prussia. Her feast day is May 5th.
Thursday of the Third Week of Easter
Lectionary: 276 Reading I
The angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, "Get up and head south on the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza, the desert route." So he got up and set out. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, that is, the queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury, who had come to Jerusalem to worship, and was returning home. Seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah. The Spirit said to Philip, "Go and join up with that chariot." Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and said, "Do you understand what you are reading?" He replied, "How can I, unless someone instructs me?" So he invited Philip to get in and sit with him. This was the Scripture passage he was reading:
Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter,
and as a lamb before its shearer is silent,
so he opened not his mouth.
In his humiliation justice was denied him.
Who will tell of his posterity?
For his life is taken from the earth.
Then the eunuch said to Philip in reply, "I beg you, about whom is the prophet saying this? About himself, or about someone else?" Then Philip opened his mouth and, beginning with this Scripture passage, he proclaimed Jesus to him. As they traveled along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, "Look, there is water. What is to prevent my being baptized?" Then he ordered the chariot to stop, and Philip and the eunuch both went down into the water, and he baptized him. When they came out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, but continued on his way rejoicing. Philip came to Azotus, and went about proclaiming the good news to all the towns until he reached Caesarea.
66:8-9, 16-17, 20
R. (1) Let all the earth cry out to God with joy. or: R. Alleluia. Bless our God, you peoples,
loudly sound his praise; He has given life to our souls,
and has not let our feet slip. R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy. or: R. Alleluia. Hear now, all you who fear God, while I declare
what he has done for me. When I appealed to him in words,
praise was on the tip of my tongue. R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy. or: R. Alleluia. Blessed be God who refused me not
my prayer or his kindness! R. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy. or: R. Alleluia.
R. Alleluia, alleluia. I am the living bread that came down from heaven, says the Lord; whoever eats this bread will live forever. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus said to the crowds: "No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day. It is written in the prophets:
They shall all be taught by God.
Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me. Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life. Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my Flesh for the life of the world."
Daily Meditation: Psalm 66:8-9, 16-17, 20
Blessed be God who refused me not my prayer or his kindness. (Psalm 66:20)
You can almost hear these words from today's psalm on the lips of the Ethiopian court official after he met Philip (see Acts 8:39). The official had just been to the Temple in Jerusalem to worship and was reading from the prophet Isaiah as he traveled home. As he was wondering what the words could mean, he suddenly noticed a man running alongside his chariot. "Do you understand what you are reading?" the man called out (8:30). The official invited Philip into his chariot, and just like that, everything changed.
This court official was clearly devout. He had worshipped in Jerusalem and prayerfully read the Scriptures. But he longed to understand more. Little did he know that God already had a plan in motion to do exactly what the psalmist had prayed for: show him kindness and answer his prayer. At the perfect moment, the Lord brought Philip to explain the Scriptures to him. The Lord provided water for his baptism. The Lord filled him with freedom and joy.
God saw the stirrings of this man's heart even before he prayed. That's true for us as well. God sees the longings of every person who is seeking him—even before they realize what they're looking for!
Our heavenly Father is always ready to bring light and life to us—and to everyone seeking him. He wants us to know him. His deepest desire is that his love, peace, and strength would find a place in our hearts. So he may lead us to a particular Scripture passage or put a person like Philip in our path to show us his faithfulness. He may provide a helping hand in the middle of a trying time or answer a prayer.
Just as the Lord knew where this official was and what was stirring in his heart, he sees you and knows you as well. Even as you are seeking him, he is already working to answer you. He hears your prayers, whether they are for yourself or for a loved one. And that knowledge can bring you comfort and hope!
"Thank you, Lord, that you do not refuse our prayers. Even now, in your kindness, you are sending an answer."
Acts 8:26-40 John 6:44-51
From today's 1st Holy Scripture: "Do you understand what you are reading?" He replied, "How can I, unless someone instructs me?" So he invited Philip to get in and sit with him."
How will we ever know what Holy Scripture is...unless we invite the Holy Spirit to explain it to us? Before reading, breathe in the breath of God. Be open. Be open to Him. Give time to Him. What do you give time to? What is important to you? You spend time on what is important right? All day long? What is most important? Think about it.
We pray in Psalms: "Bless our God, you peoples, loudly sound his praise; He has given life to our souls, and has not let our feet slip. Let all the earth cry out to God with joy"
Imagine, something gave life to your body, and it is the soul. But something gave life to your soul...and that is God too.
Now let me tell you where I honestly believe I am in faith. I believe God is the ultimate super power, creator of all things including beings, and with this said, it is hard to wrap my mind as Him as just my "father". He is so much more. I'm having a hard time with this, because it is too much for the mind to comprehend. And those who have it figured out should be careful, because God cannot be confined to time or space.
In today's Gospel we heard: 'No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day."
And a thought hits me about the chosen ones. Who gets to be chosen? Many will raise their hands to be chosen, but even among them whom say yes, few will be chosen. "Not all who say Lord Lord will enter the Kingdom of Heaven".
For now, we are chosen and can raise our hands to serve, but will that be reason enough to enter Heaven? I say this because I know many servers who hate God but still serve in the church. And I've heard of Anti-Christ working within the church, even to level of priests and bishops. Some for example work hand in hand with Freemasons who declare that their thoughts are the truth to live and die for. These have caused many atrocities in the church, including slaughtering of lambs, priests, hanging them on poles and butchering them alive, like in old Mexico not but 100 years ago.
So who comes to the Father?
Those who are drawn to Him. I sing that song often for presentation of gifts in Mass, "Drawn to You". (Listen Here). Are you drawn to Jesus the Christ our living Savior? It is Him drawing you! This is beautiful and wonderful news for one who is fearfully and wonderfully made. And what does fearfully made? It is one who is made with much grace and care. While I feel disgraced, God says "I can you fill you with grace". Think of Mary's immaculate conception, how she was fearfully and wonderfully made. A pure vessel for Christ, an ark of the covenant, of God's promise...oh what an honor! What grace! How can I empty myself of my own worries to let only God handle me? How can I empty myself of so many fruitless desires and passions, so that He can fill me with the blood of His Sacred Passion?
What would move me to fall on my knees and cry at realizing the greatest gift on earth...that of God's body, blood, soul, and divinity, especially in the most Holy Eucharist?
Our Lord says: "I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my Flesh for the life of the world."
Guess what? You are invited to live forever in a place where He lives as the Father with His most special child...you my child. Nobody can love you like that. Nobody can truly give themselves to you forever...but Jesus our Lord who is one with our Father and who extends Himself in Mercy forever. Oh what a gift we should honor and celebrate all the more...truly thanksgiving.
from your brother in Christ, Adrian
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7 "Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.
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