†Saint Quote "Each of you knows that the foundation of our faith is charity. Without it, our religion would crumble. We will never be truly Catholic unless we conform our entire lives to the two commandments that are the essence of the Catholic faith: to love the Lord, our God, with all our strength, and to love our neighbor as ourselves." –Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati
†Today's Meditation "Know, dearest daughter, how, by humble, continual, and faithful prayer, the soul acquires, with time and perseverance, every virtue. Wherefore should she persevere and never abandon prayer… The soul should advance by degrees, and I know well that, just as the soul is at first imperfect and afterwards perfect, so also is it with her prayer. She should nevertheless continue in vocal prayer, while she is yet imperfect, so as not to fall into idleness. But she should not say her vocal prayers without joining them to mental prayer, that is to say, that while she is reciting, she should endeavor to elevate her mind in My love, with the consideration of her own defects and of the Blood of My only-begotten Son, wherein she finds the breadth of My charity and the remission of her sins." —St. Catherine Of Siena, p. 92
An Excerpt From Dialogue of St. Catherine of Siena
†Daily Verse "It is not that I have already taken hold of it or have already attained perfect maturity, but I continue my pursuit in hope that I may possess it, since I have indeed been taken possession of by Christ [Jesus]. Brothers, I for my part do not consider myself to have taken possession. Just one thing: forgetting what lies behind but straining forward to what lies ahead, I continue my pursuit toward the goal, the prize of God's upward calling, in Christ Jesus." –Philippians 3:12-14
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St. John Francis Regis (1597–1640) was born to a wealthy French merchant and his noble wife. After being educated by the Jesuits, he joined their order at the age of 18 and was later ordained a priest. He grew into a skilled preacher and catechist, and received an assignment to evangelize the French provinces that had fallen to the Protestants – the Huguenots – as well as lapsed Catholics. He devoted his life to this mission and was very successful, winning countless souls to Christ. He preached the Gospel to men, women, and children in all walks and stations of life, even traveling on foot to wild mountain parishes as a missionary priest. He would live on meager meals while spending his days in prayer, preaching, hearing confessions, and visiting prisons and hospitals. He raised controversy when he established hostels for converted prostitutes to remain chaste and work for their sustenance in the lace-making and embroidery trades. He is also remembered for stationing a granary to feed the poor, which at times was miraculously replenished. St. Regis is the patron of embroiderers, social workers, and lace makers. His feast day is June 16th.
Thursday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 368 Reading I
Like a fire there appeared the prophet Elijah whose words were as a flaming furnace. Their staff of bread he shattered, in his zeal he reduced them to straits; By the Lord's word he shut up the heavens and three times brought down fire. How awesome are you, Elijah, in your wondrous deeds! Whose glory is equal to yours? You brought a dead man back to life from the nether world, by the will of the LORD. You sent kings down to destruction, and easily broke their power into pieces. You brought down nobles, from their beds of sickness. You heard threats at Sinai, at Horeb avenging judgments. You anointed kings who should inflict vengeance, and a prophet as your successor. You were taken aloft in a whirlwind of fire, in a chariot with fiery horses. You were destined, it is written, in time to come to put an end to wrath before the day of the LORD, To turn back the hearts of fathers toward their sons, and to re-establish the tribes of Jacob. Blessed is he who shall have seen you And who falls asleep in your friendship. For we live only in our life, but after death our name will not be such. O Elijah, enveloped in the whirlwind!
Then Elisha, filled with the twofold portion of his spirit, wrought many marvels by his mere word. During his lifetime he feared no one, nor was any man able to intimidate his will. Nothing was beyond his power; beneath him flesh was brought back into life. In life he performed wonders, and after death, marvelous deeds.
97:1-2, 3-4, 5-6, 7
R. (12a) Rejoice in the Lord, you just! The LORD is king; let the earth rejoice; let the many isles be glad. Clouds and darkness are round about him, justice and judgment are the foundation of his throne. R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just! Fire goes before him and consumes his foes round about. His lightnings illumine the world; the earth sees and trembles. R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just! The mountains melt like wax before the LORD, before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim his justice, and all peoples see his glory. R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just! All who worship graven things are put to shame, who glory in the things of nought; all gods are prostrate before him. R. Rejoice in the Lord, you just!
R. Alleluia, alleluia. You have received a spirit of adoption as sons through which we cry: Abba! Father! R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Jesus said to his disciples: "In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
"This is how you are to pray:
'Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.'
"If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions."
Daily Meditation: Matthew 6:7-15
This is how you are to pray: "Our Father . . . " (Matthew 6:9)
When Jesus teaches the disciples to pray, he begins by telling them to address God as their Father. Think about how amazing this must have been for the disciples to hear! Certainly, God was the Father of Israel, but now Jesus was encouraging them to approach God as he did—as their very own Father, their "Abba" or "Papa" (Mark 14:36).
This is the gift that Jesus gave us—that we are able to call God our Father and that we can be secure in knowing that we are his beloved sons or daughters. This is the core of our identity, the foundation of our existence.
But we can often forget this truth because we are used to being identified by what we do, not by who we are. For example, how would people describe you? They might identify you by your occupation: lawyer, nurse, teacher, laborer. Or they might say you are good at business, sports, or art. All well and good, but if we think of our worth in terms of our performance, then we can easily fall into a performance approach with God—as if we have to somehow earn the privilege of being a child of God.
That's why we need to spend time with the Lord each day so that he can continually remind us of our true identity. It is through prayer that we come to know who he is and who we are in relation to him. We also come to see that even when we fall short of what he is asking of us, it does not affect our identity. God is still our Father, we are still his children, and his mercy is always available to us.
When we understand that we are beloved sons and daughters of the Father, we can join God in the mission he has for us without ever worrying about "measuring up" or performing perfectly. We are able to work from a relationship with the Father, not for a relationship with him. We do the work because of God's love for us and through the grace he gives us, not to get into his good graces.
Today, pray the Our Father slowly several times, lingering over those first two words. Then thank and praise God for inviting you to call him "Father" and for asking you to join him in building his kingdom on earth.
"Our Father, hallowed be thy name!"
Sirach 48:1-14 Psalm 97:1-7
From today's 1st Holy Scripture: "You were destined...to put an end to wrath before the day of the LORD, To turn back the hearts of fathers toward their sons... Blessed is he who shall have seen you And who falls asleep in your friendship."
Fall asleep in friendship? What's that mean? Right? It means everything. It means to be faithful until the eternal rest comes upon us...forever...and then forever more. For God loves His children. I was meditating on this fact, of being "His" children. We took a long vacation trip, a family reunion vacation. We stayed in a large house cabin with my sisters and their husbands and kids. One night, I was exhausted and the mixed kids upstairs sharing a living room to sleep wouldn't go to sleep, so I went up to silence them, but the tone I used for one niece was not the sweetest to say the least. I spoke to her as if one of my own kids. Needless to say, it did not go well, hearing the next day I had made her cry. Boy, that ruined my trip. I was aggravated with myself for having failed at charity, and I even blamed the situation when my own son burned his legs a couple days later with boiling water in a hotel, which I'm still treating and seeing doctors. FYI, I did apologize the next day to my niece/god daughter, and even to the parents letting them know I was a grumpy fool that night. Regardless, I digress. What of your own children? I can't talk to others' children like my own. There's something to be said about this. What about God's own children? Can God talk to you a certain way? Can He treat you a certain way? I'm pretty rough with my kids at times. And I've noticed that about fathers. They are nothing like mothers. I look at dads at malls and other public places, and I notice they are like me, like governors, and I'm thinking of engines, not politics. A governor controls limits, and sets standards of operations. It is important so that the engine won't blow up essentially, makes it last longer. I notice when a family doesn't have a dad, a governor, things are very susceptible to go haywire, and it is proven by the large percentage of those in jail is because of no father figure in the family. And what's worse? A fatherless people as a whole. And so, we live in a world trying to go haywire, until something comes into control. That is our Father. Will you relent? Or will you obey? Better to repent, and then He will be sent...in our hearts. There's no room for God in a fatherless place often because pride, jungle law kicks in, and they call this "respect". This is not the same principle as the humility factor of Heaven. There is a whole other connotation.
We pray in Psalms: "All who worship graven things are put to shame, who glory in the things of nought; all gods are prostrate before him. Rejoice in the Lord, you just"
Today, what graven things are there? Usually it is a man made object that is then worshiped, or adored. Catholics are often accused of this worshiping idols things. But is that what we do? The answer is no. We have pictures and statues, and they help us worship and adore, but these are more visual aids than anything, much like a picture of your loved one, that's not them but it helps you remember them or the moment they represent, like when I see the stations of the cross and the different moments of our Lord's passion. It helps us pray more focused. And if we we're truly doing this worshiping graven images, all of us billions of believers would've been put to shame long, long ago.
In today's Gospel we heard our Lord: ""In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words."
Once again, we are accused of babbling off on the rosary. Are we babbling like they accuse us of? The answer is no. We are not supposed to rattle off and just "say the rosary" like I hear people say they do. What's more, if you pray it often, most time you will pray it when alone, to meditate, and quietly, not to be heard by the public, but you going off into the life of Christ in this deep meditative prayer.
And then He teaches us to pray:
"'Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come"
Back to OUR Father. And my reflection was of God our Father as I walked the office of our family business where me and my dad basically ran the whole show...and now I feel sometimes alone, not able to converse about daily ongoing business as was the usual. And I had a feeling that said "I got to do what he said and invest smartly until his return". But what return? Now I thought about God and how we are to use our talents until He promises to return. My Father's business is about His children. My dad's business was similar but heavily vested in finding work to provide for dozens of families with 50 or 60 employees at a time.
But what about Our Father? Who is in Heaven. Right after that we say HOLY BE HIS NAME. Sadly, this first commandment mixed with the second, is often shot down with daily ridiculing of His name. Even cartoons use our Lord's name in vain for a cheap laugh. If we were like the Jews, we couldn't even spell out the name of GOD in a daily writing like this. Where is the honor? There is not even jungle law "respect" here!
Yet, after ridiculing His name and honor...some still call him Father.
When I was young, I remember having to kiss my dad's hand.
When all Catholics were younger, they had to kiss the Bishop's hand, even the priest was very honored. Today? A priest is lucky if the people will even look at him in the face. There is not the honor from the parish, nor the priests at times (some, not all) for the people, often accusing "them" of certain things.
You see, we've lost the sense of true honor and worship. The priest must treat the people as if God were there. And the people must treat the priest as if God were there inside of him too. Yet, we have made it a dishonor by listening to the world's mantra.
Priests are not what the media says. Priests are marked to serve God in His position, in the person of Christ. Much like the church, marked as a special place to honor God. Yet, modern churches become a place for "social gathering".
Catholic Churches are a place of sacrifice and honor of God. It is a temple, and we are then called to be that temple, beautiful and honored, and to serve God to God.
If you have ears, you will know what has been said of the world and of your heart.
Lord, Father, You have taught us to pray. Help us live the Holy Prayer as the golden rule forever...to honor You and Love You forever.
Your brother in Christ our Lord and Savior, our Love in Heaven, adrian
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26 Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and give no opportunity to the devil.
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