†Saint Quote "O Holy Spirit, descend plentifully into my heart. Enlighten the dark corners of this neglected dwelling and scatter there Thy cheerful beams." –St. Augustine
†Today's Meditation "The reason why the soul not only travels securely when in obscurity, but also makes greater progress, is this: In general the soul makes greater progress in the spiritual life when it least thinks so, yea, when it rather imagines that it is losing everything …There is another reason also why the soul has traveled safely in this obscurity; it has suffered: for the way of suffering is safer, and also more profitable, than that of rejoicing and of action. In suffering God gives strength, but in action and in joy the soul does but show its own weakness and imperfections. And in suffering, the soul practices and acquires virtue, and becomes pure, wiser, and more cautious." —St. John of the Cross, p.149
An Excerpt From Dark Night of the Soul
†Daily Verse "And now, children, remain in him, so that when he appears we may have confidence and not be put to shame by him at his coming." –1 John 2:28
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St. Genesius of Rome
St. Genesius of Rome (d. 303 AD) was a renowned actor and playwright, the leader of a popular acting troupe during the reign of Emperor Diocletian. When the Emperor was killing Christians, Genesius wrote plays to mock them and expose their secret rites to ridicule. To research for a play mocking baptism, he went to a priest pretending to desire the sacraments and was fully instructed as a catechumen. Genesius prepared his play and instructed the other actors in their parts. On performance day the Emperor was present. Genesius played the lead character seeking baptism, and the rite was performed in such a ludicrous manner that all present laughed. As the water was poured over Genesius' head by an actor playing the priest's part, Genesius saw a vision of the heavens opened and the hand of God touching him. He also saw an angel who showed him that his many sins had been washed away through the valid baptism he had just received. At that moment Genesius' heart was changed by the Holy Spirit and he believed in the truth of Christianity. At the conclusion of the play Genesius boldly declared his new faith, recounting how he had been a scoffer until that moment. He implored the audience, including the Emperor, to follow Christ. The crowd thought this was part of the performance, but once they understood it was real, Genesius was seized. The Emperor, furious, subjected him to cruel tortures daily to make him renounce his faith in Christ. Genesius staunchly refused and was beheaded. The Christians collected his body and buried him with the other martyrs. St. Genesius is the patron saint of comedians, dancers, actors, musicians, printers, and torture victims. His feast day is August 25th.
Thursday of the Twenty-First Week in Ordinary Time
Reading 1 1 COR 1:1-9
Paul, called to be an Apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, to the Church of God that is in Corinth, to you who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be holy, with all those everywhere who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours. Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. I give thanks to my God always on your account for the grace of God bestowed on you in Christ Jesus, that in him you were enriched in every way, with all discourse and all knowledge, as the testimony to Christ was confirmed among you, so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will keep you firm to the end, irreproachable on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, and by him you were called to fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.
Responsorial Psalm PS 145:2-3, 4-5, 6-7
R. (1) I will praise your name for ever, Lord. Every day will I bless you, and I will praise your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD and highly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable. R. I will praise your name for ever, Lord. Generation after generation praises your works and proclaims your might. They speak of the splendor of your glorious majesty and tell of your wondrous works. R. I will praise your name for ever, Lord. They discourse of the power of your terrible deeds and declare your greatness. They publish the fame of your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your justice. R. I will praise your name for ever, Lord.
Alleluia MT 24:42A, 44
R. Alleluia, alleluia. Stay awake!
For you do not know when the Son of Man will come. R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Gospel MT 24:42-51
Jesus said to his disciples: "Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come. "Who, then, is the faithful and prudent servant, whom the master has put in charge of his household to distribute to them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master on his arrival finds doing so. Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property. But if that wicked servant says to himself, 'My master is long delayed,' and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eat and drink with drunkards, the servant's master will come on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth."
Daily Meditation: 1 Corinthians 1:1-9
. . . in Christ Jesus. (1 Corinthians 1:2)
Over the coming weeks, our first readings will come from Paul's first letter to the Corinthians. His epistle offers us a window into the life of this early Christian community. It gives insight into these believers' strengths and weaknesses, and it shows us Paul's fatherly care for them. Let's take a look.
Corinth was a leading Greek city in Paul's day, a bustling seaport and commercial gateway between Rome in the West and the wealthy civilizations of the East. It attracted people from all over the world and had become a melting pot of different cultures. There was a Jewish community in the city, some of whom had begun to follow Jesus. In addition, some Gentiles had converted to Christianity, so this small church faced a challenge. It was one of the first places where Jews and Gentiles learned to live and worship together as one community. That combination led to a clash of cultures that crops up regularly in Paul's letter.
But let's begin where Paul begins. He reminds the Corinthian believers of all they have received "in Christ Jesus" (1 Corinthians 1:2). Later, he will address their shortcomings and give his famous treatise on love. But before any correction, he sums up his letter and his whole mission: it's all about Jesus. In nine verses, Paul uses the name of Jesus eight times: Paul's call as an apostle comes from Jesus; the Church is made up of all who call upon the name of Jesus; and the Corinthians have received grace, sanctification, peace, instruction, spiritual gifts, strength, and their call to fellowship—all "in Christ Jesus."
Paul certainly gets his message across: Jesus is the center of it all. The Corinthians faced many challenges, and they had a lot to learn. But Paul wanted to remind them why they had come together in the first place: because Jesus had called them and changed their lives. He was their Lord, their source, their purpose, and their guide. He would be their strength and wisdom, the well they would draw from. Jesus would help them love one another and keep them standing firm until his return.
He will do the same for you.
"Jesus, be my strength and my joy today."
Psalm 145:2-7 Matthew 24:42-5
From today's 1st Holy Scripture: "I give thanks to my God always on your account for the grace of God bestowed on you in Christ Jesus, that in him you were enriched in every way..."
What could possibly be more important than God's Grace? His Mercy? His Love? Is it not all intertwined? Can you have one out of the Holy Trinity and not have the rest? Yet, he offers Himself. Jesus, the God Man, and one in the Holy Spirit. St. Paul knows this very well, and relayed that everything was in Jesus, and how far can one be if it is God's will that we are one in Him? This world, they say is small. But that statement is not totally true. This world is tremendous if we speak in spiritual terms. It is tremendously huge. What does this mean? It means God cares...an awful lot.
We pray today; " I will praise your name for ever, Lord. Every day will I bless you, and I will praise your name forever and ever. Great is the LORD and highly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable. I will praise your name for ever, Lord."
What could forever be like? Without end. That's it. Wouldn't it be amazing to have forever as a for sure thing? Because here, everything is ...not forever...only a certain thing is...faith. And this is what we are up against in the world, that some believe...and others believe not in this faith. And everyone in between? LOL, that's messy.
Our Lord speaks; ""Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come." This week, I'll be involved in perhaps a total of 4 funerals. Two lady parishioners passed, and today is my friend Michael Vasquez funeral. And another parishioner and aunt of my brother in law may be soon as she passed unexpectedly yesterday.
Sta awake! What? Who? When? Where? Exactly. Nobody knows what will happen, to who it will happen, when it will happen nor where it will happen!
Stay awake! How? Everyone is lackadaisical in their faith it seems! What does that word even mean? A definition lookup says: lacking enthusiasm and determination; carelessly lazy. Ouch, careless? What does THAT word mean? To care less? Like, we could care less about it? Right? It's having one foot in and one foot out. it is being flip flopping and on the fence, right? Isn't that the same as being a hypocrite though?
"...at an unknown hour and will punish him severely and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth."
Wait just a minute there. Did our Lord just completely call out the hypocrites...as if really bad people? Yes. He did. Almost as if to say one could be cast off with demons in a place of torture. Right? Is He speaking of hell? My friend, to me, any other place that is not Heaven, then is hell. To me, starving, waiting in long lines for a restaurant is torture. But let's get back to the whole hypocrite thing. On this matter, I always love to recall our Lord's words when He saw Nathaniel under the fig tree, when He said he was a man with no duplicity. What does THAT word mean? LOL. A definition says: " deceitfulness Example: "he was accused of duplicity and branded a traitor" 2. the state of being double." WOW. A double agent then is a traitor, a spy, not of one side or the other, right? Let's think about ourselves and our sins. Sin has no place in Heaven. There is to be no deceit in Heaven. Only true Transformers and no Decepticons! LOL right? And did you know that the Lord can transform into various beings and in human beings? That's why I try so very hard to be on top of my holy game, so as to not be caught off guard by this hidden Lord and my King. Be watchful of those that put you to the test. Be watchful of the stranger that enters your midst. Be watchful of corrective words. Be watchful because in any instance He may come. My family...Stay awake.
Stay awake and always pray. Stay awake in the night, let your soul be in God's hands. Stay awake, always with oil in your lamp, grace from God. Stay awake, watch the world with God's eyes and heart. Stay awake, do not be swindled by what other thing vie for your life!
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Random bible verse generator: Proverbs 20:3
3 It is an honor for a man to keep aloof from strife,
but every fool will be quarreling.
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