Wednesday, September 7, 2022

† "...When all speak well. . . "


†Saint Quote
"Three things are necessary to everyone: truth of faith which brings understanding, love of Christ which brings compassion, and endurance of hope which brings perseverance."
–St. Bonaventure

†Today's Meditation
"My Heart overflows with great mercy for souls, and especially for poor sinners. If only they could understand that I am the best of Fathers to them and that it is for them that the Blood and Water flowed from My Heart as from a fount overflowing with mercy. For them I dwell in the tabernacle as King of Mercy. I desire to bestow My graces upon souls, but they do not want to accept them. You, at least, come to Me as often as possible and take these graces they do not want to accept. In this way you will console My Heart. Oh, how indifferent are souls to so much goodness, to so many proofs of love! My Heart drinks only of the ingratitude and forgetfulness of souls living in the world. They have time for everything, but they have no time to come to Me for graces."
—Jesus to St. Maria Faustina Kowalska, p. 367

An Excerpt From
Diary of Saint Maria Faustina Kowalska - Divine Mercy in My Soul

†Daily Verse
"But even if you should suffer because of righteousness, blessed are you. Do not be afraid or terrified with fear of them, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts. Always be ready to give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but do it with gentleness and reverence, keeping your conscience clear, so that, when you are maligned, those who defame your good conduct in Christ may themselves be put to shame."
–1 Peter 3:14-16


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St. Regina

Saint Regina (d. 286 A.D.) was born to pagan parents in France. Her mother died in childbirth, and her father gave her to the care of a Christian nurse who secretly baptized her and raised her in the Christian faith. As Regina grew older her embrace of Christianity became evident, and her father disowned her as a result. Regina then went to live with her Christian nurse. They lived in poverty, and Regina tended sheep to help support the household. This solitude allowed her time to pray and meditate on the lives of the saints. When she was fifteen years of age, a Roman proconsul by the name of Olybrius was determined to marry her. He became greatly disturbed when he discovered that she was a Christian. He asked her to renounce her faith in order to save her life and secure a prosperous marriage with him. Regina staunchly refused to deny her faith, having already taken a vow of virginity to Christ. For her defiance she was cast into prison. Hoping that her resolve would gradually weaken, Olybrius visited her in prison and asked her once more to renounce her faith. Regina's determination only increased with time, and she again refused. Olybrius, angered, had her severely tortured with her body being scourged, burned, and raked. Finally, she was beheaded. Her resolve under torture and the appearance of a dove above her head caused witnesses to convert to Christianity. After her death many miracles were attributed to her relics. St. Regina is the patron of poor people, shepherdesses, and torture victims. Her feast day is September 7th.


Wednesday of the Twenty-Third Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 1 COR 7:25-31

Brothers and sisters:
In regard to virgins, I have no commandment from the Lord,
but I give my opinion as one who by the Lord's mercy is trustworthy.
So this is what I think best because of the present distress:
that it is a good thing for a person to remain as he is.
Are you bound to a wife? Do not seek a separation.
Are you free of a wife? Then do not look for a wife.
If you marry, however, you do not sin,
nor does an unmarried woman sin if she marries;
but such people will experience affliction in their earthly life,
and I would like to spare you that.
I tell you, brothers, the time is running out.
From now on, let those having wives act as not having them,
those weeping as not weeping,
those rejoicing as not rejoicing,
those buying as not owning,
those using the world as not using it fully.
For the world in its present form is passing away.

Responsorial Psalm PS 45:11-12, 14-15, 16-17

R. (11) Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear,
forget your people and your father's house.
So shall the king desire your beauty;
for he is your lord, and you must worship him.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
All glorious is the king's daughter as she enters;
her raiment is threaded with spun gold.
In embroidered apparel she is borne in to the king;
behind her the virgins of her train are brought to you.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
They are borne in with gladness and joy;
they enter the palace of the king.
The place of your fathers your sons shall have;
you shall make them princes through all the land.
R. Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.

Alleluia LK 6:23AB

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Rejoice and leap for joy!
Your reward will be great in heaven.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel LK 6:20-26

Raising his eyes toward his disciples Jesus said:
"Blessed are you who are poor,
for the Kingdom of God is yours.
Blessed are you who are now hungry,
for you will be satisfied.
Blessed are you who are now weeping,
for you will laugh.
Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man.
Rejoice and leap for joy on that day!
Behold, your reward will be great in heaven.

For their ancestors treated the prophets
in the same way.
But woe to you who are rich,
for you have received your consolation.
But woe to you who are filled now,
for you will be hungry.
Woe to you who laugh now,
for you will grieve and weep.
Woe to you when all speak well of you,
for their ancestors treated the false
prophets in this way."


Daily Meditation: Luke 6:20-26

Rejoice and leap for joy on that day! (Luke 6:23)

When was the last time you threw a party? Perhaps it was when your child graduated from high school, at the birth of a new baby, or when a favorite cousin came to town. Those are all fine, positive reasons to celebrate.

When Jesus tells his disciples to celebrate being persecuted, however, he is inviting them—and us—to gain a new perspective on the negative as well as the positive things that happen to us. He is giving us a strategy to deal with not only persecution but all kinds of suffering or hardship. Because when we rejoice, it changes our perspective and gives us hope. It makes it possible for us to look at things in a new way.

How? Let's consider what happened to six-year-old Timmy. The young boy was crestfallen when he went to the garage to get out his brand-new bicycle, only to realize it had been stolen. Furious, he went inside to share the bad news. His mother helped him acknowledge his feelings to God, but she also read today's Gospel to him. She encouraged him to follow Jesus' advice to rejoice. So they decided to throw a party. They got out Timmy's favorite snack, and they thanked God for always being in charge. They prayed that God would bless whoever took that bike, whether or not that meant Timmy would get the bike back.

Finally, they asked God to let them see one good thing he would bring about as a result of Timmy's stolen bicycle. Sure enough, because Timmy had to walk to school the following day, he wound up making a new friend—someone he never would have met if he had been riding his new bike.

Now, our challenges are usually more significant than a six-year-old losing a bike. Regardless, when we find the strength to praise the Lord when things are difficult, it changes our perspective. Lifting our hearts to him can make us open to opportunities that would have gone unnoticed otherwise. So let's get into the habit of praising God even when our circumstances don't make us want to throw a party, and see what just might come of it.

"Jesus, help me to rejoice in you even when I suffer hardship or persecution."

1 Corinthians 7:25-31
Psalm 45:11-12, 14-17


From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"From now on, let those having wives act as not having them, those weeping as not weeping, those rejoicing as not rejoicing, those buying as not owning, those using the world as not using it fully."
The other day, my wife texted me a picture of a shirt she was going to buy that said "I love my wife" and then I made a snarky remark "well where's your shirt that says 'I Love My Husband'!" There was none, LOL. And then our Lord says we need to hate our wives, children, our very lives!? Boy, I had a co-worker walk out on a bible study that I asked workers to join a few years ago, saying "how could I hate my wife!?", and he left the group, never stuck around to hear the answer.

And last week at choir practice, it took much explanation to a new choir member that is not Catholic on the same Scripture. And he finally stopped the 21 questions when I said that our Lord is asking us to stop being lukewarm. Then it sort of clicked.

Today, St. Paul reminds us that we are not of this world. The world teaches you that things are permanent, as if what we did, we could hold on to forever. Well, that is not all true. The truth is, everything changes, except God and His Truth. He has been molding us for thousands of years, into more and more...of Him. And this is good news.

And before we go further, let me tell you a revelation I've received: tapping into Him, like living plants, as creatures, transforms us into something more.


We pray today;
_" Listen to me, daughter; see and bend your ear.
Hear, O daughter, and see; turn your ear, forget your people and your father's house. So shall the king desire your beauty; for he is your lord, and you must worship him."
Here we are again, sounds like our Lord Jesus was only emphasizing the Psalms, "forget your people" we heard, and "forget your father's house". Oh boy, who could misunderstand this? How could you forget your people? How could you hate them? Right? But it is true, that we are easily engrossed with what's right in front of us. We only desire what is right before our eyes. "If I can't see it, I can't believe it" then is the agnostic and atheist view. Yet, God calls us to something more...and I call A gift to God and a gift from God.


In the Gospel today we heard:
"Blessed are you when people hate you,
and when they exclude and insult you,
and denounce your name as evil
on account of the Son of Man."

And it has happened from the beginning of Christian life, that there are at times certain groups that severely persecute Christians, and especially the Catholics. Why? And so, an outsider cries "why can't we all just get along?" and they have bumper stickers that say "CoExist with all sorts of religious symbols making up the letters.
Truth is, evil does not set well with the good. We are anxious until we rely and live solely for God. I know some people that are deeply involved in alcoholism. It is eating them from the inside, as they try to live with the disease, and they try to "coexist" with the problem. I've looked into ways to help an addict break away from the habit, but it seems that the pivotal point, the breaking point boils down to the will of the person, to learn to hate the culprit.
In the same way, we must hate what keeps us from God, but not to hate other people. We must hate evil as God hates evil, and the evil we try to sludge into Heaven, being soiled and expecting to be served at the Heavenly banquet with muck on our feet.
All of you is clean, but not all, and He washes our feet....with His blood.

So, when's the last time you were attacked for believing in God? In Christ? Nowadays, people say "religion doesn't matter" and they say we all believe in the same God. Well, that's a double edged sword the devil plays with, for evil plays with words. Even government knows that to control the story, and the people, they must control the rhetoric, the word.
Wow, do you see how evil works by twisting things? I'm always on the watch for how things get twisted... the truth being twisted. But we can't dismiss the whole message because there is a grain of salt in there, but watch out for the leaven! "I'm just here for moral support of my friend that is having an abortion, I'm not in favor of it but someone gots to be here". Same thing with gay marriages, "I'm not really in favor of it but I'm going to their ceremony to show them I love them". And so, we become enablers of the disease that is killing our loved ones. I'm hearing Catholic teachers on radio say "go to their gay weddings, show them you love them!". So who's right? My studies are showing that there is deeply concerning evils in the homosexual activity. The gear propelling all that is for the rules to bend to them, the laws of God and nature. And it is impossible, and so, because it is impossible, it is a matter of wills, and desires, and power.

My alcoholic friends are dying, physically and spiritually. Many who have tried to be faithful, but couldn't kick the habit are no longer actively trying to be active in the Church. Can we coexist with the disease of evil and sin? It is a ticking clock towards the end. In the end, God only knows the heart. In the mean time, blessed are those who are weeping, and blessed are the poor.

Mother of God, pray for us to be blessed. Pray that we are deposed from evil, and that it may be exposed so that we may uproot it from our lives. Pray that we are disposed to do God's will, His Holy and righteous will. That we may realize we are here for short while, and we have eternal ramifications to deal with our very thoughts, words, and actions.
I pray for Grace and Thy Precious Flame of Love to kindle in us the fire of God's love.


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Random bible verse generator:

2 Corinthians 7:10
10 For godly grief produces a repentance that leads to salvation without regret, whereas worldly grief produces death.


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