Wednesday, September 21, 2022

† "... Those who are well . . "


†Quote of the Day
"For me, prayer is a surge of the heart; it is a simple look turned toward heaven, it is a cry of recognition and of love, embracing both trial and joy."
–St. Therese of Lisieux

†Today's Meditation
"You must first have peace in your own soul before you can make peace between other people. Peaceable people accomplish more good than learned people do. Those who are passionate often can turn good into evil and readily believe the worst. But those who are honest and peaceful turn all things to good and are suspicious of no one. … It is no test of virtue to be on good terms with easy-going people, for they are always well liked. And, of course, all of us want to live in peace and prefer those who agree with us. But the real test of virtue and deserving of praise is to live at peace with the perverse, or the aggressive and those who contradict us, for this needs a great grace. … in this mortal life, our peace consists in the humble bearing of suffering and contradictions, not in being free of them, for we cannot live in this world without adversity. Those who can best suffer will enjoy the most peace, for such persons are masters of themselves, lords of the world, with Christ for their friend, and heaven as their reward."
— Thomas รก Kempis, p.72-73

An Excerpt From
Imitation of Christ

†Daily Verse
"Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, 'Why could we not cast it out?' He said to them, 'Because of your little faith. For truly I tell you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, "Move from here to there", and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.'"
–Matthew 17:20


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†St. Matthew

St. Matthew the Apostle (1st c.) was a Jew who also went by the name of Levi. He was from Galilee and served in Capernaum as a tax collector for Herod Antipas before becoming a disciple of Jesus. It was in the home of St. Matthew that Jesus dined with the "sinners and tax collectors." Under Jesus' influence St. Matthew was led to repentance for the evil he had done as a tax-collector, a position despised by his fellow Jews. He repaid those he cheated four-fold, sold all his possessions, and followed Christ as one of the twelve Apostles. St. Matthew preached among the Jews for fifteen years following the Resurrection and Ascension of Jesus. He is the author of the Gospel that bears his name, which he wrote to convince the Jews that Jesus Christ was the Messiah promised to Israel. According to tradition, St. Matthew the Apostle brought the Gospel to Syria, Media, Persia, Parthia, and finished his preaching in Ethiopia with a martyr's death. He is the patron of guards, bankers, accountants, security forces, and stock brokers. His feast day is September 21st.


Feast of Saint Matthew, Apostle and evangelist

Reading I Eph 4:1-7, 11-13

Brothers and sisters:
I, a prisoner for the Lord,
urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience,
bearing with one another through love,
striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit
through the bond of peace:
one Body and one Spirit,
as you were also called to the one hope of your call;
one Lord, one faith, one baptism;
one God and Father of all,
who is over all and through all and in all.
But grace was given to each of us
according to the measure of Christ's gift.
And he gave some as Apostles, others as prophets,
others as evangelists, others as pastors and teachers,
to equip the holy ones for the work of ministry,
for building up the Body of Christ,
until we all attain to the unity of faith
and knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood,
to the extent of the full stature of Christ.

Responsorial Psalm 19:2-3, 4-5

R. (5) Their message goes out through all the earth.
The heavens declare the glory of God;

and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.
Day pours out the word to day,

and night to night imparts knowledge.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.
Not a word nor a discourse

whose voice is not heard;
Through all the earth their voice resounds,

and to the ends of the world, their message.
R. Their message goes out through all the earth.

Alleluia See Te Deum
R. Alleluia, alleluia.
We praise you, O God,
we acclaim you as Lord;
the glorious company of Apostles praise you.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Mt 9:9-13

As Jesus passed by,
he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post.
He said to him, "Follow me."
And he got up and followed him.
While he was at table in his house,
many tax collectors and sinners came
and sat with Jesus and his disciples.
The Pharisees saw this and said to his disciples,
"Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?"
He heard this and said,
"Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.
Go and learn the meaning of the words,

I desire mercy, not sacrifice.
I did not come to call the righteous but sinners."


Daily Meditation: Matthew 9:9-13

Follow me. (Matthew 9:9)

In today's Gospel, we read about the day Matthew's journey of discipleship began. Jesus called him away from his customs post, and Matthew did not delay. Abandoning his job, his livelihood, and his money, Matthew left everything and began to follow Jesus.

Matthew's wholehearted response shows us how we can react when the Lord calls us to follow him, whether for the first time or the hundredth. Leaving his station was only Matthew's first step. After spending the day with Jesus, Matthew invited him to his home to share a meal (Luke 5:29). He decided to follow Jesus, and he continued following him all the way to his passion. Then, after meeting the risen Lord and being filled with the Holy Spirit, Matthew went on to preach the good news perhaps as far away as Persia.

As we can see from the Gospel that bears his name, Matthew gradually shed the trappings of his old life and began to "live in a manner worthy of the call" he had received (Ephesians 4:1). This process of conversion took time: time spent with Jesus and time to mature. And that's just as true for us as it was for Matthew.

Jesus called us by name at our baptism, and he continues to call us to follow him each day. As he did with Matthew, he asks us to drop what we're doing and take that first step. He invites us to listen to what he's saying and discover what it means for our lives. Then, as we spend time with him, our attachments to sin and our desires for worldly comforts begin to decrease. Our love for Jesus and God's people begins to grow. And so does our desire to invite him into our "homes," our daily lives.

Jesus longs to set you free so that you can love and serve him as Matthew did. He will gladly come into your life more deeply if you invite him. Who knows how God might use you as a witness to his love? But your journey along the path of conversion begins with a simple step taken each day. So imitate Matthew's wholehearted yes, and let Jesus lead you so that you can live a life worthy of his call.

"Jesus, I want to follow you today and every day."

Ephesians 4:1-7, 11-13
Psalm 19:2-5


From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"I, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received,
with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the Spirit..."

I think this is where most miss the mark. For it is no longer St. Paul speaking, but Christ.
It is the Holy Spirit of God. And the message to deal with each other with humility and gentleness, with patience...with true...Love.
And to miss the mark is the definition of sin. That's what the old language means when it speaks of sin. Let's keep that whole sin and sinner, mark-misser, thing in mind as we venture into the Holy Gospel.


We pray today;
"The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork. Day pours out the word to day, and night to night imparts knowledge. Their message goes out through all the earth"

Remember our Creed; true light from true light, right? God from God, right? We are speaking of the true light, our Lord. He hides in the light, and this should give us warmth, and life. For He is the very light. Light for darkness...God for man and man's salvation. And we know man means more than gender but all huMANkind.


In the Gospel today we heard:
"As Jesus passed by, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the customs post.
He said to him, "Follow me." And he got up and followed him."

What part about this amazes you?
Everything should amaze us...if we have the Holy Spirit working inside of us.
How does one change their whole a simple invitation?
Well, truth be told, it still happens!
God calls, and many are responding. Some with a faint "ok", and some with a resounding "YES". What can God do with an "ok"? He can do much, if that OK remains firm...forever. And He can do much more with an excited positive response. Things are amazing at the point of response already. Need an example? Look no further than Mother Mary, and her only Son...Jesus. Their "Yes" changed the whole world. And the yes keeps compiling with you and me, and this is amazing.

From Bishop Barron today:
"Friends, today we celebrate the feast of St. Matthew, and our Gospel tells of his conversion. Matthew's laconic account details what the transition from spiritual death to spiritual life is like. First, we notice the look of Jesus. If there is one theme clearly stated in the New Testament it is that of the primacy of grace.
Why? We don't know. We just know that we will not lift ourselves to spiritual wholeness. A gaze has to come upon us from the outside—not so much finding God as allowing ourselves to be found.
Jesus says to him, "Follow me." There is nothing simpler or more basic in the Christian life than this. This is what we disciples do: we follow, we walk after him, we apprentice to him. "He got up and followed him." The symbolism here is marvelous. Getting up, rising up—anastasis, the same word used to designate the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead. Conversion (turning around) is also elevation, rising up.
To come to Christ is to come to a higher, richer, broader form of life. Now life is not simply the pleasures and goods of the body; now life is lived in and through God."

It is then, a calling.
A call to duty. I've been asking many for help with our large family festival. Yesterday I said to a couple "I'm asking us to be slaves for Christ".
For indeed, that is a true and wonderful calling...a higher calling, to become humble servants.
Let those who have the heart respond...the sooner, the better....for this is forever.
Lord, help us with thy Grace to be Thy Holy Light.


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Random bible verse generator:

17 Whoever loves pleasure will be a poor man;

he who loves wine and oil will not be rich.


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God Bless You! Peace

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