Friday, November 25, 2022

† ".. Until All These Things Have.. .. "


†Saint Quote

"If you suffer with Him, you will reign with Him. If you cry with Him, you will have joy with Him. If you die with Him on the cross of tribulation, you will possess the eternal dwelling place in the splendor of the saints. And your name, written in the book of life, will be glorious among men." St. Clare of Assisi

†Today's Meditation
"Throughout the year, Friday is meant to be a day of penance and self-denial. We make sacrifices on Fridays to recall Christ's great sacrifice on Good Friday. In part, our sacrifices discipline and test our attachment to created goods. When we deny ourselves little comforts, our suffering sheds light on the many ways we cling too tightly to the offerings of this world. Mortification leads to self-mastery, a process that purifies our ability to lift our eyes from passing goods and set them instead upon the everlasting good that is God Almighty."
—Fr. John Burns
An Excerpt From Adore: A Guided Advent Journal for Prayer

†Daily Verse

"Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart; and you will find rest for yourselves. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light." Matthew 11:28-30


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St. Catherine of Alexandria

St. Catherine of Alexandria (4th c.) was born to a noble pagan family in Alexandria, Egypt, and her father was governor of the city. She was an intelligent child who devoted herself to study, and converted to the Christian faith after the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to her in a vision. Many of her fellow Christians were put to death under the reign of Roman Emperor Maxentius. Catherine, at the age of 18, rebuked the emperor to his face for this injustice, giving a skillful defense of the Christian faith. In response, Maxentius brought fifty of his best philosophers to debate with her and refute her claims. St. Catherine not only won the argument by confounding her opponents, but she caused many of them to convert to the Christian faith. The emperor offered Catherine a royal marriage if she would renounce her faith, but she refused. She was imprisoned, and while in captivity, through her newfound fame, converted the emperor's wife and two hundred of his soldiers. When this was discovered, Maxentius had them all put to death. Catherine was to be tortured and killed by being torn apart on a spiked wheel, but the wheel fell to pieces when it touched her. She was finally martyred by beheading. St. Catherine is the patroness of philosophers, preachers, lawyers, apologists, scholars, and librarians, to name a few. Her feast day is celebrated on November 25th.


Friday of the Thirty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time

Reading 1 RV 20:1-4, 11—21:2

I, John, saw an angel come down from heaven,
holding in his hand the key to the abyss and a heavy chain.
He seized the dragon, the ancient serpent,
which is the Devil or Satan,
and tied it up for a thousand years and threw it into the abyss,
which he locked over it and sealed,
so that it could no longer lead the nations astray
until the thousand years are completed.
After this, it is to be released for a short time.
Then I saw thrones; those who sat on them were entrusted with judgment.
I also saw the souls of those who had been beheaded
for their witness to Jesus and for the word of God,
and who had not worshiped the beast or its image
nor had accepted its mark on their foreheads or hands.
They came to life and they reigned with Christ for a thousand years.
Next I saw a large white throne and the one who was sitting on it.
The earth and the sky fled from his presence
and there was no place for them.
I saw the dead, the great and the lowly, standing before the throne,
and scrolls were opened.
Then another scroll was opened, the book of life.
The dead were judged according to their deeds,
by what was written in the scrolls.
The sea gave up its dead;
then Death and Hades gave up their dead.
All the dead were judged according to their deeds.
Then Death and Hades were thrown into the pool of fire.
(This pool of fire is the second death.)
Anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life
was thrown into the pool of fire.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth.
The former heaven and the former earth had passed away,
and the sea was no more.
I also saw the holy city, a new Jerusalem,
coming down out of heaven from God,
prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Responsorial Psalm PS 84:3, 4, 5-6A AND 8A

R. (Rev. 21:3b) Here God lives among his people.
My soul yearns and pines
for the courts of the LORD.
My heart and my flesh
cry out for the living God.
R. Here God lives among his people.
Even the sparrow finds a home,
and the swallow a nest
in which she puts her young–
Your altars, O LORD of hosts,
my king and my God!
R. Here God lives among his people.
Blessed they who dwell in your house!
continually they praise you.
Blessed the men whose strength you are!
They go from strength to strength.
R. Here God lives among his people.

Alleluia LUKE 21:28

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Stand erect and raise your heads
because your redemption is at hand.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel LK 21:29-33

Jesus told his disciples a parable.
"Consider the fig tree and all the other trees.
When their buds burst open,
you see for yourselves and know that summer is now near;
in the same way, when you see these things happening,
know that the Kingdom of God is near.
Amen, I say to you, this generation will not pass away
until all these things have taken place.
Heaven and earth will pass away,
but my words will not pass away."


Daily Meditation: Luke 21:12-19

I myself shall give you a wisdom in speaking. (Luke 21:15)

There's an old joke that says, "It took me two years to learn how to talk and the rest of my life learning when to shut up."

How true this is! But it's just as important to learn when to open our mouths and speak. That's because God put each of us on this earth to be a prophetic voice announcing his good news. In fact, when you were baptized, you were anointed with chrism and given a share in Jesus' priestly, prophetic, and kingly mission.

Imagine the privilege of having a "well-trained tongue," as Isaiah did (50:4). Imagine what it would be like to "utter what is precious," as Jeremiah did, because you are speaking from the heart of the Lord (15:19). Unfortunately, we all know what it's like to have our own words and ideas get in the way. Often, it takes wisdom and prayer to know what to say, when to say it, and—most important—how to say it.

This sounds hard, but it's not impossible. Jesus himself promised that he will give us "a wisdom in speaking," especially in tense situations when there's a higher risk for misunderstanding (Luke 21:15). All he asks is that we get in the habit of asking his Holy Spirit to guide us. Even taking just a moment to say a quick prayer before we speak can go a long way!

Of course, God delights in our human intellect and free will. Jesus promised us wisdom to guide us, not a word-for-word script. Through his Spirit, he can soften our hearts so that we don't speak out of malice or bitterness. He can fill us with his presence so that we convey his love in our own words. He can give us patience so that we don't speak rashly or out of frustration. He may even give us a stronger sense of what to say—a word or two, perhaps, that will help us guide the conversation in an upbuilding direction.

It's not impossible to become a prophetic voice in the world. It doesn't even have to be hard. It just takes a little practice, combined with trust in the Lord and a humble desire to speak his words of consolation and wisdom.

"Here I am, Lord! Help me learn the 'wisdom in speaking' that you promise to all who follow you."

Revelation 15:1-4
Psalm 98:1-3, 7-9


From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"All the dead were judged according to their deeds."

All the "dead" were judged? How can a dead person be judged? Aren't they....dead? And what about all this judgement stuff? Protestants don't all believe in being judged. They claim "once saved, always saved" and that no matter what you're saved if you believe. Is that what the original Christians, the Catholics believe? We believe we are held liable for our deeds. And if you go deep into the faith...even the smallest of deeds will not go unnoticed by righteousness. Are we doomed? Is that to be our attitude? We are only doomed if we choose it. That is, to lose hope. That is, to try and stop being perfect and holy. And the rest is in God's grace and mercy. We are saved only by God's grace. That is the true answer. And for grace? We must be more and more open to God's gift.


We pray today;
"Blessed they who dwell in your house!
continually they praise you. Blessed the men whose strength you are! They go from strength to strength.
Here God lives among his people."


In the Gospel today we heard our Master and Teacher:
"Amen, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away,
but my words will not pass away."

What gives beauty to life? Its brevity? Its susceptibility? The vulnerability? The frailty? The meekness? Or is it the tenacity to live? The drive to thrive? For me, the realization of a true God and father gives it all the beauty in context. It is not merely subjective though, once you realize that this is a truth to behold.

And so what've we to learn from today's Holy Word of God?

That His will and command is everlasting. My mind always tries to grasp the realms of forever, but it cannot fathom. Instead, it points to one thing...being. This is why God calls Himself the "I AM Who AM". He is the very essence of being, and in Him all things are made and are being presented to us this day. Everything is subject to Him ultimately, even evil that is put on a dog-leash by an angel if God so wills it to be.

What does this mean to me, a being called to be...His child of being?
Be Holy. As God our Father is Holy, we are called to be what He desires. Obedient as Christ. As meek as Christ. As radiant in life and love and righteousness as Christ. If we want to see what God wants....look no further than the Christ...our Lord, and the very being of the Father's Word, that is to come, and ever shall be, without end.

Lord, I praise Thee, my everlasting King!



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Random Bible Verse 1
Colossians 3:12–14

[Colossians 3]

12 Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. 14 And above all these put on love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony.


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God Bless You! Peace

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