Thursday, June 8, 2023

† “The first is this:


†Quote of the Day
"This bread is bread before the words of the Sacrament. But when the words of Christ come to it, it is the body of Christ ... Before the words of Christ it is a cup full of wine and water. When the words of Christ become operative, the blood which has redeemed the people is caused to be there."
–St. Ambrose

†Today's Meditation
"The invitation to lift up our hearts at the most important part of the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is an invitation by Jesus through the voice of the priest to give our hearts to the Father, as He gave His life for us. We prepare to make our hearts and lives a total self-gift to the Father as Jesus made Himself a total gift to the Father for us on the Cross."
—Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila

An Excerpt From
Meditations Before Mass

†Daily Verse
"I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world."
–John 6:51


Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ (Corpus Christi)

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ, or Corpus Christi, is celebrated on the Thursday after Trinity Sunday in honor of the institution of the Holy Eucharist (in some U.S. dioceses it is transferred to the following Sunday). The feast originated with the visions of St. Juliana of Mont Cornillon, a Belgian nun deeply devoted to the Holy Eucharist, to whom Jesus appeared requesting a feast in honor of the Blessed Sacrament. St. Juliana shared this with the Church hierarchy, and after decades of opposition Pope Urban IV instituted the feast of Corpus Christi for the universal Church in 1264. At the time there was a formal dispute among theologians on the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist—that is, Christ's actual Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity—for the first time in Church history. In response to this heresy and in support of the authenticity of St. Juliana's visions, a Eucharistic Miracle took place in Orvieto, Italy which proved the truth of the literal interpretation of Christ's doctrine handed down from the Apostles. The Holy Father requested that the liturgy for the feast be composed by St. Thomas Aquinas, now one of the Church's most sublimely poetic liturgies. Corpus Christi is traditionally accompanied with Eucharistic large and elaborate public processions, most notably by the Holy Father in Rome.


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St. William of York

St. William of York (d. 1154) was born to a powerful family in England, the nephew of the king. He became a priest and then treasurer of York Minster Cathedral at the time when the English crown was contested by two grandchildren of William the Conqueror. When the Archbishop of York died, William was chosen to take his place. Kind-hearted and generous to the poor, he was well-liked by the people; however, he faced political and ecclesiastical opposition from the rival to the English throne. Because he was consecrated without papal approval, William was accused of wrongdoing by those who wanted their preferred prelate in the position; even St. Bernard of Clairvaux opposed him. Although he eventually confirmed William's appointment, the Pope died before the pallium was given, and the new pope took the side of William's detractors. A new archbishop was ordained in his place while William went to live as a monk with his uncle, a bishop, in quiet prayer and penance. The people of York, upset that their favorite had been deposed, took to rioting. Six years later the Archbishop of York died, and another new pope made William the successor. The people were overjoyed at his return—so many came to greet him as he entered the city that a bridge collapsed under their weight; the fact that no one was hurt was considered a miracle. A few months later, after celebrating Mass on Trinity Sunday, William became ill and died. Poisoning was suspected but never confirmed. Miracles took place at his tomb which gave rise to his canonization in 1227. His feast day is June 8th.


Thursday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

Lectionary: 356
Reading 1

Tb 6:10-11; 7:1bcde, 9-17; 8:4-9a

When the angel Raphael and Tobiah had entered Media
and were getting close to Ecbatana,
Raphael said to the boy,
"Tobiah, my brother!"
He replied: "Here I am!"
He said: "Tonight we must stay with Raguel, who is a relative of yours.
He has a daughter named Sarah."

So he brought him to the house of Raguel,
whom they found seated by his courtyard gate.
They greeted him first.
He said to them, "Greetings to you too, brothers!
Good health to you, and welcome!"
And he brought them into his home.

Raguel slaughtered a ram from the flock
and gave them a cordial reception.
When they had bathed and reclined to eat, Tobiah said to Raphael,
"Brother Azariah, ask Raguel to let me marry
my kinswoman Sarah."
Raguel overheard the words; so he said to the boy:
"Eat and drink and be merry tonight,
for no man is more entitled
to marry my daughter Sarah than you, brother.
Besides, not even I have the right to give her to anyone but you,
because you are my closest relative.
But I will explain the situation to you very frankly.
I have given her in marriage to seven men,
all of whom were kinsmen of ours,
and all died on the very night they approached her.
But now, son, eat and drink.
I am sure the Lord will look after you both."
Tobiah answered,
"I will eat or drink nothing until you set aside what belongs to me."

Raguel said to him: "I will do it.
She is yours according to the decree of the Book of Moses.
Your marriage to her has been decided in heaven!
Take your kinswoman;
from now on you are her love, and she is your beloved.
She is yours today and ever after.
And tonight, son, may the Lord of heaven prosper you both.
May he grant you mercy and peace."
Then Raguel called his daughter Sarah, and she came to him.
He took her by the hand and gave her to Tobiah with the words:
"Take her according to the law.
According to the decree written in the Book of Moses
she is your wife.
Take her and bring her back safely to your father.
And may the God of heaven grant both of you peace and prosperity."
Raguel then called Sarah's mother and told her to bring a scroll,
so that he might draw up a marriage contract
stating that he gave Sarah to Tobiah as his wife
according to the decree of the Mosaic law.
Her mother brought the scroll,
and Raguel drew up the contract, to which they affixed their seals.

Afterward they began to eat and drink.
Later Raguel called his wife Edna and said,
"My love, prepare the other bedroom and bring the girl there."
She went and made the bed in the room, as she was told,
and brought the girl there.
After she had cried over her, she wiped away the tears and said:
"Be brave, my daughter.
May the Lord grant you joy in place of your grief.
Courage, my daughter."
Then she left.

When the girl's parents left the bedroom
and closed the door behind them,
Tobiah arose from bed and said to his wife,
"My love, get up.
Let us pray and beg our Lord to have mercy on us
and to grant us deliverance."
She got up, and they started to pray
and beg that deliverance might be theirs.
And they began to say:

"Blessed are you, O God of our fathers,
praised be your name forever and ever.
Let the heavens and all your creation
praise you forever.
You made Adam and you gave him his wife Eve
to be his help and support;
and from these two the human race descended.
You said, 'It is not good for the man to be alone;
let us make him a partner like himself.'
Now, Lord, you know that I take this wife of mine
not because of lust,
but for a noble purpose.
Call down your mercy on me and on her,
and allow us to live together to a happy old age."

They said together, "Amen, amen," and went to bed for the night.

Responsorial Psalm

Ps 128:1-2, 3, 4-5

R. (see 1a) Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Blessed are you who fear the LORD,
who walk in his ways!
For you shall eat the fruit of your handiwork;
Blessed shall you be, and favored.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine
in the recesses of your home;
Your children like olive plants
around your table.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Behold, thus is the man blessed
who fears the LORD.
The LORD bless you from Zion:
may you see the prosperity of Jerusalem
all the days of your life.
R. Blessed are those who fear the Lord.


See 2 Tm 1:10

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.


Mk 12:28-34

One of the scribes came to Jesus and asked him,
"Which is the first of all the commandments?"
Jesus replied, "The first is this:
Hear, O Israel!
The Lord our God is Lord alone!
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, with all your mind,
and with all your strength.
The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no other commandment greater than these."
The scribe said to him, "Well said, teacher.
You are right in saying,
He is One and there is no other than he.
And to love him with all your heart,
with all your understanding,
with all your strength,
and to love your neighbor as yourself
is worth more than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."
And when Jesus saw that he answered with understanding,
he said to him, "You are not far from the Kingdom of God."
And no one dared to ask him any more questions.


Daily Meditation: Mark 12:28-34

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. (Mark 12:30)

It's trendy these days to talk about bringing our "whole self" to work. Today's Gospel invites us to have a slightly different focus, which we might call "Bring your holy self"—and not just to work, but to everything you do. Not only from nine to five, but from the time you wake up until you fall asleep. Devote yourself to loving God with all your heart, all your understanding, and all your strength. And devote yourself to loving your neighbor as yourself.

Just how can we love God and each other with everything in the busyness of life? On our own strength, we can't! But here are a couple of suggestions that can help us get closer to that goal.

First, try to bring your holy self to every task before you, whether it's participating in a meeting or serving dinner or taking out the trash. You can do this by lifting your heart to God and thanking him for the opportunity to do whatever it is you are doing. And you can bring your holy self to the people around you by making it a point to offer them your patience, your time, and your full attention when you are with them.

Second, watch out for worries, regrets, or fears that can weigh on your mind and keep you from bringing your whole—and holy—self to what's right in front of you. Scripture says to "trust in the Lord with all [your] heart" (Proverbs 3:5). When negative thoughts threaten to overtake your mind, try to "cast all your worries" on the Lord "because he cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7). Turn your attention instead to gratitude. Thank God for his care and concern for you, and place your trust in his plans for you and your loved ones.

It might seem like a tall order to love God with everything you are and to love your neighbor as yourself. But as you take small steps to turn to him throughout your day, you might find that it's not quite as complicated as it seems.

"Lord, help me to bring my whole—and holy—self to the people and tasks in my day. I trust in you."

Tobit 6:10-11; 7:1, 9-17; 8:4-9
Psalm 128:1-5


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[[Listen to audio version]
Reflections with Brother Adrian:

From today's 1st Holy Scripture:
"You made Adam and you gave him his wife Eve
to be his help and support..."

end of verse.

This is amazing, the whole creation thing, of man and what he is to be for God. God made Adam and Even. Adam for the man of the world and Eve to help him and support him. Adam is Jesus and Eve is the Church. We are to support Him, and we are to help Him and we are to Love Him with all we got!


We pray today:
"Blessed are those who fear the Lord.
Your wife shall be like a fruitful vine in the recesses of your home; Your children like olive plants around your table."


In the Gospel today we heard:
"Which is the first of all the commandments?"
Jesus replied, "The first is this:
Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is Lord alone! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.
The second is this:
You shall love your neighbor as yourself."

From Bishop Barron today:
"Friends, in today's Gospel, the Lord says that the second greatest commandment is to love your neighbor as yourself.
Love is not primarily a feeling or an instinct; rather, it is the act of willing the good of the other as other. It is radical self-gift, living for the sake of the other. To be kind to someone so that he might be kind to you, or to treat a fellow human being justly so that he, in turn, might treat you with justice, is not to love, for such moves are tantamount to indirect self-interest.
Truly to love is to move outside of the black hole of one's egotism, to resist the centripetal force that compels one to assume the attitude of self-protection. But this means that love is rightly described as a "theological virtue," for it represents a participation in the love that God is.
Since God has no needs, only God can utterly exist for the sake of the other. All of the great masters of the Christian spiritual tradition saw that we are able to love only inasmuch as we have received, as a grace, a share in the very life, energy, and nature of God."
end quote Bishop Barron.
. . . . .

Have you noticed a trend about our Lord Jesus and the trend about our Lord and Father in Heaven, that it seems the entirety of His Word is based on love? Can it be said that the Bible is the greatest Love Story ever documented? If you take the entirety of all the books as a whole.

And so the Word could be said to have spoken from Heaven and said "In the beginning the Word was Love".
And so, those in the "know" say that to control people, they must control "the narrative", and use words as the ultimate weapon to lead and to confuse the people.
Nowadays, the dark side, the worldly ones are trying as always, to change our mentality on the word "love". And so, they say "if you do not agree to what we want, then you are a hater".

And so they are taking money away from Christian schools for not playing their game by their rules. Who suffers? The children. The African question asks "who loses when an elephants get into a fight?" and the answers is: it is the grass that suffers. It is always the least that suffer. It is the children that suffer most when parents fight or split. And they suffer in most cases...forever. And now we can take into the realms of eternal ramifications.
And so, the Word has Spoken, God has spoken, Love has spoken.
How much must you love God our Father, our Lord Jesus, the Holy Spirit? With all you got. My job in reaching out to you is to help you love God more and more. I attempt to give personal testimony of what it takes to love God. Saints say it will take all your guts. My dad used to say sometimes you have to make a heart out of guts. What does that mean? Loving in the impossible. And in my case, attempting to love the impossible ones. At church, there never ceases to be those who are seemingly impossible to work with, and we fail to see how much weakness is being dealt with. What weakness?
The lack of grace and the lack of true love. For true love is to will the good of the other. My friend, it is not about who does more, but about who can be less, so the other can be more.
It is hard to raise up those who want to put you down, right?
Yet, Jesus has let Himself be put down, so that we can be raised up....forever.

Let's pray:
Lord, My Love, how can I love Thee as I ought? Make my heart love Thee above all things, above all peoples, above all possessions and honors, so that they may know the truth and see the light that burns and yearns forever.


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Random Bible Verse 1
John 6:37

All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out.


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God Bless You! Peace

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