May the word of the Lord fill you with love and bring you peace.

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/040115.cfm

One of the Twelve, who was called Judas Iscariot, went to the chief priests and said, “What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?” They paid him thirty pieces of silver, and from that time on he looked for an opportunity to hand him over. 

On the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the disciples approached Jesus and said, “Where do you want us to prepare for you to eat the Passover?” He said, “Go into the city to a certain man and tell him, ‘The teacher says, “My appointed time draws near; in your house I shall celebrate the Passover with my disciples.”’” The disciples then did as Jesus had ordered, and prepared the Passover. 

When it was evening, he reclined at table with the Twelve. And while they were eating, he said, “Amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” Deeply distressed at this, they began to say to him one after another, “Surely it is not I, Lord?” He said in reply, “He who has dipped his hand into the dish with me is the one who will betray me. The Son of Man indeed goes, as it is written of him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed. It would be better for that man if he had never been born.” Then Judas, his betrayer, said in reply, “Surely it is not I, Rabbi?” He answered, “You have said so.” 

Today has traditionally been known as “Spy Wednesday” because this is the day Judas approached the chief priests and agreed to hand over Jesus. How many times do we betray Jesus by our actions? We claim to live by Him, but follow the world instead. We sit back and watch what goes on in our world but do not do anything to fix it. What can you do in your corner of your world to proclaim Christ instead of deny Him? Are you willing to proclaim Alleluia at Easter and mean it? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I know I betray you often in the things I do and the things I do not do. Guide me on the path of your righteous Lord so my Alleluia will be joyfully proclaimed at the Resurrection of your Son. In Jesus’ holy name I ask this, Amen. 

Lord, in your great love, answer me.

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/033115.cfm

Reclining at table with his disciples, Jesus was deeply troubled and testified, “Amen, amen, I say to you, one of you will betray me.” The disciples looked at one another, at a loss as to whom he meant. One of his disciples, the one whom Jesus loved, was reclining at Jesus’ side. So Simon Peter nodded to him to find out whom he meant. He leaned back against Jesus’ chest and said to him, “Master, who is it?” Jesus answered, “It is the one to whom I hand the morsel after I have dipped it.” So he dipped the morsel and took it and handed it to Judas, son of Simon the Iscariot. After Judas took the morsel, Satan entered him. So Jesus said to him, “What you are going to do, do quickly.” Now none of those reclining at table realized why he said this to him. Some thought that since Judas kept the money bag, Jesus had told him, “Buy what we need for the feast,” or to give something to the poor. So Judas took the morsel and left at once. And it was night. 

When he had left, Jesus said “Now is the Son of Man glorified, and God is glorified in him. If God is glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him at once. My children, I will be with you only a little while longer. You will look for me, and as I told the Jews, ‘Where I go you cannot come,’ so now I say it to you.” 

Simon Peter said to him, “Master, where are you going?” Jesus answered him, “Where I am going, you cannot follow me now, though you will follow later.” Peter said to him, “Master, why can I not follow you now?  I will lay down my life for you.” Jesus answered, “Will you lay down your life for me? Amen, amen, I say to you, the cock will not crow before you deny me three times.” 

We do not always recognize evil when we see it. Judas shared many meals and times with the Apostles but they did not see him as he truly was. How many times has evil entered our lives masquerading as good? Do you recognize it when you see it? Or do you refuse to believe something can be evil when it looks so good? Jesus is showing us here that even a friend can deny good and side with evil. Will you allow your eyes to be opened or do you want to continue in ignorance? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to open my eyes and my ears to the evil in this world. Guide my path to deal with it effectively. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

I will sing of your salvation.

 Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/033015.cfm

Six days before Passover Jesus came to Bethany, where Lazarus was, whom Jesus had raised from the dead. They gave a dinner for him there, and Martha served, while Lazarus was one of those reclining at table with him.  Mary took a liter of costly perfumed oil made from genuine aromatic nard and anointed the feet of Jesus and dried them with her hair; the house was filled with the fragrance of the oil. Then Judas the Iscariot, one of his disciples, and the one who would betray him, said, “Why was this oil not sold for three hundred days’ wages and given to the poor?” He said this not because he cared about the poor but because he was a thief and held the money bag and used to steal the contributions. So Jesus said, “Leave her alone. Let her keep this for the day of my burial. You always have the poor with you, but you do not always have me.” 

The large crowd of the Jews found out that he was there and came, not only because of him, but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. And the chief priests plotted to kill Lazarus too, because many of the Jews were turning away and believing in Jesus because of him. 

Many became followers of Jesus because of the miracles, but they stayed because of the power and truth of His words. What do you look for? Do you believe because of miracles you see or because of the truth of His words? Do not depend on miracles, depend on His words and follow what He teaches. Follow Him to the cross and you will receive salvation and eternal life. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to believe even when I do not see miracles. Open my eyes to the wonders and graces of your world and I will see miracles. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

The Lord is my light and my salvation.

Palm_Sunday001

Learn more about Palm Sunday: http://www.catholic.org/encyclopedia/view.php?id=8924

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/032915.cfm

Christ Jesus, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God  something to be grasped. Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave,  coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance, he humbled himself,  becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Jesus could have come as an arrogant conqueror but He chose to come as a humble slave. He shows us how we should live our lives. In humility with our knee bent in homage to the Lord. He did it, why can we not do it also. Are we better than Him – or do we just think we are?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to stay on my knees in Adoration of your glory. You are my Lord and my God and I want to always strive to live a humble and contrite life. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen.

My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/032815.cfm

Many of the Jews who had come to Mary and seen what Jesus had done began to believe in him. But some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done.  So the chief priests and the Pharisees convened the Sanhedrin and said, “What are we going to do?  This man is performing many signs. If we leave him alone, all will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our land and our nation.” But one of them, Caiaphas, who was high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing, nor do you consider that it is better for you that one man should die instead of the people, so that the whole nation may not perish.” He did not say this on his own, but since he was high priest for that year, he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, and not only for the nation, but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God. So from that day on they planned to kill him. 

So Jesus no longer walked about in public among the Jews, but he left for the region near the desert, to a town called Ephraim, and there he remained with his disciples. 

Now the Passover of the Jews was near, and many went up from the country to Jerusalem before Passover to purify themselves. They looked for Jesus and said to one another as they were in the temple area, “What do you think? That he will not come to the feast?” 

Did Caiaphas know how accurate his prophesy would be? Since he was High Priest he should have known who Jesus was and that He would in fact die so that a nation would be saved. He could have stopped what was going to be done, but he chose not too. He chose to allow Jesus to die and we know that in doing so He fulfilled the prophesy. How many times have we been give choices and sat back and did nothing, or worse chose to not do the right thing? We have this opportunity every day to choose for Christ. What choices do you make? Do you choose Him or the easy way? Every day you have a choice. Choose wisely. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father may I choose you every day. When given my options, help me to do the right thing, the one thing that will make a difference in someone’s life, the one thing that you would. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

The Lord will guard us, as a shepherd guards his flock.

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/032715.cfm

 The Jews picked up rocks to stone Jesus. Jesus answered them, “I have shown you many good works from my Father. For which of these are you trying to stone me?” The Jews answered him, “We are not stoning you for a good work but for blasphemy. You, a man, are making yourself God.” Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, ‘You are gods”‘? If it calls them gods to whom the word of God came, and Scripture cannot be set aside, can you say that the one whom the Father has consecrated and sent into the world blasphemes because I said, ‘I am the Son of God’?  If I do not perform my Father’s works, do not believe me; but if I perform them, even if you do not believe me, believe the works, so that you may realize and understand that the Father is in me and I am in the Father.” Then they tried again to arrest him; but he escaped from their power. 

He went back across the Jordan to the place where John first baptized, and there he remained.  Many came to him and said, “John performed no sign, but everything John said about this man was true.” And many there began to believe in him. 

They could not see past their own prejudices to see that Jesus was fulfilling the prophesies and performing miracles in the name of God. Those who had heard John did believe, because they saw what was being fulfilled. You see the signs, you see the miracles in the bible, do you believe? You should see miracles every day, do you? Open the eyes of your heart and see what the Lord has done. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the miracles that occur every. Help me to see them and know you are there. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

In my distress I called upon the Lord, and he heard my voice.

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/032615.cfm

Jesus said to the Jews: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever keeps my word will never see death.” So the Jews said to him, “Now we are sure that you are possessed. Abraham died, as did the prophets, yet you say, ‘Whoever keeps my word will never taste death.’ Are you greater than our father Abraham, who died? Or the prophets, who died? Who do you make yourself out to be?” Jesus answered, “If I glorify myself, my glory is worth nothing; but it is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say, ‘He is our God.’ You do not know him, but I know him. And if I should say that I do not know him, I would be like you a liar. But I do know him and I keep his word. Abraham your father rejoiced to see my day; he saw it and was glad.” So the Jews said to him, “You are not yet fifty years old and you have seen Abraham?” Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, before Abraham came to be, I AM.” So they picked up stones to throw at him; but Jesus hid and went out of the temple area. 

They did not understand that Jesus was telling them that if they would believe in Him and what he said they would have eternal life. The body dies and decays but the soul lives forever. If we believe in Him we will have eternal life. What do you believe? Our goal should be to know God as Jesus does. Is your faith strong enough and your heart willing to do that? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father i want to know you as intimately and lovingly as Jesus does. Help me to love you and know you in the same way. In Jesus’ holy name, I ask these graces, Amen. 

The Lord remembers his covenant forever.

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