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

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042615.cfm

Beloved: See what love the Father has bestowed on us that we may be called the children of God. Yet so we are. The reason the world does not know us is that it did not know him. Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed. We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is. 

You are a child of God, a child of the King. No one knows the Father as a child does. Today we see that the world does not know who Christ is, what He does for us and would do for them, if they would just give their hearts to Him. Where is your heart? What will be revealed to you? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I pray that those who do not know you will open their hearts an minds to you. You saved my life, Lord and I praise your holy name, Amen. 

The stone rejected by the builders has become the cornerstone, Alleluia!

 St. Mark

Learn more about St. Mark: http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=305

 Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042515.cfm

Jesus appeared to the Eleven and said to them: “Go into the whole world and proclaim the Gospel to every creature. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved; whoever does not believe will be condemned. These signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will drive out demons, they will speak new languages. They will pick up serpents with their hands, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not harm them. They will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.” 

Then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God. But they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through accompanying signs. 

Do you believe that these things still happen today? I do. Jesus gave the authority to do all these things to His Disciples and they passed that authority down to our current Pope and Priests. The Disciples believed and were able to do all that Jesus told them they would do. Those who believe and speak in His name can also do these miracles. All it takes is faith that the Lord will work through you. Are you ready? I am. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to believe so that I will preach your word and be open to all the signs and wonders you have in store for me. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

For ever I will sing the goodness of the Lord, Alleluia!

 Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042415.cfm

Saul, still breathing murderous threats against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, that, if he should find any men or women who belonged to the Way, he might bring them back to Jerusalem in chains. On his journey, as he was nearing Damascus, a light from the sky suddenly flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” He said, “Who are you, sir?” The reply came, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. Now get up and go into the city and you will be told what you must do.” The men who were traveling with him stood speechless, for they heard the voice but could see no one. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing; so they led him by the hand and brought him to Damascus. For three days he was unable to see, and he neither ate nor drank. 

There was a disciple in Damascus named Ananias, and the Lord said to him in a vision, “Ananias.”  He answered, “Here I am, Lord.” The Lord said to him, “Get up and go to the street called Straight and ask at the house of Judas for a man from Tarsus named Saul. He is there praying, and in a vision he has seen a man named Ananias come in and lay his hands on him, that he may regain his sight.” But Ananias replied, “Lord, I have heard from many sources about this man, what evil things he has done to your holy ones in Jerusalem. And here he has authority from the chief priests to imprison all who call upon your name.” But the Lord said to him, “Go, for this man is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before Gentiles, kings, and children of Israel, and I will show him what he will have to suffer for my name.” So Ananias went and entered the house; laying his hands on him, he said, “Saul, my brother, the Lord has sent me, Jesus who appeared to you on the way by which you came, that you may regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” Immediately things like scales fell from his eyes and he regained his sight. He got up and was baptized, and when he had eaten, he recovered his strength. 

He stayed some days with the disciples in Damascus, and he began at once to proclaim Jesus in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God. 

Have you ever had Jesus knock you down to get your attention? I have and it is always a wake up call to get back on the path the Lord has set for me. Like Saul many times we are blinded by what we think is the truth, only to have the scales fall from our eyes. In that moment we look for someone to instruct us, to guide us and help us. The Lord will send those people to help you, just as He sent Ananias to Saul. Place your trust in them and grow in the wisdom and love of Our Lord. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, may I keep my eyes and my heart focused on you. May I be guided by those you have placed in my life to lead me an guide me closer to you. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen!  

Go out to all the world and tell the Good News, Alleluia!

 

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042315.cfm

The angel of the Lord spoke to Philip, “Get up and head south on the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza, the desert route.” So he got up and set out. Now there was an Ethiopian eunuch, a court official of the Candace, that is, the queen of the Ethiopians, in charge of her entire treasury, who had come to Jerusalem to worship, and was returning home. Seated in his chariot, he was reading the prophet Isaiah. The Spirit said to Philip, “Go and join up with that chariot.” Philip ran up and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and said, “Do you understand what you are reading?” He replied, “How can I, unless someone instructs me?” So he invited Philip to get in and sit with him. This was the Scripture passage he was reading: 

Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter, and as a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he opened not his mouth. In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who will tell of his posterity? For his life is taken from the earth. 

Then the eunuch said to Philip in reply, “I beg you, about whom is the prophet saying this? About himself, or about someone else?” Then Philip opened his mouth and, beginning with this Scripture passage, he proclaimed Jesus to him. As they traveled along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, “Look, there is water. What is to prevent my being baptized?” Then he ordered the chariot to stop, and Philip and the eunuch both went down into the water, and he baptized him. When they came out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, but continued on his way rejoicing. Philip came to Azotus, and went about proclaiming the good news to all the towns until he reached Caesarea. 

“How can I, (understand) unless someone instructs me?” We are being called to be the ones to proclaim Jesus to those who do not understand. There are many out there today who do not understand what Jesus taught, they have teachers who do not know the truth, so they are being misled. Who teaches you the Scriptures? Are you taught the truth? Seek the truth and you will find it, ask and you will receive it, be open and you will be called to proclaim His word. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to always follow your truth. May I be open to your teachings and be willing to spread your word. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

Let all the earth cry out to God with joy, Alleluia!

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042215.cfm

 Jesus said to the crowds, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst. But I told you that although you have seen me, you do not believe. Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me. And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it on the last day. For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him on the last day.” 

He will not reject anyone who comes to Him. How many people in this world will do that for you? In this environment that we live in today, who else will give their life for you? We believe in Jesus because we have the Word of God to tell us. We know He is the bread of life, He comes to us every day in the Mass. Do you believe He is the bread of life? You must if you want to have eternal life. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of eternal life in your Son Jesus. May I always take the bread of life that is Jesus in faith and truth. In His holy name I pray, Amen. 

Let all the earth cry out to God with joy! Alleluia!

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042115.cfm

Stephen said to the people, the elders, and the scribes: “You stiff-necked people, uncircumcised in heart and ears, you always oppose the Holy Spirit; you are just like your ancestors. Which of the prophets did your ancestors not persecute? They put to death those who foretold the coming of the righteous one, whose betrayers and murderers you have now become. You received the law as transmitted by angels, but you did not observe it.” 

When they heard this, they were infuriated, and they ground their teeth at him. But Stephen, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked up intently to heaven and saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God, and Stephen said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” But they cried out in a loud voice, covered their ears, and rushed upon him together. They threw him out of the city, and began to stone him. The witnesses laid down their cloaks at the feet of a young man named Saul. As they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he fell to his knees and cried out in a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them”; and when he said this, he fell asleep. 

Now Saul was consenting to his execution. 

It is so sad what hate can do. These people hate Stephen – not for something horrible he did, but for the truth he spoke. How often do we try to run and hide from the truth? Saul was a witness and by his inaction he participated in the murder. But the Lord took the bad that he did and turned it to goodness. There is nothing you or I can do that the Lord cannot forgive us. Saul repented, we can too. The Lord established the Sacrament of Reconciliation so we can be like Saul, forgiven, blessed and given a new focus for our life. Come home to the Lord, be forgiven and find out what the Lord has in mind for you. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the forgiveness you have showered on me. I try to keep on the path you have given me Lord. Help me when I fail to remember that I can always come home to you. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

Into your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit, Alleluia!

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/042015.cfm

[After Jesus had fed the five thousand men, his disciples saw him walking on the sea.] The next day, the crowd that remained across the sea saw that there had been only one boat there, and that Jesus had not gone along with his disciples in the boat, but only his disciples had left. Other boats came from Tiberias near the place where they had eaten the bread when the Lord gave thanks. When the crowd saw that neither Jesus nor his disciples were there, they themselves got into boats and came to Capernaum looking for Jesus. And when they found him across the sea they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you get here?” Jesus answered them and said, “Amen, amen, I say to you, you are looking for me not because you saw signs but because you ate the loaves and were filled. Do not work for food that perishes but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you.  For on him the Father, God, has set his seal.” So they said to him, “What can we do to accomplish the works of God?” Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in the one he sent.”

Why do you follow Jesus? Do you follow Him because you believe He is the Savior sent from God or because of what you think you will profit by being a follower? He knows your heart and He knows your answer. If you truly love Him an follow Him for the right reasons you will have a life that is blessed and beyond anything you can hope for. If you follow Him for the wrong reasons you will only have what the world can give and that leads to death. Why do you follow Jesus? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I love you and follow you because I want to spend eternal life with you. Help me when I falter and fail you. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

Blessed are they who follow the law of the Lord! Alleluia!

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