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

Archive for August, 2015

8-31-2015 Gospel Lk 4:16-30

 

 Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/083115.cfm

Jesus came to Nazareth, where he had grown up, and went according to his custom into the synagogue on the sabbath day. He stood up to read and was handed a scroll of the prophet Isaiah. He unrolled the scroll and found the passage where it was written: 

The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring glad tidings to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord.

Rolling up the scroll, he handed it back to the attendant and sat down, and the eyes of all in the synagogue looked intently at him. He said to them, “Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.” And all spoke highly of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They also asked, “Is this not the son of Joseph?” He said to them, “Surely you will quote me this proverb, ‘Physician, cure yourself,’ and say, ‘Do here in your native place the things that we heard were done in Capernaum.’” And he said, “Amen, I say to you, no prophet is accepted in his own native place. Indeed, I tell you, there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah when the sky was closed for three and a half years and a severe famine spread over the entire land. It was to none of these that Elijah was sent, but only to a widow in Zarephath in the land of Sidon. Again, there were many lepers in Israel during the time of Elisha the prophet; yet not one of them was cleansed, but only Naaman the Syrian.” When the people in the synagogue heard this, they were all filled with fury. They rose up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town had been built, to hurl him down headlong. But he passed through the midst of them and went away. 

They got angry because Jesus was telling them things they found hard to believe. They did not want to believe it. They saw Jesus as the little boy they knew growing up, not the man He had become. Certainly not the Prophet He sounded like. How many people do you ignore because their words make you uncomfortable? Or you think you know them and they can’t possibly know what you need to hear? Prophets come from many walks of life. Do not assume you know more than God!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank you for the people you have sent to me to lead me to you. Give me the grace to know a true word from you when I hear it. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

The Lord comes to judge the earth.

8-30-2015 Reading 2 Jas 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/083015.cfm

Dearest brothers and sisters: All good giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no alteration or shadow caused by change.  He willed to give us birth by the word of truth that we may be a kind of first fruits of his creatures. 

Humbly welcome the word that has been planted in you and is able to save your souls. 

Be doers of the word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves. 

Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this: to care for orphans and widows in their affliction and to keep oneself unstained by the world. 

The truth of the word of God was planted in your soul before you were born. We seek that truth all our life, but if we do not do what the word leads us to, we delude ourselves with the lies of the world. Are you humble before the Lord, willing to carry His word to those in need? If you do not, you betray the truth you seek.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, your truth leads me to places I am not always sure I want to be! But with your words and courage I lay down my fears and follow your word. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

One who does justice will live in the presence of the Lord.

8-29-2015 Memorial of the Passion of Saint John the Baptist Gospel Mk 6:17-29

 Passion of John the Baptist

Learn more about the Passion of St. John the Baptist: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/liturgicalyear/calendar/day.cfm?date=2014-08-29

 Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/082915.cfm

Herod was the one who had John the Baptist arrested and bound in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, whom he had married. John had said to Herod, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife.” Herodias harbored a grudge against him and wanted to kill him but was unable to do so. Herod feared John, knowing him to be a righteous and holy man, and kept him in custody. When he heard him speak he was very much perplexed, yet he liked to listen to him. She had an opportunity one day when Herod, on his birthday, gave a banquet for his courtiers, his military officers, and the leading men of Galilee. Herodias’ own daughter came in and performed a dance that delighted Herod and his guests. The king said to the girl, “Ask of me whatever you wish and I will grant it to you.” He even swore many things to her, “I will grant you whatever you ask of me, even to half of my kingdom.” She went out and said to her mother, “What shall I ask for?” She replied, “The head of John the Baptist.” The girl hurried back to the king’s presence and made her request, “I want you to give me at once on a platter the head of John the Baptist.” The king was deeply distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests he did not wish to break his word to her. So he promptly dispatched an executioner with orders to bring back his head. He went off and beheaded him in the prison. He brought in the head on a platter and gave it to the girl. The girl in turn gave it to her mother. When his disciples heard about it, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb. 

We are hardwired to search for the truth. Herod knew that what he did was wrong, but he did not have the courage to face the truth. Herodias hated John because he spoke the truth and she knew it. When faced with the truth we have three choices. To deny it, to run from it and to face it and change. What do you do? Do you have the courage to make the changes that Christ has asked of you?  

Prayer: Heavenly Father I know your truth, but sometimes in this world it is hard to face it and follow you. Help me and guide so all I do is what you desire. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

The Lord comes to rule the earth with justice.

8-28-2015 Memorial of Saint Augustine, Bishop and Doctor of the Church Gospel Mt 25:1-13

St. Augustine

Learn more about St. Augustine: http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=418

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/082815.cfm

Jesus told his disciples this parable: “The Kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them were foolish and five were wise. The foolish ones, when taking their lamps, brought no oil with them, but the wise brought flasks of oil with their lamps.  Since the bridegroom was long delayed, they all became drowsy and fell asleep. At midnight, there was a cry, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins got up and trimmed their lamps. The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’  But the wise ones replied, ‘No, for there may not be enough for us and you. Go instead to the merchants and buy some for yourselves.’ While they went off to buy it, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went into the wedding feast with him.  Then the door was locked. Afterwards the other virgins came and said, ‘Lord, Lord, open the door for us’ But he said in reply,  ‘Amen, I say to you, I do not know you.’  Therefore, stay awake, for you know neither the day nor the hour.” 

We must prepare our soul for the Lord. We do not know how long we have on this earth or when He will return. If we are lazy and not prepared, we will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Are you prepared? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father help me to stay awake. Help me to be prepared for when I meet you face to face. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

Rejoice in the Lord, you just!

8-27-2015 Memorial of Saint Monica Gospel Mt 24:42-51

St. Monica

 Learn more about St. Monica: http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=1

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/082715.cfm

Jesus said to his disciples: “Stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come. Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour of night when the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and not let his house be broken into. So too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come. 

“Who, then, is the faithful and prudent servant, whom the master has put in charge of his household to distribute to them their food at the proper time? Blessed is that servant whom his master on his arrival finds doing so. Amen, I say to you, he will put him in charge of all his property. But if that wicked servant says to himself, ‘My master is long delayed,’ and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eat and drink with drunkards, the servant’s master will come on an unexpected day and at an unknown hour and will punish him severely and assign him a place with the hypocrites, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth.”

We do not know when the Lord will be back, so we must live everyday as if this is the day. We must be prepared, not living the life of the world, but living the life that Christ wants us to live. To live for Him and only Him. How do you live? For the world or for the Lord? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, may I always live my days for you, with you In my heart, my mind and soul. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

Fill us with your love, O Lord, and we will sing for joy!

8-26-2015 Gospel Mt 23:27-32

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/082615.cfm

Jesus said, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You are like whitewashed tombs, which appear beautiful on the outside, but inside are full of dead men’s bones and every kind of filth. Even so, on the outside you appear righteous, but inside you are filled with hypocrisy and evildoing. 

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, you hypocrites. You build the tombs of the prophets and adorn the memorials of the righteous, and you say, ‘If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would not have joined them in shedding the prophets’ blood.’ Thus you bear witness against yourselves that you are the children of those who murdered the prophets; now fill up what your ancestors measured out!” 

We think we can fool God. We try to hide the things we do, and we succeed with people. But we forget that the Lord can see our souls, our hearts. He knows what we do, not what we say we do. How much do you try to hide from the Lord? When will you realized it does not work? If we are not honest with God, we cannot be honest with the people in our lives. How honest are you? 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to be honest with you with all things in my life. I know you are there when I try to hide my sins, help me to always be honest with you and those in my life. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen. 

You have searched me and you know me, Lord.

8-25-2015 Reading 1 1 Thes 2:1-8

Link to today’s readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/082515.cfm

You yourselves know, brothers and sisters, that our reception among you was not without effect. Rather, after we had suffered and been insolently treated, as you know, in Philippi, we drew courage through our God to speak to you the Gospel of God with much struggle. Our exhortation was not from delusion or impure motives, nor did it work through deception. But as we were judged worthy by God to be entrusted with the Gospel, that is how we speak, not as trying to please men, but rather God, who judges our hearts. Nor, indeed, did we ever appear with flattering speech, as you know, or with a pretext for greed–God is witness– nor did we seek praise from men, either from you or from others, although we were able to impose our weight as Apostles of Christ. Rather, we were gentle among you, as a nursing mother cares for her children. With such affection for you, we were determined to share with you not only the Gospel of God, but our very selves as well, so dearly beloved had you become to us. 

They will know we are Christians by our love. That is what we need to show to those who do not believe in God, or claim to love God but not the Church He founded. We must love them first, pray for them and plant the seeds of conversion. Can you love like the Apostles did? That is what we are called to do. 

Prayer: Heavenly Father, help me to love those who I find unlovable. Help me to see you in those who do not believe and bring them to you. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen.

You have searched me and you know me, Lord.

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