Saturday, December 30, 2017

Daily Thought For December 30, 2017

The Characteristics Of A Good Friend

When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

Henri Nouwen

Friday, December 29, 2017

Daily Thought For December 29, 2017

Why God Allows Difficulties

“God, by placing man in difficult situations, provokes him into performing acts of faith.  These situations, which make us realize our powerlessness, can deepen our yearning for God…
…[H]e may allow or cause you to go through difficult trials of faith when you will not be able to cope with your problems by yourself…

The experience of not being able to cope with something, and the feeling of loss, can cause you to have the desire to look for his coming.  This is a chance for the growth and the deepening of your faith.” 

Fr. Tadeusz Dajczer, December Magnificat, p. 202-203.

Thursday, December 28, 2017

Daily Thought For December 28, 2017

Great Advice On Overcoming Anger

Anger can be a powerful and fierce emotion. If left unchecked, it can cause us to make rash decisions and lead us to hurt innocent people. Just look at Herod. He heard a king had been born in Israel and he was afraid. This child was a threat, and Herod wanted to get rid of him quickly. When the Magi didn’t cooperate with his plan, he became furious. So he lashed out, ordering the deaths of all young boys in and around Bethlehem.

Such a violent act horrifies us. And it should! It seems so arbitrary and unnecessary. Herod could have taken any number of other less drastic measures to protect himself. But as terrible as his reaction is, the truth is that none of us are immune to the pitfalls of anger.

It can start small. Maybe you get annoyed because your husband eats the lunch you had packed for yourself. It was just one thoughtless action, but you start to generalize and tell yourself he’s always inconsiderate or selfish. You start scolding him even when he has done nothing wrong. You might even find yourself lashing out at your children who aren’t even involved. They don’t deserve your wrath, but it’s too late; your anger is out of hand.

Anger can snowball to the point that we strike out against anyone. But there are some practical steps we can take to keep this from happening:

• First, be attentive to what’s going on in your mind. As soon as you see frustration or annoyance bubbling up, ask God to help you deal with it before it overflows into something more damaging.

• Try to think of one positive quality about the person you’re angry with. It may seem like a small thing, but stopping to see their virtues can give you a better perspective. It can also help you cool down.

• Finally, pray for that person. It’s hard to stay angry with someone you’re lifting up to the Lord. It will help you see them from God’s perspective, and you may even find yourself feeling more compassionate toward them.

Unchecked anger is destructive. But we don’t have to be controlled by it. God can help us break the cycle.


“Lord, help me not to let anger grow in my heart.”

Daily Thought From The Word Among Us (www.wau.org)

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

Daily Thought For December 27, 2017

May The Son Illumine Our Vocations

For St. John, as for everyone else, his vocation gave a new meaning even to the most ordinary things. The whole of life is affected by Our Lord's plans for each one of us. The discovery of one's personal vocation, is the most important point in each person's existence. It changes everything without changing anything; just as a landscape, without changing, is different before and after the sun goes down, beneath the light of the moon, or wrapped in the darkness of night. Every discovery gives a new beauty to things, and a new light creates new shadows; one discovery is the prelude to other discoveries of new lights and more beauty.  

John's whole life was centred on his Lord and Master; in his faithfulness to Jesus he found the meaning of his life. He put up no resistance of any kind to His call; he was found on Calvary when all the others had disappeared. This is what our life, too, has to be like,  because even though Our Lord calls some people in a special way, all his preaching comprises a vocation, an invitation to follow him into a new life whose secret he possesses: if any man would come after me ... 


Our Lord has chosen all of us - some of us with a specific vocation - to follow him, to imitate him and to carry on in the world the work of his Redemption. And from all of us he expects a joyful and unshakeable faithfulness like St John's - even in the most difficult moments. 

from In Conversation with God Volume 1 pp.246-247 by Francis Fernandez

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Daily Thought For December 26, 2017

We Need Peace


Lectio

Matthew 10:17–22

Meditatio

“For it will not be you who speak
but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.”

We might suppose that the day after Christmas would bring us another cozy Gospel story of angels and shepherds, or Magi traveling across countries, following the light of a star. But today, instead, we recall one of the first martyrs of the early Church—Saint Stephen.

Stephen’s story seems to break rather abruptly into the Christmas season. The rage of the crowd and Stephen’s violent martyrdom startle us. It seems so much at odds with the utter wonder and simplicity of God coming among us as a newborn baby. New hope was born among us, cause for great joy. The story of Stephen is given to us today as a challenge to bring this joy out into a world that often resists it.

As too soon the lights and decorations begin to come down around us and life quickly returns to more “ordinary” time, it can be difficult to live out the joy and hope that we celebrate each Christmas. When we experience moments of suffering or fear, the peacefulness of the crèche scene may seem very far away. But Jesus promises us that he will always be with us.
Just as Mary and Joseph lived each moment leading up to the birth of Jesus—and after—with trust in God’s faithfulness, Jesus calls us to put our trust in him.

Oratio

Jesus, our world profoundly needs the peace and hope that we celebrate each year at Christmas. Send me your Spirit, that I might speak your words of peace in moments of pain and difficulty. Help me to trust in your promise to always be with me.

Contemplatio

“If God is for us, who can be against us?” (Rom 8:31)


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 84–85). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Monday, December 25, 2017

Daily Thought For December 25, 2017

Christmas Blessings!

Our Saviour, dearly-beloved, was born today: let us be glad. For there is no proper place for sadness, when we keep the birthday of the Life, which destroys the fear of mortality and brings to us the joy of promised eternity. No one is kept from sharing in this happiness. There is for all one common measure of joy, because as our Lord the destroyer of sin and death finds none free from charge, so is He come to free us all. Let the saint exult in that he draws near to victory. Let the sinner be glad in that he is invited to pardon. Let the gentile take courage in that he is called to life. For the Son of God in the fulness of time which the inscrutable depth of the Divine counsel has determined, has taken on him the nature of man, thereby to reconcile it to its Author: in order that the inventor of death, the devil, might be conquered through that (nature) which he had conquered.

St. Leo I

Saturday, December 23, 2017

Daily Thought For December 23, 2017

Our Amazing Destiny


Lectio

Luke 1:57–66

Meditatio

“What, then, will this child be?”

As each of my nieces and nephews was born (and especially when I had a chance to see them soon after birth), a feeling of awe and wonder struck me. What a little bundle of potential a newborn baby is! Each child is a mystery. What will he become? What will she be like?

We can spot some clues—long feet and toes indicating future height, for example. We can surmise some likely possibilities—the prospect of inheriting gifts and inclinations from artistic, athletic, or musically gifted parents, for instance. But no one except God can know for sure anything about the future deeds, accomplishments, influence, or lifespan of the child. And only a foolish person would claim to know the future.

A child like John, the son of Elizabeth and Zechariah, is the focus of wonder because each child is a gift from God to the world—a sign that God has not finished with us yet.

The extraordinary circumstances around John’s birth make people take notice. Obviously, God is involved because this baby would not even have been conceived in the normal way of things. But God is involved in each child’s life, and indeed each person’s, no matter at what stage of life, no matter what a person may have done or not done previously. Every human being has marvelous potential and is a mystery known only to God.

Sometimes we sell each other and ourselves short. We might look at a person or at ourselves and feel that our future paths are already laid out. That is not true. God always provides the grace needed to change. We can always change direction or focus, or deepen our commitment, or repent of our selfishness, and allow God to transform us. The Baby born in Bethlehem reminds us of this.

Oratio

God, my Father, thank you for the gift that every single child is to the world. Thank you for the renewal of wonder, awe, and hope that every baby brings. Is that why your Son came as a baby—to awaken in people a new hope in your grace at work in the world?
I am a mystery of your grace. Thank you for the gift of being able to begin again. Help me never to despair of the possibility of change, either in myself or those around me.

Contemplatio

What will you do in me today, Lord?


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 76–77). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Friday, December 22, 2017

Daily Thought For December 22, 2017

Love & Suffering

Love and sacrifice are closely linked, like the sun and the light. We cannot love without suffering and we cannot suffer without love.

St. Gianna Beretta Molla 

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Daily Thought For December 21,2017

Beautiful Insights Into The Visitation


Lectio

Luke 1:39–45

Meditatio

  “… for joy …”

Christmas is just a few days away. Most of us still have lots of things to do as we prepare for our liturgies and our family celebrations. And so, today’s Gospel is especially for us. We find echoes of the pre-holiday hustle and bustle in Mary’s hasty journey through the difficult hill country.

Mary was very young, pregnant, and certainly preoccupied with her own future. For these reasons we are moved by her thoughtfulness, concern, and care every time we read this passage. In announcing to her God’s plans, the Archangel Gabriel tells her, as a means of reassuring her, that her older, barren cousin is also with child. Mary goes quickly to Elizabeth, eager to serve.

We expect exuberance from the young. It is one of life’s delights. Luke recreates this delight in the heart of today’s Advent saint, Elizabeth. We are not told the words or manner of Mary’s greeting to Elizabeth, but we can imagine how it must have been by Elizabeth’s reaction; “The moment the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the infant in my womb leaped for joy.” At that moment of encounter, the Holy Spirit has filled the older woman’s heart and she cries out an astonished blessing. How could she have known Mary’s own sweet secret? From where does her prophetic praise arise? How does she know the young girl has brought the Promised One to her humble home?

As we prepare to celebrate Christmas this year, let us return to this scene and imagine the days that followed and try to feel the joy that must have dwelt in every little word and gesture these holy women shared. As the day of Christ’s coming nears, let our hearts leap and our voices cry out in joy.

Oratio

Lord, I address this prayer to your Mother knowing the joy that gives you. Mary, reflecting on your journey and the meeting that took place between you and Elizabeth is to me a portrait of grace. You illustrate the gentle yet exuberant approach of God’s grace to my soul and, in Elizabeth, I see the soul’s astounded but joyful reception. May you, the Mother full of grace, make me a kind and joyful person, willing to serve unselfishly.

Contemplatio

“Blessed are you who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled.”


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 72–73). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Daily Thought For December 19, 2017

Listen In The Silence Of Your Heart

Imagine how difficult it must have been for Zechariah to remain silent for nine long months. How could he conduct business? How could he minister as a priest? How could he relate to his wife, Elizabeth? Scripture gives us little insight into how Zechariah spent that time, but we can be sure he spent a good portion of it learning patience and trust in God.

Whatever Zechariah did, it’s clear that God used this time to prepare him for his role as father of John the Baptist. Raising any child is a challenging venture, so imagine how much higher the stakes were here: Zechariah had to form the new Elijah, the herald of the Messiah. It’s a good thing he had a prolonged period of silence and reflection!

Catholic author and poet Caryll Houselander once talked about the blessings of silence this way: “God speaks silently, God speaks in your heart; if your heart is noisy, chattering, you will not hear.” It’s in silence that we can become aware of our emptiness and our longing for the Lord. Spending too much time caught up in the noise and clutter of the world can dull our spiritual senses. It can make us think that we are fulfilled and satisfied when we may be just bouncing from one distraction to the next. It’s only in silence and emptiness that we can allow the Lord to fill us and speak to us.

In these few days before Christmas, make it a point to seek out the Lord in silence. Maybe you can steal a few moments before the tabernacle during adoration or before the crèche in your home. Don’t say much; just picture Jesus sitting with you, and rest in his presence. It may not appear that anything is happening. You may feel nothing dramatically changing in you. But if you keep this up over time, you won’t be disappointed. God will speak to you. He will bring you peace. He will assure you of his love. He loves to spend time with you!

After John was born, Zechariah’s “mouth was opened,” and he sang God’s praises (Luke 1:64). His silence filled him with joy and confidence in the Lord. The same can happen for each of us as we wait before our God in silence.


“Lord, help me to seek you and find you in the silence of my heart.”

Daily Reflection from The Word Among Us (www.wau.org)

Monday, December 18, 2017

Daily Thought For December 18, 2017

He Is Present


Lectio

Matthew 11:28–30

Meditatio

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened, and I will give you rest.”

Who cannot relate to this passage? The feeling of being tired and burdened can last all year and is simply more intense these weeks before Christmas. Yet Advent is the one time we really long to slow down and appreciate the season. We know that we celebrate at Christmas the mystery that holds for us great joy: the birth of our Savior. Children are innately happy, filled with eager anticipation—even the secular world celebrates this season of joy. We long to savor the gift, to get away from the frenetic pace so often connected with this season.

My parents, ever my spiritual models, years ago made the simple decision that they would no longer go the expensive and exasperating mall-crawling, gift-giving route. They give a donation to charity, commit to daily Mass, and spend the rest of Advent a little more calm and less burdened as they visit family and friends.

In the midst of this hectic season, Jesus invites us to take his “light” and “easy” yoke upon our shoulders. But to take up his yoke, we shall have to lay down our own—there is no room for two. We shall have to lay down those “unnecessary anxieties” that weigh on us and squelch our joy. Jesus invites us to let go of whatever weighs us down. In my case this means my perfectionism, worry, unrealistic expectations. The meal doesn’t have to be the best ever; sending cards can be a time of prayer for each person I write to; decorating can be done simply. If I could let go of useless anxieties, I could give more attention to the people and projects that genuinely merit it. I could give more time to prayer.

Only trust in the Lord will allow me to exchange my yoke for his. To accept in faith that Jesus has the compassion, wisdom, and strength to handle my burdens will allow me to let go and be free.

Oratio

Lord Jesus, I fear that if mine is the first move I will never make it. If I must divest myself of my self-made yoke before I take on yours, where will I find the strength? But if you would help me here, if you would give me the grace to trust in your love, to trust in your strength and power to provide—if you make the first move, then I will have courage. Let me taste the sweetness of your yoke so my own pales in comparison and I willingly let it go to embrace yours.

Contemplatio

Lord, help me believe your words: your yoke is easy and your burden light.


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 34–35). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Daily Thought For December 17, 2017

Take His Hand And Walk

As long as you realize that God is holding on to you by your will and resolution to serve him, go on boldly and do not be upset by your little set-backs and falls; there is no need to be put out by this provided you throw yourself into his arms from time to time and kiss him with the kiss of charity. Go on joyfully and with your heart as open and widely trustful as possible; and if you cannot always be joyful, at least be brave and confident. 


Go straight on, and always in God's sight. God takes pleasure in seeing you make your little steps; and like a good father who holds his child by the hand, he will conform his steps to yours and will be quite happy not to go any faster than you. What are you anxious about? Whether you are taking this road or that other way, going fast or slow? All that matters is that he is with you, and you with him.

St. Francis de Sales
(Selected Letters, pp.45-46, Selected Letters, P: 160) 

Friday, December 15, 2017

Daily Thought For December 16, 2017

Trust

When I trust deeply that today God is truly with me and holds me safe in a divine embrace, guiding every one of my steps I can let go of my anxious need to know how tomorrow will look, or what will happen next month or next year. I can be fully where I am and pay attention to the many signs of God's love within me and around me.

Henri Nouwen

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Daily Thought For December 14, 2017

Giving The Glory To God


Ponder

IN ISAIAH’S POETRY, the Lord calls Jacob a worm and Israel a maggot (41:14). Of course, some translations soften it a little by using the word insect. The King James version just says ye men of Israel. In any case, that name-calling jolts us, especially at 7 A.M. Mass. Would we be able to take it if the Lord faced us squarely with our reality?

The text goes on to tell us that the Lord will help even worms and maggots; the promises of prosperity, fertile, fruitful lands, and precious forests continue—in fact, mightily! “You shall rejoice in the LORD; in the Holy One of Israel you shall glory” (Is 41:16). The point of the reading: The wonderful things happening to Israel will ultimately be God’s doing, not ours. “The hand of the LORD has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it” (Is 41:20).

In Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus talks to the crowds. Some support him; others object to everything he says and does. He praises the greatness of his cousin, John the Baptist. At the same time, Jesus tells us that the least in the Father’s kingdom is greater than John.
In A Guide to the Eucharist and Hours, Kevin W. Irwin unravels these texts wonderfully. He says that John is a “model of unprecedented self-effacement before God.” John knows his importance, but he “humbly stands aside when the Lord comes.” Irwin goes on, “John, this last and specially chosen prophet, leads us by word and example to realize that we too must be self-effacing before the Lord.”

Isn’t it true: We hope people will like what we did for them, be grateful for our efforts, say “thank you” for the hot chocolate and cookies.… Obviously, we’ve done the deed for ourselves, if we expect thanks.

Irwin’s final comments say it all:

  John’s example functions as a most important Advent model for us, especially as we prepare for the coming holidays. There are cards to send, gifts to purchase, food to prepare, family to please, and neighbors to greet. But, in all this, we ought to remember why we do it—out of love for others and to spread the peace of Christ, the true gift of Christmas. We are to incarnate Jesus’ love in our daily lives among those we love and especially among those who do not love us.

Mary, I can’t quite imagine that you pouted when your Son ran in, grabbed a cookie, and ran off to play with his friends. Well, I can’t imagine that he forgot to say thank you either. Are you smiling? Isn’t this the normal backside of every weaving? Help me not to take myself too seriously!

Act

  Today, do what you do for the doing of it and for the Lord—not for the thanks you will or won’t receive. That’s the stuff of saints!

Pray

  Jesus, teach me to pray like Isaiah: “The hand of the Lord has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it” (41:20).


Frisk, M. J. (2005). Joyous Expectation: Journeying through Advent with Mary (pp. 41–43). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Daily Thought For December 13, 2017

Lay It Down


Lectio

Matthew 11:28–30

Meditatio

“Come to me, all you who labor and are burdened,
and I will give you rest.”

Who cannot relate to this passage? The feeling of being tired and burdened can last all year and is simply more intense these weeks before Christmas. Yet Advent is the one time we really long to slow down and appreciate the season. We know that we celebrate at Christmas the mystery that holds for us great joy: the birth of our Savior. Children are innately happy, filled with eager anticipation—even the secular world celebrates this season of joy. We long to savor the gift, to get away from the frenetic pace so often connected with this season.

My parents, ever my spiritual models, years ago made the simple decision that they would no longer go the expensive and exasperating mall-crawling, gift-giving route. They give a donation to charity, commit to daily Mass, and spend the rest of Advent a little more calm and less burdened as they visit family and friends.
In the midst of this hectic season, Jesus invites us to take his “light” and “easy” yoke upon our shoulders. But to take up his yoke, we shall have to lay down our own—there is no room for two. We shall have to lay down those “unnecessary anxieties” that weigh on us and squelch our joy. Jesus invites us to let go of whatever weighs us down. In my case this means my perfectionism, worry, unrealistic expectations. The meal doesn’t have to be the best ever; sending cards can be a time of prayer for each person I write to; decorating can be done simply. If I could let go of useless anxieties, I could give more attention to the people and projects that genuinely merit it. I could give more time to prayer.

Only trust in the Lord will allow me to exchange my yoke for his. To accept in faith that Jesus has the compassion, wisdom, and strength to handle my burdens will allow me to let go and be free.

Oratio

Lord Jesus, I fear that if mine is the first move I will never make it. If I must divest myself of my self-made yoke before I take on yours, where will I find the strength? But if you would help me here, if you would give me the grace to trust in your love, to trust in your strength and power to provide—if you make the first move, then I will have courage. Let me taste the sweetness of your yoke so my own pales in comparison and I willingly let it go to embrace yours.

Contemplatio

Lord, help me believe your words: your yoke is easy and your burden light.


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 34–35). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Daily Thought For December 12, 2017

Light It Up!

If we are truly in love with Christ and if we sense how much he loves us, our heart will 'light up' with a joy that spreads to everyone around us.

Pope Francis

Monday, December 11, 2017

Daily Thought For December 11, 2017

Is Humanity Still Waiting? How Do We Prepare?


But the question is: is the humanity of our time still waiting for a Saviour? One has the feeling that many consider God as foreign to their own interests. Apparently, they do not need him. They live as though he did not exist and, worse still, as though he were an “obstacle” to remove in order to fulfil themselves. Even among believers—we are sure of it—some let themselves be attracted by enticing dreams and distracted by misleading doctrines that suggest deceptive shortcuts to happiness.

Yet, despite its contradictions, worries and tragedies, and perhaps precisely because of them, humanity today seeks a path of renewal, of salvation, it seeks a Saviour and awaits, sometimes unconsciously, the coming of the Saviour who renews the world and our life, the coming of Christ, the one true Redeemer of man and of the whole of man.

Of course, false prophets continue to propose a salvation “at a cheap price”, that always ends by producing searing disappointments.

The history of the past 50 years itself demonstrates this search for a Saviour “at a cheap price” and highlights all the disappointments that have derived from it. It is the task of us Christians, with the witness of our life, to spread the truth of Christmas which Christ brings to every man and woman of good will.

Born in the poverty of the manger, Jesus comes to offer to all that joy and that peace which alone can fulfil the expectations of the human soul.

But how should we prepare ourselves to open our hearts to the Lord who comes? The spiritual attitude of watchful and prayerful expectation remains the fundamental characteristic of the Christian in this Advent Season. It is this attitude that distinguishes the protagonists of that time: Zechariah and Elizabeth, the shepherds, the Magi, the humble, simple people, above all Mary and Joseph’s expectation! The latter, more than any of the others, felt in the first person the anxiety and trepidation for the Child who would be born.

It is not difficult to imagine how they spent the last days, waiting to hold the newborn Infant in their arms. May their attitude be our own, dear brothers and sisters! In this regard, let us listen to the exhortation of St Maximus, Bishop of Turin, cited above: “While we are waiting to welcome the Nativity of the Lord, let us clothe ourselves in clean garments, without a stain. I am speaking of clothing the soul, not the body. Let us not be clad in silk raiments but in holy works! Sumptuous clothing may cover the limbs but does not adorn the conscience” (ibid.).

In being born among us, may the Child Jesus not find us distracted or merely busy, beautifying our houses with decorative lights. Rather, let us deck our soul and make our families a worthy dwelling place where he feels welcomed with faith and love. May the Blessed Virgin and St Joseph help us to live the Mystery of Christmas with renewed wonder and peaceful serenity.

With these sentiments, I would like to offer my most fervent good wishes for a holy and happy Christmas to all of you present here and to your relatives, with a special remembrance for those who may be in difficulty or who are suffering in body and spirit. Happy Christmas to you all!


Benedict XVI. (2013). General Audiences of Benedict XVI (English). Vatican City: Libreria Editrice Vaticana.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Daily Thought For December 10, 2017

The Lord Is Doing Something New


Lectio

Mark 1:1–8

Meditatio

  “The beginning of the Gospel …”

Beginnings are generally small, even insignificant. Nightfall begins when the first faint star appears. A world-changing technology may begin in a flash of insight entirely hidden to all but the thinker. A life-changing love may have its origin in a subtle glance whose potential could never be fathomed by the two who exchange it. Advent celebrates just this kind of beginning, one bursting with possibilities.

The Gospel itself, “the power of God for salvation” (cf. Rom 1:16), begins with a solitary voice in the desert. Those who heard that call probably thought the eccentric John, with his camel hair and locusts, was the focal point of what was about to begin. But John is not staging an event as if he were launching a new product line or planning an inauguration. Instead, he claims to be no more than an advance messenger; the “one mightier” is drawing near. This is why John pares his existence down to the essentials. This is why John insists on a symbolic baptism of repentance and a confession that is both an admission of sin and a proclamation of hope and praise: John is preparing the way of the Lord. This is the Lord who had spoken through the prophets, anticipating the utter newness that was “impossible to human beings, but not for God” (cf. Mk 10:27): “I will give you a new heart and place a new spirit within you” (Ez 36:26).

For Mark, it isn’t only a written account that starts, as all books do, from “the beginning”: it is the Gospel itself that is just beginning, even now. We even find a new beginning at the end of Mark’s Gospel, where the Lord sends us, like the apostles, to proclaim the Gospel to every creature (cf. Mk 16:15). Mark is telling us that the entire written Gospel is the first breath of something startlingly new.

Oratio

Lord, I admit to a certain amount of fear in the face of what is new, even when I secretly know that the old and familiar no longer work. During this Advent week, let me hear your word in a new way. Renew me in mind and heart, so that I will be able to respond to you in peace. Then I will give you praise for the great things you are bringing about before my very eyes!

Contemplatio

Lord, even here, even now, you are doing something new!

Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 26–27). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Daily Thought For December 7, 2017

A Child's Will

     It took having kids for me to start distilling some of Jesus' parables. The first grader, eager to please, jumps when offered a task-that is, until she hears the actual chore. If it doesn't fit her criteria of glamour or overall extraordinariness, you can see the wheels turning as she starts backing out. The four-year-old is more honest; he'd rather just play. The toddler throws things. 
     Their childish flightiness is familiar to me, even as I seek to do the will of my Father in heaven. Often I'm my daughter, raring to fight for a worthy cause du jour, at the risk of missing the daily cases God places before me in which it is difficult, boring, and tiresome to love. To suffer. To obey. I empathize with my son's desire to remain in comfort, and even the youngest's most willful rebelliousness. 
     Jesus warns us, Not everyone who says to me, "Lord, Lord," will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father. When my house is beset by storms, whose will have I centered it on? Like my children, I fail at obedience, but Advent is the time for reshoring that foundation. Children also have the incredible capacity to abandon themselves to a task out of sheer love and joy. That's the obedience I long to imitate. 

Reflection based on Matthew 7:21,24-27 
ELIZABETH HANSEN (Magnificat Advent Companion)

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Daily Thought For December 6, 2017

The Lord's Compassion & The Gift of Lourdes

Lectio

Matthew 15:29–37

Meditatio

  “My heart is moved with pity for the crowd.”

Today’s Gospel visibly demonstrates Jesus’ compassion in word and action. After days of following the Master, the crowd longs for his presence, his words, and his saving deeds. Jesus also knows the people are hungry! “My heart is moved with pity.…”

As the Teacher climbs the mountain and sits before the crowd, the suffering of the sick and the needs of the people stirred his heart with pity. His saving touch heals the physically challenged and those who suffered many kinds of sickness. With seven loaves and a few fish, Jesus multiplies the food so the people will not “collapse on the way.”

The healing of the sick and the feeding of the four thousand show clearly how profoundly God embraces our human condition in Jesus Christ. The heart of God understands the physical suffering, pain, and weakness we experience! He is not only a God who is “for” us in our need, but who experienced hunger and physical pain in his own flesh.

Perhaps images of Lourdes fill our imagination when we read this Gospel. Men, women, and children who suffer from every kind of physical, emotional, and mental illness seek spiritual and physical healing at Lourdes. Accompanied by caregivers and family members, the sick assemble as the Eucharist is celebrated, received, and adored. Jesus’ heart again “is moved with pity” for them as it was on that mountain in Galilee. Lourdes is a place of hope because the presence of God is so deeply felt in prayer, word, and sacrament. How completely Jesus embraces human weakness is so visible and deeply moving at Lourdes.

Jesus never runs away from our pain, sin, or human messiness, but he embraces it in tenderness and mercy. We can bring to our Savior’s compassionate heart whatever weighs us down, wherever we live!

Oratio

Jesus, companion and friend, walk with me when I feel I cannot go on. Feed me with your word and the Eucharist so the needs and hungers of my heart will be fed. Bring healing to whatever is sick in me. May my words and actions give hope to those who journey with me and who feel overwhelmed by problems and concerns. Satisfy the hunger of the world’s poor with bread, and the hunger of all people for love and a meaningful life. May the Eucharist be the icon through which I see the needs and hungers of others.

Contemplatio

Jesus, you satisfy the hungers of my heart.


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 16–17). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Daily Thought For December 5, 2017

The Cross Will Always Stand Against Evil

The image of the naked Galilean hanging from the cross has always inspired great love and fierce hate. Nero sought to make the cross a hateful image by putting Christians to death upon it, pouring pitch upon them, and lighting Rome with these flaming human crosses. Julian the Apostate said that he would make the world forget the Man on the cross, but in his final agony he had to acknowledge, “Thou has conquered, Galilean.” Communists forbid its presence because they fear its power against their evil designs. Hitler has tried to replace the image of our Blessed Lord on the cross with a stupid swastika. Invectives, false philosophies, violence, and every diabolical scheme have been used to tear the Christ from the cross and the crucifix from the church. Nevertheless, like the bombs that were dropped on this chapel, they have only succeeded in making the cross stand out more and more in bold relief. The image we love grows greater in our understanding because of the vehemence of the hate it occasions in wicked men. Each of us has that sacred image stamped upon his soul. Like the chapel, we are Temples of God. And no matter how we are torn by the bombs of tragedy and trial and assault from without, the image of the crucified remains if we want it to. Now at the foot of this cross let us renew our baptismal vows. Let us promise to shield forever His image in our hearts.

Fr. Francis Sampson (the priest who saved the real "Private Ryan") for more information on his remarkable life click HERE.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Daily Thought For December 4, 2017

Our Holy Longing Will Be Fulfilled

Lectio

Matthew 8:5–11

Meditatio

  “I will come …”

In the movie August Rush, the eleven-year-old orphan Evan Taylor hopes to be reunited with his birth parents, whom he has never known. His parents, Lyla and Louis, fall in love but are separated. Lyla has a child, but her father gives the child up for adoption without Lyla’s knowledge. With the vision possible only to the human heart, Evan clings to the hope he will one day be reunited with his parents. Evan can be for us an icon of Advent hope. He longs to know he is not alone, to know that he is loved.

During Advent, we also long for the coming of the awaited Messiah—in Bethlehem, at the end of time, and in each human heart, including our own. Like Evan, we also cry out: “Come!”
Similarly, the centurion in today’s Gospel pleads with Jesus to heal a sick servant. The centurion trusts Jesus so much that he believes Jesus’ word has power to bring relief and healing. Situations of pain or paralysis in our own lives can open us up to cry out for healing. This desire prompts us to reach out to those we trust: a spouse, a close friend or relative, a parent, mentor, spiritual guide, God. Sometimes a simple word or gesture from someone significant reassures us that we are not alone. How powerful are the words: “I’ll be right there,” or, “I am with you.”

Ponder for a moment the first three words of Jesus’ response to the centurion’s request: “I will come …” Every time we call out to him, our loving God says the same thing: “I will come.” Jesus manifests his desire to come and be with us not just at certain moments, but all the time. Just as Evan Taylor’s hopeful expectation for reunion is finally fulfilled, our longing for God’s presence will also be fulfilled. The Lord reassures us: “I am with you always …” (Mt 28:20).

Oratio

Lord, come anew into this heart made by you, hungry for you. Come into my heart, my mind, my life, my entire being, body and soul. Heal what is broken in me; give life to what is paralyzed within me. I believe you can do all things, and that you want to come and heal. Like the centurion, who asked for healing for his servant, I also ask you to bless and heal those for whom I pray today, especially for: (pause to mention names).
Come, Emmanuel, God with us.

Contemplatio

“Come, O Lord. Do not delay.”


Daughters of Saint Paul. (2009). Advent Grace: Daily Gospel Reflections (pp. 12–13). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Daily Thought For November 30, 2017

St. John Chrysostom on Friendship

Such is friendship, that through it we love places and seasons; for as bright bodies emit rays to a distance, and flowers drop their sweet leaves on the ground around them, so friends impart favor even to the places where they dwell. With friends even poverty is pleasant. Words cannot express the joy which a friend imparts; they only can know who have experienced. A friend is dearer than the light of heaven, for it would be better for us that the sun were exhausted than that we should be without friends.

St. John Chrysostom

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Daily Thought For November 28, 2017

Small Beginnings Are Great

We cannot do everything, and there is a sense of liberation in realizing that. This enables us to do something, and to do it very well. It may be incomplete, but it is a beginning, a step along the way, an opportunity for the Lord's grace to enter and do the rest.

Blessed Oscar Romero

Monday, November 27, 2017

Daily Thought For November 27, 2017

An Important Reminder

The story of Mary of Magdalene reminds us all of a fundamental truth...A disciple of Christ is one who, in the experience of human weakness, has had the humility to ask for his help, has been healed by him and has set out following closely after him, becoming a witness of the power of his merciful love that is stronger than sin and death.

Pope Benedict XVI

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Daily Thought For November 26, 2017

Go Make A Difference!

Speak tenderly; let there be kindness in your face, in your eyes, in your smile, in the warmth of your greeting. Always have a cheerful smile. Don't only give your care, but give your heart as well.

St. Teresa of Calcutta

Friday, November 24, 2017

Daily Thought For November 24, 2017

The Power Of Prayer Gives Way To Hope

Prayer can truly change your life. For it turns your attention away from yourself and directs your mind and your heart toward the Lord. If we look only at ourselves, with our own limitations and sins, we quickly give way to sadness and discouragement. But if we keep our eyes fixed on the Lord, then our hearts are filled with hope, our minds are washed n the light of truth, and we come to know the fullness of the Gospel with all is promise and life.

St. John Paul II

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Daily Thought For November 23, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving!

Father all-powerful, Your gifts of love are countless and Your goodness infinite. On Thanksgiving Day we come before You with gratitude for Your kindness: open our hearts to concern for our fellow men and women, so that we may share Your gifts in loving service. 
We ask this through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, Who lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.
Amen.

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Daily Thought For November 22, 2017

24 Hour Prayer

There are some people who, in order not to pray use as an excuse the fact that life is so hectic that it prevents us from praying. This cannot be. Prayer does not demand that we interrupt our work, but that we continue working as if it were a prayer. It is not necessary to always be in meditation, nor to consciously experience the sensation that we are talking to God, no matter how nice that would be. What matters is being with Him, living in Him, in His will. To love with a pure heart, to love everybody, especially to live the poor, is a twenty-four hour prayer.

St. Teresa of Calcutta

Monday, November 20, 2017

Daily Thought For November 20, 2017

Pray And Don't Lose Heart

If God seems slow in responding, it is because He is preparing a better gift. He will not deny us. God withholds what you are not yet ready for. He wants you to have a lively desire for His greatest gifts. All of which is to say, pray always and do not lose heart.

St. Augustine


Friday, November 17, 2017

Daily Thought For November 17, 2017

Tending Your Own Garden

Don't sow your desires in someone else's garden; just cultivate your own as best you can; don't long to be other than what you are, but desire to be thoroughly what you are. Direct your thoughts to being very good at that and to bearing the crosses, little or great, that you will find there. Believe me, this is the most important and least understood point to the spiritual life. We all love according to what is our taste; few people like what is according to their duty or to God's liking. What is the use of building castles in Spain when we have to live in France?

St. Francis de Sales

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Daily Thought For November 16, 2017

In Praise Of The Holy Spirit

Holy Spirit, the life that gives life: You are the cause of all movement. You are the breath of all creatures. You are the salve that purifies our souls. You are the ointment that heals our wounds. You are the fire that warms our hearts. You are the light that guides our feet. Let all the world praise you.

St. Hildegard of Bingen

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Daily Thought For November 15, 2017

Are You A Canal Or A Reservoir?

If then you are wise, you will show yourself rather as a reservoir than as a canal. For a canal spreads abroad water as it receives it, but a reservoir waits until it is filled before overflowing, and thus communicates, without loss to itself, its superabundant water. In the Church at the present day, we have many canals, few reservoirs.

St. Bernard of Clairvaux

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Daily Thought For November 14, 2017

A Grave Warning From A Great Philosopher

Unless we regain the art of silence and insight, the ability for nonactivity, unless we substitute true leisure for our hectic amusements, we will destroy our culture and ourselves.

Josef Pieper

Monday, November 13, 2017

Daily Thought For November 13, 2017

The Power of Prayer

They who pray with faith have fervour and fervour is the fire of prayer. This mysterious fire has the power of consuming all our faults and imperfections, and of giving to our actions, vitality, beauty and merit.

St. Francis Xavier Cabrini (Memorial is Today)

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Daily Thought For November 12, 2017

Press Forward & Fear Nothing

If we wish to serve God and love our neighbor well, we must manifest our joy in the service we render to Him and them. Let us open wide our hearts. It is joy which invites us. Press forward and fear nothing.

St. Katharine Drexel

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Daily Thought For November 11, 2017

Tune Our Hearts To Brave Music

God of our life, there are days when the burdens we carry chafe our shoulders and weigh us down; when the road seems dreary and endless, the skies gray and threatening; when our lives have no music in them, and our hearts are lonely, and our souls have lost their courage. Flood the path with light, run our eyes to where the skies are full of promise; tune our hearts to brave music; give us the sense of comradeship with heroes and saints of every age; and so quicken our spirits that we may be able to encourage the souls of all who journey with us on the road of life, to your honor and glory.

St. Augustine

Friday, November 10, 2017

Daily Thought For November 10, 2017

Evidence The Holy Spirit Is Lacking

"Where joylessness reigns, where humor dies, the spirit of Jesus Christ is assuredly absent."

Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Daily Thought For November 9, 2017

An Important Truth

Remember that when you leave this earth, you can take with you nothing that you have received - only what you have given: a full heart, enriched by honest service, love, sacrifice and courage.

St. Francis of Assisi

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Daily Thought For November 8, 2017

The Relief Of Suffering

Love is the first ingredient in the relief of suffering.

St. Pio of Pietrelcina

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Daily Thought For November 7, 2017

Power In Weakness

The Church therefore has one inescapable task: To lift up Christ. When she seeks to lift herself up she becomes weak, but when she acknowledges her own weakness and proclaims her Lord, she is strong.

Cardinal Avery Dulles, SJ

Monday, November 6, 2017

Daily Thought For November 6, 2017

Great Prayer From A Great Saint

Lord, help me to live this day, quietly, easily. To lean upon Thy great strength, trustfully, restfully. To wait for the unfolding of Thy will, patiently, serenely. To meet others, peacefully, joyously. To face tomorrow, confidently, courageously.

St. Francis of Assisi

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Daily Thought For November 5, 2017

Why Peter Got Out Of The Boat

It is not those who commit the least faults who are the most holy, but those who have the greatest courage, the greatest generosity, the greatest love, who make the boldest efforts to overcome themselves, and are not immediately apprehensive about tripping.

St. Francis de Sales

Saturday, November 4, 2017

Daily Thought For November 4, 2017

Love Is The Answer

Lectio

Luke 14:1, 7–11

Meditatio

“On a sabbath Jesus went to dine at the home of the one of the leading Pharisees.…”

Jesus, why do you eat at the house of a Pharisee? What are you thinking? You have denounced the hypocrisy of the Pharisees and reproached the scribes and lawyers. They have been setting traps for you, hoping to get rid of you. They are clearly set against you. Why do you go to the house of a Pharisee to share the intimacy of a meal? I can’t fathom it. How do you act there? Did you plan what to say? Did you think of some great remarks that would outwit your host? Did you come up with backhanded complements or sarcastic remarks that would beat them at their own game? Why did you walk into the hornet’s nest? They are observing you. How can you eat under that scrutiny?

I can’t understand, Jesus, because I wouldn’t have been able to do it. There are some people I don’t like—family members who don’t talk to me, colleagues I don’t get along with, difficult neighbors. I couldn’t just sit down to eat with them. I would feel such anger in my heart. My mind would be racing with things I would like to say to them. I would be rehearsing how to tell them off or defend myself. I would be stilted, uneasy, and maybe even unpleasant. I try to steer clear of anyone who upsets me. Some days just thinking of them gets my blood boiling. How do you do it? It seems so natural: you go to dine at the home of one of the Pharisees.

I understand: Love is the answer. Even though they seek your life and make your life difficult, you love them. You have nothing to hide. You seek their well-being. You promote the possibility of their growth. You give them every chance possible to hear, to listen, to trust, to obey. Your word convicts me, Lord.

Oratio

Jesus, this moment is decisive for the rest of my life. Today I begin to love my enemies, to love those I disagree with or who disagree with me. I start to love those who offend me or whom I don’t like. I will begin today to love the colleagues I don’t get along with and those who refuse to talk to me. I love those who report me and make my life miserable. And one day may I have the grace and the joy of sitting down with each of these persons at the eternal feast laid out in heaven for your children. Amen.

Contemplatio

Today I gaze on the mystery of the way you loved.


Daughters of St. Paul. (2011). Ordinary Grace Weeks 18–34: Daily Gospel Reflections. (M. G. Dateno & M. L. Trouvé, Eds.) (pp. 238–239). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Friday, November 3, 2017

Daily Thought For November 3, 2017

The Encounter That Changes Everything!

Christianity is not a new philosophy or new morality. We are Christians only if we encounter Christ... Only in this personal relationship with Christ, only in this encounter with the Risen One do we really become Christians... Therefore, let us pray to the Lord to enlighten us, so that, in our world, he will grant us the encounter with his presence, and thus give us a lively faith, an open heart, and great charity for all, capable of renewing the world.

Pope Benedict XVI

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Daily Thought For November 2, 2017

The Chief Purpose Of Life

The chief purpose of life, for any of us, is to increase according to our capacity our knowledge of God by all means we have, and to be moved by it to praise and thanks.

J.R.R Tolkien

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Daily Thought For November 1, 2017

St. Thomas On How To Alleviate Sorrow

Sorrow can be alleviated by good sleep, a bath and a glass of wine.

St. Thomas Aquinas

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Daily Thought For October 31, 2017

A Christian Is.....

A Christian is: a mind through which Christ thinks, a heart through which Christ loves, a voice through which Christ speaks, and a hand through which Christ helps.

St. Augustine

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Daily Thought For October 28, 2017

Don't Get Discouraged — God Is Patient!

Don't get upset with your imperfections. It's a great mistake because it leads nowhere - to get angry because you are angry, upset at being upset, depressed at being depressed, disappointed because you are disappointed. So don't fool yourself. Simply surrender to the Power of God's Love, which is always greater than our weakness.

St. Frances de Sales

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Daily Thought For October 27, 2017

How Pride Works

Pride measures prosperity not by her own advantages but by the disadvantages of others. She would not even wish to be a goddess unless there were some wretches left whom she could order about and lord it over, whose misery would make her happiness seem all the more extraordinary, whose poverty can be tormented and exacerbated by a display of her wealth. This infernal serpent, pervading the human heart, keeps men from reforming their lives, holding them back like a suckfish.

St. Thomas More

Daily Thought For October 26, 2017

Living Waters

He is like a tree planted near running water. (Psalm 1:3)

What a glorious promise—especially to the Jewish people who would have prayed this psalm! Remember, the Holy Land is a more arid region than where most of us live. The thought of lush vegetation growing along the banks of a babbling stream would have seemed almost exotic to them. So to say that the one who follows the Lord is like one of those trees is to say something powerful indeed!

While it’s true that most of us live in more temperate climates, our spiritual environments can be far more arid. The world around us may not be as hospitable to our spiritual life, which means we should drink as deeply as we can when we are in the presence of Jesus’ living waters. And nowhere do these waters flow more abundantly than at Mass.

What is one of the first things you do when you enter a church? You bless yourself with holy water. You recall your baptism, when you were first plunged into the water of life.

Then, during the Penitential Rite, you “confess to almighty God” that you need his forgiveness and mercy. You acknowledge that you need him to wash you with the waters of forgiveness.

Before the priest begins the Eucharistic Prayer, he adds drops of water to the wine. Why? Because it symbolizes Jesus humbling himself to take on our humanity, and it symbolizes our being joined to Christ. This small action tells us that we can be “mingled,” or mixed, with the Lord so fully that his life becomes our life.

Finally, when you receive the Body and Blood of Christ, you are being joined to believers all across the world who are receiving the exact same thing. Together with these millions of brothers and sisters, you are drinking from the stream of eternal life. That stream is flowing in you and through you, and it connects you to the worldwide Church.

You don’t need to dig a new well or find a new stream. The water is already there for you. So come and drink! Receive the stream that flows from the altar of the Lord, and let it fill you up.


“Thank you, Jesus, for planting me near running water! Help me to draw near to the life-giving stream of the Mass.”

Daily Thought From The Word Among Us (www.wau.org)

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Daily Thought For October 25, 2017

Faith Is Not Like Bottled Water

Faith is not like bottled water but like rain. Its destiny is not just to be kept and held but to make something visible grow.

Peter Kreeft

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Daily Thought For October 24, 2017

Partnership With God

Pray daily as though your future were entirely dependent on God; and then proceed to work for your reasonable needs and intelligent desires as though their fulfillment depended entirely on you in proportion as you see your daily life as a partnership with God, you will find life’s inadequacies, insecurities, and anxieties less confusing to the mind, less oppressive to the body and less frustrating to the spirit. Your inadequacies will be counterbalanced by your supernatural faith in God's divine plan for you. (Matt 25:14-23) Your natural sense of insecurity will find strength in Christ’s sermon on His Father’s divine providence for His children (Matt. 6:25-34). Finally, your spontaneous anxieties will find solace and peace in the good news of your Redemption. (John 1:1-14) This large perspective will make anger and hostility less necessary to you, since your fulfillment will no longer be restricted to the narrow fulfillment of an hour, day or year. Rather, it will be viewed as a noble effort of your grace dignified human nature, for reasonable fulfillment on earth and a glorious fulfillment with God in eternity.

from My Daily Life (Confraternity of The Precious Blood) p.89

Monday, October 23, 2017

Daily Thought For October 23, 2017

The Gift of Perspective

As your perspective grows in breadth and depth, you will find yourself acquiring a keener awareness of God’s presence in your daily round of occupations. Your religious sense gradually becomes so intertwined with your natural interests and concerns, that nature and grace are seen as two hands of God embracing you and sustaining you. With perspective your passing earthly activities become steps not only toward your natural self-fulfillment in this life, but also toward your unending, all satisfying self-fulfillment with God in heaven. You will see your personal life on earth as your share in the evolution of God’s original act of creation. Whether your personal gifts and opportunities be great or small in the eyes of worldly men, you will see them as part of God’s overall plan to draw all things back to himself in due time.

The more your balanced perspective develops, so much the more will you realize why true self-development is the work of a lifetime. It is not a negative self dismembering analysis, but a positive self discovering synthesis. The treasure found in the field of which Jesus spoke, is within you. God speaks to you not only through His supernatural grace, but also through the individual nature which He fashioned into the person you are today. He would have you make an intelligent, reasonable use of the gift that is “you.”


My Daily Life Devotional (Confraternity of the Precious Blood) pp.26-27.

Sunday, October 22, 2017

Daily Thought For October 22, 2017

Judging Others

Judging others makes us blind, whereas love is illuminating. By judging others we blind ourselves to our own evil and to the grace which others are just as entitled to as we are. 

Dietrich Bonhoeffer


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Daily Thought For October 21, 2017

The Sea of Faith

Even in the life of a Christian, faith rises and falls like the tides of an invisible sea. It's there, even when he can't see it or feel it, if he wants it to be there. You realize, I think, that it is more valuable, more mysterious, altogether more immense than anything you can learn or decide upon It will keep you free - not free to do anything you please, but free to be formed by something larger than your own intellect or the intellects around you.

Flannery O'Connor

Friday, October 20, 2017

Daily Thought For October 20, 2017

You Can Do Everything - In Christ!

Start being brave about everything. Drive out darkness and spread light. Don’ look at your weaknesses. Realize instead that in Christ crucified you can do everything.

St. Catherine of Siena

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Daily Thought For October 19, 2017

Courage

To have courage for whatever comes in life - everything lies in that.

St. Teresa of Avila

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Daily Thought For October 18, 2017

The Splendor Of God In Creation

Listen to the sermon preached to you by the flowers, the trees, the shrubs, the sky, and the whole world. Notice how they preach to you a sermon full of love, of praise of God, and how they invite you to glorify the sublimity of that sovereign Artist who has given them being.

St. Paul of the Cross

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Daily Thought For October 17, 2017

No One Has Ever Hoped In The Lord And Been Confounded

Men may deprive me of property and honour; sickness may take away my strength and other means of serving You; I may even lose Your grace by sin; but never, never will I lose my hope in You. I will cherish it unto that dreadful moment when all hell will be unchained to snatch my soul away. "No one has hoped in the Lord and has been confounded."

St. Claude de la Colombière

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Daily Thought For October 14, 2017

Let Us Always Be Mindful of Christ's Love

If Christ Jesus dwells in a man as his friend and noble leader, that man can endure all things, for Christ helps and strengthens us and never abandons us. He is a true friend. And I clearly see that if we expect to please him and receive an abundance of his graces, God desires that these graces must come to us from the hands of Christ, through his most sacred humanity, in which God takes delight.

Many, many times I have perceived this through experience. The Lord has told it to me. I have definitely seen that we must enter by this gate if we wish his Sovereign Majesty to reveal to us great and hidden mysteries. A person should desire no other path, even if he is at the summit of contemplation; on this road he walks safely. All blessings come to us through our Lord. He will teach us, for in beholding his life we find that he is the best example.

What more do we desire from such a good friend at our side? Unlike our friends in the world, he will never abandon us when we are troubled or distressed. Blessed is the one who truly loves him and always keeps him near. Let us consider the glorious Saint Paul: it seems that no other name fell from his lips than that of Jesus, because the name of Jesus was fixed and embedded in his heart. Once I had come to understand this truth, I carefully considered the lives of some of the saints, the great contemplatives, and found that they took no other path: Francis, Anthony of Padua, Bernard, Catherine of Siena. A person must walk along this path in freedom, placing himself in God’s hands. If God should desire to raise us to the position of one who is an intimate and shares his secrets, we ought to accept this gladly.


Whenever we think of Christ we should recall the love that led him to bestow on us so many graces and favours, and also the great love God showed in giving us in Christ a pledge of his love; for love calls for love in return. Let us strive to keep this always before our eyes and to rouse ourselves to love him. For if at some time the Lord should grant us the grace of impressing his love on our hearts, all will become easy for us and we shall accomplish great things quickly and without effort. 

St. Teresa of Avila

Friday, October 13, 2017

Daily Thought For October 13, 2017

The Starting Point — Consenting To Our Poverty

     At the beginning…we are ready to make radical sacrifices.  We would like to leave everything, give everything.  But, very quickly, we discover that God always asks of us something that we had not thought of, sometimes even apparently insignificant things of which we are incapable of letting go.”
     We discover “all those secret attachments, those unconfessed refusals, those secret wounds.  We would have liked to leave everything, we were aspiring to freedom, and here we discover, with a sort of disillusionment that can sometimes lead to despair or turn into cynicism, that we are caught in our own trap…following Jesus, leaving everything for him, is beyond our capacity. We then realize that, despite all our efforts and our good resolutions, in fact we have not yet really begun!”
     “But paradoxically, this realization of our resistance, our inability to respond to his call, is perhaps, in reality, the most precious fruit…For when we have consented to our own poverty, then God can finally begin to work within us.”  

(Dom Jean-Charles Nault, O.S.B., September Magnificat, p. 304-305.