Thursday, August 31, 2017

Daily Thought For August 31, 2017

Rise Up People Of God - The Anointing Of The Holy Spirit Awaits Us!

The person who desires to become a sign must be dedicated to sacrifice, even as the aged Simeon prophesied of Jesus: "This child ... will be a sign of contradiction." 
The person who wants to be a sign will share in the destiny of the Virgin Mary: "And a sword will pierce your soul!" 
A sign must be steady and bold, luminous and watchful, indifferent to opinions, 
well rooted and unshakeable, 
capable of facing storms and long nights, trials and dangers. 
And if the Lord chooses you to become a sign in this present time, will you accept or refuse? 

Moses and Elijah wanted to escape, but God's grace came upon them and these powerful men had to submit, for the Spirit of God was working in them. 


from Prayers of Hope — Words of Courage  by Cardinal Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan p. 27


Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Daily Thought For August 29, 2017

A Very Wise Quote For Some Of The Tensions We Are Facing

“There are two kinds of ‘atheism’: the atheism of the right, which professes to love God and ignores neighbor; and the atheism of the left, which professes to love neighbor and ignores God.” 

Archbishop Fulton Sheen 

Monday, August 28, 2017

Daily Thought For August 28, 2017

The "Doctor of Grace" reflects on the Goodness & Consolation of God

Urged to reflect upon myself, I entered under your guidance the innermost places of my being; but only because you had become my helper was I able to do so. I entered, then, and with the vision of my spirit, such as it was, I saw the incommutable light far above my spiritual ken and transcending my mind: not this common light which every carnal eye can see, nor any light of the same order; but greater, as though this common light were shining much more powerfully, far more brightly, and so extensively as to fill the universe. The light I saw was not the common light at all, but something different, utterly different, from all those things. Nor was it higher than my mind in the sense that oil floats on water or the sky is above the earth; it was exalted because this very light made me, and I was below it because by it I was made. Anyone who knows truth knows this light.
  O eternal Truth, true Love, and beloved Eternity, you are my God, and for you I sigh day and night. As I first began to know you, you lifted me up and showed me that, while that which I might see exists indeed, I was not yet capable of seeing it. Your rays beamed intensely on me, beating back my feeble gaze, and I trembled with love and dread. I knew myself to be far away from you in a region of unlikeness, and I seemed to hear your voice from on high: “I am the food of the mature: grow, then, and you shall eat me. You will not change me into yourself like bodily food; but you will be changed into me”.
  Accordingly I looked for a way to gain the strength I needed to enjoy you, but I did not find it until I embraced the mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who is also God, supreme over all things and blessed for ever. He called out, proclaiming I am the Way and Truth and the Life, nor had I known him as the food which, though I was not yet strong enough to eat it, he had mingled with our flesh, for the Word became flesh so that your Wisdom, through whom you created all things, might become for us the milk adapted to our infancy.
Late have I loved you, Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved you!
Lo, you were within,
  but I outside, seeking there for you,
  and upon the shapely things you have made
  I rushed headlong – I, misshapen.
You were with me, but I was not with you.
They held me back far from you,
  those things which would have no being,
  were they not in you.
You called, shouted, broke through my deafness;
  you flared, blazed, banished my blindness;
  you lavished your fragrance, I gasped; and now I pant for you;
  I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst;

  you touched me, and I burned for your peace.

from The Liturgy of The Hours for August 28, 2017 Memorial of St. Augustine (from his Confessions)

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Daily Thought For August 27, 2017

We Are All "Living" Stones Precious In God's Sight

Also with us today, Jesus wishes to continue to build His Church, this house with solid foundation but where cracks aren’t lacking, and which has continuous need of being repaired, always. The Church is always in need of being reformed, repaired. We certainly don’t feel like rocks, but only like small stones. However, no small stone is useless, rather, in Jesus’ hands it becomes precious, because He gathers it, looks at it with great tenderness, works on it with His Spirit, and puts it in the right place, which He has always thought of and where it can be more useful to the entire edifice. Each one of us is a small stone, but in Jesus’ hands we participate in the building of the Church. And all of us, in as much as small, have been made “living stones, ” because when Jesus takes the stone in His hand, He makes it His, He makes it alive, full of life, full of life by the Holy Spirit, full of life from His love, and thus we have a place and a mission in the Church: she is a community of life, made up of very many stones, all different, which form  one edifice in the sign of fraternity and communion.

excerpt from the Angelus Message of Pope Francis - August 27, 2017

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Daily Thought For August 19, 2017

Against Rash Judgments

Our souls may lose their peace and even disturb other people's, if we are always criticizing trivial actions - which often are not real defects at all, but we construe them wrongly through our ignorance of their motives.

St. Teresa of Avila

Friday, August 18, 2017

Daily Thought For August 18, 2017

Can I Get An Amen? 

With Christ as the center of your life, you will never be disappointed.

Pope Francis

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Daily Thought For August 16, 2017

One Reason I Enjoy Retreats & Spiritual Conferences

When large numbers of people share their joy in common, the happiness of each is greater because each adds fuel to the other's flame.

St. Augustine

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Daily Thought For August 13, 2017

"Take Courage, It Is I; Do Not Be Afraid"

Lectio

Matthew 14:22–33

Meditatio

“Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.”

As I pray with this Gospel account, I contemplate each part of it, entering into the story as if I too were with Peter and the other disciples in their boat. As they set off, the wind begins to rise, rocking their boat. In the heart of the night, as the wind tosses the disciples’ boat, Jesus comes “toward them walking on the sea.” I sense the fear that comes upon Peter and the disciples, but Jesus comforts and strengthens them, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” Jesus does not scold Peter for his fear, but simply calls to him, “Come,” thus inviting him to a deeper trust in Jesus and in his word. Peter leaves the security of his boat to follow Jesus. But when Peter takes his gaze off Jesus and looks around at the waves, seeing how strong the wind is, he starts to sink. But even in the midst of his panic and fear, Peter again turns his attention to Jesus, the only one who can save him. As soon as Peter cries out to Jesus, the Gospel tells us that “immediately” and without hesitation, “Jesus stretched out his hand and caught Peter.”

This encounter allows Peter and the other disciples on the boat to more clearly recognize Jesus as the Son of God. But what about me? Just like Peter, how often I want proof: Is it really you, Jesus? Are you really with me? Jesus invites me also to deepen my faith in him, in whom we meet a God who loves us so much that he became one of us. He continues to come to me and to each of us today, in the midst of the darkest storms of life.

Oratio

Jesus, you know about all the storms in my life, all the uncertainties, trials, and suffering that I and those I love are going through. You know about all the fears and doubts I hold within, and how small and hopeless I am before them all. When I feel overwhelmed and afraid, and when I struggle to believe you are with me, help me to take courage from the knowledge that you are always with me. May I behold the greatness of your love that works with more power and beauty than I can imagine.

Contemplatio

“Be still and confess that I am God!” (Ps 46:11)


Daughters of St. Paul. (2011). Ordinary Grace Weeks 18–34: Daily Gospel Reflections. (M. G. Dateno & M. L. Trouvé, Eds.) (pp. 24–25). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Daily Thought For August 11, 2017

The Struggle In Every Moment

Love leads to communion, 
and communion allows everyone to move forward in harmony. Communion is not a happiness passively enjoyed, 
but it struggles to maintain a fraternal spirit and to open the doors of this fraternity 
to all people. 
By nature, love propagates itself; 
it is contagious, communicates to others, and draws everyone toward communion. 
I must engrave this maxim within myself: 
"Communion is the struggle of every moment." A moment's neglect can destroy it; 
a mere trifle suffices, 
a single thought without charity, 
an obstinately maintained prejudice, a harmful attachment, 
an erroneous direction, 
a personal ambition or interest, 
an action done for myself and not for the Lord, returning to a bad habit already abandoned, the desire for personal satisfaction 
that overrides what is pleasing to the Lord. 

Help me, Lord, to examine myself in this way: 
Who is the center of my life: you or me? If you are the center, then everyone will be gathered into unity. 
But if, instead, I see that people around me lose interest and disperse, 
that will be a sign that I have put myself at the center. 

from Prayers of Hope — Words of Courage by Francis Xavier Nguyen Van Thuan pp.34-35

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Daily Thought For August 10, 2017

Prayer & Forgiveness Work Together

Forgiving the men who killed my parents and brother was a process, a journey into deeper and deeper prayer.

Immaculée Ilibagiza

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Daily Thought For August 8, 2017

Living Stones In God's Holy Temple

The Holy Spirit, in the variety of his gifts, unites us and enables us to contribute to the building up of the Church in holiness. In this great work, each of us has a part to play; each of us, as a "living stone", is needed for the growth and the beauty of God's holy temple. Let us ask the Lord to help us to take an ever more active part in the Church's life and mission, guided by the Holy Spirit and with Jesus as our cornerstone.

Pope Francis

Monday, August 7, 2017

Daily Thought for August 7, 2017

Faithful In The Present Moment

We must be faithful to the present moment or we will frustrate the plan of God for our lives.

Venerable Solanus Casey

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Daily Thought For August 6, 2017

If More People Believed This The World Would Be Very Different

Some believe it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay small acts of kindness and love.

J.R. Tolkien

Friday, August 4, 2017

Daily Thought For August 4, 2017

Increase Our Faith


Lectio

Matthew 13:54–58

Meditatio

“… their lack of faith.”

This Gospel scene presents Jesus to us after he has traveled around Galilee gaining fame and popularity by teaching with authority and performing mighty deeds. Jesus might have hoped for a warm, supportive welcome from the people of his hometown, who had known him since his youth. But any hope of comfort or sympathy quickly disappears when he is faced with their suspicious questions and lack of faith.

What is this lack of faith? What exactly are they lacking? What is it that his neighbors cannot believe? Could it be that they are stuck in their own narrow ideas of God? Are they so convinced that they know how God should reveal himself that when God does reveal himself in a concrete, visible way in Jesus, they can’t recognize him?

Perhaps they haven’t lived in a relationship with God. To be “in relationship” with someone means that the parties continually reveal themselves to each other. It would be unreasonable to think I really know anyone through and through. The other person always remains somewhat of a mystery to me, no matter how long we have known each other or how much of ourselves we have shared. How much more true is this of God, who is totally other!
Perhaps Jesus’ admonition regarding their lack of faith refers to their lack of a living, growing relationship with God. Perhaps Jesus is inviting them to realize that no one has the last word on how God should be, act, or reveal himself. It is we who must remain open, longing to understand who he is and how he acts in our lives and in the world, ready to assent to what he does show us about himself, because he is God.

Oratio

Jesus, sometimes I think I know you. I also think I know who the Father is and can recognize how he acts in my life. But how often I limit you because of my human and somewhat narrow vision. How often I may be lacking in faith because my relationship with you is based on my self-constructed image of you. Help me, instead, to see the reality of yourself that you are revealing to me day by day. Help me to live today open to what you will teach me about yourself, about the Father, about my relationship with you.

Contemplatio

“I do believe, help my unbelief!” (Mk 9:24).



Daughters of St. Paul. (2011). Ordinary Grace Weeks 1–17: Daily Gospel Reflections. (M. G. Dateno & M. L. Trouvé, Eds.) (pp. 302–303). Boston, MA: Pauline Books & Media.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Daily Thought For August 3, 2017

Nothing Is Impossible

Let us not close our hearts, let us not lose confidence, let us never give up: there are no situations which God cannot change, there is no sin which he cannot forgive if only we open ourselves to him.

Pope Francis

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Daily Thought For August 1, 2017

Overcoming Evil With Good

When we have to reply to anyone who has insulted 
us, we should be careful to do it always with gentleness. A soft answer extinguishes the fire of wrath.

St. Alphonsus Liguori