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Showing posts from April, 2019

Daily Thought For April 30, 2019

Living Life More Abundantly
Every authentic vocation is a calling to live ever more fully. We should be wary of callings that may mask refusal to engage life, fear of love, flight from the body or feelings, or a lack of acceptance of human existence as it is. Accepting one’s calling should mean choosing a more intense, abundant way of life, not fear-driving flight, or a disguised choice of death, as can happen with some poorly discerned religious commitments.
Fr. Jacques Philippe Called To Life pp.24-25

Daily Thought For April 29, 2019

Simple But Powerful
Love God, serve God; everything is in that.
St. Clare of Assisi

Daily Thought For April 26, 2019

The Joy of Mercy & Finding Dignity Again
Going on, one can therefore say that the love for the son the love that springs from the very essence of fatherhood, in a way obliges the father to be concerned about his son’s dignity. This concern is the measure of his love, the love of which Saint Paul was to write: “Love is patient and kind … love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful … but rejoices in the right … hopes all things, endures all things” and “love never ends.” Mercy—as Christ has presented it in the parable of the prodigal son—has the interior form of the love that in the New Testament is called agape. This love is able to reach down to every prodigal son, to every human misery, and above all to every form of moral misery, to sin. When this happens, the person who is the object of mercy does not feel humiliated, but rather found again and “restored to value.” The father first and foremost expresses to him his joy that he has been “found again” and…

Daily Thought For April 25, 2019

Incredulous Joy
Lectio

Luke 24:35–48

Meditatio

“… still incredulous for joy.”

Have you ever been “incredulous for joy”? Perhaps you received some good news—an invitation to a wonderful event, or a gift, or an award that you never imagined receiving. At first it seems too amazing, and you search for other possibilities. Is it a joke or a dream? What conditions are attached?

The disciples in the upper room are incredulous for joy (after getting over their terror at seeing what they think is a ghost). They look more closely at Jesus, touch him, and realize that he is not a spirit. But they still can’t get over it. They still don’t believe that they’re seeing Jesus raised from the dead. There has to be another explanation. It is just too amazing.

But Jesus has important things to say to them. He doesn’t want them to be distracted, still puzzling over how it could be true. So he asks them a simple, down-to-earth question, something so matter-of-fact that it brings them out of their daze.

“Have you…

Daily Thought For April 24, 2019

Overcoming Sadness
It is impossible to graft an oak limb onto a pear tree. The two trees are much too different. Neither can anger or despair be grafted onto love without extreme difficulty. Can sadness be compatible with holy love? Joy is ranked among the fruits of the Holy Spirit, listed immediately after love itself. And yet Paul writes, "Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death" (2 Corinthians 7: 10). There is, then, a sorrow or sadness in harmony with the love of God. It belongs to penitent sinners, and it is a part of our compassion for others. 

There is also a sadness of this world. It is the result of fishing in troubled waters. There is a fish called the sea-devil that hides in the muddy water it stirs up around itself. It waits in ambush for its prey. When it spots a little fish swimming by it darts out and devours it. In the same way the devil makes his ambush in sadness. After troubling the soul wi…

Daily Thought For April 23, 2019

A Broken Watch, Holy Communion, & Resting On His Heart
This morning I had an adventure. My watch had stopped, and I did not know when to get up, and I thought of what a misfortune it would be to miss Holy Communion. It was still dark, so I had no way of knowing whether it was time to get up. I dressed, made my meditation and went to the chapel, but everything was still locked, and silence reigned everywhere. I steeped myself in prayer, especially for the sick. I now see how much the sick have need of prayer. Finally, the chapel was opened. I found it difficult to pray because I was already feeling very exhausted, and immediately after Holy Communion I returned to my room. Then I saw the Lord, who said to me, Know, My daughter, that the ardor of your heart is pleasing to Me. And just as you desire ardently to become united with Me in Holy Communion, so too do I desire to give Myself wholly to you; and as a reward for your zeal, rest on My Heart. At that moment, my spirit was immerse…

Daily Thought For April 20, 2019

Entrust Everything To Jesus
When I see that the burden is beyond my strength, I do not consider or analyze it or probe into it, but I run like a child to the Heart of Jesus and say only one word to Him: “You can do all things.” And then I keep silent, because I know that Jesus Himself will intervene in the matter, and as for me, instead of tormenting myself, I use that time to love Him.”
St. Faustina Kowalska Divine Mercy Diary #1033

Daily Thought For April 19, 2019

Overcoming Trivial Things
Let me warn you, Theotimus, of a troublesome temptation that frequently comes to those who have a strong desire to do God's will: They fret over trifles. Should I accept this invitation to dinner? Should I wear gray or black clothes? Should I fast on Friday or Saturday? Should I play a game or not? This takes their time and energy. While trying to determine what is best, they miss opportunities to do something good. 

We don't weigh small change. Commerce would become very inefficient and cumbersome if we did. There is nothing to be gained by weighing every little action to know whether it may be of more value than some other action. Is it better to attend one church than another? Is it better to spin than to sew? It is poor service to a master to spend as much time considering what is to be done as actually doing it. Our attention is to be in proportion to the importance of what we are doing. 

Some things need serious consideration: the choice of a vocat…

Daily Thought For April 18, 2019

Washing Feet & Overcoming The Poison of Resentment
When the Lord tells Peter that without the washing of the feet he would not be able to have any part in him, Peter immediately asks impetuously that his head and hands be washed. This is followed by Jesus' mysterious saying: "He who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet" (Jn 13: 10). Jesus was alluding to a cleansing with which the disciples had already complied; for their participation in the banquet, only the washing of their feet was now required. But of course this conceals a more profound meaning. What was Jesus alluding to? We do not know for certain. In any case, let us bear in mind that the washing of the feet, in accordance with the meaning of the whole chapter, does not point to any single specific sacrament but the sacramentum Christi in its entirety - his service of salvation, his descent even to the Cross, his love to the end that purifies us and makes us capable of God. Yet here, with the…

Daily Thought For April 17, 2019

Living Fountain of All Graces
Hail, most merciful Heart of Jesus, 
Living Fountain of all graces, 
Our sole shelter, our only refuge; 
In You I have the light of hope. 
Hail, most compassionate Heart of my God, 

Unfathomable living Fount of Love 
From which gushes life for sinful man 
And the Spring of all sweetness. 

Hail, open Wound of the Most Sacred Heart, 
From which the rays of mercy issued forth 
And from which it was given us to draw life 
With the vessel of trust alone. 

Hail, God’s goodness, incomprehensible, 
Never to be measured or fathomed, 
Full of love and mercy, though always holy, 
Yet, like a good mother, ever bent o’er us. 

Hail, Throne of Mercy, Lamb of God, 
Who gave Your life in sacrifice for me, 
Before whom my soul humbles itself daily, 

Living in faith profound. 

St. Faustina Kowalska Diary—Divine Mercy in My Soul #1321

Daily Thought For April 16, 2019

Extraordinary Inspirations
     Other inspirations are extraordinary, not only because they take the soul beyond the limits of ordinary activity, but also because they go against traditional laws, rules, and customs of the Church. These are easier to admire than to imitate. 
     One of the best indicators of all inspirations in general, and extraordinary ones in particular, is the peace and tranquility that comes with them. While the Holy Spirit is powerful, his power is gentle. He arrives at the Upper Room "like the blowing of a violent wind" (Acts 2:2). But he does not knock the Apostles down. Their natural response of fear is quickly replaced with calm confidence. 
     God's servants who had the highest and most awe-inspiring inspirations were also the mildest and most peaceful people. The evil spirit is unstable, rough, and upsetting. Those who get taken in by infernal suggestions, mistaking them for heavenly inspirations, are easy to spot. They are loud, obstinate, a…

Daily Thought For Apri 15, 2019

What Regular Confession Taught a Wayward Son About His Father
I never used to rate confession highly on the to-do list. I was always too busy to go, always had a reason to do something else and that reason always made sense. I never really considered whether I liked confession or not. I wasn’t burdened with the prospect of reliving my own guilt and never had a problem with the teachings of the church on whether the sacrament was even all that necessary. I just didn’t go.

That began to change during my marriage preparation. My wife put me back on the road to the Church when we were dating and I reluctantly agreed. I knew it was important to her (at the time, I didn’t give thought to whether God cared or not) and so I went. It was my first time in the confessional in years and it was different. The priest was there face to face. It was bright. He smiled. He listened. He consoled. He sent me to Scripture in front of the Blessed Sacrament after it was over. God forgave me. It was…tolerable …

Daily Thought For April 14, 2019

Following in Our Master's Footsteps
In the footsteps of Mary, countless holy men and women have followed Jesus on the path of humility and obedience.  Today, World Youth Day, I would like to mention all those young saints, especially the saints “next door” to us, known only to God; sometimes he likes to surprise us with them.  Dear young people, do not be ashamed to show your enthusiasm for Jesus, to shout out that he is alive and that he is your life.  Yet at the same time, do not be afraid to follow him on the way of the cross.  When you hear that he is asking you to renounce yourselves, to let yourselves be stripped of every security, and to entrust yourselves completely to our Father in heaven, then rejoice and exult!  You are on the path of the kingdom of God.

Festive acclamations and brutal torture; the silence of Jesus throughout his Passion is profoundly impressive.  He also overcomes the temptation to answer back, to act like a “superstar”.  In moments of darkness and great…

Daily Thought For April 13, 2019

A Wonderful Prayer For Mercy
God, merciful Father,
in your Son, Jesus Christ, you have revealed your love
and poured it out upon us in the Holy Spirit, the Comforter,
We entrust to you today the destiny of the world and of every man and woman.

Bend down to us sinners,
heal our weakness,
conquer all evil,
and grant that all the peoples of the earth
may experience your mercy.
In You, the Triune God,
may they ever find the source of hope.

Eternal Father,
by the Passion and Resurrection of your Son,
have mercy on us and upon the whole world!


Amen.

St. John Paul II - excerpt from Homily for the Dedication of the Shrine of Divine Mercy Kraków-Łagiewniki, 17 August 2002 (We spent three nights here at the end of our pilgrimage to Poland. A grace-filled place!) The full homily can be viewed by clicking here. 

Daily Thought For April 12, 2019

Many Came To Believe In Him
Lectio

John 10:31–42

Meditatio

“[M]any there began to believe in him.”

Today’s Gospel begins to prepare us for the momentous events of Good Friday, one week from today. It describes what happened when some people picked up rocks to stone Jesus. He pointed out that he had shown them many good works from his Father and asked, “For which of these are you trying to stone me?” They answered that it was because “you, a man, are making yourself God.” Although they had seen the signs he worked, they did not believe. The people whom John describes at the end of today’s reading, instead, “began to believe in him.” What a contrast: unbelief and belief!

We have received the gift of faith, through which we believe all that God has revealed. How does our faith affect our daily living? For example, we know that Jesus redeemed us. Does our belief lead us to confidently ask for forgiveness whenever we sin? Does our belief that God loves us unconditionally enkindle our trust in hi…

Daily Thought For April 3, 2019

A Plea For God's Mercy To Heal & Bring Peace


Sr Faustina Kowalska wrote in her Diary:  "I feel tremendous pain when I see the sufferings of my neighbors. All my neighbors' sufferings reverberate in my own heart; I carry their anguish in my heart in such a way that it even physically destroys me. I would like all their sorrows to fall upon me, in order to relieve my neighbor" (Diary, p. 365). This is the degree of compassion to which love leads, when it takes the love of God as its measure!

It is this love which must inspire humanity today, if it is to face the crisis of the meaning of life, the challenges of the most diverse needs and, especially, the duty to defend the dignity of every human person. Thus the message of divine mercy is also implicitly a message about the value of every human being. Each person is precious in God's eyes; Christ gave his life for each one; to everyone the Father gives his Spirit and offers intimacy.

This consoling message is addre…