Friday, April 17, 2009
Acts 4:1-12Ps 118:1-2 and 4, 22-24, 25-27aJn 21:1-14
One week ago we're suffering together with our Lord Jesus , we were waiting and expecting for the great moment of Light of Resurrection . For me all days in the Octave of Easter are joyful , through the great gift of eternal life and victory over sins and evil . We are so blessed and loved like children of God , in His glorious Trinity .
In this Octave we celebrate Jesus conquering sin and death, and in the Gospel he is appearing to the Apostles for the third time since his Resurrection from the dead. So, I’m reminded today of the One we are following, the One who conquered sin and death, and we are reminded that that early Church, which was established by Jesus was put here to help us follow our Faith.
Like the apostles who were a little fuzzy the day Jesus showed up while they were fishing, we too get a little fuzzy from time to time. Our Church is here to help clarify, shine light into the darkness, when the issues become bigger than us. In our Psalm reading, we hear “the stone rejected by the builders has become the cornerstone.” Jesus was rejected too, and we know we can expect a similar treatment, but not alone. So, I am consoled to stand firm with the Church on all the Pro-Life issues; because we know we are standing with Truth
During this beginning of the Easter season it is important that we remember to recognize our lowliness and let the Holy Spirit work through us to give glory to God. Let us ask the intercession of our mother, Mary, who perfectly recognized herself as the handmaid of the Lord. It is only by giving God the glory and recognizing his ultimate authority, that the Holy Spirit will fill us with courage, zeal, and love as we continue to proclaim as Saint Peter did that: “there [is no] other name under heaven given to the human race by which we are to be saved” except that of “Jesus Christ the Nazorean.” May the Holy Spirit work within to bring us to a greater zeal for and love of Christ.
God bless and be with all of you !
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Today is Thursday within the Octave of Easter .
Psalm 8:2ab and 5, 6-7, 8-9
In this day Psalm we can read and meditate upon these verses :
O LORD, our Lord,
how glorious is your name over all the earth!
What is man that you should be mindful of him,
or the son of man that you should care for him?
The psalmist seems thoroughly amazed that God cares so much about humans. Why is it, O Lord, considering how glorious You are, that You are mindful of us?
How much God , in His Holy Trinity is caring for us .. Then, as if that were not enough, He has made us just a little less than the angels, crowned us with glory and honor and made us like Him: rulers over everything He has made.
The psalmist can think of only one explanation for this: “O Lord, our God, how wonderful Your name in all the earth!”
This is a message that disciples of Jesus have been commissioned to take to the ends of the earth. How do we do it? Luke tells us how the earliest disciples did it. Like us, they had troubles, questions, doubts, and, on occasion, were even terrified. How then did they take the good news of Jesus to their world?
First, Jesus opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. They had power to share their faith because Jesus was in their minds.
Second, in the breaking of the bread, they recognized Jesus. They saw him in the most mundane of things.
Finally, in the midst of their greatest doubts, they remembered the words of Jesus: “Peace be with you.”
Understanding – recognition – memory; blessings to cherish during the Octave of Easter and beyond.
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
The joy that we experience at Easter is enhanced by the gospel accounts of the joy felt by those who were privileged to see the risen Jesus on Easter day. Today St. John directs our attention to Mary Magdalene who, according to the gospel accounts, was the first person to see Jesus after his resurrection.
There is a tradition in the Church that even before his appearance to Mary Magdalene Jesus visited his mother Mary. But the gospels are silent about such a visit. However, when I contemplate this gospel reading about Mary Magdalene I always think also of the Blessed Virgin Mary. What joy she must have felt on seeing her risen son! The lives of the two Marys offer an interesting contrast: the sinless Virgin Mary and the repentant sinner Mary Magdalene. And yet they are very much alike in their love for Jesus. Their love of Jesus bound them in a friendship reserved for the very closest of his followers
Monday, April 13, 2009
Joyful Easter, to all of us on this first Monday after Easter.
We have been reading the death and resurrection story of our Saving Lord, Jesus Christ. Today we read, about Saint Peter (Acts 2:14, 22-33 ) calling out to members of his Jewish community to be witnesses to the death and resurrection of the man they knew as Jesus, truly the Son of God. This reading calls us to embrace and to live the values and ideals that Jesus taught, now recorded for us in scripture.
Today is the day after the resurrection. Lent has ended, and now we begin a new week in a new season. Liturgically, this is a joyful time for us, and nature responds as well: spring is upon us.
The plants are making their journey upwards for yet another year, as their bright green shoots bring forgotten colors back to the dark soil after months of rest.
When we see a new plant sprouting up, baby animals, or new life in any form, we should let those signs be a reminder for us of what God has promised for us.
That in seeing those forms of new life we consider what amazing gift we have been given and are filled with hope and joy in Him .
Saturday, April 11, 2009
Holy Saturday Prayer:
All-powerful and ever-living God, Your only Son went down among the dead and rose again in glory. In Your goodness raise up Your faithful people, buried with Him in baptism, to be one with Him in the eternal life of Heaven, where He lives and reigns with You and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.Amen
Something strange is happening - there is a great silence on Earth today, a great silence and stillness. The whole Earth keeps silence because the King is asleep. The Earth trembled and is still because God has fallen asleep in the flesh and He has raised up all who have slept ever since the world began. God has died in the flesh and hell trembles with fear.
He has gone to search for our first parent, as for a lost sheep. Greatly desiring to visit those who live in darkness and in the shadow of death, He has gone to free from sorrow the captives Adam and Eve, He who is both God and the Son of Eve. The Lord approached them bearing the cross, the weapon that had won Him the victory. At the sight of him Adam, the first man He had created, struck his breast in terror and cried out to everyone: “My Lord be with you all”. Christ answered him: “And with your spirit”. He took him by the hand and raised him up, saying: “Awake, O sleeper, and rise from the dead, and Christ will give you light”.
[ This Holy Saturday reading on the descent of the Lord Jesus into Hell is used in the Roman Church's Office of Readings for Holy Saturday, with the accompanying biblical reading of Hebrews 4:1-13. The "harrowing of hell" and the rescue of Adam and Eve was a popular theme in early and medieval Christian poetry, liturgy and song. Note the parallels here between Adam and Eve's sin, which lost paradise for us, and the passion of Christ, which won for us not simply an earthly paradise, but eternal life. While it appears that this comes from a Holy Saturday homily written in Greek dating back to the fourth century liturgy (PG 43, 439, 462f), the author of this text is unknown. ]
Perhaps this Lent has been for us a journey into “death,” into letting go of things, circumstances, perhaps even people who have blocked the path of Life, and have prevented our growing “into union” with Jesus. If so, the promise of this Holy Night burns brightly: you, too, shall live! Perhaps this Lent has found us “holding on for dear life,” clinging to other loves and satisfactions that still block our path.
The Risen Jesus calls to us: Do not be afraid. Die with me, so that with me you may have life!
Let us humbly pray
You teach us in both the Old and the New Testament
to celebrate this Passover mystery.
Help us to understand Your great Love for us.
May the goodness You now show us
confirm our Hope in Your future Mercy.
We ask this through Christ
our Lord and Saviour . Amen
Thursday, April 9, 2009
We celebrate the gift of the love of Jesus,
given to us for our nourishment -
given to us as an example of self-less love.
In our prayer today, we let our Lord wash our feet - Love us unconditionally -
and we let Jesus be broken and given for us.
We pray that we might be faithful to the one commandment of Jesus -
that we might Love others in the same way that we have been loved.
If I, therefore, the master and teacher, have washed your feet, you ought to wash one another's feet.
I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do. John 13
Let us to remember that by surrendering to His Passion and Death on the Cross, Jesus washes our feet. By being broken and given for us in the Eucharist, Jesus is giving us an example and a commandment for how we are to be broken and given for each other, by washing each other's feet.
Jesus loves us unconditionally, that is, without condition. He loves us, not because we deserve it. He loves us because we need loving. He tells us to love the same way. Tonight we are given his Eucharistic, self-sacrificing example of how to love each other. "This much," he says. "Love each other this completely, this freely, loving the most unattractive parts of each other, where love is needed most."
Tonight, when we watch this example of His love for us, and when we receive the Eucharist together, let us let Jesus love us.
We can pray in our hearts, "Lord, I so desire for You to love me. I don't want to hold back, hold away from You, those unpresentable parts inside of me. I don't want anything covered up, anymore. I want to be transparent and free before You. Wash all of me with Your love."
And we might ask, "Lord, let Your body and blood bring me into the most intimate communion with You tonight.
Fill my heart.
Push out all of the fear and anxiety, all of the anger and frustration, all the pettiness and lust.
Fill me tonight, Lord, so that I might be filled with Your peace and learn how to love others this way.
Help me to give myself to those closest to me in the days ahead.
Help me to be self-sacrificing, thinking of their needs first.
Help me to serve them and care for them and to delight in losing myself in feeding their hungers.
And, Lord, let me hear the cries, the hungers and thirsts of so many more of Your people, not only close to me, but in my city and throughout the world.
On this special night, let me taste Your desire that we all be one, through our sharing of this Eucharistic love."
Where Love and Charity are found,
there is God.