Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Catholic Caucus: Sunday Mass Readings, 05-05-13, Sixth Sunday of Easter
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 05-05-13 | Revised New American Bible

Posted on 05/04/2013 8:00:37 PM PDT by Salvation

May 5, 2013

 

Sixth Sunday of Easter

 

Reading 1 Acts 15:1-2, 22-29

Some who had come down from Judea were instructing the brothers,
“Unless you are circumcised according to the Mosaic practice,
you cannot be saved.”
Because there arose no little dissension and debate
by Paul and Barnabas with them,
it was decided that Paul, Barnabas, and some of the others
should go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and elders
about this question.

The apostles and elders, in agreement with the whole church,
decided to choose representatives
and to send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas.
The ones chosen were Judas, who was called Barsabbas,
and Silas, leaders among the brothers.
This is the letter delivered by them:

“The apostles and the elders, your brothers,
to the brothers in Antioch, Syria, and Cilicia
of Gentile origin: greetings.
Since we have heard that some of our number
who went out without any mandate from us
have upset you with their teachings
and disturbed your peace of mind,
we have with one accord decided to choose representatives
and to send them to you along with our beloved Barnabas and Paul,
who have dedicated their lives to the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
So we are sending Judas and Silas
who will also convey this same message by word of mouth:
‘It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us
not to place on you any burden beyond these necessities,
namely, to abstain from meat sacrificed to idols,
from blood, from meats of strangled animals,
and from unlawful marriage.
If you keep free of these,
you will be doing what is right. Farewell.’”

Responsorial Psalm Ps 67:2-3, 5, 6, 8

R. (4) O God, let all the nations praise you!
or:
R. Alleluia.
May God have pity on us and bless us;
may he let his face shine upon us.
So may your way be known upon earth;
among all nations, your salvation.
R. O God, let all the nations praise you!
or:
R. Alleluia.
May the nations be glad and exult
because you rule the peoples in equity;
the nations on the earth you guide.
R. O God, let all the nations praise you!
or:
R. Alleluia.
May the peoples praise you, O God;
may all the peoples praise you!
May God bless us,
and may all the ends of the earth fear him!
R. O God, let all the nations praise you!
or:
R. Alleluia.

Reading 2 Rev 21:10-14, 22-23

The angel took me in spirit to a great, high mountain
and showed me the holy city Jerusalem
coming down out of heaven from God.
It gleamed with the splendor of God.
Its radiance was like that of a precious stone,
like jasper, clear as crystal.
It had a massive, high wall,
with twelve gates where twelve angels were stationed
and on which names were inscribed,
the names of the twelve tribes of the Israelites.
There were three gates facing east,
three north, three south, and three west.
The wall of the city had twelve courses of stones as its foundation,
on which were inscribed the twelve names
of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

I saw no temple in the city
for its temple is the Lord God almighty and the Lamb.
The city had no need of sun or moon to shine on it,
for the glory of God gave it light,
and its lamp was the Lamb.

Gospel Jn 14:23-29

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Whoever loves me will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,
and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.
Whoever does not love me does not keep my words;
yet the word you hear is not mine
but that of the Father who sent me.

“I have told you this while I am with you.
The Advocate, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you everything
and remind you of all that I told you.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.
Not as the world gives do I give it to you.
Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.
You heard me tell you,
‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’
If you loved me,
you would rejoice that I am going to the Father;
for the Father is greater than I.
And now I have told you this before it happens,
so that when it happens you may believe.”


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; easter; prayer
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

1 posted on 05/04/2013 8:00:37 PM PDT by Salvation
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Alleluia Ping!
 
If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be, 
please Freepmail me.

2 posted on 05/04/2013 8:12:58 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Salvation

From: Acts 15:1-2, 22-29

Dissension at Antioch; Judaizers


[1] But some men came down from Judea and were teaching the brethren,
“Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be
saved.” [2] And when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and debate
with them, Paul and Barnabas and some of the others were appointed to go up
to Jerusalem to the Apostles and the elders about this question.

The Council’s Decision


[22] Then it seemed good to the Apostles and the elders, with the whole Church,
to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barna-
bas. They sent Judas called Barsabbas, and Silas, leading men among the breth-
ren, [23] with the following letter: “The brethren, both the Apostles and the elders,
to the brethren who are of the Gentiles in Antioch and Syria and Cilicia, greeting.
[24] Since we have heard that some persons from us have troubled you with words,
unsettling your minds, although we gave them no instructions, [25] it has seemed
good to us in assembly to choose men and send them to you with our beloved
Barnabas and Paul, [26] men who have risked their lives for the sake of our Lord
Jesus Christ. [27] We have therefore sent Judas and Silas, who themselves will
tell you the same things by word of mouth. [28] For it has seemed good to the Ho-
ly Spirit and to us to lay upon you no greater burden than these necessary things:
[29] that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols and from blood and
from what is strangled and from unchastity. If you keep yourselves from these,
you will do well. Farewell.”

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

1-35. This chapter is the center of Acts, not just because it comes right in the
middle of the book but also because it covers the key event as far as concerns
the universality of the Gospel and its unrestricted spread among the Gentiles. It
is directly linked to the conversion of the pagan Cornelius; here, with the help of
the Holy Spirit, all the consequences of that event are drawn out.

Christians with a Pharisee background — “certain men [who] came from James”
(Galatians 2;12) — arriving in Antioch, assert categorically that salvation is impos-
sible unless a person is circumcised and practices the Law of Moses. They ac-
cept (cf. 11:18) that Gentile converts can be baptized and become part of the
Church; but they do not properly understand the economy of the Gospel, that is
the “new” way; they think that the Mosaic rites and precepts are all still neces-
sary for attaining salvation. The need arises, therefore, for the whole question to
be brought to the Apostles and elders in Jerusalem, who form the government of
the Church.

2. Paul and Barnabas are once again commissioned by the Antiochene commu-
nity to go to Jerusalem (cf. 11:30). Paul says in Galatians 2:2 that this journey to
the Holy City was due to a special revelation. Possibly the Holy Spirit inspired him
to volunteer for it. “Paul”, St. Ephraem writes, “so as not to change without the
Apostles’ accord anything which they would allow to be done perhaps because of
the weakness of the Jews, make his way to Jerusalem to see to the setting aside
of the Law and of circumcision in the presence of the disciples: without the Apos-
tles’ support they [Paul and Barnabas] do not want to set them aside” (”Armenian
Commentary, ad loc”.).

22-29. The decree containing the decisions of the Council of Jerusalem incorpo-
rating St. James’ suggestions makes it clear that the participants at the Council
are conscious of being guided in their conclusions by the Holy Spirit and that in
the last analysis it is God who has decided the matter.

“We should take,” Melchor Cano writes in the 16th century, “the same road as
the Apostle Paul considered to be the one best suited to solving all matters to do
with the doctrine of the faith. [...] The Gentiles might have sought satisfaction from
the Council because it seemed to take from the freedom granted them by Jesus
Christ, and because it imposed on the disciples certain ceremonies as necessa-
ry, when in fact they were not, since faith is the key to salvation. Nor did the Jews
object by invoking Sacred Scripture against the Council’s decision on the grounds
that Scripture seems to support their view that circumcision is necessary for sal-
vation. So, by respecting the Council they gave us the criterion which should be
observed at all times; that is, to place full faith in the authority of the synods con-
firmed by Peter and his legitimate successors. They say ‘it has seemed good to
the Holy Spirit and to us’; thus, the Council’s decision is the decision of the Holy
Spirit Himself” (”De Locis”, V, 4).

It is the Apostles and the elders, with the whole Church, who designate the peo-
ple who are to publish the Council’s decree, but it is the Hierarchy which formu-
lates and promulgates it. The text contains two parts—one dogmatic and moral
(verse 28) and the other disciplinary (verse 29). The dogmatic part speaks of im-
posing no burden other than what is essential and therefore declares that pagan
converts are free from the obligation of circumcision and of the Mosaic Law but
are subject to the Gospel’s perennial moral teaching on matters to do with chas-
tity. This part is permanent: because it has to do with a necessary part of God’s
salvific will it cannot change.

The disciplinary part of the decree lays down rules of prudence which can change,
which are temporary. It asks Christians of Gentile background to abstain—out of
charity towards Jewish Christians—from what has been sacrificed to idols, from
blood and from meat of animals killed by strangulation.

The effect of the decree means that the disciplinary rules contained in it, although
they derive from the Mosaic Law, no longer oblige by virtue of that Law but rather
by virtue of the authority of the Church, which has decided to apply them for the
time being. What matters is not what Moses says but what Christ says through
the Church. The Council “seems to maintain the Law in force,” writes St. John
Chrysostom, “because it selects various prescriptions from it, but in fact suppres-
ses it, because it does not accept ALL its prescriptions. It had often spoken about
these points, it sought to respect the Law and yet establish these regulations as
coming not from Moses but from the Apostles” (”Hom. on Acts,” 33).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


3 posted on 05/04/2013 8:18:13 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23

A New World Comes Into Being. The New Jerusalem (Continuation)


[10] And in the Spirit [the angel] carried me away to a great high mountain, and
showed me the holy city Jerusalem coming down out of heaven from God, [11]
having the glory of God, its radiance like a most rare jewel, like a jasper, clear as
crystal. [12] It had a great, high wall, with twelve gates, and at the gates twelve
angels, and on the gates the names of the twelve tribes of the sons of Israel were
inscribed; [13] on the east three gates, on the north three gates, on the south
three gates, and on the west three gates. [14] And the wall of the city had twelve
foundations, and on them the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

[22] And I saw no temple in the city, for its temple is the Lord God the Almighty
and the Lamb. [23] And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine upon it, for
the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

9-21. In contrast with the punishment visited on the evil city, Babylon, the harlot
(cf. 17:1), we are now shown the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, the spouse, co-
ming down from heaven. There is a significant parallel between 17:1ff and 21:9ff.

The author writes with a truly remarkable mastery of language: after the introduc-
tion (v. 9), he describes the Holy City using three literary devices which, after gi-
ving the measurements of the city, he repeats in more or less reverse order. The
description is like the impressions a traveler has as he approaches: first, from a-
far, he sees its radiance—the city as a whole and the glory of God (vv. 10-11); as
he comes closer he can distinguish walls and gates (vv. 12-13), and when closer
still its foundation stones (v. 14). Once inside, he realizes its sheer scale (vv. 15-
16) and is able to assess the size and richness of its walls (vv. 17-18) and foun-
dation stones and gates (vv. 19-21); and he is spellbound by the brightness that
shines from the glory of God (21:22-22:5).

The city is given the titles of Bride and Wife (Spouse) which are normally used to
designate the Church (cf. 19:7). This is easy to understand in the context of the
imagery used: the city represents the Church, the community of the elect viewed
in its complete, indissoluble union with the Lamb.

10-14. This vision is rather like the one the prophet Ezekiel had when he saw the
New Jerusalem and the temple of the future (cf. Ezek 40-42). However, St John
stresses (cf. also 21:2) that the city comes down from heaven: this shows that
the full establishment (so long desired) of the messianic kingdom will be brought
about by the power of God and in line with his will.

The description of the Holy City begins with the view from outside. This is the first
thing that is seen and it is what makes it strong and unassailable. He speaks of
walls and gates and foundations. The names of the tribes of Israel and the twelve
Apostles show the continuity between the ancient chosen people and the Church
of Christ; and yet the point is made that the Church is something quite new which
rests on the twelve Apostles of the Lord (cf. Eph 2:20). The arrangement of the
gates, in threes facing the four points of the compass, indicates that the Church
is universal: all nations must come to it to gain salvation. This is what St Augus-
tine means when he says that “outside the catholic Church one can find every-
thing except salvation” (”Sermo Ad Cassar”, 6).

21b-27. After taking us up to the walls and through the gates of the City, the au-
thor brings us right inside, to its very center; this also is amazingly rich. However,
surprisingly, there is no temple. This makes it different from the Jerusalem de-
scribed by Ezekiel, for the center of that city was the temple (cf. Ezek 4042). The
temple in Jerusalem and the tent of the tabernacle in the wilderness symbolized
the fact that God dwelt there; it was the visible sign of divine presence (”shekinah”
in Hebrew), a presence revealed by the descent of the cloud of the glory of God.

In the heavenly Jerusalem there is no longer any need for God to have a dwelling-
place, because God the Father himself and the Lamb are always present. The
Godhead does not need to be brought to mind by the temple (the symbol of his
invisible presence), because the blessed will always see God face to face. This
sight of God is what causes the righteous to be forever happy. “There are no
words to explain the blessedness which the soul enjoys, the gain which he ob-
tains once his true nature has been restored to him and he is able henceforth to
contemplate his Lord” (Chrysostom, “Ad Theodorum Lapsum”, 1, 13).

In the Old Testament theophanies of Yahweh, a splendid brightness revealed the
divine glory. And so, the presence of God will fill the heavenly Jerusalem with such
a brightness of light that there is no need of sun or moon. Beside God the Father,
with equal rank and dignity, is the Lamb, whose glory will also shine out, revealing
his divinity.

This light will illuminate all those who worship the Lord, thereby fulfilling the mes-
sianic prophecies of Isaiah (cf. Is 60:3, 5, 11; 65-66).

The gates of the Holy City will stay open by day, that is, always, because there
will be no more night, nor anything unclean: the saints will be the only ones to en-
ter.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 05/04/2013 8:19:01 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: All

From: John 14:23-29

The Promise of the Holy Spirit


(Jesus said to His disciples,) [23] Jesus answered him, “If a man loves Me, he
will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and
make Our home with him. [24] He who does not love Me does not keep My
words; and the word which you hear is not Mine but the Father’s who sent Me.

[25] “These things I have spoken to you, while I am still with you. [26] But the
Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach
you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” [27]
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give
to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. [28] You have
heard Me say to you, ‘I go away, and I will come to you.’ If you loved Me, you
would have rejoiced, because I go to the Father; for the Father is greater than I.
[29] And now I have told you before it takes place, so that when it does take
place, you may believe.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

22-23. It was commonly held by the Jews that when the Messiah came He
would be revealed to the whole world as King and Savior. The Apostles take Je-
sus’ words as a revelation for themselves alone, and they are puzzled. Hence
the question from Judas Thaddeus. It is interesting to note how easy the Apos-
tles’ relations with our Lord are: they simply ask Him about things they do not
know and get Him to clear up any doubts they have. This is a good example of
how we should approach Jesus, who is also our Teacher and Friend.

Jesus’ reply may seem evasive but in fact, by referring to the form His manifesta-
tion takes, He explains why He does not reveal Himself to the world: He makes
Himself known to him who loves Him and keeps His commandments. God repea-
tedly revealed Himself in the Old Testament and promised to dwell in the midst
of the people (cf. Exodus 29:45; Ezekiel 37:26-27; etc.); but here Jesus speaks
of a presence of God in each person. St. Paul refers to this presence when he
asserts that each of us is a temple of the Holy Spirit (cf. 2 Corinthians 6:16-17).
St. Augustine, in reflecting on God’s ineffable nearness in the soul, exclaims,
“Late have I loved You, O Beauty so ancient and so new, late have I loved You!
You were within me, and I was in the world outside myself. I searched for You
in the world outside myself.... You were with me, but I was not with You. The
beautiful things of this world kept me far from You and yet, if they had not been
in You, they would have no being at all. You called me; You cried aloud to me;
You broke my barrier of deafness; You shone upon me; Your radiance enve-
loped me; You cured my blindness” (”Confessions”, X, 27, 38).

Jesus is referring to the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in the soul renewed by grace:
“Our heart now needs to distinguish and adore each one of the Divine Persons.
The soul is, as it were, making a discovery in the supernatural life, like a little
child opening his eyes to the world about him. The soul spends time lovingly with
the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, and readily submits to the work of the
lifegiving Paraclete, who gives Himself to us with no merit on our part, bestowing
His gifts and the supernatural virtues!” (St. J. Escriva, “Friends of God”, 306).

25-26. Jesus has expounded His teaching very clearly, but the Apostles do not
yet fully understand it; they will do so later on, when they receive the Holy Spirit
who will guide them unto all truth (cf. John 16:13). “And so the Holy Spirit did
teach them and remind them: He taught them what Christ had not said because
they could not take it in, and He reminded them of what the Lord had taught and
which, either because of the obscurity of the things or because of the dullness
of their minds, they had not been able to retain” (Theophylact, “Enarratio in Evan-
gelium Ioannis, ad loc”).

The word translated here as “bring to your remembrance” also includes the idea
of “suggesting”: the Holy Spirit will recall to the Apostles’ memory what they had
already heard Jesus say—and He will give them light to enable them to discover
the depth and richness of everything they have seen and heard. Thus, “the Apos-
tles handed on to their hearers what He had said and done, but with that fuller un-
derstanding which they, instructed by the glorious events of Christ (cf. John 2:22)
and enlightened by the Spirit of truth, now enjoyed: (Vatican II, “Dei Verbum”, 19).

“Christ has not left His followers without guidance in the task of understanding
and living the Gospel. Before returning to His Father, He promised to send His
Holy Spirit to the Church: ‘But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father
will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remem-
brance all I have said to you’” (John 14:26).

“This same Spirit guides the successors of the Apostles, your bishops, united
with the Bishop of Rome, to whom it was entrusted to preserve the faith and to
‘preach the Gospel to the whole creation’ (Mark 16:15). Listen to their voices, for
they bring you the word of the Lord” (John Paul II, “Homily at Knock
Shrine” 30 September 1979).

In the Gospels is consigned to writing, under the charism of divine inspiration,
the Apostles’ version of everything they had witnessed—and the understanding of
it, which they obtained after Pentecost. So it is that these sacred writers “faithful-
ly hand on what Jesus, the Son of God, while He lived among men, really did and
taught for their eternal salvation, until the day when He was taken up (cf. Acts 1:
1-2)” (Vatican II, “Dei Verbum”, 19). This is why the Church so earnestly recom-
mends the reading of Sacred Scripture, particularly the Gospels. “How I wish
your bearing and conversation were such that, on seeing or hearing you, people
would say: This man reads the life of Jesus Christ” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 2).

27. Wishing a person peace was, and still is, the usual form of greeting among
Jews and Arabs. It is the greeting Jesus used, and which the Apostles continued
to use, as we can see from their letters (cf. 1 Peter 1:3; 3 John 15; Romans 1:7;
etc.). The Church still uses it in the liturgy: for example, before Communion the
celebrant wishes those present peace, a condition for worthily sharing in the holy
sacrifice (cf. Matthew 5:23) and also a fruit of that sacrifice.

On our Lord’s lips this common greeting acquires its deepest meaning; peace is
one of the great messianic gifts (cf. Isaiah 9:7; 48:18; Micah 5:5; Matthew 10:22;
Luke 2:14; 19:38). The peace which Jesus gives us completely transcends the
peace of the world, which can be superficial and misleading and compatible with
injustice. The peace of Christ is, above all, reconciliation with God and reconci-
liation of men with one another; it is one of the fruits of the Holy Spirit (cf. Gala-
tians 5:22-23); it is “serenity of mind, tranquility of soul, simplicity of heart, a
bond of love, a union of charity: no one can inherit God if he does not keep His
testament of peace, or live in unity with Christ if he is separated from Christiani-
ty” (St. Augustine, “De Verbis Domini Serm.”, 58).

“Christ ‘is our peace’ (Ephesians 2:14). And today and forever He repeats to us:
‘My peace I give to you, My peace I leave with you’. [...] Never before in the histo-
ry of mankind has peace been so much talked about and so ardently desired as
in our day. [...] And yet again and again, one can see how peace is undermined
and destroyed. [...] Peace is the result of many converging attitudes and realities;
it is the product of moral concerns, of ethical principles based on the Gospel
message and fortified by it. [...] In his message for the 1971 Day of Peace, my
revered predecessor, that pilgrim of peace, Paul VI, said: “True peace must be
founded upon justice, upon a sense of the untouchable dignity of man, upon the
recognition of an indelible and happy equality between men, upon the basic prin-
ciple of human brotherhood, that is, of the respect and true love due to each man,
because he is man’. This same message I affirmed in Mexico and in Poland. I re-
affirm it here in Ireland. Every human being has inalienable rights that must be re-
spected. Each human community — ethnic, historical, cultural or religious — has
rights which must be respected. Peace is threatened every time one of these
rights is violated. The moral law, guardian of human rights, protector of the digni-
ty of man, cannot be set aside by any person or group, or by the State itself, for
any cause, not even for security or in the interests of law and order. The law of
God stands in judgment over all reasons of State. As long as injustices exist in
any of the areas that touch upon the dignity of the human person, be it in the po-
litical, social or economic field, be it in the cultural or religious sphere, true peace
will not exist. [...] Peace cannot be established by violence, peace can never flou-
rish in a climate of terror, intimidation and death. It is Jesus Himself who said: ‘All
who take the sword will perish by the sword’ (Matthew 26:52). This is the word of
God, and it commands this generation of violent men to desist from hatred and
violence and to repent” (John Paul II, “Homily at Drogheda”, 29 September 1979).

The peace and joy which Christ brings us should be typical of believers: “Get rid
of those scruples that deprive you of peace.—What takes away your peace of
soul cannot come from God.

“When God comes to you, you will feel the truth of those greetings: My peace I
give to you..., peace I leave you..., peace be with you..., and you will feel it even
in the midst of troubles.” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 258).

28. Jesus Christ, as Only-begotten Son of God, possesses divine glory for all
eternity; but while He is on earth this glory is veiled and hidden behind His holy
human nature (cf. 17:5; Philippians 2:7). It only shows itself on a few occasions,
such as when He performs miracles (cf. 2:11) or at the Transfiguration (cf. Mat-
thew 17:1-8 and paragraph). Now, through His death, resurrection and ascension
into Heaven Jesus will be glorified — in His body also — as He returns to the Fa-
ther and enters into His glory. Therefore, His departure from this world should be
a source of joy for His disciples; but they do not properly understand what He is
saying, and they are saddened because they are more aware of the Master be-
ing physically separated from them than the glory which awaits Him.

When Jesus says that the Father is greater than He, He is thinking about His hu-
man nature; as man Jesus is going to be glorified, ascending as He does to the
right hand of the Father. Jesus Christ “is equal to the Father in His divinity, less
than the Father in His humanity” (”Athanasian Creed”). St. Augustine exhorts us
to “acknowledge the twofold nature of Christ — the divine, by which He is equal to
the Father; the human, by which He is less than the Father. But the one and the
other are together not two, but one Christ’ (”In Ioann. Evang.”, 78, 3). However, al-
though the Father and the Son are equal in nature, eternity and dignity, our Lord’s
words can also be understood by taking “greater” to refer to His origin: only the
Father is “beginning without beginning”, whereas the Son proceeds eternally from
the Father by way of a generation which is also eternal. Jesus Christ is God from
God, Light from Light, True God from True God (cf. Nicene Creed).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


5 posted on 05/04/2013 8:19:38 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass

If the Ascension of the Lord is going to be celebrated next Sunday, the alternative Second Reading and Gospel shown here (which would otherwise have been read on that Sunday) may be used today.


First reading Acts 15:1-2,22-29 ©
Some men came down from Judaea and taught the brothers, ‘Unless you have yourselves circumcised in the tradition of Moses you cannot be saved.’ This led to disagreement, and after Paul and Barnabas had had a long argument with these men it was arranged that Paul and Barnabas and others of the church should go up to Jerusalem and discuss the problem with the apostles and elders.
  Then the apostles and elders decided to choose delegates to send to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas; the whole church concurred with this. They chose Judas known as Barsabbas and Silas, both leading men in the brotherhood, and gave them this letter to take with them:
  ‘The apostles and elders, your brothers, send greetings to the brothers of pagan birth in Antioch, Syria and Cilicia. We hear that some of our members have disturbed you with their demands and have unsettled your minds. They acted without any authority from us; and so we have decided unanimously to elect delegates and to send them to you with Barnabas and Paul, men we highly respect who have dedicated their lives to the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Accordingly we are sending you Judas and Silas, who will confirm by word of mouth what we have written in this letter. It has been decided by the Holy Spirit and by ourselves not to saddle you with any burden beyond these essentials: you are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols; from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from fornication. Avoid these, and you will do what is right. Farewell.’

Psalm Psalm 66:2-3,5-6,8 ©
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
or
Alleluia!
O God, be gracious and bless us
  and let your face shed its light upon us.
So will your ways be known upon earth
  and all nations learn your saving help.
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
or
Alleluia!
Let the nations be glad and exult
  for you rule the world with justice.
With fairness you rule the peoples,
  you guide the nations on earth.
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
or
Alleluia!
Let the peoples praise you, O God;
  let all the peoples praise you.
May God still give us his blessing
  till the ends of the earth revere him.
Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you.
or
Alleluia!
EITHER:
Second reading Apocalypse 21:10-14,22-23 ©
In the spirit, the angel took me to the top of an enormous high mountain and showed me Jerusalem, the holy city, coming down from God out of heaven. It had all the radiant glory of God and glittered like some precious jewel of crystal-clear diamond. The walls of it were of a great height, and had twelve gates; at each of the twelve gates there was an angel, and over the gates were written the names of the twelve tribes of Israel; on the east there were three gates, on the north three gates, on the south three gates, and on the west three gates. The city walls stood on twelve foundation stones, each one of which bore the name of one of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
  I saw that there was no temple in the city since the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb were themselves the temple, and the city did not need the sun or the moon for light, since it was lit by the radiant glory of God and the Lamb was a lighted torch for it.
OR:
Second reading Apocalypse 22:12-14,16-17,20 ©
I, John, heard a voice speaking to me: ‘Very soon now, I shall be with you again, bringing the reward to be given to every man according to what he deserves. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. Happy are those who will have washed their robes clean, so that they will have the right to feed on the tree of life and can come through the gates into the city.’
  I, Jesus, have sent my angel to make these revelations to you for the sake of the churches. I am of David’s line, the root of David and the bright star of the morning.
  The Spirit and the Bride say, ‘Come.’ Let everyone who listens answer, ‘Come.’ Then let all who are thirsty come: all who want it may have the water of life, and have it free.
  The one who guarantees these revelations repeats his promise: I shall indeed be with you soon. Amen; come, Lord Jesus.
EITHER:
Gospel Acclamation Jn14:23
Alleluia, alleluia!
Jesus said: ‘If anyone loves me he will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,
and we shall come to him.’
Alleluia!
Gospel John 14:23-29 ©
Jesus said to his disciples:
‘If anyone loves me he will keep my word,
and my Father will love him,
and we shall come to him and make our home with him.
Those who do not love me do not keep my words.
And my word is not my own:
it is the word of the one who sent me.
I have said these things to you while still with you;
but the Advocate, the Holy Spirit,
whom the Father will send in my name,
will teach you everything
and remind you of all I have said to you.
Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you,
a peace the world cannot give,
this is my gift to you.
Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.
You heard me say: I am going away, and shall return.
If you loved me you would have been glad to know that I am going to the Father,
for the Father is greater than I.
I have told you this now before it happens,
so that when it does happen you may believe.’
OR:
Gospel Acclamation cf.Jn14:18
Alleluia, alleluia!
I will not leave you orphans, says the Lord;
I will come back to you,
and your hearts will be full of joy.
Alleluia!
Gospel John 17:20-26 ©
Jesus raised his eyes to heaven and said:
‘Holy Father,
I pray not only for these,
but for those also
who through their words will believe in me.
May they all be one.
Father, may they be one in us,
as you are in me and I am in you,
so that the world may believe it was you who sent me.
I have given them the glory you gave to me,
that they may be one as we are one.
With me in them and you in me,
may they be so completely one
that the world will realise that it was you who sent me
and that I have loved them as much as you loved me.
Father, I want those you have given me
to be with me where I am,
so that they may always see the glory you have given me
because you loved me before the foundation of the world.
Father, Righteous One,
the world has not known you,
but I have known you,
and these have known that you have sent me.
I have made your name known to them
and will continue to make it known,
so that the love with which you loved me may be in them,
and so that I may be in them.’

6 posted on 05/04/2013 8:27:25 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: All
Pray with Pope Benedict

Pope to welcome 70,000 youths, confirm 44 (this Sunday) [Catholic Caucus]
Pope Francis’ General Audience focused on women. Feminists aren’t going to be happy
Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio's "Letter On the Year of Faith" (Crossing Threshold of Faith)

Pope Francis – the real deal – has Audience with Cardinals
Benedict XVI's Final General Audience
On Ash Wednesday
On God As Creator of Heaven and Earth
On Abraham's Faith
On Christ As Mediator Between God and Man
On the Incarnation
On God the Almighty Father
Year of Faith: Indulgences and Places of Pilgrimage [Ecumenical]
On the Identity of Jesus

On the Faith of Mary, the Virgin Mother of Christ
Father Cantalamessa's 1st Advent Sermon (Catholic Caucus)
On The Unfolding of God's Self-Revelation
On the Beauty of God's Plan of Salvation
On Bearing Witness to the Christian Faith
On the Splendor of God's Truth
On the Knowledge of God
Archbishop Chaput says Year of Faith holds solution to relativism
Following the Truth: The Year Of Faith – 10 Things You Should Know [Catholic Caucus]
Papal Encyclical on Faith Announced

On the Desire for God
On the Ecclesial Nature of Faith
On the Nature of Faith
Catechism's benefits explained for Year of Faith (Catholic Caucus)
A Life of Faith: Papal Theologian Speaks on the Grace of Faith
ASIA/LAOS - "Year of Faith" amid the persecutions of Christians forced to become "animists"
From no faith to a mountain-top of meaning: Father John Nepil (Catholic Caucus)
Living the Year of Faith: How Pope Benedict Wants You to Begin [Catholic Caucus]
Share Your Faith in This Year of Faith: Two keys to help you do it.
On A New Series of Audiences for The Year of Faith

Pope will deliver year-long teaching series on restoring faith
Pope Benedict XVI Grants Plenary Indulgence to Faithful [Catholic Caucus]
Pope, at Marian shrine, entrusts Year of Faith, synod to Mary (Catholic Caucus)
Catholic Church Calls for Public Prayers in Offices on Fridays
Highlights in the Plan for Year of Faith: Traditional Events Will Take on Special Perspective
Catholic Church calls for public prayers in offices on Fridays
Vatican Unveils Logo for Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Miami Prelate Recalls Pope's Visit to Cuba, Looks to Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
The World-Changing Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Vatican to Issue Recommendations for Celebrating Year of Faith

7 posted on 05/04/2013 8:31:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: All

 

He is Risen! Truly Risen!

A blessed Eastertide to all!

 

8 posted on 05/04/2013 8:31:47 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: All
Regina Caeli: Ask Jesus what he wants from you (Catholic Caucus)
If Christ Has Not Been Raised (you don't want to miss this one!)
The Few Witnesses to the Resurrection
Iraq: Christians celebrate Easter behind high blast walls and tight security cordons
8 things you need to know about Easter
Pope: Urbi et Orbi Message, Easter, 2013 [Full text]
Pope Francis Leads First Easter Celebrations
Resurrection of the Body (Ecumenical)
April 11 Audience: On Easter's Spiritual Joy
When did the Resurrection become truly the Faith, and the official teaching of the Church?
What are they thinking? (The Easter and Christmas only Church-goers, that is!)

The Resurrection Appearances Chronologically Arranged
Are There Discrepancies in the Resurrection Accounts? If so, Can They be Resolved?
URBI ET ORBI MESSAGE OF HIS HOLINESS POPE BENEDICT XVI - EASTER 2012
Saint Gregory the Great’s Sermon on the Mystery of the Resurrection
Pope Benedict XVI warns of moral 'darkness' as he celebrates Easter Mass
Easter Changes Everything
New Catholics a sign of Easter blessing for church (in Oregon)
On Easter Joy -- General Audience, Pope Benedict XVI
The Christ of the Folded Napkin
Reflection on Hope and New Life After the Easter Feasts (Thomas Rosica, CSB)
Easter Time [Eastertide or Easter Season]
Risen Christ opens for a us a completely new future says the Pope at Easter Mass
Man Who "Died" 5 Times Is Becoming Catholic (Thousands to Enter Church at Easter)
On the Resurrection-Pope Benedict XVI
Octave of Easter, Pope Benedict XVI
The Double Alleluia
Easter Sunday
Eastertide Overview
Our 'Great Sunday' (Season of Easter) [Editorial Column]
Happy Easter: The Tomb is Empty! The Warrior of Love has conquered!

Homily Of His Holiness Benedict XVI (Holy Saturday Easter Vigil, Saint Peter's Basilica)
Pope to Baptize Prominent Muslim
Holy Saturday (Easter Vigil)
The Exultet
The Dark before Dawn
Easter and the Holy Eucharist(Catholic/Orthodox Caucus)
Holy Saturday and the Easter Vigil
Easter Day and Easter Season
THE EASTER LITURGY [Easter Vigil] (Anglican and Catholic Rites)
Holy Saturday and the Easter Vigil
Poles visit symbolic Christ's Graves on Holy Saturday
Easter Vigil tonight
HOMILIES PREACHED BY FATHER ALTIER FOR EASTER VIGIL FROM 2002-2005
2 Paschal Candles; Lights On at Vigil And More on Washing of the Feet
RCIA and Holy Saturday
The Time Of Easter or Eastertide -- Easter Seasosn
Easter Day and Easter Season
Easter Reflections -- 50 Days of the Easter Season
The Blessed Season of Easter - Fifty Days of Reflections

9 posted on 05/04/2013 8:35:35 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: All
Perpetual Novena for the Nation (Ecumenical)
10 posted on 05/04/2013 8:38:51 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
11 posted on 05/04/2013 8:39:16 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: All

 
 
Jesus, High Priest
 

We thank you, God our Father, for those who have responded to your call to priestly ministry.

Accept this prayer we offer on their behalf: Fill your priests with the sure knowledge of your love.

Open their hearts to the power and consolation of the Holy Spirit.

Lead them to new depths of union with your Son.

Increase in them profound faith in the Sacraments they celebrate as they nourish, strengthen and heal us.

Lord Jesus Christ, grant that these, your priests, may inspire us to strive for holiness by the power of their example, as men of prayer who ponder your word and follow your will.

O Mary, Mother of Christ and our mother, guard with your maternal care these chosen ones, so dear to the Heart of your Son.

Intercede for our priests, that offering the Sacrifice of your Son, they may be conformed more each day to the image of your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saint John Vianney, universal patron of priests, pray for us and our priests

This icon shows Jesus Christ, our eternal high priest.

The gold pelican over His heart represents self-sacrifice.

The border contains an altar and grapevines, representing the Mass, and icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.

Melchizedek: king of righteousness (left icon) was priest and king of Jerusalem.  He blessed Abraham and has been considered an ideal priest-king.

St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests.


12 posted on 05/04/2013 8:41:19 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: All
Pray a Rosary each day for our nation.

Pray the Rosary

1.  Sign of the Cross:  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

2.  The Apostles Creed:  I BELIEVE in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth, and in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord, who was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell; on the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty; from there He shall come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

3.  The Lord's Prayer:  OUR Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

4. (3) Hail Mary:  HAIL Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and in the hour of our death. Amen. (Three times)

5. Glory Be:  GLORY be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Fatima Prayer: Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.

Announce each mystery, then say 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, 1 Glory Be and 1 Fatima prayer.  Repeat the process with each mystery.

End with the Hail Holy Queen:

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus!

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Final step -- The Sign of the Cross

 

The Mysteries of the Rosary

By tradition, Catholics meditate on these Mysteries during prayers of the Rosary.
The biblical references follow each of the Mysteries below.


The Glorious Mysteries
(Wednesdays and Sundays)
1.The Resurrection (Matthew 28:1-8, Mark 16:1-18, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-29) [Spiritual fruit - Faith]
2. The Ascension (Mark 16:19-20, Luke 24:50-53, Acts 1:6-11) [Spiritual fruit - Christian Hope]
3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-13) [Spiritual fruit - Gifts of the Holy Spirit]
4. The Assumption [Spiritual fruit - To Jesus through Mary]
5. The Coronation [Spiritual fruit - Grace of Final Perseverance]


13 posted on 05/04/2013 8:42:01 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: All



~ PRAYER ~

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle
 Be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the devil;
May God rebuke him, we  humbly pray,
 and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
 by the power of God,
 Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
 Amen
+

14 posted on 05/04/2013 8:42:41 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: All

A Prayer for our Free Nation Under God
God Save Our Country web site (prayer warriors)
Prayer Chain Request for the United States of America
Pray for Nancy Pelosi
Prayer and fasting will help defeat health care reform (Freeper Prayer Thread)
Prayer Campaign Started to Convert Pro-Abortion Catholic Politicians to Pro-Life
[Catholic Caucus] One Million Rosaries
Non-stop Rosary vigil to defeat ObamaCare

From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:

"Pray for Obama.  Psalm 109:8"

   

PLEASE JOIN US -

Evening Prayer
Someone has said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless.
Did you know that during WWII there was an advisor to Churchill who organized a group of people who dropped what they were doing every day at a prescribed hour for one minute to collectively pray for the safety of England, its people and peace?  


There is now a group of people organizing the same thing here in America. If you would like to participate: Every evening at 9:00 PM Eastern Time (8:00 PM Central) (7:00 PM Mountain) (6:00 PM Pacific), stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens, and for a return to a Godly nation. If you know anyone else who would like to participate, please pass this along. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.    Please forward this to your praying friends.


15 posted on 05/04/2013 8:46:23 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: All
May Devotion: Blessed Virgin Mary
The Virgin Mary as Our Lady of Grace

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. Toward the end of the eighteenth century a zealous Jesuit priest, Father Lalomia, started among the students of the Roman college of his Society the practice of dedicating May to Our Lady. The devotion, which others had promoted in a small way, soon spread to other Jesuit Colleges and to the entire Latin church and since that time it has been a regular feature of Catholic life.

INVOCATIONS

Thou who wast a virgin before thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.
Thou who wast a virgin in thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.
Thou who wast a virgin after thy delivery, pray for us. Hail Mary, etc.

My Mother, deliver me from mortal sin.
Hail Mary (three times).

Mother of love, of sorrow and of mercy, pray for us.

Remember, O Virgin Mother of God, when thou shalt stand before the face of the Lord, that thou speak favorable things in our behalf and that He may turn away His indignation from us.
Roman Missal

Thou art my Mother, O Virgin Mary: keep me safe lest I ever offend thy dear Son, and obtain for me the grace to please Him always and in all things.

FOR THE HELP OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

May we be assisted, we beseech Thee, 0 Lord, by the worshipful intercession of Thy glorious Mother, the ever-Virgin Mary; that we, who have been enriched by her perpetual blessings, may be delivered from all dangers, and through her loving kindness made to be of one heart and mind: who livest and reignest world without end. Amen.
Roman Missal

THE SALVE REGINA

Hail, holy Queen, Mother of mercy, hail, our life, our sweetness, and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus! O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary!
Roman Breviary

PRAYER TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

O blessed Virgin Mary, who can worthily repay thee thy just dues of praise and thanksgiving, thou who by the wondrous assent of thy will didst rescue a fallen world? What songs of praise can our weak human nature recite in thy honor, since it is by thy intervention alone that it has found
the way to restoration? Accept, then, such poor thanks as we have here to offer, though they be unequal to thy merits; and, receiving our vows, obtain by thy prayers the remission of our offenses. Carry thou our prayers within the sanctuary of the heavenly audience, and bring forth from it the antidote of our reconciliation. May the sins we bring before Almighty God through thee, become pardonable through thee; may what we ask for with sure confidence, through thee be granted. Take our offering, grant us our requests, obtain pardon for what we fear, for thou art the sole hope of sinners. Through thee we hope for the remission of our sins, and in thee, 0 blessed Lady, is our hope of reward. Holy Mary, succour the miserable, help the fainthearted, comfort the sorrowful, pray for thy people, plead for the clergy, intercede for all women consecrated to God; may all who keep thy holy commemoration feel now thy help and protection. Be thou ever ready to assist us when we pray, and bring back to us the answers to our prayers. Make it thy continual care to pray for the people of God, thou who, blessed by God, didst merit to bear the Redeemer of the world, who liveth and reigneth, world without end. Amen.
Saint Augustine

PETITION TO MARY

Most holy Virgin Immaculate, my Mother Mary, to thee who art the Mother of my Lord, the queen of the universe, the advocate, the hope, the refuge of sinners, I who am the most miserable of all sinners, have recourse this day. I venerate thee, great queen, and I thank thee for the many graces thou hast bestowed upon me even unto this day; in particular for having delivered me from the hell which I have so often deserved by my sins. I love thee, most dear Lady; and for the love I bear thee, I promise to serve thee willingly for ever and to do what I can to make thee loved by others also. I place in thee all my hopes for salvation; accept me as thy servant and shelter me under thy mantle, thou who art the Mother of mercy. And since thou art so powerful with God, deliver me from all temptations, or at least obtain for me the strength to overcome them until death. From thee I implore a true love for Jesus Christ. Through thee I hope to die a holy death. My dear Mother, by the love thou bearest to Almighty God, I pray thee to assist me always, but most of all at the last moment of my life. Forsake me not then, until thou shalt see me safe in heaven, there to bless thee and sing of thy mercies through all eternity. Such is my hope. Amen.
Saint Alphonsus Liguori

Magnificat Prayer
My being proclaims the greatness of the Lord, my spirit finds joy in God my savior,
For he has looked upon his servant in her lowliness; all ages to come shall call me blessed.
God who is mighty has done great things for me,
holy is his name; His mercy is from age to age on those who fear him. He has shown might with his arm; he has confused the proud in their inmost thoughts. He has deposed the mighty from their thrones and raised the lowly to high places. The hungry he has given every good thing, while the rich he has sent empty away. He has upheld Israel his servant, ever mindful of his mercy; Even as he promised our fathers, promised Abraham and his descendants forever.
(Lk 1:46-55) 

TO MARY, REFUGE OF SINNERS
Hail, most gracious Mother of mercy, hail, Mary, for whom we fondly yearn, through whom we obtain forgiveness! Who would not love thee? Thou art our light in uncertainty, our comfort in sorrow, our solace in the time of trial, our refuge from every peril and temptation. Thou art our sure hope of salvation, second only to thy only-begotten Son; blessed are they who love thee, our Lady! Incline, I beseech thee, thy ears of pity to the entreaties of this thy servant, a miserable sinner; dissipate the darkness of my sins by the bright beams of thy holiness, in order that I may be acceptable in thy sight.

FOR THE GRACE OF LOVE
O Mary, my dear Mother, how much I love thee! And yet in reality how little! Thou dost teach me what I ought to know, for thou teachest me what Jesus is to me and what I ought to be for Jesus. Dearly beloved Mother, how close to God thou art, and how utterly filled with Him! In the measure that we know God, we remind ourselves of thee. Mother of God, obtain for me the grace of loving my Jesus; obtain for me the grace of loving thee!
Cardinal Merry del Val

TO THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY FOR MAY

O most august and blessed Virgin Mary! Holy Mother of God! glorious Queen of heaven and earth! powerful protectress of those who love thee, and unfailing advocate of all who invoke thee! look down, I beseech thee, from thy throne of glory on thy devoted child; accept the solemn offering I present thee of this month, specially dedicated to thee, and receive my ardent, humble desire, that by my love and fervor I could worthily honor thee, who, next to God, art deserving of all honor. Receive me, 0 Mother of Mercy, among thy best beloved children; extend to me thy maternal tenderness and solicitude; obtain for me a place in the Heart of Jesus, and a special share in the gifts of His grace. 0 deign, I beseech thee, to recognize my claims on thy protection, to watch over my spiritual and temporal interests, as well as those of all who are dear to me; to infuse into my soul the spirit of Christ, and to teach me thyself to become meek, humble, charitable, patient, and submissive to the will of God.

May my heart bum with the love of thy Divine Son, and of thee, His blessed Mother, not for a month alone, but for time and eternity; may I thirst for the promotion of His honor and thine, and contribute, as far as I can, to its extension. Receive me, 0 Mary, the refuge of sinners! Grant me a Mother's blessing and a Mother's care, now, and at the hour of my death. Amen.

TO OUR LADY

Saint John Vianney, better known as the Cure of Ars, when asked how long he had loved Mary, said: "I loved her almost before I could know her." In this prayer he expresses that love.
O thou most holy virgin Mary, who dost evermore stand before the most holy Trinity, and to whom it is granted at all times to pray for us to thy most beloved Son; pray for me in all my necessities; help me, combat for me, and obtain for me the pardon of all my sins. Help me especially at my last hour; and when I can no longer give any sign of the use of reason, then do thou encourage me, make the sign of the cross for me, and fight for me against the enemy. Make in my name a profession of faith; favor me with a testimony of my salvation, and never let me despair of the mercy of God. Help me to overthrow the wicked enemy. When I can no longer say: "Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I place my soul in your hands," do thou say it for me; when I can no longer hear human words of consolation, do thou comfort me. Leave me not before I have been judged; and if I have to expiate my sins in purgatory, oh! pray for me earnestly; and admonish my friends to procure for me a speedy enjoyment of the blessed sight of God. Lessen my sufferings, deliver me speedily, and lead my soul into heaven with thee: that, united with all the elect, I may there bless and praise my God and thee for all eternity. Amen.
Saint John Vianney

ACT OF REPARATION

O blessed Virgin, Mother of God, look down in mercy from heaven, where thou art enthroned as Queen, upon me, a miserable sinner, thine unworthy servant. Although I know full well my own unworthiness, yet in order to atone for the offenses that are done to thee by impious and blasphemous
tongues, from the depths of my heart I praise and extol thee as the purest, the fairest, the holiest creature of all God's handiwork. I bless thy holy name, I praise thine exalted privilege of being truly Mother of God, ever virgin, conceived without stain of sin, co-redemptrix of the human race. I bless the Eternal Father who chose thee in an especial way for His daughter; I bless the Word Incarnate who took upon Himself our nature in thy bosom and so made thee His Mother; I bless the Holy Spirit who took thee as His bride. All honor, praise and thanksgiving to the ever-blessed Trinity, who predestined thee and loved thee so exceedingly from all eternity as to exalt thee above all creatures to the most sublime heights. 0 Virgin, holy and merciful, obtain for all who offend thee the grace of repentance, and graciously accept this poor act of homage from me thy servant, obtaining likewise for me from thy divine Son the pardon and remission of all my sins. Amen.

Prayer Source: Prayer Book, The by Reverend John P. O'Connell, M.A., S.T.D. and Jex Martin, M.A., The Catholic Press, Inc., Chicago, Illinois, 1954

Memorare of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Sassoferrato - Jungfrun i bön.jpg

Remember O Most Gracious Virgin Mary!
That never was it known
That anyone who fled to thy protection,
Implored thy help or sought thy intercession
Was left unaided. 

Inspired by this confidence, I fly unto Thee!
O Virgin of virgins, My Mother!

To Thee I come before Thee I stand,
Sinful and Sorrowful,
Oh Mother of the Word Incarnate,
Despise not my petitions, but in thy mercy,
Hear and answer me.


Amen

Mariaphobic Response Syndrome: Part Two
Mariaphobic Response Syndrome: Part One
A Mother’s Love, The Blessed Virgin Mary Saying YES To God
Chesterton on devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary [Ecumenical]
The Perpetual Virginity of Blessed Mary
A Comparison is Instituted Between the Disobedient and Sinning Eve and the Virgin Mary..

Magnificat: The Hymn of the Blessed Virgin Mary [Catholic Caucus]
The Blessed Virgin Mary's Role in the Celibate Priest's Spousal... (Pt 2) (CATHOLIC CAUCUS)
The Blessed Virgin Mary's Role in the Celibate Priest's Spousal and Paternal Love (CATHOLIC CAUCUS)
Discovering Mary [Excellent New Book For Converts]
Beginning Our Lady's Month [Catholic Caucus]
Give it all to Mary [Catholic Caucus]
JESUS LIVING IN MARY: HANDBOOK, SPIRITUALITY OF ST. LOUIS DE MONTFORT, ROSARY [Ecumenical]
Mary, Tabernacle of the Lord By Archbishop Fulton Sheen(Catholic Caucus)
Mary is our Mother and Queen of the New Davidic Kingdom (Scriptures Agree With Catholic Church)

Hail Mary
Holy Water Silhouette (Virgin Mary -video))
How could Mary be the Mother of God?
Mary, the Mother of God (a defense)
Calling Mary “Mother of God” Tells Us Who Jesus Is
The Holy Spirit And Mary (Catholic Caucus)
Mary, Our Cause of Rejoicing
Mary in Byzantine Doctrine and Devotion (Catholic / Orthodox Caucus)
Radio Replies First Volume - Devotion to Mary
The Blessed Virgin Mary and the Catholic Discovery of America(Catholic Caucus)

Mary is the star that guides us to holiness, says Holy Father during Angelus [Catholic Caucus]
The Efficacy and Power of One Hail Mary [Ecumenical]
When Did Belief in the Virgin Birth Begin?
Mary, Motherhood, and the Home BY Archbishop Fulton Sheen
On Mary, Mother of Priests
Benedict reflects on Mary and the priesthood [Catholic Caucus]
Radio Replies First Volume - Mary
Mary and the Sword Continued Part #2 by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen
Mary and the Sword by Bishop Fulton J. Sheen(Catholic Caucus)

Why Did Mary Offer a Sin Offering? [Ecumenical]
Mary and Intercessory Prayer
Mary: Holy Mother
Mary not just for Catholics anymore
Pope concludes Month of Mary in the Vatican Gardens
Consecration to Mary(Catholic Caucus)
Mary’s Marching Orders
Praying the Hail Mary Like Never Before [Ecumenical]
Our Lady of the Most Blessed Sacrament [Catholic Caucus]
Catholic Caucus: The Catechism of St. Thomas Aquinas - THE HAIL MARY

Our Roots: The Immaculate Conception [Ecumenical]
The Blessed Virgin in the History of Christianity [Ecumenical]
Archbishop Sheen Today! -- Mary and the --------
Mary Immaculate: Patroness of the United States [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
"The Woman He Loved": Fulton Sheen and the Blessed Mother(Catholic Caucus)
September 12: The Most Holy Name of Mary and -----
Catholic Devotional: Feast of the Holy Name of Mary
A Homily on the Feast of the Most Holy Name of Mary
May Devotion: Blessed Virgin Mary
Catholic Caucus: Mary, The Power of Her Name [The Most Holy Name of the Blessed Virgin Mary]

16 posted on 05/04/2013 8:47:02 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: All

May 2013

Pope's Intentions

Administrators of Justice. That administrators of justice may act always with integrity and right conscience.

Seminaries. That seminaries, especially those of mission churches, may form pastors after the Heart of Christ, fully dedicated to proclaiming the Gospel.


17 posted on 05/04/2013 8:47:58 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Arlington Catholic Herald

The peace of Christ
Fr. Jerome Magat

In the Gospel according to St. John, five of the 21 chapters are devoted to the Last Supper. As the narrative unfolds in the upper room on Holy Thursday, Jesus promises to send the Holy Spirit upon the apostles. Jesus offers the Twelve Apostles His peace and He assures them that His peace is unlike the peace the world gives. In a world full of strife and increasing violence, we do well to consider what exactly Jesus meant when He offered the apostles His peace. These verses regarding peace have had such enduring value in the church that they have been a part of the Mass for millennia. In the current Mass, they follow the recitation of the Lord’s Prayer.

Worldly peace is rooted in an absence of conflict. Whenever warring parties come to peace terms or suspend violence under the directives of a cease-fire, we often hear that there is peace among the parties in conflict. That peace can be disrupted easily and fighting and war can resume rather quickly. Peace among enemies can be a tenuous reality with no certain future guaranteed.

Christian peace is much more than an absence of conflict. For believers, Christ’s peace truly reigns when the virtue of justice is satisfied. Justice, simply speaking, is giving another what they are due. There are different forms of justice (commutative, redistributive, etc.) but in all types of justice, parties to a conflict only experience peace when each side has received their due recompense. Hence, peace, as Christians understand it, is a fruit of justice. If justice is lacking, peace cannot abound. Justice becomes a precondition for Christ’s peace to enter. Warring parties may cease violence for a time but if either or both parties do not believe that they have received a just resolution to their claims, peace is but a mirage — violence can resume with little provocation.

Jesus teaches that peace can only reign in man’s heart when interior conversion has begun. When an individual is no longer conflicted within — when he renders justice unto God by obeying His commands and acts justly toward his neighbor can peace truly reign. Until that interior change of heart occurs, man can feel an inner unease — a fighting within himself that is a sure sign that some injustice is present. When interior peace is lacking, it is almost always a sure sign that God’s will is not being accomplished. For example, a father may chose to discipline his child with a severe punishment. The father may experience some emotional distress for having punished the child but he knows that the discipline and punishment are necessary tools to form that child and truly love him. If that father is at peace, even as he sees his child suffer the consequences for his action, it may be a sure sign of God’s presence. The father has addressed the problematic child’s injustice and resolved it. The path has been paved for Christ’s peace to enter.

In the Gospel narrative, Jesus assures the apostles that they can experience His peace because He is going to the Father — an act of justice. In His forthcoming ascension, Jesus will have accomplished the demands of justice to the Father by becoming our ransom and satisfying man’s debt to God by suffering and dying for us. Jesus’ obedience, which is a form of justice, paves the way for us to experience the peace that only He can give.

Fr. Magat is parochial vicar of St. William of York Church in Stafford.


18 posted on 05/04/2013 8:58:07 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: All
The Work of God

If any one loves me, he will keep my word Catholic Gospels - Homilies - Matthew, Luke, Mark, John - Inspirations of the Holy Spirit

Year C

 -  6th Sunday of Easter

If any one loves me, he will keep my word

If any one loves me, he will keep my word Catholic Gospels - Matthew, Luke, Mark, John - Inspirations of the Holy Spirit John 14:23-29

23 Jesus answered him, "Those who love me will keep my word, and my Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.
24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; and the word that you hear is not mine, but is from the Father who sent me.
25 "I have said these things to you while I am still with you.
26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I have said to you.
27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.
28 You heard me say to you, 'I am going away, and I am coming to you.' If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father, because the Father is greater than I.
29 And now I have told you this before it occurs, so that when it does occur, you may believe. (NRSV)

Inspiration of the Holy Spirit - From the Sacred Heart of Jesus

6th Sunday of Easter - If any one loves me, he will keep my word If anyone loves me, he will keep my Word. To keep my Word really means to put my words into practice, to draw wisdom from my lessons of love, to make an effort to live by my will and to be ruled by my love.

It is very common for a soul to pursue the way of holiness, doing most of the things I have asked for. But there is always a tendency to fail; there is always room for more to be done.

The greatest problem is the ego. Pride is always tempting souls to abandon the way of righteousness. The evil one is aware of the souls who are making efforts to please me and he will lay many snares on their way to incite selfishness and pride to conquer their hearts. Therefore the only weapon against the adversary is humility of heart, which involves self-denial and a complete way of littleness.

I said that the road was narrow and very difficult, I know that it is hard for you, but I ask you to work hard, so that you may rejoice in the company of my Father and in my company as well, since we will be very pleased with obedience and will dwell in a humble and contrite heart.

My Peace I have brought to you with the triumph of my resurrection. You have been reconciled with God.

You who believe in me are a temple of my Holy Spirit. My Holy Spirit will guide you to understand my word and to keep it in your heart. Open your heart and remain in me. My Grace will not abandon you but will make you a very strong follower of mine and an apostle of my Word.

Author: Joseph of Jesus and Mary


19 posted on 05/04/2013 9:06:44 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: All
Sunday Gospel Reflections

6th Sunday of Easter
Reading I:
Acts 15:1-2,22-29 II: Rev 21:10-14,22-23
Gospel
John 14:23-29

23Jesus answered him, "If a man loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.
24He who does not love me does not keep my words; and the word which you hear is not mine but the Father's who sent me.
25"These things I have spoken to you, while I am still with you.
26But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.
27Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.
28You heard me say to you, 'I go away, and I will come to you.' If you loved me, you would have rejoiced, because I go to the Father; for the Father is greater than I.
29And now I have told you before it takes place, so that when it does take place, you may believe.


Interesting Details
  • This section is Jesus' answer to a disciple's question(v. 22): "Lord, how can it be that you will reveal yourself to us and not to the world ?" Jesus had touched on the answer previously in the Beautitudes(Mt 5:8)-- Blessed are the pure of heart, for they shall see God! Here, Jesus explains further.
  • (vv.23-24) Jesus identifies his disciples (the ones who love him) as those who keep his words. He further identifies the world (those who do not love him) as the ones who do not keep his word. The reward for those of us who keep his word includes:
    1. (v.23) The Father and the Son will make a dwelling in us; God's temple will be within us, that is, spiritual rather than physical.
    2. (v.26) The Holy Spirit will come to us. Verse 26 makes it clear that the Holy Spirit does not bring teaching that is independent of the revelation in Jesus. Rather, the Holy Spirit gives us understanding of what Jesus had taught and done. Jesus calls the Holy Spirit a "Paraclete", which means "an advocate", who will guide us.
    3. (v.27) We will have peace: " not as the word gives peace" , but an inner peace that comes from the indwelling presence of God.

One Main Point

The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit make their dwelling in us, teach us, and give us peace.


Reflections
  1. Jesus said, "if anyone loves me, he will keep my word". I pray that my love of Jesus wil push me to meditate on his words, letting his words take root in my soul, and putting his words into practice in my life.
  2. Peace can mean no war, no conflicts. Or peace can be despite wars and conficts. Which type of peace do I want ? How do I reach this state?

20 posted on 05/04/2013 9:20:11 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Daily Gospel Commentary

Sixth Sunday of Easter - Year C
Commentary of the day
Blessed John-Paul II, Pope from 1978 to 2005
Encyclical « Dominum et vivificantem », § 24 (trans. © Libreria Editrice Vaticana)

The Advocate, the holy Spirit... will remind you of all that I told you"

Christ, who "gave up his spirit" on the Cross (Jn 19,30) as the Son of Man and the Lamb of God, once risen goes to the Apostles 'to breathe on them" (Jn 20,22)... The Lord's coming fills those present with joy: "Your sorrow will turn into joy," (cf. Jn 16,20) as he had already promised them before his Passion. And above all there is fulfilled the principal prediction of the farewell discourse: the Risen Christ, as it were beginning a new creation, "brings" to the Apostles the Holy Spirit. He brings him at the price of his own "departure": he gives them this Spirit as it were through the wounds of his crucifixion: "He showed them his hands and his side" (Jn 20,20). It is in the power of this crucifixion that he says to them: "Receive the Holy Spirit" (v.22).

Thus there is established a close link between the sending of the Son and the sending of the Holy Spirit. There is no sending of the Holy Spirit (after original sin) without the Cross and the Resurrection: "If I do not go away, the Counselor will not come to you." (Jn 16,7). There is also established a close link between the mission of the Holy Spirit and that of the Son in the Redemption. The mission of the Son, in a certain sense, finds its "fulfillment" in the Redemption. The mission of the Holy Spirit "draws from" the Redemption: "He will take what is mine and declare it to you" (Jn 16,15). The Redemption is totally carried out by the Son as the Anointed One, who came and acted in the power of the Holy Spirit, offering himself finally in sacrifice on the wood of the Cross. And this Redemption is, at the same time, constantly carried out in human hearts and minds-in the history of the world-by the Holy Spirit, who is the "other Counselor" (Jn 14,16).


21 posted on 05/04/2013 9:22:42 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: All
Sunday, May 05, 2013
Sixth Sunday of Easter
First Reading:
Psalm:
Second Reading:
Gospel:
Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
Psalm 67:2-3, 5-6, 8
Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23
John 14:23-29

When I am completely united to you, there will be no more sorrow or trials; entirely full of you, my life will be complete.

-- St. Augustine


22 posted on 05/04/2013 9:26:39 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: All
Archdiocese of Washington

Four Gifts of Grace – A Meditation on the Gospel for the 6th Sunday of Easter

By:

The Gospel for today has a number of “sayings” of the Lord Jesus which all amount to a kind of litany of love and setting forth of the gifts that He by his grace is and will accomplish in us. Lets get right to work and consider the wonderful gifts of grace.

I. Power - Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever loves me will keep my word

Here is a fundamental theology of grace: that the keeping of the commandments and mandates of the Lord’s word is the fruit of his Love. Let us state it plainly: the keeping of the Commandments is the fruit of Love, not the cause of it. “Yes,” says the Lord, “If you love me, the keeping of the commandments is sure to follow.” And note this too, we do not initiate this Love, God does. Scripture says, We love because he first Loved us (1 John 4:19).

Pay attention. No one can give what they do not have, and no one can possess what they have not received. God is the author and initiator of Love. Thus Love ALWAYS starts with him. The Lord is not setting up some sort of loyalty test here as if he were saying “If you love me, prove it by keeping the commandments.” That is not he gospel! The Gospel is that God has loved us, before we were ever born, before we could do anything to merit it. He loved us when we were dead in our sins. And HE took the initiative and loved us, when we hated him and crucified him.

And if we will accept this love, it will enable us to love God  with the same love with which he has loved us. And with his love in us we will begin to love what he loves and who he loves. We will love holiness, forgiveness, mercy, justice, compassion, chastity, generosity and so forth. And we will love our brethren and even our enemies. Why? Because God loves them and when his love is in our heart, so is his love for them, and for all the things he loves besides.

Do you get this? Love enables us to keep his word, to live it and love it. When I was young I dated a girl who liked square dancing. At the time I had no love for square dancing and thought it silly. But my love for her meant I started to love what she loved, and her family too. Do you see it? Love changes our heart and and our desires if we let it have its way.

So let Love have its way, and you will keep the commandments. The keeping of the commandments is the fruit of love, not its cause. Love is the power of grace at work in us to love what and who God loves. Jesus says, If you love me, you will keep my commandments (John 14:15).

II. Presence - [Jesus says] and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him.

One of the great desires of Jesus was to restore us to unity with the Father. Jesus was crazy about his Father and earnestly desired to have us know Him and love Him more deeply.

If we will but accept the Father’s love and shalom offered through Jesus, we will have a tender and joyful relationship with our Abba, our Father who loves us! Jesus often spoke of his Father almost as a doting Father. He was like a shepherd who left 99 in search of one, He was like someone who lost a coin and swept diligently to find it and, having found it, throws a party more costly that the value of the coin to celebrate. He is like a father whose son told him to drop dead but when His son finally returned, ran to meet him and threw a celebratory party.

Do you grasp this? The Father loves you and Jesus has reconciled you to him (cf 5:10). Now run to him, run to Abba,  God. If you take one step, he’ll take two, and start running to embrace you!

This is the Gospel: Jesus Christ has reconciled us to the Father, by the Father’s own request. He loves you. Now run to him and watch him run to you. He wants not distance, but intimate presence, love and embrace.

III. Perfection -I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you.

We all know that the Christian journey is not accomplished in an instant. But rather, we make this journey with God, the Holy Spirit, who teaches us and makes us mindful of all that Jesus has done for us, and taught us. Little by little we are given a new mind, a new heart, a new walk, and new priority, a new and better life. May God who has begun a good work in bring it to perfection (cf Phil 1:6).

And if we are open, he is faithful and he WILL do it. The process may be slow, but that is because we have foreheads of brass and necks of iron (cf Is 48:4). But God is faithful and patient. I am a witness; and if he can change me, he can change you too. He has promised and will do it.

We will be transformed by the renewal of our minds (cf Rom 12:2), for the Holy Spirit will bring to our mind all that the Lord IS and all that he taught. Let the Lord change your mind and heart. And if he does that, the rest will follow: sow a thought, reap a deed, sow a deed reap a habit, sow a habit reap and character, sow a character reap a destiny. And it all begins with the mind.

One of the gifts of grace is the renewing our minds, leading to total transformation.

IV. Peace - Jesus says, Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe.

What is the gift of peace? Peace is shalom, it is more than an absence of conflict. It is the presence in the relationship of everything that should be there. Peace is the experience that everything is alright.

For us peace is access once again to the Father. It is to be able to walk with him once again in Love, in and through Jesus Christ. And we don’t just walk with him in some earthly garden paradise, as Adam and Eve did (but lost). Rather we walk with him in heaven. In Jesus we are seated with the Father in honor at his right hand.

So, what does it mean when the same Jesus who said, “The Father and I are One” (Jn 10:30), also says, “The Father is greater than I” (Jn 14:28)?

Theologically it means that the Father is the source in the Trinity. All the members are co-eternal, co-equal, equally divine, but the Father is the Principium Deitatis (“the Principle of the Deity”).

Jesus proceeds from the Father from all eternity. In effect Jesus is saying, “I delight that the Father is the principle of my being, even though I have no origin.”

Devotionally, Jesus is saying I always do what pleases my Father. Jesus loves his Father, is crazy about him, is always talking about him and pointing to him. In effect, he says, by calling the Father greater, “I look to my Father for everything and I do what I see him doing (Jn 5:19) and what I know pleases him (Jn 5:30). His will and mine are one, and what I will to do proceeds from him and I do what I know accords with his will, Whom I love.”

And here then is the source of our peace, that we, with Jesus love the Father and always do what pleases him. And Jesus “goes to the Father” but he takes us with him, for we are members of his mystical Body. In Jesus, we enter the holy of holies, and sit next to the Father in love and intimacy.

Here then are some important gifts of grace. It is for us to lay hold of them and live out of them. The Lord promises them to us, so they are ours. And if at times they seem distant, reach out and take back what the devil stole from you. These are gifts of the Lord’s resurrected grace.

Here’s a song that speaks of peace and presence, not to mention power.


23 posted on 05/04/2013 9:34:48 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: All
Just A Minute Just A Minute (Listen)
Some of EWTN's most popular hosts and guests in a collection of one minute inspirational messages. A different message each time you click.

24 posted on 05/04/2013 9:36:51 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: All

Regina Coeli

 

This prayer, which dates from the twelfth century, is substituted for the Angelus during Easter Season.

Glory to God in the highest!

In Latin

In English

Regina coeli, laetare, alleluia: Quia quem meruisti portare, alleluia. Resurrexit sicut dixit, alleluia. Ora pro nobis Deum, alleluia.

 

V. Gaude et laetare, Virgo Maria, Alleluia,

R. Quia surrexit Dominus vere, alleluia.

 

Oremus: Deus qui per resurrectionem Filii tui, Domini nostri Iesu Christi, mundum laetificare dignatus es: praesta, quaesumus, ut per eius Genetricem Virginem Mariam, perpetuae capiamus gaudia vitae. Per eundem Christum Dominum nostrum.

R. Amen.

Queen of Heaven rejoice, alleluia: For He whom you merited to bear, alleluia, Has risen as He said, alleluia. Pray for us to God, alleluia.

 

V. Rejoice and be glad, O Virgin Mary, alleluia.

R. Because the Lord is truly risen, alleluia.

 

Let us pray: O God, who by the Resurrection of Thy Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, granted joy to the whole world: grant we beseech Thee, that through the intercession of the Virgin Mary, His Mother, we may lay hold of the joys of eternal life. Through the same Christ our Lord.

R. Amen.


25 posted on 05/04/2013 9:38:07 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Salvation

My favorite, from my school days.


26 posted on 05/04/2013 9:41:52 PM PDT by onyx (Please Support Free Republic - Donate Monthly! If you want on Sarah Palin's Ping List, Let Me know!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: onyx

We had a Serra Club fundraiser this morning by having yogurt trifles for a breakfast cup.

Recipe:
Layer
Granola
Plain yogurt
Dried cranberries and your favorite nut (almond, walnut, pecan) a few of each.
A couple of berries hidden in the middle
Repeat the process granla, plain yogurt, a few dried cranberries and nuts.

Repeat again if clear glass is large enough.

Top with layer of plain yogurt and plentiful supply of fresh berries.

I guess you could use fresh peaches too.

We made over $200.00, but there was First Communion today at that church too.


27 posted on 05/05/2013 2:28:08 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
John
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  John 14
23 Jesus answered, and said to him: If any one love me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and will make our abode with him. Respondit Jesus, et dixit ei : Si quis diligit me, sermonem meum servabit, et Pater meus diliget eum, et ad eum veniemus, et mansionem apud eum faciemus ; απεκριθη ιησους και ειπεν αυτω εαν τις αγαπα με τον λογον μου τηρησει και ο πατηρ μου αγαπησει αυτον και προς αυτον ελευσομεθα και μονην παρ αυτω ποιησομεν
24 He that loveth me not, keepeth not my words. And the word which you have heard, is not mine; but the Father's who sent me. qui non diligit me, sermones meos non servat. Et sermonem, quem audistis, non est meus : sed ejus qui misit me, Patris. ο μη αγαπων με τους λογους μου ου τηρει και ο λογος ον ακουετε ουκ εστιν εμος αλλα του πεμψαντος με πατρος
25 These things have I spoken to you, abiding with you. Hæc locutus sum vobis apud vos manens. ταυτα λελαληκα υμιν παρ υμιν μενων
26 But the Paraclete, the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring all things to your mind, whatsoever I shall have said to you. Paraclitus autem Spiritus Sanctus, quem mittet Pater in nomine meo, ille vos docebit omnia, et suggeret vobis omnia quæcumque dixero vobis. ο δε παρακλητος το πνευμα το αγιον ο πεμψει ο πατηρ εν τω ονοματι μου εκεινος υμας διδαξει παντα και υπομνησει υμας παντα α ειπον υμιν
27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, do I give unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be afraid. Pacem relinquo vobis, pacem meam do vobis : non quomodo mundus dat, ego do vobis. Non turbetur cor vestrum, neque formidet. ειρηνην αφιημι υμιν ειρηνην την εμην διδωμι υμιν ου καθως ο κοσμος διδωσιν εγω διδωμι υμιν μη ταρασσεσθω υμων η καρδια μηδε δειλιατω
28 You have heard that I said to you: I go away, and I come unto you. If you loved me, you would indeed be glad, because I go to the Father: for the Father is greater than I. Audistis quia ego dixi vobis : Vado, et venio ad vos. Si diligeretis me, gauderetis utique, quia vado ad Patrem : quia Pater major me est. ηκουσατε οτι εγω ειπον υμιν υπαγω και ερχομαι προς υμας ει ηγαπατε με εχαρητε αν οτι ειπον πορευομαι προς τον πατερα οτι ο πατηρ μου μειζων μου εστιν
29 And now I have told you before it comes to pass: that when it shall come to pass, you may believe. Et nunc dixi vobis priusquam fiat : ut cum factum fuerit, credatis. και νυν ειρηκα υμιν πριν γενεσθαι ινα οταν γενηται πιστευσητε

28 posted on 05/05/2013 2:35:41 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: annalex
21. He that has my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loves me: and he that loves me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.

ALCUIN. By love, and the observance of His commandments, that will be perfected in us which He has begun, viz. that we should be in Him, and He in us. And that this blessedness may be understood to be promised to all, not to the Apostles only, He adds, He that has My commandments and keeps them, he it is that loves Me.

AUG. He that has them in , and keeps them in life; he that has them in words, and keeps them in works; he that has them by hearing, and keeps them by doing; he that has them by doing, and keeps them by persevering, he it is that loves Me. Love must be strewn by works, or it is a mere barren name.

THEOPHYL. As if He said, You think that by sorrowing, as you do, for my death you prove your affection; but I esteem the keeping of My commandments the evidence of love. And then He shows the privileged state of one who loves: And he that loves Me shall be loved of My Father, and I will love him.

AUG. I will love him, as if now He did not love him. What means this? He explains it in what follows: And will manifest Myself to him, i.e. I love him so far as to manifest Myself to him; so that, as the reward of his faith, he will have sight. Now He only loves us so that we believe; then He will love us so that we see. And whereas we love now by believing that which we shall see, then we shall love by seeing that which we have believed.

AUG. He promises to show Himself to them that love Him as God with the Father, not in that body which He bore upon earth, and which the wicked saw.

THEOPHYL. For, as after the resurrection He was to appear to them in a body more assimilated to His divinity, that they might not take Him then for a spirit, or a phantom, He tells them now beforehand not to have misgivings upon seeing Him, but to remember that He shows Himself to them as a reward for their keeping His commandments; and that therefore they are bound ever to keep them, that they may ever enjoy the sight of Him.

22. Judas said to him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?
23. Jesus answered and said to him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come to him, and make our abode with him.
24. He that loves me not keeps not my sayings: and the word which you hear is not mine, but the Father's which sent me.
25. These things have I spoken to you, being yet present with you.
26. But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance whatsoever I have said to you.
27. Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you: not as the world gives, give I to you.

AUG. Our Lord having said, A little while, and the world sees Me no more: but you shall see Me: Judas, not the traitor named Iscariot, but he whose Epistle is read among the Canonical Scriptures, asks His meaning: Judas said to Him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that you will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world?

Our Lord in reply explains why He manifests Himself to His own, and not to aliens, viz. because the one love Him, the other do not. Jesus answered and said to him, If a man love Me, he will keep My words.

GREG. If you would prove your love, show your works. The love of God is never idle; whenever it is, it does great things: if it do not work, it is not.

AUG. Love distinguishes the saints from the world: it makes men to be of one mind in an house; in which house the Father and the Son take their abode; who give that love to those, to whom in the end they will manifest themselves. For these is a certain inner manifestation of God, unknown to the ungodly, to whom there is no manifestation made of the Father and the Holy Spirit, and only could be of the Son in the flesh; which latter manifestation is not as the former, being only for a little while, not for ever, for judgment, not for joy, for punishment, not for reward.

And We will come to him: They come to us, in that we go to Them; They come by succoring, we go by obeying; They come by enlightening, we go by contemplating; They come by filling, we go by holding: so Their manifestation to us is not external, but inward; Their abode in us not transitory, but eternal. It follows, And will make Our abode with him.

GREG. Into some hearts He comes, but not to make His abode with them. For some feel compunction for a season and turn to God, but in time of temptation forget that which gave them compunction, and return to their former sins, just as if they had never lamented them. But whoever loves God truly, into his heart the Lord both comes, and also makes His abode therein: for the love of the Godhead so penetrates him, that no temptation withdraws him from it. He truly loves, whose mind no evil pleasure overcomes, through his consent thereto.

AUG. But while the Father and the Son make Their abode with the loving, soul, is the Holy Spirit excluded? What means that which is said of the Holy Spirit above: He dwells with you, and shall be in you, but that the Spirit makes His abode with us? Unless indeed a man be so absurd as to think that when the Father and the Son come, the Holy Spirit departs, as if to give place to His superiors.

Yet even this carnal thought is met by Scripture, in that it says, Abide with you for ever. He will therefore be in the same abode with Them for ever. As He did not come without Them, so neither They without Him. As a consequence of the Trinity, acts are sometimes attributed to single persons in it: but the substance of the same Trinity demands, that in such acts the presence of the other Persons also be implied.

GREG. In proportion as a man's love rests upon lower things, in that proportion is he removed from heavenly love: He that loves Me not, keeps not My sayings. To the love then of our Maker, let the tongue, mind, life bear witness.

CHRYS. Or thus Judas thought that he should , see Him, as we see the dead in sleep: How is it, that you will manifest Yourself to us, and not to the world? meaning, Alas, as you art to die, you will appear to us but as one dead. To correct this mistake, He says, I and My Father will come to him, i.e. I shall manifest Myself, even as My Father manifests Himself. And will make our abode with Him; which is not like a dream. It follows, And the word which you hear is not Mine, but the Father's which sent Me; i.e. He that hears not My words, inasmuch as he loves not Me, so loves he not My Father. This He says to show that He spoke nothing which was not the Father's, nothing beside what seemed good to the Father.

AUG. And perhaps there is a distinction at bottom, since He speaks of His sayings, when they are His own, in the plural number; as when He says, He that loves Me not, keeps not My sayings: when they are not His own, but the Father's, in the singular, i.e. as the Word, which is Himself. For He is not His own Word, but the Father's, as He is not His own image, but the Father's, or His own Son, but the Father's.

CHRYS. These things have I spoken to you, being yet present with you. Some of these things were obscure, and not understood by the disciples.

AUG The abode He promised them hereafter is altogether a different one from this present abode He now speaks of. The one is spiritual and inward, the other outward, and perceptible to the bodily sight and hearing.

CHRYS. To enable them to sustain His bodily departure more cheerfully, He promises that that departure shall be the source of great benefit; for that while He was then in the body, they could never know much, because the Spirit would not have come: But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, Whom the Father will send in My name, He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said to you.

GREG. Paraclete is Advocate, or Comforter. The Advocate then intercedes with the Father for sinners, when by His inward power He moves the sinner to pray for himself. The Comforter relieves the sorrow of penitents, and cheers them with the hope of pardon.

CHRYS. He often calls Him the Comforter, in allusion to the affliction in which they then were.

DIDYMUS. The Savior affirms that the Holy Spirit is sent by the Father, in His, the Savior's, name; which name is the Son. Here an agreement of nature and propriety, so to speak, of persons is strewn. The Son can come in the Father's name only, consistently with the proper relationship of the Son to the Father, and the Father to the Son.

No one else comes in the name of the Father, but in the name of God, of the Lord, of the Almighty, and the like. As servants who come in the name of their Lord, do so as being the servants of that Lord, so the Son who comes in the name of the Father, bears that name as being the acknowledged only-begotten Son of the Father. That the Holy Spirit then is sent in the Son's name, by the Father, shows that He is in unity with the Son: whence He is said too to be the Spirit of the Son, and to make those sons by adoption, who are willing to receive Him.

The Holy Spirit then, Who comes in the name of the Son from the Father, shall teach them, who are established in the faith of Christ, all things; all things which are spiritual, both the understanding of truth, and the sacrament of wisdom. But He will teach not like those who have acquired an art or knowledge by study and industry, but as being the very art, doctrine, knowledge itself. As being this Himself, the Spirit of truth will impart the knowledge of divine things to the mind.

GREG. Unless the Spirit be present to the mind of the hearer, the word of the teacher is vain. Let none then attribute to the human teacher, the understanding which follows in consequence of his teaching: for unless there be a teacher within, the tongue of the teacher outside will labor in vain. Nay even the Maker Himself does not speak for the instruction of man, unless the Spirit by His unction speaks at the same time.

AUG. So then the Son speaks, the Holy Spirit teaches: when the Son speaks we take in the words, when the Holy Spirit teaches, we understand those words. The whole Trinity indeed both speaks and teaches, but unless each person worked separately as well, the whole would be too much for human infirmity to take in.

GREG. But why is it said of the Spirit, He shall suggest all stings to you: to suggest being the office of an inferior? The word is used here, as it is used sometimes, in the sense of supplying secretly. The invisible Spirit suggests, not because He takes a lower place in teaching, but because He teaches secretly.

AUG. Suggest, i.e. bring to your remembrance. Every wholesome hint to remember that we receive is of the grace of the Spirit.

THEOPHYL. The Holy Spirit then was both to teach and to bring to remembrance: to teach what Christ had forborne to tell His disciples, because they were not able to bear it; to bring to remembrance what Christ had told them but which on account of its difficulty, or their slowness of understanding, they were unable to remember.

CHRYS. Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you: He says this to console His disciples, who were now troubled at the prospect of the hatred and opposition which awaited them after His departure.

AUG. He left no peace in this world; in which we conquer the enemy, and have love one to another: He will give us peace in the world to come, when we shall reign without an enemy, and where we shall be able to avoid disagreement. This peace is Himself, both when we believe that He is, and when we shall see Him as He is. But why does He say, Peace I leave with you, without the My, whereas He puts in My in, My peace 1 give to you? Are we to understand My in the former; or is it not rather left out with a meaning?

His peace is such peace as He has Himself; the peace which He left us in this world is rather our peace than His. He has nothing to fight against in Himself, because He has no sin: but ours is a peace in which we still say, Forgive us our debts (Matt 6:12). And in like manner we have peace between ourselves, because we mutually trust one another, that we mutually love one another. But neither is that a perfect peace; for we do not see into each other's minds. I could not deny however that these words of our Lord's may be understood as a simple repetition.

He adds, Not as the world gives, give I unto you: i.e. not as those men, who love the world, give. They give themselves peace, i.e. free, uninterrupted enjoyment of the world. And even when they allow the righteous peace, so far as not to persecute them, yet there cannot be true peace, where there is no true agreement, no union of heart.

CHRYS. External peace is often even hurtful, rather than profitable to those who enjoy it.

AUG. But there is a peace which is serenity of thought, tranquillity of mind, simplicity of heart, the bond of love, the fellowship of charity. None will be able to come to the inheritance of the Lord who do not observe this testament of peace; none be friends with Christ, who are at enmity with the Christians.

28. You have heard how I said to you, I go away, and come again to you. If you loved me, you would rejoice, because I said, I go to the Father: for my Father is greater than I.
29. And now I have told you before it comes to pass, that, when it is come to pass, you might believe.

CHRYS. After saying, Peace I leave with you, which was like taking farewell, He consoles them: Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid: the two feelings of love and fear were now the uppermost in them.

AUG. Though He was only going for a time, their hearts would be troubled and afraid for what might happen before He returned; lest in the absence of the Shepherd the wolf might attack the flock: you have heard how I said to you, I go away, and come again to you. In that He was man, He went; in that He was God, He stayed.

Why then be troubled and afraid, when He left the eye only, not the heart? To make them understand that it was as man that He said, I go away, and come again to you; He adds, If you loved Me you would rejoice, because I said, I go to My Father; for My Father is greater than I. In that the Son then is unequal with the Father, through that inequality He went to the Father, from Him to come again to judge the quick and dead: in that He is equal to the Father, He never goes from the Father, but is everywhere altogether with Him in that Godhead, which is not confined to place.

Nay, the Son Himself, because that being equal to the Father in the form of God, He emptied Himself, not losing the form of God, but taking that of a servant, is greater even than Himself: the form of God which is not lost, is greater than the form of a servant which was put on. In this form of a servant, the Son of God is inferior not to the Father only, but to the Holy Ghost; in this the Child Christ was inferior even to His parents; to whom we read, He was subject. Let us acknowledge then the twofold substance of Christ, the divine, which is equal to the Father, and the human, which is inferior.

But Christ is both together, not two, but one Christ else the Godhead is a quaternity, not a Trinity. Wherefore He says, If you loved Me, you would rejoice, because I said, I go to the Father; for human nature should exult at being thus taken up by the Only Begotten Word, and made immortal in heaven; at earth being raised to heaven, and dust sitting incorruptible at the right hand of the Father. Who, that loves Christ, will not rejoice at this, seeing, as he does, his own nature immortal in Christ, and hoping that He Himself will be so by Christ.

HILARY. Or thus: If the Father is greater by virtue of giving, is the Son less by confessing the gift? The giver is the greater, but He to whom unity with that giver is given, is not the less.

CHRYS. Or thus: The Apostles did not yet know what the resurrection was of which He spoke when He said, I go, and come again to you: or what they ought to think of it. They only knew the great power of the Father. So He tells them: Though you fear I shall not be able to save Myself, and do not trust to My appearing again after My crucifixion; yet when you hear that I go to My Father, you should rejoice, because I go to one greater, one able to dissolve and change all things. All this is said in accommodation to their weakness: as we see from the next words:

And now I have told you before it comes to pass; that when it does come to pass, you may believe.

AUG. But is not the time for belief before a thing takes place? Is it not the praise of faith, that it believes what it does not see? according to w hat is said below to Thomas: Because you have seen, you has believed. He saw one thing, believed another: what he saw was man, what he believed was God. And if belief can be talked of with reference to things seen, as when we say that we believe our eyes; yet it is not mature faith, but is merely preparatory to our believing what we do not see.

When it has come to pass, then He says, because after His death they would see Him alive again, and ascending to His Father; which sight would convince them that He was the Christ, the Son of God; able as He was to do so great a thing, and to foretell it. Which faith however would not be a new, but only an enlarged faith; or a faith which had failed at His death, and been renewed by His resurrection.



Catena Aurea John 14
29 posted on 05/05/2013 2:36:30 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: annalex


The Holy Trinity
(Also known as Hospitality of Abraham)

Andrei Rublev (1360s - 1427 or 1430)


30 posted on 05/05/2013 2:37:11 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: annalex


Christ Giving His Blessing

Hans Memling

1478
Oil on oak panel, 38,1 x 28,2 cm
Norton Simon Museum of Art, Pasadena

31 posted on 05/05/2013 2:37:33 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: annalex


The Holy Trinity

Hendrick van Balen

1620
Oil on panel
Sint-Jacobskerk, Antwerp

32 posted on 05/05/2013 2:38:07 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

To: All


Information:
St. Hilary of Arles
Feast Day: May 5
Born: 400 at Lorraine
Died: 449



33 posted on 05/05/2013 2:50:19 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: All
Intractive Saints for Kids

St. Judith of Prussia

Feast Day: May 05
Died: 1260

St. Judith was born at Sangerhausen in Thuringia which is now central Germany. Her family was rich but she wanted to follow the example of St. Elizabeth of Hungary. In St. Judith's time, many Christian women were influenced by her inspiring example.

When she was just fifteen, Judith was married to a wealthy young nobleman. She tried to be a good Christian wife and was very generous with the poor. Her husband was a good man, but he was happy with his rich and comfortable life.

He also wanted his wife to dress and live like a rich woman so that people would respect them. But Judith gently made him realize that they would have more to give to people less fortunate than themselves if they lived and dressed more simply.

Then Judith's husband died suddenly while he was on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land. As a young widow Judith raised her children alone. When the children grew up and didn't need her help any longer, Judith finally gave in to a longing that had been hidden in her heart even during the busy, happy days of her life.

She sold everything she had and moved to Prussia where people would not know that she was from a wealthy family. There she lived as a hermit in a little hut and spent her time praying and taking care of weary travelers who passed by.

She prayed especially for nonbelievers to come to Jesus in faith. She prayed also for the newly baptized Christians to be true to their faith.

"Three things can lead us close to God," she once said. "They are painful physical suffering, being in exile in a foreign land, and being poor by choice because of love for God."

St. Judith died of fever in 1260 at Kulmsee in Prussia. She was named the patroness of Prussia.


34 posted on 05/05/2013 3:05:04 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Catholic
Almanac:
Sunday, May 5
Liturgical Color: White

St. Angelus of Jerusalem is honored by the Church today. He became a Carmelite, converting many Jews in Sicily. In 1220, he was martyred for denouncing an extramarital affair of a local leader.

35 posted on 05/05/2013 3:18:05 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: All

Daily Readings for: May 05, 2013
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: Grant, almighty God, that we may celebrate with heartfelt devotion these days of joy, which we keep in honor of the risen Lord, and that what we relieve in remembrance we may always hold to in what we do. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Easter: May 5th

Sixth Sunday of Easter

Old Calendar: Fifth Sunday after Easter

"Peace I bequeath to you, my own peace I give you, a peace the world cannot give, this is my gift to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid." We are not alone or without help in the life that we have embraced. The Church strengthens our faith and feeds our souls "with the pure milk of her teaching, with the bread of the Eucharist; she makes us witnesses of Christ's resurrection and of the victory which He won over the forces of evil."

Click here for commentary on the readings in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.


Sunday Readings
The first reading is taken from the Acts of the Apostles 15:1-2, 22-29 and concerns the Council of Jerusalem which falls in the middle of the book of Acts and describes the turning point for the Church when the council officially recognized the evangelization of the Gentiles. This evangelization had been initiated by Sts. Peter, Barnabas and Paul. Thus, the Christian church broke away from the Mosaic rules while maintaining its roots in the rich theology and traditions of the chosen people.

The second reading is from the Book of Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23 and continues the description of the Heavenly Jerusalem. In the heavenly Jerusalem there is no longer any need for God to have a dwelling-place, because God the Father himself and the Lamb are always present. The Godhead does not need to be brought to mind by the temple (the symbol of his invisible presence), because the blessed will always see God face to face. This sight of God is what causes the righteous to be forever happy.

The Gospel is from John 14:23-29. In the first reading at today's Mass, we were given the story of the first General Council ever held by the Church authorities. There we saw that a vital decision was reached through the guidance and assistance of the Holy Spirit. "It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and ours" (Acts 15:28) was how the authorities announced the conclusion they had reached. In this Gospel which we have just read, Christ promised his Apostles, the night before his death, that when he returned to the Father, the Holy Spirit would be sent to them. He would teach them all things and recall to their minds all that Christ had taught them. In other words, the Church, through the Apostles, was promised the direct assistance of the Holy Spirit in preserving and interpreting what we call "the deposit of faith" or the sum total of the divine revelation given to us for our sanctification.

That promise was fulfilled in a very solemn way within twenty years of our Lord's resurrection at the Council of Jerusalem. It has been fulfilled again and again down through the history of the Church. And this has been the case not only on the solemn occasions of General Councils, or when definitions concerning faith and morals were given ex cathedra by the Pope, but in many circumstances of less solemnity.

The Holy Spirit "breathes where he wills." He assists the local authorities in the Church. He inspires individual Christians if they call on him in their need. He inspires young people of both sexes to offer their lives to the service of the Church and their neighbor. He has inspired founders of orders and congregations to form institutes which would help the spread of the faith. He is at work today among us and among the separated brothers of the Church, helping and inspiring them towards that unity for which Christ prayed.

There are moments of crisis in all our lives, moments when a vital decision has to be made. If that decision is wrongly made it may not only seriously interfere with our earthly welfare, but more important still jeopardize our eternal salvation. We should call on the Holy Spirit to help us daily, but we should call for his assistance especially when we have a serious decision to make.

His role in the Church and in the lives of all Christians is to preserve and protect the revelation that God has given us. There are times in the lives of many of us when we are tempted to doubt about what we are called on to believe, or to hesitate with regard to what we are called on to do. It is on such occasions that the help of the Holy Spirit is especially necessary. He will not fail us if we turn to him earnestly and sincerely.

Excepted from The Sunday Readings, Fr. Kevin O'Sullivan, O.F.M.


36 posted on 05/05/2013 3:23:03 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
No 36 was from this souce.

Catholic Culture

37 posted on 05/05/2013 3:24:11 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: All
The Word Among Us

Meditation: John 14:23-29

6th Sunday of Easter

Peace I leave with you. (John 14:27)

Rarely is a passage from Scripture as Trinitarian as these few verses. This passage comes from Jesus’ farewell address at the Last Supper: the final words that he gave his disciples before he was arrested and crucified (John 13-17). In these five chapters, Jesus focuses on the relationship between God as Trinity and his people. They show us how much God wants to draw every single person to himself, and they show us what we should do if we want to be filled with his peace.

Today’s passage contains many of the themes that we find in the whole five chapters of Jesus’ farewell message. He tells the disciples how much the Father loves them. He tells them that his Father wants to make his home in the hearts of all people who love him. He speaks about the role of the Holy Spirit in our lives and about the blessings we experience when we obey God’s commands. It’s amazing how, in just a few short sentences, Jesus says so much about the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit!

Now, even though the Trinity is a mystery of our faith, we don’t have to understand it perfectly to experience the peace that our Triune God wants to give us. Few of us know how a watch, a car, or a computer works. But we all have experienced the benefits these things give us. And so it is with God. When Jesus says, “Peace I leave with you,” he is offering us a share in the harmony and communion that exist within the Trinity. He is offering us true, deep, lasting peace.

This peace is not just a warm feeling. It’s the grace to be holy and to resist evil. It’s the grace to forgive. It’s the grace to remind us that God is with us and that we have nothing to fear (John 14:27). It’s the spiritual tranquility that comes from the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

“Jesus, I want to be filled with your peace now and always.”

Acts 15:1-2, 22-29; Psalm 67:2-3, 5-6, 8; Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23

 

Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion

1. The reading from Acts tells us of the importance of unity and how the early Christians worked together “with one accord” to resolve conflicts. We read of the lengths they went to avoid splits and factions. Are their any areas in the life of your parish or the life of your family where there is disunity? What steps can you take to be a peacemaker and a resolver of conflicts?

2. In the Responsorial Psalm, the response is “O God, let all the nations praise you!” Why do we as Americans need to especially praise God? What reasons do you have to personally praise the Lord?

3. The Book of Revelation speaks of our new heavenly city. All its imagery (precious stone, jasper, crystal) is a symbolic attempt to express the inexpressible wonder of living eternally with God. But we are so practiced to thinking only of the present world, we may find it difficult to think about or “desire” heaven. How important to you is it to focus on your future life with God? What can you do to allow the reality of your heavenly destiny to have a greater impact on how you live your life?

4. In the Gospel Jesus tells us that if we love him and keep his word, the Father and he will come and make their dwelling with us. What steps can you take to deepen the life and love of Christ that is within you?

5. In the meditation, we hear these words: “Now, even though the Trinity is a mystery of our faith, we don’t have to understand it perfectly to experience the peace that our Triune God wants to give us.” What is the difference between this peace and the peace that the world gives? Do you know this peace? What can you do to experience it more deeply, and give it away to others?

6. Take some time now to pray and ask the Lord to give you a greater experience of his peace. Use the prayer at the end of the meditation as a starting point.


38 posted on 05/05/2013 3:31:15 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Marriage = One Man and One Woman
Til' Death Do Us Part

Daily Marriage Tip for May 5, 2013:

: “Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid…I am going away and I will come back to you.” (John 14: 27-29) Separations like business trips or military deployments can strain a marriage. Plan a daily way to reconnect even if it is simply to pick a common time to pray for each other.


39 posted on 05/05/2013 3:35:49 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: All
Following Christ’s Blueprint
Pastor’s Column
 6th Sunday of Easter
          May 5, 2013
 
 
Jesus, who truly is the Word of God, will be the only thing standing at the end of our lives.  Therefore, think of how important it is to trust the Lord God and to know his WORD.   Jesus says, "If you love me you will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him." (John 14:23)
 
          As I was meditating on Christ's word this morning outside my chapel in the rectory, one could hear hammering on the frame and walls and sheet rock on the new church. And it occurred to me that, just as our new church is rising in the parking lot, the Holy Spirit is building a home within us; only this home is meant to last forever. Each piece of wood or sheet rock or arch is like a verse of the Word of God or a piece of what the church teaches.  A disobedient Christian will build according to his own building plan, that which he thinks is best; but when the inevitable earthquakes of life come this will lead to a collapse.  Following Christ’s building plan, by listening to his words and allowing him to place the beams, will lead to a secure structure and Jesus will move in.  The Holy Spirit, the Father and the Son will build such a structure in our lives if we allow him to do so. 
 
          Remember that Jesus was a carpenter by trade, so he is anxious to be about the building project within us, and our blueprint really is the Word of God and church teaching. So very many around us in this world are building what may appear on the surface to be beautiful and massive edifices, but without God. Many have predicted that the Catholic Church would not endure or have tried to destroy her over the last 2000 years; and yet she still stands, she will be here at the end, and so will we if Christ is our carpenter!
 
            Lord, I know you have a blueprint for me today. You are a carpenter and you know how to build things, and you know how to build a home within me in which you want to dwell.  Help me not to follow my own blueprint today, my own will.  Instead, let me reflect on your Word and your will and what the church asks me to do.  You will be speaking to me in the circumstances and events of my life, in my duties and responsibilities, in what happens to me and what doesn't.  Help me to follow your blueprint for so that you will dwell within me, bringing your Father and the Holy Spirit and constructing a place for me in heaven. AMEN
                                                                                                Father Gary

40 posted on 05/05/2013 4:02:34 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
St. Paul Center Blog

Council of Jerusalem: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 6th Sunday of Easter

Posted by Dr. Scott Hahn on 05.03.13 |


council of Jerusalem

Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
Psalm 67:2-3, 5-6, 8
Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23
John 14:23-29

The first Church council, the Council of Jerusalem we hear about in today’s First Reading, decided the shape of the Church as we know it.

Some Jewish Christians had wanted Gentile converts to be circumcised and obey all the complex ritual and purity laws of the Jews.

The council called this a heresy, again showing us that the Church in the divine plan is meant to be a worldwide family of God, no longer a covenant with just one nation.

Today’s Liturgy gives us a profound meditation on the nature and meaning of the Church.

The Church is One, as we see in the First Reading: “the Apostles [bishops] and presbyters [priests], in agreement with the whole Church [laity].”

The Church is Holy, taught and guided by the Spirit that Jesus promises the Apostles in the Gospel.

The Church is Catholic, or universal, making known God’s ways of salvation to all peoples, ruling all in equity, as we sing in today’s Psalm.

And the Church, as John sees in the Second Reading, is Apostolic - founded on the twelve Apostles of the Lamb.

All these marks of the Church are underscored in the story of the council.

Notice that everybody, including Paul, looks to “Jerusalem [and] ...the Apostles” to decide the Church’s true teaching. The Apostles, too, presume that Christian teachers need a “mandate from us.”

And we see the Spirit guiding the Apostles in all truth. Notice how they describe their ruling: “It is the decision of the Holy Spirit and of us.”

Knowing these truths about the Church, our hearts should never be troubled. The Liturgy’s message today is that the Church is the Lord’s, watched over and guarded by the Advocate, the Holy Spirit sent by the Father in the name of the Son.

This should fill us with confidence, free us to worship with exultation, inspire us to rededicate our lives to His Name - to love Jesus in our keeping of His Word, to rejoice that He and the Father in the Spirit have made their dwelling with us.


41 posted on 05/05/2013 4:18:27 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: All
 
6th Sunday of Easter: Shalom of Jesus

 
 
"Peace I leave with you . . ."
 
Sunday Readings: http://usccb.org/bible/readings/050513.cfm



Acts 15: 1-2, 22-29
Rev. 21: 10-14, 22-23
Jn 14: 23-29

It has been said that love is not a feeling – it is a verb.  And being a “verb,” if we remember our grammar 101, it is an action word.  A verb implies an action.  At times someone may sadly say, “There is no love in our marriage anymore.” We could experience the same in family, parish, or our prayer. So we may ponder what we need to do in order to find that love again.  But is it only about feeling in love, bonded, connected, appreciated, affirmed? 

In our Gospel this Sunday we hear Jesus speak of an action: “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him . . .” (Jn 14: 23).  That’s quite a promise from our Lord isn’t it?  If we keep his word, which essentially may be defined as loyalty to him, and keep his commandments, then we become spiritually bonded to the work of the Trinity itself.  To love Jesus, means at the same time to love the Father and the Holy Spirit.  From where could we possibly draw anything better?

In the context of his farewell to the Apostles, who he knew would be feeling vulnerable and lost without his presence among them, he says further: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.  Do not let your hearts be troubled . . .” (Jn 14: 27).  For the Apostles, there is much to fear or at least that must have been their perception and they felt they would need to rely on their own ingenuity.  But Jesus offers them an even greater assurance: “The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name will teach you everything, and remind you of all that I told you . . .” (Jn 14: 26).  But did they grasp his words fully?  Do we? What does it mean to have the guarantee of Jesus’ Peace – his “Shalom” in our lives?

While he wished them the best, he also gave them a promise of his constant abiding presence in this gift of shalom.  It is a Hebrew word not unfamiliar to Jews today and certainly not to those of Jesus’ time.  We commonly translate the word as “peace.” So when Jesus says to his Apostles, “Peace be with you” as he appears to them after the resurrection and when we hear it in the context of this Sunday’s Gospel from John, “my peace I give to you,” we should wonder if it’s more than just the wish for a calm spirit or for good relations between warring nations.

“Shalom” has peace as just one small part of its meaning. It is used both to greet people and a way to say goodbye.  It is the wish not only for peace but for a complete peace; for a feeling of contentment, completeness, well-being and harmony. In wishing his Apostles peace or “shalom” he was offering them the full blessing of completeness; that they would want for nothing if they remain loyal to him: “Whoever loves me will keep my word” (in doing so, you will find completeness) “my Father will love him, and we will come to him” (and in so doing, you will want for nothing).  The added promise of the Holy Spirit completes the fullness of “shalom.” Think of this the next time you offer the “sign of peace” at Mass. We wish a “shalom” to those around us. But this completeness is not always easily maintained.  

For the early Church all was not hearts and flowers. It is clear that controversy and the threat of schism were very real in the beginning years of Christianity.  Our first reading from Acts continues the Easter stories of the growth of Christianity. This Sunday we hear of the first challenge to unity – the acceptance among the Gentile community of the new way.

The burning question on the minds of the Apostles as they heard of the success of Paul and the resulting sign of the Holy Spirit among the non-Jewish believers was of membership. God’s desire, as they saw in Jesus, was expansive in nature; to reach out beyond the boundaries of the Jewish nation to all humankind. But this would mean a break with fellow Jews, something the Apostles themselves were in a quandary about. The solution was a brilliant inspiration of the Holy Spirit and a compassionate pastoral decision. The willingness of the Church to seek a compromise which maintained the shalom which Jesus so desired for his believers.

In the end, Peter, Paul and the others could not deny what they saw among the Gentiles and so they decided to extend the comprehensive peace (shalom) which Jesus offered to them in not requiring the Gentile believers to follow the law of Moses (circumcision for males) but to adhere only to certain restrictions.  (Acts 15: 28-29). A new age had begun and a new direction for the Church – we are they.

In just two weeks the Church celebrates the great Solemnity of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday.  The Easter season will conclude but the push of the Spirit continues until the end of time. Where and how can I contribute that same spirit of “shalom” among those I worship with, work with, and live with? Where do I see something new beginning and continuing today and what challenges do I see facing the Church (they are many and increasing).

Our Eucharist calls us to seek peace and truth.  The sacrament of Reconciliation invites us to experience the shalom of Jesus. May we never tire of that privilege.
Grant, almighty God,
that we may celebrate with heartfelt devotion these days of joy,
which we keep in honor of the risen Lord,
and that what we relive in remembrance
we may always hold to I what we do.

(Roman Missal)
 
Fr. Tim

42 posted on 05/05/2013 5:38:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: All
Vultus Christi

To See Christ

 on May 5, 2013 8:15 AM | 
 

Pescia,_San_Antonio_Abate_011.JPG

Why did I choose this painting of Saint Antony of Egypt and Saint Paul the Hermit to illustrate today's entry? Saint Antony's face reflects the pure light of Christ shining from the Gospel for Saint Paul, and Saint Paul's face reflects the same pure light of Christ shining from the Gospel for Saint Antony. When two saints meet, their encounter is incandescent with the light of Christ.

4 Jan. 5 May. 4 Sept.
Having our loins, therefore, girded with faith and the performance of good works, let us walk in His paths by the guidance of the Gospel, that we may deserve to see Him Who hath called us to His kingdom. And if we wish to dwell in the tabernacle of His kingdom, we shall by no means reach it unless we run thither by our good deeds. But let us ask the Lord with the Prophet, saying to Him: "Lord, who shall dwell in Thy tabernacle, or who shall rest upon Thy holy hill?" After this question, brethren, let us hear the Lord answering, and shewing to us the way to His tabernacle, and saying: "He that walketh without stain and worketh justice: he that speaketh truth in his heart, that hath not done guile with his tongue: he that hath done no evil to his neighbour, and hath not taken up a reproach against his neighbour:" he that hath brought the malignant evil one to naught, casting him out of his heart with all his suggestions, and hath taken his bad thoughts, while they were yet young, and dashed them down upon the (Rock) Christ. These are they, who fearing the Lord, are not puffed up with their own good works, but knowing that the good which is in them cometh not from themselves but from the Lord, magnify the Lord Who worketh in them, saying with the Prophet: "Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto Thy Name give the glory." So the Apostle Paul imputed nothing of his preaching to himself, but said: "By the grace of God I am what I am." And again he saith: "He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord."

Ready for Spiritual Combat

In today's portion of the Prologue, Saint Benedict enjoins us to gird our loins with faith and with the performance of good works. To have one's loins girt means to be kitted out with weapons and ready for action on the battlefield. Saint Benedict may have been thinking of the Apostle's exhortation:

Therefore take unto you the armour of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and to stand in all things perfect. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of justice, and your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace: in all things taking the shield of faith, wherewith you may be able to extinguish all the fiery darts of the most wicked one. And take unto you the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God. (Ephesians 6:13-17)

Following the Guidance of the Gospel

In all things the monk is subject to the guidance of the Gospel. The Gospel is the primary and indispensable rule of monks; it is one's habitual reference in every season of life. When a monk hears the Holy Gospel chanted at Matins or at Holy Mass, he hears the very voice of Christ. Heart speaks to heart. He listens to the Holy Gospel with such attention that not a single word of it is lost, for the least syllable of the Gospel is "more to be desired than gold and many precious stones: and sweeter than honey and the honeycomb" (Psalm 18:11).

Saint Antony the Great

Saint Athanasius writes of of Saint Antony that, "he gave such heed to what was read [at the sacred liturgy] that none of the things that were written fell from him to the ground, but he remembered all, and afterwards his memory served him for books." Saint Antony's careful attention to the Word of God is the model of the attention of the heart by which a son of Saint Benedict will want to listen to the Holy Gospel.

The Radiant Face of the Word

Today's monk, having ample access to the text of the Holy Gospels, often in various languages and translations, will supplement the primary hearing of the liturgic Gospel at Matins and at Holy Mass with the reading and meditation of the Gospel in the secret of his cell. He will open the book of the Gospels as reverently as if we were opening the door of the tabernacle. He will read the sacred page in such a way as to peer through the text, as through a lattice work, in order to discover, shining through the letter of the text, the radiant Face of the Word.

Behold he standeth behind our wall, looking through the windows, looking through the lattices. Behold my beloved speaketh to me: Arise, make haste, my love, my dove, my beautiful one, and come. (Canticle 2:9-10)

Saint Benedict's monk is animated by a single desire: he wants to see Him who has called us into His kingdom, Christ the Lord.


43 posted on 05/05/2013 5:51:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: All
Regnum Christi

Make Me Your Holy Temple
| SPIRITUAL LIFE | SPIRITUALITY
Sixth Sunday of Easter

John 14:23-29

Jesus answered and said to him, “Whoever loves me will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our dwelling with him. Whoever does not love me does not keep my words; yet the word you hear is not mine but that of the Father who sent me. I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name -- he will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe.”

Introductory Prayer: Lord, as I begin this prayer I offer you my whole self: my thoughts, desires, decisions, actions, hopes, fears, weaknesses, failures and petty successes. I open my entire being to you, aware that you know everything already. I’m certain of your mercy and of the purifying power of your penetrating, loving gaze.

Petition: May the Blessed Trinity dwell in me.

1. How Can God Dwell in My Stony Heart? We have no writings of Our Lord. The only time we see Our Lord writing, he was bent over writing something in the sand with his finger. However, as his finger traced in the sand, it was also etching into the hardened hearts of the surrounding crowd. They dropped the stones with which they intended to kill the adulterous woman. It is curious how these stones also symbolized the hardness of their hearts. They dropped them because their hearts had also softened. In the Old Testament we see Moses coming down from the mountain with a stone tablet that contained the written law of God, the Ten Commandants. Christ came to crush our stony hearts and to write his law of love there. Christ wants us to give him a blank slate so that he can write whatever he wants in our hearts.

2. Christ Knows We Need Reassurance: It is scary when we learn that a loved one will be leaving us for an undetermined amount of time. We can think of the soldiers who go off to war and how hard it must be for their spouses and children to deal with the loneliness and uncertainties that naturally arise. Yet the good soldier assures them he will return, and he is confident that they will be strong and live upright lives. How hard it must have been for the apostles when Christ told them he would be leaving them. They had left everything to follow him, and now it seemed as if they would be alone. Christ knew how heavy their hearts were, so he assured the apostles that he needed to leave in order that he and the Father could send the Holy Spirit into their hearts. The Holy Spirit enlightens our hearts too, as he enlightened the hearts of the apostles.

3. We Should Rejoice Because Christ Is Going Home: Christ is the Prince of Peace. He sought to uplift the apostles, who were dragged down by sadness and fear at being left alone in the world. Christ tells them, and he tells us, that they should rejoice because he is going home. Christ wants us to rejoice not only because he is going home to the Father, but also because if we keep his word, he and the Father will make their dwelling in us. Their abode will be in our hearts. He wants us to trust the Holy Spirit who will give us the clarity of thought and the strength to live Christ’s teachings coherently. How open am I to the promptings of the Holy Spirit within my soul? What keeps me from perceiving Him within me? Do I need to be more detached from the goods of this life so my friendship with my Lord and Creator can grow?

Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, I want to trust in your word -- in the working of the Holy Spirit in my heart. Help me to let go of the anxieties that at times paralyze my thoughts and actions. I open my heart so that you, the Blessed Trinity, can dwell within me. This gives me supernatural joy, a joy that the world cannot give or take away.

Resolution: I will look to comfort someone who is lonely, helping him or her to know that you are always with us.


44 posted on 05/05/2013 5:58:48 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: All

Scripture Speaks:Sixth Sunday of Easter

Gayle Somers

by Gayle Somers on May 3, 2013 ·

During His conversation with the apostles on the night of His arrest, Jesus looks into the future.  What does He see?

Gospel (Read Jn 14:23-29)

In a long section of St. John’s Gospel that we call “the Last Supper Discourse” (see Jn 13-17), Jesus begins to anticipate His departure from this world and what that will mean for His friends, the apostles.  He emphasizes that to love Him means to live as He taught them.  Those who love Jesus in word and action will live in communion with the Trinity here on earth, even before they reach heaven.

Then, Jesus moves on to describe something that is yet to happen and is of vital importance as we seek to understand how His followers will know what they need to know about Him and His Word after His departure.  How will the Gospel move from this band of apostles and those who traveled with them into all the world?  Once Jesus leaves, how can we know we have the truth about Him and thus be able to live it?

Apostles 2

Jesus has a plan to make sure all those who wish to follow Him, in all the years that must pass before His return, will know what they need to know:  “The Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My Name, will teach you everything and remind you of all that I told you.”  If we have read the Gospels carefully, this promise by Jesus has to bring some relief.  We have seen how little they actually understood of what Jesus said and did while He was still with them.  Notice that this promise is made uniquely to the apostles in this conversation.  Jesus switches from speaking about “whoever” (all believers) in vss 23-24 to “you” (the eleven who were with Him at the Last Supper) in vss 25-29.  We can understand by this that although the Holy Spirit will be sent to all believers, He will do a particular work of teaching and reminding the apostles.  Later in this same discourse, Jesus tells the apostles that the Holy Spirit will “guide you into all the truth” (Jn 16:13).  This is an even more expansive promise, because it anticipates that the apostles will, in the future, need to know more than they did on this night.  In all this, the work of the Holy Spirit is of supreme importance.  Jesus knew that He had chosen mere men upon whom to build His Church.  The worldwide proclamation of the Gospel, through all the ages of the Church’s history, would have to come through ordinary flesh and blood.  How could this be anything other than risky?  There is only one way:  a supernatural charism of the Holy Spirit, working in the apostles and their successors, would guarantee “all the truth.”

Because of this magnificent promise, Jesus can leave His apostles with “Peace.”  How is this peace different from what “the world gives”?  Peace in the world depends on circumstances.  The peace of Jesus goes much deeper than that!  His peace grounds us in the truth of God’s love and power, no matter what our circumstances might be.  How can we be sure of this truth?  We look to these promises right here.  The charism given first to the apostles and then passed on through the laying on of hands to their successors enables us to know “all the truth,” expressed now in both Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition.

What an incredible plan!  Did it work?  Our first reading gives us the evidence we need to answer this question.

Possible response:  Lord Jesus, please help me love You in ways that go beyond words and emotions.

First Reading (Read Acts 15:1-2, 22-29)

In Christendom, ever since the Reformation, there are Christians who interpret our Gospel reading differently from the Catholic Church.  They believe the Holy Spirit’s charism of teaching, reminding, and guiding into “all the truth” is given to every believer, not just those who are ordained successors to the apostles (the bishops).  Certainly Catholics recognize the way the Holy Spirit teaches and guides us in our individual lives with God.  However, the Church makes a distinction between that universal work of the Holy Spirit and this particular work of revealing “all the truth,” which we understand to be the dogma we must all believe and the way of life we must all live in order to have the fullness of what Jesus intended to give us.  The Church believes this teaching charism is a gift given exclusively to the apostles and those appointed to follow them.

Fortunately, we can look to the Book of Acts for evidence about which interpretation is the most biblical.  St. Luke tells us about the first episode of confusion over truth experienced by the New Testament Church.  In Antioch, where many Gentile pagans converted to Christianity, some Jewish Christians “who had come down from Judea” told the believers that they needed to be circumcised (always a sign of being in covenant with God) in order to be saved.  This caused quite a rift in the Church there, with Paul and Barnabas insisting that circumcision wasn’t necessary.  Which group had “all the truth”?  They were all believers; they all had the Holy Spirit.  The circumcision group had the Old Testament Scriptures on their side (the New Testament didn’t exist yet).  Jesus hadn’t said anything about a situation like this.  How would it be resolved?

“It was decided that Paul, Barnabas, and some of the others should go up to Jerusalem to the apostles and elders about this question” (emphasis added).  Here we see that the Christians in Antioch knew they couldn’t arrive at the truth about circumcision on their own.  They did not expect the Holy Spirit to lead them into “all the truth” on this question.  They did expect that the apostles in Jerusalem could settle it, because Jesus had promised that charism to them.  However, notice that it was not only the apostles but also “the elders” who were called upon to render a decision.  Who were they?  The “elders” (or “bishops”) were those appointed by the apostles to help lead the new Church (see Acts 14:23).  We can see that right away the apostles were passing along their special charism through the laying on of hands (the growing Church would need many more than twelve leaders).  Because the elders, by their ordination, received this gift of truth from the Holy Spirit, they were included in the decision about “all the truth” concering Gentile circumcision.

This meeting of apostles and elders (the Council of Jerusalem), led by Peter, declared that salvation is by grace (see Acts 15:6-11).  They also sent out a letter explaining how Jewish and Christian converts could peacefully coexist without undue provocation of Jewish sensibilities or undue emphasis on Jewish legal requirements.  These pronouncements were for all Christians.  The Council’s ruling prevented a split in the Church, which surely would have happened if individual Christians followed their individual convictions about circumcision of Gentiles.  Some of our non-Catholic brethren will suggest that this apostolic conciliar method of arriving at “all the truth” was only necessary until all the New Testament was written.   Once that was done, according to this way of thinking, the only teaching authority was the Bible itself.  History before the Reformation refutes this, however.  Even when the New Testament had been completed, the question of its interpretation needed to be addressed.  Major dogmas like the Trinity, the Incarnation, and even which books actually were Scripture were all resolved by apostolic conciliar declarations.  There were many good-hearted, devout, holy Christians who had many different ideas about what the words in Scripture actually meant.  It was, in all these dogmatic matters, ultimately up to the bishops of the Church, in union with the Pope, to make a final determination.  History makes this very clear.

So, we see that the New Testament Church understood apostolic authority in the way it has been preserved in the Catholic Church.  If we are looking for “all the truth” in the many dogmatic and moral questions that arise during the course of human history, we will need to look to those who can trace their ordinations back through a succession of hands to the apostles.   Jesus made His promise of the Holy Spirit’s charism of truth to them, and Scripture tells us they passed it on to others.  Today, by that gift, the Voice of Jesus continues to ring out through His Church to the whole world.  The plan worked!

Possible response:  Lord Jesus, thank You for building a Church that will always be able to teach us “all the truth” about life with You.

Psalm (Read Ps 67:2-3, 5-6, 8)

The psalm captures for us the joy that comes to “all nations” when God’s way may “be known upon earth.”  In the Gospel, when Jesus looked out to the future, He saw God’s plan for that to happen through His one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church.  Two thousand years later, we can see its fruit.  Therefore, we want to sing:  “O God, let all the nations praise You!”

Possible response:  The psalm is, itself, a response to our other readings.  Read it again prayerfully to make it your own.

Second Reading (Read Rev 21:10-14, 22-23)

Here we see a splendid vision of the Church at the end of time.  Notice how it is built on the foundation of the “twelve apostles of the Lamb.”  It is not built solely on the bible; it is built on twelve fallible human beings who were given the charism of infallible truth to build it.   All the teaching and preaching authority of the Catholic Church rests right there.  The beauty of this vision, written by an apostle to whom the charism of truth through the Holy Spirit had been given (see Rev 1:10), helps us understand why Jesus promised His peace in the Gospel.  The past, the present, and the future all belong to “the Lord God and the Lamb.”  Alleluia!

Possible response:  Heavenly Father, thank You for the splendor that lies ahead for Your people, the Church—You will dwell with us.  Thank You for its foretaste in the Eucharist at every Mass.


45 posted on 05/05/2013 6:12:33 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: All

This Sunday’s Gospel :The Paraclete

Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D.

by Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D. on May 3, 2013 · 

He wore steel rimmed glasses and had hair to the middle of his back.  The fringe on his buck-skinned jacket bounced as he walked.

At least that was the way I was accustomed to seeing Mike as he bopped around town.  It was just a few years after Woodstock, and we were all taken with hippie culture.  It seemed so free, so new, so exciting.

But that day at the entrance of the mall, I scarcely recognized him.  His hair was cut and his clothing conventional.  He was passing out tracts and spoke to me of the Holy Spirit.  I scratched my head and vaguely remembered some talk about the Holy Spirit in confirmation class.   But I had to admit that I really did not know much about this third person of the Blessed Trinity.

This is quite common among Christians.  God the Father–we can get a glimpse of his tenderness and strength, thanks to Michelangelo’s magnificent Sistine ceiling.  And baby Jesus in the manger, the savior hanging on the Cross–these are images we can easily visualize.  But Holy Spirit, Holy Ghost?  Somehow, we can’t feel quite the same way about a dove as we do about a child on its mother’s lap.  And then what does this “Spirit” do?  The Father creates, the Son saves, but the Spirit?

Paraclete

Jesus calls him the “Paraclete” as he prepares the disciples for his departure (Jn 14:15-21).  Frankly, this does not help us much–unless, of course, we get a bit of explanation.  This word means “Advocate.”  It is the word for lawyer or attorney in Spanish and other languages.  There may be lots of jokes about lawyers, but when you are in trouble with the law, having a good lawyer is no laughing matter.  That’s the role of the Holy Spirit– He is our defense attorney.

Now part of the role of the defense attorney is to tell his client how to plead.  Sometimes, when the evidence against you is overwhelming, the sentence will be a whole lot lighter if you just plead guilty.  The Spirit counsels us to be honest, convicting us gently of sin–not to accuse us, not to condemn us, but to help us win our case.  He is the Spirit of Truth.  Blessed John Paul II’s theme was “Be not afraid.”   Be not afraid of the truth about your sin, your weakness, and your failings, says the Spirit.  For the judge happens to be the one who loves you so much that he died for you. Your judge is the same one who saved the woman caught in adultery from the rage of the hypocrites.

But he is also the one who told the adulteress to “go and sin no more.”  This is the real problem.  How is she to do that?  Sin was where she looked for life.  It drew her like a magnet.

Craving for drugs, booze and “free-sex” drew my hippie friends like a magnet in the 1970′s.  If we were acquitted by the Judge through the counsel of the Advocate, how were we to resist the allure of sin?

Archbishop Fulton Sheen once said that the only way to dislodge sin from one’s life is through the expulsive force of a new love.  This is the role of the Advocate.  He is the Love of God who is poured into our hearts (Ro 5:5) who drives out unlovely loves.  He is the Lord and Giver of true life who makes utterly clear that so many other things that we regarded as “life” are really death warmed-over.

Once you have a taste of the real thing, you are never again satisfied with imitations.  That’s why Mike abandoned the drug scene.  That’s why the Magdalene and the Samaritan woman abandoned all other lovers.  That’s why the rejoicing in Samaria rose to fever pitch (Acts 8:8).

The Holy Spirit is the real thing.  And he does not just come and go.  He is with us always.


46 posted on 05/05/2013 6:15:26 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

 


<< Sunday, May 5, 2013 >> Sixth Sunday of Easter
 
Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23

View Readings
Psalm 67:2-3, 5-6, 8
John 14:23-29

 

DESPERATELY NEEDING THE SPIRIT?

 
"Do not be distressed or fearful." —John 14:27
 

When Jesus told His disciples not to be distressed, they didn't realize they would soon be very distressed. Likewise, when Jesus tells us not to be distressed in today's Gospel reading, we may not realize that this is to be taken personally and immediately. We think that this message is not specifically for us and is generally intended for everybody. Moreover, we may think that things are going well in our lives, and therefore we don't expect any immediate distress. However, the disciples were wrong, and we might be mistaken as well. They were on the threshold of the most distressful time of their lives. Although we may not know it, we may desperately need the Holy Spirit's help (see Jn 14:26).

Assume that two weeks from today you will need to receive a new Pentecost, or else be overwhelmed by distress. Whether or not this happens, the wisest thing is to be ready for anything by being filled with the Holy Spirit. May you desire a new Pentecost more than you want anything else. Jesus has promised: "This much have I told you while I was still with you; the Paraclete, the Holy Spirit Whom the Father will send in My name, will instruct you in everything, and remind you of all that I told you" (Jn 14:25-26). Come, Holy Spirit!

 
Prayer: Father, may I want the Holy Spirit in fullness more than I want to breathe. Renew my Baptism and Confirmation.
Promise: "It is the decision of the Holy Spirit, and ours too, not to lay on you any burden beyond that which is strictly necessary." —Acts 15:28
Praise: Alleluia! Jesus is the Resurrection and the Life! (Jn 11:25) Alleluia forever!

47 posted on 05/05/2013 6:19:15 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: All
18" x 24' Full Color Signs

48 posted on 05/05/2013 6:23:19 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: All

http://resources.sainteds.com/showmedia.asp?media=../sermons/homily/2013-05-05-Homily%20Fr%20Gary.mp3&ExtraInfo=0&BaseDir=../sermons/homily


49 posted on 05/12/2013 8:31:58 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson