Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Catholic Caucus: Daily Mass Readings, 05-09-13, SOL, Ascension of the Lord
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 05-09-13 | New American Bible

Posted on 05/08/2013 8:00:28 PM PDT by Salvation

May 9, 2013 

 

Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord

 

Reading 1 Acts 1:1-11

In the first book, Theophilus,
I dealt with all that Jesus did and taught
until the day he was taken up,
after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit
to the apostles whom he had chosen.
He presented himself alive to them
by many proofs after he had suffered,
appearing to them during forty days
and speaking about the kingdom of God.
While meeting with them,
he enjoined them not to depart from Jerusalem,
but to wait for “the promise of the Father
about which you have heard me speak;
for John baptized with water,
but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”

When they had gathered together they asked him,
“Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
He answered them, “It is not for you to know the times or seasons
that the Father has established by his own authority.
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you,
and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem,
throughout Judea and Samaria,
and to the ends of the earth.”
When he had said this, as they were looking on,
he was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight.
While they were looking intently at the sky as he was going,
suddenly two men dressed in white garments stood beside them.
They said, “Men of Galilee,
why are you standing there looking at the sky?
This Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven
will return in the same way as you have seen him going into heaven.”

Responsorial Psalm Ps 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9 

R. (6) God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
All you peoples, clap your hands,
shout to God with cries of gladness,
For the LORD, the Most High, the awesome,
is the great king over all the earth.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
God mounts his throne amid shouts of joy;
the LORD, amid trumpet blasts.
Sing praise to God, sing praise;
sing praise to our king, sing praise.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.
For king of all the earth is God;
sing hymns of praise.
God reigns over the nations,
God sits upon his holy throne.
R. God mounts his throne to shouts of joy: a blare of trumpets for the Lord.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Reading 2 Eph 1:17-23

Brothers and sisters:
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory,
give you a Spirit of wisdom and revelation
resulting in knowledge of him.
May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened,
that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call,
what are the riches of glory
in his inheritance among the holy ones,
and what is the surpassing greatness of his power
for us who believe,
in accord with the exercise of his great might:
which he worked in Christ,
raising him from the dead
and seating him at his right hand in the heavens,
far above every principality, authority, power, and dominion,
and every name that is named
not only in this age but also in the one to come.
And he put all things beneath his feet
and gave him as head over all things to the church,
which is his body,
the fullness of the one who fills all things in every way.

Or Heb 9:24-28; 10:19-23

Christ did not enter into a sanctuary made by hands,
a copy of the true one, but heaven itself,
that he might now appear before God on our behalf.
Not that he might offer himself repeatedly,
as the high priest enters each year into the sanctuary
with blood that is not his own;
if that were so, he would have had to suffer repeatedly
from the foundation of the world.
But now once for all he has appeared at the end of the ages
to take away sin by his sacrifice.
Just as it is appointed that men and women die once,
and after this the judgment, so also Christ,
offered once to take away the sins of many,
will appear a second time, not to take away sin
but to bring salvation to those who eagerly await him.

Therefore, brothers and sisters, since through the blood of Jesus
we have confidence of entrance into the sanctuary
by the new and living way he opened for us through the veil,
that is, his flesh,
and since we have Aa great priest over the house of God, “
let us approach with a sincere heart and in absolute trust,
with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience
and our bodies washed in pure water.
Let us hold unwaveringly to our confession that gives us hope,
for he who made the promise is trustworthy.

Gospel Lk 24:46-53

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Thus it is written that the Christ would suffer
and rise from the dead on the third day
and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins,
would be preached in his name
to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
You are witnesses of these things.
And behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you;
but stay in the city
until you are clothed with power from on high.”

Then he led them out as far as Bethany,
raised his hands, and blessed them.
As he blessed them he parted from them
and was taken up to heaven.
They did him homage
and then returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
and they were continually in the temple praising God.


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; easter; prayer
Or you may hear these readings for Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

May 9, 2013

Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

 

Reading 1 Acts 18:1-8

Paul left Athens and went to Corinth.
There he met a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus,
who had recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla
because Claudius had ordered all the Jews to leave Rome.
He went to visit them and, because he practiced the same trade,
stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade.
Every sabbath, he entered into discussions in the synagogue,
attempting to convince both Jews and Greeks.

When Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia,
Paul began to occupy himself totally with preaching the word,
testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus.
When they opposed him and reviled him,
he shook out his garments and said to them,
“Your blood be on your heads!
I am clear of responsibility.
From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”
So he left there and went to a house
belonging to a man named Titus Justus, a worshiper of God;
his house was next to a synagogue.
Crispus, the synagogue official, came to believe in the Lord
along with his entire household, and many of the Corinthians
who heard believed and were baptized.

Responsorial Psalm PS 98:1, 2-3ab, 3cd-4

R. (see 2b) The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.
Sing to the LORD a new song,
for he has done wondrous deeds;
His right hand has won victory for him,
his holy arm.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.
The LORD has made his salvation known:
in the sight of the nations he has revealed his justice.
He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness
toward the house of Israel.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.
All the ends of the earth have seen
the salvation by our God.
Sing joyfully to the LORD, all you lands;
break into song; sing praise.
R. The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power.
or:
R. Alleluia.

Gospel Jn 16:16-20

Jesus said to his disciples:
“A little while and you will no longer see me,
and again a little while later and you will see me.”
So some of his disciples said to one another,
“What does this mean that he is saying to us,
‘A little while and you will not see me,
and again a little while and you will see me,’
and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?”
So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ of which he speaks?
We do not know what he means.”
Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them,
“Are you discussing with one another what I said,
‘A little while and you will not see me,
and again a little while and you will see me’?
Amen, amen, I say to you,
you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices;
you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.”

1 posted on 05/08/2013 8:00:28 PM PDT by Salvation
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: All
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.

2 posted on 05/08/2013 8:01:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | 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.

3 posted on 05/08/2013 8:02:30 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Acts 1:1-11

Prologue


[1] In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do
and teach, [2] until the day when he was taken up, after he had given command-
ment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. [3] To them
he presented himself alive after his passion by many proofs, appearing to them
during forty days, and speaking of the kingdom of God. [4] And while staying with
them he charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise
of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me, [5] for John baptized with wa-
ter, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”

The Ascension


[6] So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time
restore the kingdom of Israel?” [7] He said to them, “It is not for you to know times
or seasons which the Father has fixed by his own authority. [8] But you shall re-
ceive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be my witnes-
ses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.” [9]
And when he had said this, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud
took him out of their sight. [10] And while they were gazing into heaven as he went,
behold, two men stood by them in white robes, [11] and said, “Men of Galilee, why
do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into
heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”

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

1-5. St Luke is the only New Testament author to begin his book with a prologue,
in the style of secular historians. The main aim of this preface is to convey to the
reader the profoundly religious character of the book which he is holding in his
hands. It is a work which will give an account of events marking the fulfillment of
the promises made by the God of Israel the Creator and Savior of the world. Un-
der the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, into his book St Luke weaves quotations
from the Psalms, Isaiah, Amos and Joel; it both reflects the Old Testament and
interprets it in the light of its fulfillment in Jesus Christ.

The prologue refers to St Luke’s Gospel as a “first book”. It mentions the last e-
vents of our Lord’s life on earth—the appearances of the risen Christ and his as-
cension into heaven—and links them up with the account which is now beginning.

St Luke’s aim is to describe the origins and the early growth of this Christianity,
of which the main protagonist of this book, the Holy Spirit, has been the cause.
Yet this is not simply an historical record: the Acts of the Apostles, St Jerome
explains, “seems to be a straightforward historical account of the early years of
the nascent Church. But if we bear in mind it is written by Luke the physician,
who is praised in the Gospel (cf. 2 Cor 8: 18), we will realize that everything he
says is medicine for the ailing soul” (”Epistle” 53, 9).

The spiritual dimension of this book, which is one of a piece with the Third Gos-
pel, nourished the soul of the first generations of Christians, providing them with
a chronicle of God’s faithful and loving support of the new Israel. “This book”, St.
John Chrysostom writes at the start of his great commentary, “will profit us no
less than the Gospels, so replete is it with Christian wisdom and sound doctrine.
It offers an account of the numerous miracles worked by the Holy Spirit. It con-
tains the fulfillment of the prophecies of Jesus Christ recorded in the Gospel; we
can observe in the very facts the bright evidence of Truth which shines in them,
and the mighty change which is taking place in the Apostles: they become per-
fect men, extraordinary men, now that the Holy Spirit has come upon them. All
Christ’s promises and predictions—He who believes in me will do these and even
greater works, you will be dragged before tribunals and kings and beaten in the
synagogues, and will suffer grievous things, and yet you will overcome your per-
secutors and executioners and will bring the Gospel to the ends of the earth—all
this, how it came to pass, may be seen in this admirable book. Here you will
see the Apostles speeding their way overland and sea as if on wings. These Ga-
lileans, once so timorous and obtuse, we find suddenly changed into new men,
despising wealth and honor, raised above passion and concupiscence” (”Hom.
on Acts”, 1).

St Luke dedicates this book to Theophilus—as he did his Gospel. The dedication
suggests that Theophilus was an educated Christian, of an upper-class back-
ground, but he may be a fictitious person symbolizing “the beloved of God”, which
is what the name means. It also may imply that Acts was written quite soon after
the third Gospel.

1. “To do and teach”: these words very concisely sum up the work of Jesus Christ,
reported in the Gospels. They describe the way in which God’s saving Revelation
operates: God lovingly announces and reveals himself in the course of human his-
tory through his actions and through his words. “The economy of Revelation is rea-
lized by deeds and words, which are intrinsically bound up with each other”, Vati-
can II teaches. “As a result, the works performed by God in the history of salvation
show forth and bear out the doctrine and realities signified by the words; the words,
for their part, proclaim the works, and bring to light the mystery they contain. The
most intimate truth which this revelation gives us about God and the salvation of
man shines forth in Christ, who is himself both the mediator and the sum total of
Revelation” (”Dei Verbum”, 2).

The Lord “proclaimed the kingdom of the Father both by the testimony of his life
and by the power of his word” (Vatican II, “Lumen Gentium”, 35). He did not limit
himself to speech, to being simply the Teacher whose words opened man’s minds
to the truth. He was, above all, the Redeemer, able to save fallen man through the
divine efficacy of each and every moment of his life on earth.

“Our Lord took on all our weaknesses, which proceed from sin—with the exception
of sin itself. He experienced hunger and thirst, sleep and fatigue, sadness and
tears. He suffered in every possible way, even the supreme suffering of death. No
one could be freed from the bonds of sinfulness had he who alone was totally in-
nocent not been ready to die at the hands of impious men. Therefore, our Savior,
the Son of God, has left all those who believe in him an effective source of aid,
and also an example. The first they obtain by being reborn through grace, the
second by imitating his life” (St Leo the Great, “Twelfth Homily on the Passion”).

Jesus’ redemptive action—his miracles, his life of work, and the mystery of his
death, resurrection and ascension, whose depth and meaning only faith can
plumb—also constitute a simple and powerful stimulus for our everyday conduct.
Faith should always be accompanied by works, by deeds, that is, our humble
and necessary cooperation with God’s saving plans.

“Don’t forget that doing must come before teaching. ‘Coepit facere et docere’, the
holy Scripture says of Jesus Christ: ‘He began to do and to teach. ‘ “First deeds:
so that you and I might learn” (St. J. Escriva, “The Way”, 342).

3. This verse recalls the account in Luke 24:13-43 of the appearances of the risen
Jesus to the disciples of Emmaus and to the Apostles in the Cenacle. It stresses
the figure of forty days. This number may have a literal meaning and also a deeper
meaning. In Sacred Scripture periods of forty days or forty years have a clearly
salvific meaning: they are periods during which God prepares or effects important
stages in his plans. The great flood lasted forty days (Gen 7:17); the Israelites
journeyed in the wilderness for forty years on their way to the promised land (Ps
95:10); Moses spent forty days on Mount Sinai to receive God’s revelation of the
Covenant (Ex 24:18); on the strength of the bread sent by God Elisha walked for-
ty days and forty nights to reach his destination (1 Kings 19:8); and our Lord fas-
ted in the wilderness for forty days in preparation for his public life (Mt 4:2).

5. “You shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit”: this book has been well described
as the “Gospel of the Holy Spirit”. “There is hardly a page in the Acts of the Apos-
tles where we fail to read about the Spirit and the action by which he guides, di-
rects and enlivens the life and work of the early Christian community. It is he who
inspires the preaching of St Peter (cf. Acts 4:8), who strengthens the faith of the
disciples (cf. Acts 4:31), who confirms with his presence the calling of the Gen-
tiles (cf. Acts 10:44-47), who sends Saul and Barnabas to distant lands, where
they will open new paths for the teaching of Jesus (cf. Acts 13:2-4). In a word,
his presence and doctrine are everywhere” (St. Escriva, “Christ Is Passing By”,
127).

6-8. The Apostles’ question shows that they are still thinking in terms of earthly
restoration of the Davidic dynasty. It would seem that for them —as for many
Jews of their time—eschatological hope in the Kingdom extended no further than
expectation of world-embracing Jewish hegemony.

“It seems to me”, St John Chrysostom comments, “that they had not any clear
notion of the nature of the Kingdom, for the Spirit had not yet instructed them.
Notice that they do not ask when it shall come but ‘Will you at this time restore
the Kingdom to Israel?’, as if the Kingdom were something that lay in the past.
This question shows that they were still attracted by earthly things, though less
than they had been” (”Hom. on Acts”, 2).

Our Lord gives an excellent and encouraging reply, patiently telling them that the
Kingdom is mysterious in character, that it comes when one least expects, and
that they need the help of the Holy Spirit to be able to grasp the teaching they
have received. Jesus does not complain about their obtuseness; he simply cor-
rects their ideas and instructs them.

8. The outline of Acts is given here: the author plans to tell the story of the growth
of the Church, beginning in Jerusalem and spreading through Judea and Samaria
to the ends of the earth. This is the geographical structure of St Luke’s account.
In the Third Gospel Jerusalem was the destination point of Jesus’ public life (which
began in Galilee); here it is the departure point.

The Apostles’ mission extends to the whole world. Underlying this verse we can
see not so much a “geographical” dimension as the universalist aspirations of
the Old Testament, articulated by Isaiah: “It shall come to pass in the latter days
that the mountain of the house of the Lord shall be established as the highest of
the mountains, and shall be raised above the hills; and all the nations shall flow
to it, and many peoples shall come, and say: ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain
of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; that he may teach us his ways and
that we may walk in his paths. For out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word
of the Lord from Jerusalem” (Is 2:2-3).

9. Jesus’ life on earth did not end with his death on the Cross but with his ascen-
sion into heaven. The ascension, reported here, is the last event, the last myste-
ry of our Lord’s life on earth (cf. also 24:50-53)—and also it concerns the origins of
the Church. The ascension scene takes place, so to speak, between heaven and
earth. “Why did a cloud take him out of the Apostles’ sight?”, St John Chrysostom
asks. “The cloud was a sure sign that Jesus had already entered heaven; it was
not a whirlwind or a chariot of fire, as in the case of the prophet Elijah (cf. 2 Kings
2:11), but a cloud, which was a symbol of heaven itself” (”Hom. on Acts”, 2). A
cloud features in theophanies—manifestations of God—in both the Old Testament
(cf. Ex 13:22) and the New (cf. Lk 9:34f).

Our Lord’s ascension is one of the actions by which Jesus redeems us from sin
and gives us the new life of grace. It is a redemptive mystery “What we have al-
ready taught of the mystery of his death and resurrection the faithful should deem
not less true of his ascension. For although we owe our redemption and salvation
to the passion of Christ, whose merits opened heaven to the just, yet his ascen-
sion is not only proposed to us as a model, which teaches us to look on high
and ascend in spirit into heaven, but it also imparts to us a divine virtue which
enables us to accomplish what it teaches” (”St Pius V Catechism” I, 7, 9).

Our Lord’s going up into heaven is not simply something which stirs us to lift up
our hearts—as we are invited to do at the preface of the Mass, to seek and love
the “things that are above” (cf. Col 3:1-2); along with the other mysteries of his
life, death and resurrection, Christ’s ascension saves us. “Today we are not only
made possessors of paradise”, St Leo says, “but we have ascended with Christ,
mystically but really, into the highest heaven, and through Christ we have ob-
tained a more ineffable grace than that which we lost through the devil’s envy”
(”First Homily on the Ascension”).

The ascension is the climax of Christ’s exaltation, which was achieved in the first
instance by his resurrection and which—along with his passion and death—const-
itutes the paschal mystery. The Second Vatican Council expresses this as fol-
lows: “Christ our Lord redeemed mankind and gave perfect glory to God [...]
principally by the paschal mystery of his blessed passion, resurrection from the
dead, and glorious ascension” (”Sacrosanctum Concilium”, 5; cf. “Dei Verbum”,
19).

Theology has suggested reasons why it was very appropriate for the glorified Lord
to go up into heaven to be “seated at the right hand of the Father.” “First of all, he
ascended because the glorious kingdom of the highest heavens, not the obscure
abode of this earth, presented a suitable dwelling place for him whose body, rising
from the tomb, was clothed with the glory of immortality. He ascended, however,
not only to possess the throne of glory and the kingdom which he had merited by
his blood, but also to attend to whatever regards our salvation. Again, he ascen-
ded to prove thereby that his kingdom is not of this world” (”St Pius V Catechism”,
I, 7, 5; cf. “Summa Theologiae”, III, q. 57, a. 6).

The ascension marks the point when the celestial world celebrates the victory
and glorification of Christ: “It is fitting that the sacred humanity of Christ should
receive the homage, praise and adoration of all the hierarchies of the Angels and
of all the legions of the blessed in heaven” (St. J. Escriva, “Holy Rosary”, second
glorious mystery).

11. The angels are referring to the Parousia—our Lord’s second coming, when he
will judge the living and the dead. “They said to them, What are you doing here,
looking into heaven? These words are full of solicitude, but they do not proclaim
the second coming of the Savior as imminent. The angels simply assert what is
most important, that is, that Jesus Christ will come again and the confidence
with which we should await his return” (St John Chrysostom, “Hom. on Acts”,
2).

We know for a certainty that Christ will come again at the end of time. We con-
fess this in the Creed as part of our faith. However, we know “neither the day nor
the hour” (Mt 25:13) of his coming. We do not need to know it. Christ is always
imminent. We must always be on the watch, that is, we should busy ourselves
in the service of God and of others, which is where our sanctification lies.

*********************************************************************************************
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 05/08/2013 8:07:32 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Ephesians 1:17-23

Thanksgiving. The Supremacy of Christ (Continuation)


[17] that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit
of wisdom and of revelation in the knowledge of him, [18] having the eyes of your
hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called
you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, [19] and what
is the immeasurable greatness of his power in us who believe, according to the
working of his great might [20] which he accomplished in Christ when he raised
him from the dead and made him sit at the right hand in the heavenly places, [21]
far above all rule and authority and power and dominion, and above every name
that is named, not only in this age but also in that which is to come; [22] and he
has put all things under his feet and has made him the head over all things for
the church, [23] which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.

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

17. The God whom St Paul addresses is “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ”, that
is, the God who has revealed himself through Christ and to whom Jesus himself,
as man, prays and asks for help (cf. Lk 22:42). The same God as was described
in the Old Testament as “the God of Abraham, of Isaac and of Jacob” is now de-
fined as “the God of our Lord Jesus Christ”. He is the personal God recognized
by his relationship with Christ, his Son, who as mediator of the New Covenant ob-
tains from God the Father everything he asks for. This will be our own experience
too if we are united to Christ, for he promised that “if you ask anything of the
Father, he will give it to you in my name” (Jn 16:23; 15:16).

The founder of Opus Dei reminds us that “Jesus is the way, the mediator. In him
are all things; outside of him is nothing. In Christ, taught by him, we dare to call
Almighty God ‘our Father’: he who created heaven and earth is a loving Father”
(”Christ Is Passing By”, 91).

The Apostle also calls God “the Father of glory”. The glory of God means his
greatness, his power, the infinite richness of his personality, which when it is re-
vealed inspires man with awe. Already, in the history of Israel, God revealed him-
self through his saving actions in favor of his people. Asking God to glorify his
name is the same as asking him to show himself as our Savior and to give us his
gifts. But the greatest manifestation of God’s glory, of his power, was the raising
of Jesus from the dead, and the raising, with him, of the Christian (cf. Rom 6:4;
1 Cor 6:14). In this passage St Paul asks God “the Father of glory” to grant Chris-
tians supernatural wisdom to recognize the greatness of the blessings he has gi-
ven them through his Son; that is, to acknowledge that he is their Father and the
origin of glory. By asking for a “spirit of wisdom and revelation” the Apostle is see-
king special gifts—on the one hand, wisdom, that gift of the Holy Spirit which ena-
bles one to penetrate the mystery of God: “Who has learned thy counsel, unless
thou hast given wisdom and sent thy holy Spirit from on high?” (Wis 9:17). This
wisdom which the Church has been given (cf. Eph 1:8) can be communicated to
Christians in a special way, as a special gift or charism of the Holy Spirit. The A-
postle also asks God to give them a spirit “of revelation”, that is, the grace of per-
sonal revelations, such as he himself (cf. 1 Cor 14:6) and other Christians (cf. 1
Cor 14:26) received. It is not a matter of revelation or recognition of new truths,
but rather of special light from the Holy Spirit so as to have a deeper appreciation
of the truth of faith, or of the will of God in a particular situation.

18-19. Along with this deeper knowledge of God, St Paul asks that Christians be
given a fuller and livelier hope, because God and hope are inseparable. He recog-
nizes the faith and charity of the faithful to whom he is writing (cf. 1:15); now he
wants hope to shine more brightly for them; he wants God to enlighten their
minds and make them realize the consequences of their election, their calling, to
be members of the holy people of God, the Church. Hope, therefore, is a gift from
God. “Hope is a supernatural virtue, infused by God into our soul, by which we de-
sire and expect eternal life, promised by God to his servants, and the mean ne-
cessary to obtain it” (”St Pius X Catechism”, 893).

The ground for hope lies in God’s love and power which have been manifested in
the resurrection of Christ. This same power is at work in the Christian. Because
God’s plan for our salvation is an eternal one, he who has called us will lead us
to an immortal life in heaven. The fact that God’s power is at work in us (cf. Rom
5:5) does not mean that we encounter no difficulties. St. Escriva reminds us that
“as we fight this battle, which will last until the day we die, we cannot exclude
the possibility that enemies both within and without may attack with violent force.
As if that were not enough, you may at times be assailed by the memory of your
own past errors, which may have been very many. I tell you now, in God’s name:
do not despair. Should this happen (it need not happen; nor will it usually happen),
then turn it into another motive for uniting yourself more closely to the Lord, for he
has chosen you as his child and he will not abandon you. He has allowed this
trial to befall you so as to have you love him the more and discover even more
clearly his constant protection and love” (”Friends of God”, 214).

20-21. The Apostle is in awe at the marvels which God’s power has worked in
Jesus Christ. He sees Christ as the source and model of our hope. “For, just as
Christ’s life is the model and exemplar of our holiness, so is the glory and exal-
tation of Christ the form and exemplar of our glory and exaltation” (St Thomas
Aquinas, “Commentary on Eph, ad. Ioc”.).

As elsewhere in the New Testament (cf. Acts 7:56; Heb 1:3; 1 Pet 3:22), the fact
that the risen Christ is seated “at the right hand” of the Father means that he
shares in God’s kingly authority. The Apostle is using a comparison with which
people of his time were very familiar — that of the emperor seated on his throne.
The throne has always been the symbol of supreme authority and power. Thus,
the “St Pius V Catechism” explains that being seated at the right hand “does not
imply position or posture of body, but expresses the firm and permanent posses-
sion of royal and supreme power and glory, which he received from the Father”
(I, 7, 3).

Christ’s pre-eminence is absolute: he is Lord of all creation, material as well as
spiritual, earthly as well as heavenly. “All rule and authority and power and do-
minion”: this refers to the angelic spirits (cf. note on Eph 3:10), whom the false
preachers were presenting as superior to Christ. St Paul argues against them:
Jesus Christ at his resurrection was raised by God above all created beings.

22-23. In previous letters St Paul described the Church as a body (cf. Rom 12:
4f; 1 Cor 12:12ff). Here, and in Colossians 1:18, he pursues this comparison and
says that it is the body of Christ, and that Christ is its head. He returns to this
teaching elsewhere in the Captivity Epistles (cf. Col 1:18; Eph 5:23f). The image
of body and head highlights the life-giving and salvific influence of Christ on the
Church, and at the same time emphasizes his supremacy over the Church (cf.
St. Thomas Aquinas, “Commentary on Eph, ad loc.”, and also the note on Col
1:18). This fact fills Christians with joy: by joining the Church through Baptism,
they have become truly members of our Lord’s body. “No, it is not pride”, Paul
VI says, “ nor arrogance nor obstinacy nor stupidity nor folly that makes us so
sure of being living, genuine members of Christ’s body, the authentic heirs of
his Gospel” (”Ecclesiam Suam”, 33).

This image also reveals Christ’s close union with his Church and his deep love
for her: “he loved her so much”, St John of Avila observes, “that although what
normally happens is that a person raises his arm to take a blow and protect his
head, this blessed Lord, who is the head, put himself forward to receive the blow
of divine justice, and died on the Cross to give life to his body, that is, us. And
after giving us life, through penance and the sacraments, he endows us, defends
and keeps us as something so very much his own, that he is not content with
calling us his servants, friends, brethren or children: the better to show his love
and render us honor, he gives us his name. For, by means of this ineffable union
of Christ the head with the Church his body, he and we are together called ‘Christ”’
(”Audi, Filia”, chap. 84).

The Apostle also describes the Church, the body of Christ (cf. 1 Cor 12:12) as
his “fullness” (cf. note on Col 1:19). What he means is that, through the Church,
Christ becomes present in and fills the entire universe and extends to it the fruits
of his redemptive activity. By being the vehicle which Christ uses to distribute his
grace to all, the Church is different from the Israel of the Old Testament: it is not
confined to a particular geographical location.

Because the Church has limitless grace, its call is addressed to all mankind: all
men are invited to attain salvation in Christ. “For many centuries now, the Church
has been spread throughout the world,” St. Escriva comments, “and it numbers
persons of all races and walks of life. But the universality of the Church does not
depend on its geographical extension, even though that is a visible sign and a mo-
tive of credibility. The Church was catholic already at Pentecost; it was born ca-
tholic from the wounded heart of Jesus, as a fire which the Holy Spirit enkindles
[...]. ‘We call it catholic’, writes St Cyril, ‘not only because it is spread throughout
the whole world, from one extreme to the other, but because in a universal way
and without defect it teaches all the dogmas which men ought to know, of both
the visible and the invisible, the celestial and the earthly. Likewise, because it
draws to true worship all types of men, those who govern and those who are ruled,
the learned and the ignorant. And finally, because it cures and makes healthy all
kinds of sins, whether of the soul or of the body, possessing in addition—by what-
ever name it may be called—all the forms of virtue, in deeds and in words and in
every kind of spiritual gift’ (”Catechesis”, 18, 23)” (”In Love with the Church”, 9).

All grace reaches the Church through Christ. The Second Vatican Council reminds
us: “He continually endows his body, that is, the Church, with gifts of ministries
through which, by his power, we serve each other unto salvation so that, carrying
out the truth in love, we may through all things grow into him who is our head”
(”Lumen Gentium”, 7). This is why St Paul calls the Church the “body” of Christ;
and it is in this sense that it is the “fullness” (”pleroma”) of Christ—not because it
in any way fills out or completes Christ but because it is filled with Christ, full of
Christ, forming a single body with him, a single spiritual organism, whose unifying
and life-giving principle is Christ, its head. This demonstrates Christ’s absolute su-
premacy; his unifying and life-giving influence extends from God to Christ, from
Christ to the Church, and from the Church to all men. It is he in fact who fills all
in all (cf. Eph 4:10; Col 1:17-19; 2:9f).

The fact that the Church is the body of Christ is a further reason why we should
love it and serve it. As Pope Pius XII wrote: “To ensure that this genuine and
whole-hearted love will reign in our hearts and grow every day, we must accustom
ourselves to see Christ himself in the Church. For it is indeed Christ who lives in
the Church, and through her teaches, governs and sanctifies; and it is also Christ
who manifests himself in manifold disguise in the various members of his society”
(”Mystici Corporis”, 43).

*********************************************************************************************
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 05/08/2013 8:09:10 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Lk 24:46-53

Jesus’ Last Instructions And Leave-Taking


[46] And (Jesus) said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer
and on the third day rise from the dead, [47] and that repentance and forgiveness
of sins should be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem.
[48] You are witness of these things. [49] And behold, I send the promise of my
Father upon you; but say in the city, until you are clothed with power from on
high.”

The Ascension of Our Lord


[50] Then he led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up his hands be blessed
them. [51] While he blessed them, he parted from them, and was carried up into
heaven. [52] And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
[53] and were continually in the temple blessing God.

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

44-49. St. Matthew stresses that the Old Testament prophecies are fulfilled in
Christ, because his immediate audience was Jews, who would accept this as
proof that Jesus was indeed the promised Messiah.; St Luke does not usually
argue along these lines because he is writing for Gentiles; however, in this epi-
logue he does report, in a summarized way, Christ’s statement to the effect that
everything foretold about him had come true. By doing so he shows the unity of
Old and New Testaments and that Jesus is truly the Messiah.

44-49. St. Matthew stresses that the Old Testament prophecies are fulfilled in
Christ, because his immediate audience was Jews, who would accept this as
proof that Jesus was indeed the promised Messiah.; St Luke does not usually
argue along these lines because he is writing for Gentiles; however, in this epi-
logue he does report, in a summarized way, Christ’s statement to the effect that
everything foretold about him had come true. By doing so he shows the unity of
Old and New Testaments and that Jesus is truly the Messiah.

St. Luke also refers to the promise of the Holy Spirit (cf. Jn 14:16-17, 26; 15:26;
16:7ff), whose fulfilment on the day of Pentecost he will narrate in detail in the
Book of Acts (cf. Acts 2:1-4).

46.From St. Luke’s account we have seen how slow the apostles were to grasp
Jesus’ prophecy of his death and resurrection (cf. 9:45; 18:34). Now that the pro-
phecy is fulfilled Jesus reminds them that it was necessary for the Christ to suf-
fer and to rise from the dead (cf. Acts 2:1-4).

The Cross is a mystery, in our own life as well as in Christ’s “Jesus suffers to car-
ry out the will of the Father. And you, who also want to carry out the most holy
will of God, following the steps of the Master, can you complain if you meet suffe-
ring on the way? (St. J. Escriva, The Way, 213) 49.

“I send the promise of my Father upon you,” that is, the Holy Spirit who, some
days later, at Pentecost, would come down upon them in the cenacle (cf. Acts
2:1-4) as the Father’s gift to them (cf. Lk 11:13).

50-53 St. Luke, who will report our Lord’s ascension in the Acts of the Apostles,
here gives a summary account of this mystery which marks the end of Jesus’s
visible presence on earth. St Thomas Aquinas explains that it was inappropriate
for Christ to remain on earth after the Resurrection, whereas it was appropriate
that he should ascend into heaven, because, although his risen body was alrea-
dy a glorified one, it now receives an increase in glory due to the dignity of the
place to which it ascends (cf. Summa theologiae, 3, q. 57 a. 1).

“Our Lord’s Ascension also reminds us of another fact. The same Christ, who en-
courages us to carry out our task in the world, awaits us in heaven. In other words,
our life on earth, which we love, is not definitive. ‘Here we have no lasting city, but
we seek the city which is to come’ (Heb 13:14), a changeless home, where we
may live forever. […] Christ awaits us. We are ‘citizens of heaven’ (Phil 3:20), and
at the same time fully-fledged citizens of this earth, in the midst of difficulties, in-
justices and lack of understanding, but also in the midst of the joy and serenity
that comes from knowing that we are children of God” (St. J. Escriva, Christ is
Passing By, 126).

We have come to the end of St. Luke’s narrative. Words cannot express the
gratitude and love we feel when we reflect on Christ’s life among us. Let us offer
God our desire to be ever more faithful children and disciples of his, as we savor
this summary of Christ’s life given us by the Magisterium: “We believe in our Lord
Jesus Christ, who is the Son of God. He is the eternal Word born of the Father
before time began […]. He dwelt among us full of grace and truth. He announced
and established the Kingdom of God, enabling us to know the Father. He gave us
the commandment that we should love one another as he loved us. He taught us
the way of the Gospel Beatitudes, according to which we were to be poor in spirit
and humble, bearing suffering in patience, thirsting after justice, merciful, clean of
heart, peaceful, enduring persecution for justice’s sake. He suffered under Pontius
Pilate, the Lamb of God taking to himself the sins of the world, and he died for us,
nailed to the Cross, saving us by this redeeming blood. After he had been buried
he rose from the dead of his own power, lifting us by his Resurrection to that sha-
ring in the divine life which is grace. He ascended into heaven whence he will
come again to judge the living and the dead, each according to his merits. Those
who have responded to the love and compassion of God will go into eternal life.
Those who have refused them to the end will be consigned to the fire that is never
extinguished. And of his kingdom there will be no end” (Paul VI, Creed of the Peo-
ple of God, 11f).

*********************************************************************************************
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.


6 posted on 05/08/2013 8:11:14 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Acts 18:1-8

Paul in Corinth, with Aquila and Priscilla


[1] After this he left Athens and went to Corinth. [2] And he found a Jew named
Aquila, a native of Pontus, lately come from Italy with his wife Priscilla because
Claudius had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome. And he went to see them;
[3] and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them, and they worked,
for by trade they were tentmakers. [4] And he argued in the synagogue every
sabbath, and persuaded Jews and Greeks.

Preaching to Jews and Gentiles


[5] When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with
preaching, testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus. [6] And when they
opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your
blood be upon your heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”
[7] And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a wor-
shipper of God; his house was next door to the synagogue. [8] Crispus, the ruler
of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with all his household; and ma-
ny of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized.

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

1-11. St Paul must have arrived in Corinth very discouraged by what happened in
Athens, and very short of money. Some time later he wrote: “And I was with you
in weakness and in much fear and trembling; and my speech and my message
were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and po-
wer, that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God
...” (1 Cor 2:3-4). He would never forget his experience in the Areopagus before
the Athenians, who “were friends of new speeches yet who paid no heed to them
or what they said; all they wanted was to have something new to talk about”
(Chrysostom, “Hom. on Acts”, 39).

Corinth was a very commercial, cosmopolitan city located on an isthmus be-
tween two gulfs (which are now joined). Ships came to Corinth from all over the
world. Low moral standards, concentration on money-making and voluptuous wor-
ship of Aphrodite meant that Corinth did not seem the best ground for sowing the
word of God; but the Lord can change people’s hearts, especially if he has people
as obedient and zealous as Paul, Silvanus, Timothy and the early Christians in
general. The Athenians’ intellectual pride proved to be a more formidable obstacle
than the Corinthians’ libertarian lifestyle.

Christians should not soft-pedal if they find themselves in situations where paga-
nism and loose living seem to be the order of the day: indeed this should only
spur them on. When addressing his Father at the Last Supper Jesus prayed: “I
do not pray that thou shouldst take them out of the world, but that thou shouldst
keep them from the evil one” (Jn 17:15).

2. This married couple were probably already Christians when they arrived in Co-
rinth. Since they came from Rome, the indications are that there was a commu-
nity of Christians in the capital from very early on. Aquila and Priscilla (the dimi-
nutive of Prisca) proved to be of great help to Paul from the very beginning of his
work in Corinth.

Later on they both must have returned to Rome (cf. Rom 16:3); and it may well
be that apostolic considerations dictated their movements, as would be the case
with countless Christians after them. “The Christian family’s faith and evangeli-
zing mission also possesses this Catholic missionary inspiration. The sacrament
of marriage takes up and reproposes the task of defending and spreading the faith,
a task which has its roots in Baptism and Confirmation and makes Christian mar-
ried couples and parents witnesses of Christ ‘to the ends of the earth’ (Acts 1:8)
[...].

“Just as at the dawn of Christianity Aquila and Priscilla were presented as a mis-
sionary couple (cf. Acts 18; Rom 16:3f), so today the Church shows forth her
perennial newness and fruitfulness by the presence of Christian couples who [...]
work in missionary territories, proclaiming the Gospel and doing service to their
fellowman for the love of Jesus Christ” (Bl. John Paul II, “Familiaris Consortio”,
54).

The edict of Claudius (41-54 A.D.) expelling the Jews from Rome was issued be-
fore the year 50. It is referred to by Suetonius, the Roman historian, but the de-
tails of the decree are not known. We do know that Claudius had protected the
Jews on a number of occasions. He gave them the right to appoint the high priest
and to have charge of the temple. Apparently, conflict between Jews and Chris-
tians in Rome led him to expel some Jews from the city, on a temporary basis,
or at least to advise them to leave.

3. St Paul earns his living and manages to combine this with all his preaching of
the Gospel. “This teaching of Christ on work,” Bl. John Paul II writes, “based on
the example of his life during his years in Nazareth, finds a particularly lively echo
in the teaching of the Apostle Paul. Paul boasts of working at his trade (he was
probably a tent-maker: cf. Acts 18:3), and thanks to that work he was able even
as an Apostle to earn his own bread” (”Laborem Exercens”, 26).

During this stay of a year and a half in Corinth St Paul wrote some rather severe
letters to the Thessalonians, pointing out to them the need to work: “If any one
will not work, let him not eat. [...] we command and exhort [idlers] in the Lord
Jesus Christ to do their work in quietness and to earn their own living” (2 Thess
3:10, 12). St John Chrysostom, commenting on this passage of Acts, says that
“Work is man’s natural state. Idleness is against his nature. God has placed
man in this world to work, and the natural thing for the soul is to be active and
not passive” (”Hom. on Acts”, 35).

Taking Christ’s own example, St. Escriva points out that “Work is one of the
highest human values and a way in which men contribute to the progress of
society. But even more, it is a way to holiness” (”Conversations”, 24). In Jesus’
hands, “a professional occupation, similar to that carried out by millions of peo-
ple in the world, was turned into a divine task. It became a part of our redemp-
tion, a way to salvation” (”ibid”., 55).

In fact, it is in work, in the middle of ordinary activity, that most people can and
should find Christ. God “is calling you to serve him in and from the ordinary, ma-
terial and secular activities of human life. He waits for us everyday [...] in all the
immense panorama of work” (”ibid”., 114). Man thereby finds God in the most
visible, material things, and Christians can avoid the danger of what might be
called “a double life: on one side, an interior life, a life of relation with God; and
on the other, a separate and distinct professional, social and family life, full of
small earthly realities” (”ibid”.).

Like most people Paul spent part of his day working to earn his living. When en-
gaged in work he was still the Apostle of the Gentiles chosen by God, and his
very work spoke to his companions and friends. We should not think that there
was any split between his on-going personal relationship with God, and his apos-
tolic activity or his work —or that he did not work in a concentrated or exemplary
manner.

4. It is easy to imagine the hope and eagerness Paul felt when preaching the Gos-
pel to his fellow Jews. He knew from experience the difficulties they had about re-
cognizing Jesus as the Messiah and accepting the Good News. Paul feels both
joy and sorrow: he is happy because the moment has arrived for the sons of Abra-
ham to receive the Gospel as is their right by inheritance; but he also realizes that
although it brings salvation to some, it spells rejection for those who refuse to
accept it.

Origen spoke in similar terms: “I experience anxiety to speak and anxiety not to
speak. I wish to speak for the benefit of those who are worthy, so that I may not
be taken to task for refusing the word of truth to those who have the ability to
grasp it. But I am afraid to speak in case I address those who are unworthy, be-
cause it means I am giving holy things to dogs and casting pearls before swine.
Only Jesus was capable of distinguishing, among his listeners, those who were
without from those who were within: he spoke in parables to the outsiders and
explained the parables to those who entered with him into the house” (”Dialogue
with Heraclides”, 15).

6. The blindness of the Jews once again causes Paul great sadness; here is fur-
ther evidence of the mysterious resistance to faith of so many of the chosen peo-
ple. As he did in Pisidian Antioch (cf. 13:51), the Apostle shakes the dust from
his clothes to show his break from the Jews of Corinth: their apparent fidelity to
the religion of their forefathers disguises their proud rejection of God’s promises.

He finds himself confronted by the great enigma of salvation history, in which
God dialogues with human freedom. As St Justin writes, “The Jews, in truth, who
had the prophecies and always looked for the coming of Christ, not only did not
recognize him, but, far beyond that, even mistreated him. But the Gentiles, who
had never even heard anything of Christ until his Apostles went from Jerusalem
and preached about him and gave them the prophecies, were filled with joy and
faith, and turned away from their idols, and dedicated themselves to the Unbegot-
ten God through Christ” (”First Apology”, 49, 5).

Paul’s words on this occasion are addressed to the Jews of Corinth, not to Jews
elsewhere. For a long time past he has directed his preaching to Gentiles as well
as Jews. The phrase “From now on I will go to the Gentiles” does not mean that
he will no longer address Jews, for in the course of his apostolic work he conti-
nues to evangelize Jews as well as Gentiles (cf. Acts 18:19; 28:17).

7. Titus Justus had a Roman name and was a Gentile, but the fact that he lived
next door to the synagogue and, in particular, the Greek term used to identify
him as a “worshipper” of God, indicates that he was a convert to Judaism. Cf.
note on Acts 2:5-11.

*********************************************************************************************
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.


7 posted on 05/08/2013 8:12:34 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: All

From: John 16:16-20

Fullness of Joy


(Jesus said to His disciples,) [16] “A little while, and you will see Me no more;
again a little while, and you will see Me.” [17] Some of His disciples said to one
another, “What is this that He says to us, ‘A little while, and you will not see Me,
and again a little while, and you will see Me’; and, ‘because I go to the Father’?”
[18] They said, “What does He mean by ‘a little while’? We do not know what He
means.” [19] Jesus knew they wanted to ask Him; so He said to them, “Is this
what you are asking yourselves, what I meant by saying, ‘A little while and you
will not see Me, and again a little while, and you will see Me’? [20] Truly, truly,
I say to you, you will weep and lament, but the world will rejoice; you will be sor-
rowful, but your sorrow will turn into joy.”

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

16-20. Earlier our Lord consoled the disciples by assuring them that He would
send them the Holy Spirit after He went away (verse 7). Now He gives them fur-
ther consolation: He is not leaving them permanently, He will come back to stay
with them. However, the Apostles fail to grasp what He means, and they ask
each other what they make of it. Our Lord does not give them a direct explana-
tion, perhaps because they would not understand what He meant (as happened
before: cf. Matthew 16:21-23 and paragraph). But He does emphasize that though
they are sad now they will soon be rejoicing: after suffering tribulation they will be
filled with a joy they will never lose (cf. John 17:13). This is a reference primarily
to the Resurrection (cf. Luke 24:41), but also to their definitive encounter with
Christ in Heaven.

*********************************************************************************************
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.


8 posted on 05/08/2013 8:13:23 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | 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

These readings are for the Vigil Mass on the evening before the feast:


First reading Acts 1:1-11 ©
In my earlier work, Theophilus, I dealt with everything Jesus had done and taught from the beginning until the day he gave his instructions to the apostles he had chosen through the Holy Spirit, and was taken up to heaven. He had shown himself alive to them after his Passion by many demonstrations: for forty days he had continued to appear to them and tell them about the kingdom of God. When he had been at table with them, he had told them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait there for what the Father had promised. ‘It is’ he had said ‘what you have heard me speak about: John baptised with water but you, not many days from now, will be baptised with the Holy Spirit.’
  Now having met together, they asked him, ‘Lord, has the time come? Are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel?’ He replied, ‘It is not for you to know times or dates that the Father has decided by his own authority, but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and then you will be my witnesses not only in Jerusalem but throughout Judaea and Samaria, and indeed to the ends of the earth.’
  As he said this he was lifted up while they looked on, and a cloud took him from their sight. They were still staring into the sky when suddenly two men in white were standing near them and they said, ‘Why are you men from Galilee standing here looking into the sky? Jesus who has been taken up from you into heaven, this same Jesus will come back in the same way as you have seen him go there.’

Psalm Psalm 46:2-3,6-9 ©
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
All peoples, clap your hands,
  cry to God with shouts of joy!
For the Lord, the Most High, we must fear,
  great king over all the earth.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God goes up with shouts of joy;
  the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
Sing praise for God, sing praise,
  sing praise to our king, sing praise.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
God is king of all the earth,
  sing praise with all your skill.
God is king over the nations;
  God reigns on his holy throne.
God goes up with shouts of joy; the Lord goes up with trumpet blast.
or
Alleluia!
EITHER:
Second reading Ephesians 1:17-23 ©
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit of wisdom and perception of what is revealed, to bring you to full knowledge of him. May he enlighten the eyes of your mind so that you can see what hope his call holds for you, what rich glories he has promised the saints will inherit and how infinitely great is the power that he has exercised for us believers. This you can tell from the strength of his power at work in Christ, when he used it to raise him from the dead and to make him sit at his right hand, in heaven, far above every Sovereignty, Authority, Power, or Domination, or any other name that can be named not only in this age but also in the age to come. He has put all things under his feet and made him, as the ruler of everything, the head of the Church; which is his body, the fullness of him who fills the whole creation.
OR:
Second reading Hebrews 9:24-28,10:19-23 ©
It is not as though Christ had entered a man-made sanctuary which was only modelled on the real one; but it was heaven itself, so that he could appear in the actual presence of God on our behalf. And he does not have to offer himself again and again, like the high priest going into the sanctuary year after year with the blood that is not his own, or else he would have had to suffer over and over again since the world began. Instead of that, he has made his appearance once and for all, now at the end of the last age, to do away with sin by sacrificing himself. Since men only die once, and after that comes judgement, so Christ, too, offers himself only once to take the faults of many on himself, and when he appears a second time, it will not be to deal with sin but to reward with salvation those who are waiting for him.
  In other words, brothers, through the blood of Jesus we have the right to enter the sanctuary, by a new way which he has opened for us, a living opening through the curtain, that is to say, his body. And we have the supreme high priest over all the house of God. So as we go in, let us be sincere in heart and filled with faith, our minds sprinkled and free from any trace of bad conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us keep firm in the hope we profess, because the one who made the promise is faithful.

Gospel Luke 24:46-53 ©
Jesus said to his disciples, ‘You see how it is written that the Christ would suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that, in his name, repentance for the forgiveness of sins would be preached to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses to this.
  ‘And now I am sending down to you what the Father has promised. Stay in the city then, until you are clothed with the power from on high.’
  Then he took them out as far as the outskirts of Bethany, and lifting up his hands he blessed them. Now as he blessed them, he withdrew from them and was carried up to heaven. They worshipped him and then went back to Jerusalem full of joy; and they were continually in the Temple praising God.

9 posted on 05/08/2013 8:18:13 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | 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

10 posted on 05/08/2013 8:22:00 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: All

 

He is Risen! Truly Risen!

A blessed Eastertide to all!

 

11 posted on 05/08/2013 8:24:06 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | 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

12 posted on 05/08/2013 8:25:26 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | 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.


13 posted on 05/08/2013 8:33:16 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | 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 Luminous Mysteries or Mysteries of Light
(Thursdays) see Rosarium Virginis Mariae
1. Jesus' Baptism in the Jordan (II Corinthians 5:21, Matthew 3:17 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Gratitude for the gift of Faith]
2. Jesus' self-manifestation at the wedding of Cana (John 2:1- 12) [Spiritual fruit - Fidelity]
3. Jesus' proclamation of the Kingdom of God, with His call to conversion (Mark 1:15, Mark 2:3-13; Luke 7:47- 48, John 20:22-23) [Spiritual fruit - Desire for Holiness]
4. Jesus' Transfiguration (Luke 9:35 and parallels) [Spiritual fruit - Spiritual Courage]
5. Jesus' institution of the Eucharist, as the sacramental expression of the Paschal Mystery. (Luke 24:13-35 and parallels, 1 Corinthians 11:24-25) [Spiritual fruit - Love of our Eucharistic Lord]

14 posted on 05/08/2013 8:33:51 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: akk



~ 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
+

15 posted on 05/08/2013 8:35:25 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: All
Perpetual Novena for the Nation (Ecumenical)
16 posted on 05/08/2013 8:35:59 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: All
Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
17 posted on 05/08/2013 8:36:35 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | 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.


18 posted on 05/08/2013 8:38:00 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | 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]

19 posted on 05/08/2013 8:38:39 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | 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.


20 posted on 05/08/2013 8:41:44 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

The Ascension of the Lord - Solemnity - Year C
Commentary of the day
Blessed John Henry Newman (1801-1890), priest, founder of a religious community, theologian
Sermon « The Spiritual Presence of Christ in the Church », PPS, vol. 6, no.10

"Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age" (Mt 28,20)

Christ's going to the Father is at once a source of sorrow, because it involves his absence; and of joy, because it involves his presence. And out of the doctrine of his Resurrection and Ascension, spring those Christian paradoxes, often spoken of in Scripture, that we are sorrowing, yet always rejoicing; “as having nothing, yet possessing all things” (2Cor 6,10).

This, indeed, is our state at present; we have lost Christ and we have found him; we see him not, yet we discern him. We embrace his feet (Mt 28,9), yet he says, "Touch Me not" (Jn 20,17). How is this? it is thus: we have lost the sensible and conscious perception of him; we cannot look on him, hear him, converse with him, follow him from place to place; but we enjoy the spiritual, immaterial, inward, mental, real sight and possession of him; a possession more real and more present than that which the Apostles had in the days of his flesh, because it is spiritual, because it is invisible.

We know that the closer any object of this world comes to us, the less we can contemplate it and comprehend it. Christ has come so close to us in the Christian Church (if I may so speak), that we cannot gaze on him or discern him. He enters into us, he claims and takes possession of his purchased inheritance; he does not present himself to us, but he takes us to him. He makes us his members... We see him not, and know not of his presence, except by faith, because he is over us and within us. And thus we may at the same time lament because we are not conscious of his presence... and may rejoice because we know we do possess it... , according to the text, "Whom having not seen... you love; in whom, though now you see him not, yet believing, you rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory: receiving the end of your faith, even the salvation of your souls" (1Pt 1,8-9).


21 posted on 05/08/2013 8:43:52 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: All
Thursday, May 09, 2013
EasterWeekday
First Reading:
Psalm:
Gospel:
Acts 18:1-8
Psalm 98:1-4
John 16:16-20

I have found David My servant, with My holy oil I have anointed him; for My hand shall help him, and My arm shall strengthen him. The enemy shall have no advantage over him, and the son of iniquity shall not hurt him.

-- Psalm 88: 21-23


22 posted on 05/08/2013 8:47:29 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | 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.

23 posted on 05/08/2013 8:48:08 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

Comment #24 Removed by Moderator

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 05/09/2013 7:39:41 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
The Ascension of the Lord

The Ascension of the Lord
Feast Day
Thursday after the sixth Sunday of Easter or on the seventh Sunday of Easter

Christ in Glory
Detail from Disputa dei Sacramento - The Triumph of the Christian Faith
Raphael (ca 1508) Stanza della Segnatura, Apostolic Palace, Vatican

Readings - Hymn

The feast of the Ascension is celebrated on the fortieth day after Easter Sunday*, commemorating the Ascension of Christ into Heaven and His completion of the work of our redemption. The liturgy on this day celebrates the entry of Christ into heaven with our human nature glorified, and the pledge of our glorification with Him. In the past, processions outside the church were held on this day to imitate Christ's leading the Apostles out of the city to the Mount of Olives, and to commemorate the entry of Christ into heaven.

* In some dioceses of the United States, this feast is celebrated on the Seventh Sunday of Easter. See local liturgical calendar.

Readings

This high priest of ours is one who has taken His seat in heaven, on the right hand of that throne where God sits in majesty, monistering now in the sanctuary, in that true tabernacle which the Lord, not man, has set up. After all, it is ther very function of a pirest to offer gift and sacrifice.

Hebrews 8:1b:3a
Feast of the Ascension - Prayers for Midday

 

Collect at the Vigil Mass:

O God, whose Son today ascended to the heavens
as the Apostles looked on,
grant, we pray, that, in accordance with his promise,
we may be worthy for him to live with us always on earth,
and we with him in heaven.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

Collect:

Gladden us with holy joys, almighty God,
and make us rejoice with devout thanksgiving,
for the Ascension of Christ your Son
is our exaltation,
and, where the Head has gone before in glory,
the Body is called to follow in hope.
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. +Amen.

or

Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that we, who believe that your Only Begotten Son, our Redeemer,
ascended this day dwell already in heavenly realms.
Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

First Reading for Mass: Acts of the Apostles 1:1-11 Year A,B,C

In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up, after He had given commandment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom He had chosen. To them He presented Himself alive after His passion by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days, and speaking of the kingdom of God. And while staying with them He charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, He said, "you heard from Me, for John baptized with water, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit."

So when they had come together, they asked Him, "Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?" He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has fixed by His own authority. But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witness in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth." And when He had said this, as they were looking on, He was lifted up, and a cloud took Him out of their sight. And while they were gazing into heaven as He went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, and said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw Him go into heaven."

Second Reading: Ephesians 1:17-23 Year A,B,C

Jesus came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near; for through Him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. So then you are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built into it for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Year B Optional Readings: Eph 4:1-13 or Eph 4:1-7, 11-13
Year C Optional Readings: Heb 9:24-28 - 10:19-23

Year A
Gospel Reading: Matthew 28:16-20

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw Him they worshipped Him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age."

Year B
Gospel Reading: Mark 16:15-20

Jesus said to His disciples, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: in My name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover."
So then the Lord Jesus, after He had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven, and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went forth and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by the signs that attended it. Amen.

Year C
Gospel Reading: Luke 24:46-53

Jesus said to His disciples, "Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I send the promise of My Father upon you; but stay in the city, until you are clothed with power from on high."

Then He led them out as far as Bethany, and lifting up His hands He blessed them. While He blessed them, He parted from them, and was carried up into heaven. And they worshipped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and were continually in the temple blessing God.

(Scripture: RSV-CE Ignatius Bible)

Hymn for the Ascension

Hail the day that sees Him rise

Hail the day that sees Him rise, Alleluia!
Glorious to His native skies: Alleluia!
Christ, awhile to mortals giv'n, Alleluia!
Enters now the highest heav'n! Alleluia

There the glorious triumph waits; Alleluia!
Lift your heads, eternal gates! Alleluia!
Wide unfold the radiant scene; Alleluia!
Take the King of glory in! Alleluia!

See! He lifts His hands above, Alleluia!
See! He shows the prints of love: Alleluia!
Hark! His gracious lips bestow, Alleluia!
Blessings on His Church below. Alleluia!

Lord, beyond our mortal signt, Alleluia!
Raise our hearts to reach Thy height, Alleluia!
There Thy face unclouded see, Alleluia!
Find our heav'n of heav'ns in Thee. Alleluia!

Text: Charles Wesley (1707-88); Melody: Robert Williams (1781-1821)


26 posted on 05/09/2013 7:40:56 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: All
What the Lord’s Ascension Means
Please Let us Celebrate Ascension on Thursday Again
English Bishops May Transfer Ascension, Epiphany Back to Traditional Days
[CATHOLIC/ORTHODOX CAUCUS] 2nd Glorious Mystery: The Ascension (Patristic Rosary)
Jesus' Ascension gives a foretaste of life in Heaven, teaches Pope Benedict
The denial of the Ascension is as grave a departure from Christian teaching as is ...
[Our Lord's] Ascension
Podcast: Fr. Z Reads Pope St. Leo the Great's Sermon 74 (On the Ascension)
ASCENSION THURSDAY - Holy Day of Obligation in certain dioceses

Ascension Sunday(Sigh)
New Roman">Ascension Thursday Sermons
Today's the Solemnity of the Ascension of Our Lord
Ascension reveals the 'ultimate vocation' of all human beings, says Pope during prayer today
Extinguish the Paschal Candle on the Feast of Ascension . . . or Else!
HOMILIES PREACHED BY FATHER ALTIER ON THE SOLEMNITY OF THE ASCENSION
Ascension Thursday
Thursday of the Ascension of Our Lord
Feast of the Ascension - Catholic Holy Day of Obligation
The Ascension of Christ and His Glorified Existence

27 posted on 05/09/2013 7:47:43 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: All


Information:
St. Pachomius
Feast Day: May 9
Born: 292, Thebes, Egypt
Died: 9 May 348, Egypt


28 posted on 05/09/2013 7:53:15 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: All
Interactive Saints for Kids

Blessed Nicholas Albergati

Feast Day: May 09
Born: 1375 :: Died: 1443

Blessed Nicholas was born in Bologna, Italy. When he grew up, he studied law at the university. But after a few years, he decided not to become a lawyer. Instead, at the age of twenty, Nicholas joined the Carthusian order.

When he was about thirty-five Nicholas was chosen to be bishop of his native diocese. He reluctantly agreed but could not believe it could be God's will. His superiors assured him it was.

People liked Bishop Nicholas. Like them, he lived in a small, plain house and he often visited the people of his diocese. He went to the poorest families first. He blessed their homes, talked with them and helped them with their needs. The people were very grateful.

This wise and holy Bishop was made a cardinal in 1426. He helped maintain peace between Pope Martin V and the emperor. He also acted as peacemaker between Pope Eugene IV and the French king. These popes asked him for advice about important Church matters.

Blessed Nicholas is named the patron of learning and he wrote many books to encourage people to learn about their faith. He died in 1443 while on a visit to Siena, Italy. Pope Eugene IV had his body brought back to Bologna. The pope himself participated in the funeral Mass and burial.


29 posted on 05/09/2013 8:11:06 AM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Catholic
Almanac:
Thursday, May 9
Liturgical Color: White

Pope Paul V canonized St. Frances of Rome on this day in 1608. Many trials in her life, including the loss of her husband, son and family property, only served to increase her devotion to God.

30 posted on 05/09/2013 4:57:07 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Catholic Culture

Daily Readings for: May 09, 2013
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: O God, whose Son today ascended to the heavens as the Apostles looked on, grant, we pray, that, in accordance with his promise, we may be worthy for him to live with us always on earth, and we with him in heaven. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.


O God, who made your people partakers in your redemption, grant, we pray, that we may perpetually render thanks for the Resurrection of the Lord. Who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Easter: May 9th

Ascension of Our Lord or Thursday of the Sixth Week of Easter

Old Calendar: Ascension of Our Lord; St. Gregory Nazianzen, bishop, confessor and doctor; St. Pachomius (Hist)

The ecclesiastical provinces of Boston, Hartford, New York, Newark, Omaha, and Philadelphia have retained the celebration of the Ascension on the proper Thursday, while all other provinces have transferred this solemnity to the Seventh Sunday of Easter, May 20. If transferred today is observed as an Easter Weekday. The following readings are used: Acts 18:1-8/Jn 16:16-20 (294).

According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Gregory Nazianzen. He was educated at Athens in all the sciences with St. Basil the Great. He became bishop of Nazianzen and his profound knowledge earned for him the title of Doctor and Theologian, titles confirmed by the Church. He died in 389. His feast in the Ordinary Form of the Roman Rite is celebrated January 2.

Historically today is the feast of St. Pachomius, founder of the cenobitical life, born near Esneh, Egypt; died at Phebôou c.346. After spending some time with the hermit Palemon, he withdrew to Tabennisi where he introduced community life among the hermits who gathered around him. Before he died he had established nine monasteries for men and two for women. His order continued until the 11th century. Represented in hermit's garb, or crossing the Nile on the back of a crocodile.


St. Gregory Nazianzen
Gregory, surnamed the "Theologian" by the Greeks, was born at Nazianz in Cappadocia in 329. He was one of the "Three Lights of the Church from Cappadocia." To his mother, St. Nonna, is due the foundation for his saintly life as an adult. He was educated at the most famous schools of his time — Caesarea, Alexandria, Athens. At Athens he formed that storied bond of friendship with St. Basil which was still flaming with all the fervor of youthful enthusiasm when he delivered the funeral oration at the grave of his friend in 381.

Gregory was baptized in 360, and for a while lived the quiet life of a hermit. In 372 he was consecrated bishop by St. Basil. In 381 he accepted the see of Constantinople, but grieved by the constant controversies retired again to the quiet life he cherished so highly and dedicated himself entirely to contemplation.

During his life span the pendulum was continually swinging back and forth between contemplation and the active ministry. He longed for solitude, but the exigencies of the times called him repeatedly to do pastoral work and to participate in the ecclesiastical movements of the day. He was unquestionably one of the greatest orators of Christian antiquity; his many and great accomplishments were due in great measure to his exceptional eloquence. His writings have merited for him the title of "Doctor of the Church."

— Excerpted from The Church's Year of Grace, Pius Parsch

Things to Do:

  • We too must harmoniously combine the two phases of spiritual life, the contemplative which tends to solitude and the active or pastoral which responds to the need of the times and the good of souls.

St. Pachomius
St. Pachomius can justifiably be called the founder of cenobitic monasticism (monks who live in community). Even though St. Antony the Great was the first to go into the desert to live a life of seclusion pursuing evangelical perfection, he lived an eremitic life, that is, a primarily solitary life.

Pachomius first started out as a hermit in the desert like many of the other men and women in the third and fourth centuries who sought the most radical expression of Christian life and he developed a very strong bond of friendship with the hermit Palemon. One day he had a vision during prayer in which he was called to build a monastery, and was told in the vision that many people who are eager to live an ascetic life in the desert, but are not inclined to the solitude of the hermit, will come and join him. His hermit friend Palemon helped him to build the monastery and Pachomius insisted that his cenobites were to aspire to the austerity of the hermits.

However, he knew that his idea was a radical one, in that most of the men who came to live in his monastery had only ever conceived of the eremitic lifestyle; his great accomplishment was to reconcile this desire for austere perfection with an openness to fulfilling the mundane requirements of community life as an expression of Christian love and service. He spent most of his first years as a cenobitic doing all the menial work on his own, knowing that his brother monks needed to be gently inducted into serving their brothers in the same manner. He therefore allowed them to devote all their time to spiritual exercises in those first years. At his death, there were eleven Pachomian monasteries, nine for men and two for women.

The rule that Pachomius drew up was said to have been dictated to him by an angel, and it is this rule that both St. Benedict in the west and St. Basil in the east drew upon to develop their better known rules of cenobitic life.

— Catholic News Agency

Things to Do:


31 posted on 05/09/2013 5:28:13 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: All
The Word Among Us

Meditation: Acts 18:1-8

The Ascension of the Lord or Easter Weekday

A man named Titus Justus … (Acts 18:7)

Paul must have been pretty angry to shake out his garments and give up on the Jews in Corinth. But look! Just a few lines later, we read that the ruler of the synagogue and his whole family were converted, forming the foundation of the Corinthian church. How on earth did that happen? A man named Titus!

Titus was living a life that bridged two worlds. He was a Gentile, but he practiced Jewish customs and worshipped God. Despite all the opposition Paul received, Titus offered him a place to stay—and his house just happened to be right next door to the synagogue!

Coincidence? Probably not. God positioned Titus between two groups of people, and when Titus opened his door to Paul, he opened the door to an entire community of believers. Paul’s proximity to the synagogue, and his friendship with Titus, undoubtedly gave him numerous opportunities to keep sharing the gospel with the Jews who worshipped right next door to him. And it worked! From Paul’s later writings, we know that a number of Jews ended up joining the Corinthian church.

Maybe your life doesn’t bridge two worlds as obviously as Titus’ did. Still, think about the different groups of people you interact with. Think about your family, your job, your neighborhood, your church, the gym, and so on. Have you ever thought that God might have positioned you just perfectly in the midst of all these people to be a door-opener for the gospel?

Today, take some time to map out the many different connections you have. You could start by making a list or drawing a kind of web that illustrates the many groups you are linked to. Next, think and pray about how you can open the way for the gospel in each of these links. Then, look for ways to take advantage of these connections.

You may have to adjust your thinking a bit before you can see all the connections that God has placed in your life. But ask the Spirit to help you. And if you get stuck, just remember Titus. He simply invited Paul to stay with him. Even a small act of hospitality can do wonders!

“Lord, help me to open doors for the gospel wherever I go. Teach me how to bring people closer to you.”

Psalm 98:1-4; John 16:16-20


32 posted on 05/09/2013 5:38:52 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 31 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Luke
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  Luke 24
46 And he said to them: Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise again from the dead, the third day: et dixit eis : Quoniam sic scriptum est, et sic oportebat Christum pati, et resurgere a mortuis tertia die : και ειπεν αυτοις οτι ουτως γεγραπται και ουτως εδει παθειν τον χριστον και αναστηναι εκ νεκρων τη τριτη ημερα
47 And that penance and remission of sins should be preached in his name, unto all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. et prædicari in nomine ejus pœnitentiam, et remissionem peccatorum in omnes gentes, incipientibus ab Jerosolyma. και κηρυχθηναι επι τω ονοματι αυτου μετανοιαν και αφεσιν αμαρτιων εις παντα τα εθνη αρξαμενον απο ιερουσαλημ
48 And you are witnesses of these things. Vos autem testes estis horum. υμεις δε εστε μαρτυρες τουτων
49 And I send the promise of my Father upon you: but stay you in the city till you be endued with power from on high. Et ego mitto promissum Patris mei in vos ; vos autem sedete in civitate, quoadusque induamini virtute ex alto. και ιδου εγω αποστελλω την επαγγελιαν του πατρος μου εφ υμας υμεις δε καθισατε εν τη πολει ιερουσαλημ εως ου ενδυσησθε δυναμιν εξ υψους
50 And he led them out as far as Bethania: and lifting up his hands, he blessed them. Eduxit autem eos foras in Bethaniam, et elevatis manibus suis benedixit eis. εξηγαγεν δε αυτους εξω εως εις βηθανιαν και επαρας τας χειρας αυτου ευλογησεν αυτους
51 And it came to pass, whilst he blessed them, he departed from them, and was carried up to heaven. Et factum est, dum benediceret illis, recessit ab eis, et ferebatur in cælum. και εγενετο εν τω ευλογειν αυτον αυτους διεστη απ αυτων και ανεφερετο εις τον ουρανον
52 And they adoring went back into Jerusalem with great joy. Et ipsi adorantes regressi sunt in Jerusalem cum gaudio magno : και αυτοι προσκυνησαντες αυτον υπεστρεψαν εις ιερουσαλημ μετα χαρας μεγαλης
53 And they were always in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen. et erant semper in templo, laudantes et benedicentes Deum. Amen. και ησαν δια παντος εν τω ιερω αινουντες και ευλογουντες τον θεον αμην

33 posted on 05/09/2013 5:58:32 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: annalex
46. And said to them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day:
47. And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
48. And you are witnesses of these things.
49. And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you: but tarry you in the city of Jerusalem, until you be endued with power from on high.

THEOPHYL. Otherwise, how would their agitated and perplexed minds have learnt the mystery of Christ. But He taught them by His words; for it follows, And said to them, Thus it is written, and thus it behooved Christ to suffer, that is, by the wood of the Cross.

BEDE; But Christ would have lost the fruit of His Passion had He not been the Truth of the resurrection, therefore it is said, And to rise form the dead.

He then after having commended to them the truth of the body, commends the unity of the Church, adding, And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations.

EUSEB. For it was said, Ask of me, and I will give you the heathen for your inheritance. But it was necessary that those who were converted from the Gentiles should be purged from a certain stain and defilement through His virtue, being as it were corrupted by the evil of the worship of devils, and as lately converted from an abominable and unchaste life. And therefore He says that it behoves that first repentance should be preached, but next, remission of sins, to all nations. For to those who first showed. repentance for their sins, by His saving grace He granted pardon of their transgression, for whom also He endured death.

THEOPHYL. But herein that He says, Repentance and remission of sins, He also makes mention of baptism, in which by the putting off of our past sins there follows pardon of iniquity. But how must we understand baptism to be performed in the name of Christ alone, whereas in another place He commands it to be in the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost. First indeed we say that it is not meant that baptism is administered in Christ's name alone, but that a person is baptized with the baptism of Christ, that is, spiritually, not Judaically, nor with the baptism, wherewith John baptized to repentance only but to the participation of the blessed Spirit; as Christ also when baptized in Jordan manifested the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove. Moreover you must understand baptism in Christ's name to be in His death. For as He after death rose again on the third day, so we also are three times dipped in the water, and fitly brought out again, receiving thereby an earnest of the immortality of the Spirit. This name of Christ also contains in itself both the Father as the Anointer and the Spirit as the Anointing, and the Son as the Anointed, that is, in His human nature. But it was fitting that the race of man should no longer be divided into Jews and Gentiles, and therefore that He might unite all in one, He commanded that their preaching should begin at Jerusalem but be finished with the Gentiles. Hence it follows, Beginning at Jerusalem.

BEDE; Not only because to them were entrusted the oracles of God, and theirs is the adoption and the glory, but also that the Gentiles entangled in various errors might by this sign of Divine mercy be chiefly invited to come to hope, seeing that to them even who crucified the Son of God pardon is granted.

CHRYS. Further, lest any should say that abandoning their acquaintances they went to show themselves, (or as it were to vaunt themselves with a kind of pomp,) to strangers therefore first among the very murderers themselves are the signs of the resurrection displayed, in that very city wherein the frantic outrage burst forth. For where the crucifiers themselves are seen to believe, there the resurrection is most of all demonstrated.

EUSEB. But if those things which Christ foretold are already receiving their accomplishment, and His word is perceived by a seeing faith to be living and effectual throughout the whole world; it is time for men not to be unbelieving towards Him who uttered that word. For it is necessary that He should live a divine life, whose living works are shown to be agreeable to His words; and these indeed have been fulfilled by the ministry of the Apostles. Hence He adds, But you are witnesses of these things, &c. that is, of My death and resurrection.

THEOPHYL. Afterwards, lest they should be troubled at the thought, How shall we private individuals give our testimony to the Jews and Gentiles who have killed Thee? He subjoins, And, behold, I send the promise of my Father upon you, &c. which indeed He had promised by the mouth of the prophet Joel, I will pour my Spirit upon all flesh.

CHRYS. But as a general does not permit his soldiers who are about to meet a large number, to go out until they are armed, so also the Lord does not permit His disciples to go forth to the conflict before tile descent of the Spirit. And hence He adds, But tarry you in the city of Jerusalem, until you be endued with power from on high.

THEOPHYL. That is, not with human but heavenly power. He said not, until you receive, but be endued with, showing the entire protection of the spiritual armor.

BEDE; But concerning the power, that is, the Holy Spirit, the Angel also says to Mary, And the power of the Highest shall overshadow you. And the e Lord Himself says elsewhere, For I know that virtue is gone out of me.

CHRYS. But why did not the Spirit come while Christ was present, or immediately on His departure? Because it was fitting that they should become desirous of grace, and then at length receive it. For we are then most awakened towards God, when difficulties press upon us. It was necessary in the mean time that our nature should appear in Heaven, and the covenants be completed, and that then the Spirit should come, and pure joys be experienced. Mark also what a necessity He imposed upon them of being at Jerusalem, in that He promised that the Spirit should there be given them. For lest they should again flee away after His resurrection by this expectation, as it were a chain, He kept them all there together. But He says, until you be endued from on high. He did not express the time when, in order that they may be constantly watchful. But why then marvel that He does not reveal to us our last day, when He would not even make known this day which was close at hand.

GREG. They then are to be warned, whom age or imperfection hinders from the office of preaching, and yet rashness impels, lest while they hastily arrogate to themselves so responsible an office, they should cut themselves off from the way of future amendment. For the Truth Itself which could suddenly strengthen those whom it wished, in order to give an example to those that follow, that imperfect men should not presume to preach, after having fully instructed the disciples concerning the virtue of preaching, commanded them to abide in the city, until they were endued with power from on high. For we abide in a city, when we keep ourselves close within the gates of our minds, lest by speaking we wander beyond them; that when we are perfectly endued with divine power, we may then as it were go out beyond ourselves to instruct others.

AMBROSE; But let us consider how according to John they received the Holy Spirit, while here they are ordered to stay in the city until they should be endued with power from on high. Either He breathed the Holy Spirit into the eleven as being more perfect, and promised to give it to the rest afterwards; or to the same persons He breathed in the one place He promised in the other. Nor does there seem to be any contradiction, since there are diversities of graces. Therefore one operation He breathed into them there, another He promised here. For there the grace of remitting sins was given, which seems to be more confined, and therefore is breathed into them by Christ, that you may believe the Holy Spirit to be of Christ, to be from God. For God alone forgives sins. But Luke describes the pouring, forth of the grace of speaking with tongues.

CHRYS. Or He said, Receive you the Holy Spirit, that He might make them fit to receive it, or indicated as present that which was to come.

AUG. Or the Lord after His resurrection gave the Holy Spirit twice, once on earth, because of the love of our neighbor, and again from heaven, because of the love of God.

50. And he led them out as far as to Bethany and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.
51. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.
52. And they worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:
53. And were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.

BEDE; Having omitted all those things which may have taken place during forty-three days between our Lord and His disciples, St. Luke silently joins to the first day of the resurrection, the last day when He ascended into heaven, saying, And he led them out as far as to Bethany. First, indeed, because of the name of the place, which signifies "the house of obedience." For He who descended because of the disobedience of the wicked, ascended because of the obedience of the converted. Next, because of the situation of the same village, which is said to be placed on the side of the mount of Olives; because He has placed the foundations, as it were, of the house of the obedient Church, of faith, hope, and love, in the side of that highest mountain, namely, Christ. But He blessed them to whom He had delivered the precepts of His teaching; hence it follows, And he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.

THEOPHYL. Perhaps pouring into them a power of preservation, until the coming of the Spirit; and perhaps instructing them, that as often as we go away, we should commend to God by our blessing those who are placed under us.

ORIGEN; But that He blessed them with uplifted hands, signifies that it becomes him who blesses any one to be furnished with various works and labors in behalf of others. For in this way are the hands raised up on high.

CHRYS. But observe, that the Lord submits to our sight the promised rewards. He had promised the resurrection of the body; He rose from the dead, and conferred with His disciples for forty days. It is also promised that we shall be caught up in the clouds through the air; this also He made manifest by His works. For it follows, And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted, &c.

THEOPHYL. And Elias indeed was seen, as it were, to be taken up into heaven, but the Savior, the forerunner of all, Himself ascended into heaven to appear in the Divine sight in His sacred body; and already is our nature honored in Christ by a certain Angelic power.

CHRYS. But you will say, How does this concern me? Because you also shall be taken up in like manner into the clouds. For your body is of like nature to His body, therefore shall your body be so light, that it can pass through the air. For as is the head, so also is the body; as the beginning, so also the end. See then how you are honored by this beginning. Man was the lowest part of the rational creation, but the feet have been made the head, being lifted up aloft into the royal throne in their head.

BEDE; When the Lord ascended into heaven, the disciples adoring Him where His feet lately stood, immediately return to Jerusalem, where they were commanded to wait for the promise of the Father, for it follows, And they worshipped him, and returned, &c. Great indeed was their joy, for they rejoice that their God and Lord after the triumph of His resurrection had also passed into the heavens.

GREEK EX. And they were watching, praying, and fasting, because indeed they were not living in their own homes, but were abiding in the temple, expecting the grace from on high; among other things also learning from the very place piety and honesty. Hence it is said, And were continually in the temple.

THEOPHYL. The Spirit had not yet come, and yet their conversation is spiritual. Before they were shut up; now they stand in the midst of the chief priests; distracted by no worldly object, but despising all things, they praise God continually; as it follows, Praising and blessing God.

BEDE; And observe that among the four beasts in heaven, Luke is said to be represented by the calf, for by the sacrifice of a calf, they were ordered to be initiated who were chosen to the priesthood; and Luke has undertaken to explain more fully than the rest the priesthood of Christ; and his Gospel, which he commenced with the ministry of the temple in the priesthood of Zacharias, he has finished with the devotion in the temple. And he has placed the Apostles there, about to be the ministers of a new priesthood, not in the blood of sacrifices, but in the praises of God and in blessing, that in the place of prayer and amidst the praises of their devotion, they might wait with prepared hearts for the promise of the Spirit.

THEOPHYL. Whom imitating, may we ever dwell in a holy life, praising and blessing God; to Whom be glory and blessing and power, for ever and ever. Amen.

Catena Aurea Luke 24
34 posted on 05/09/2013 5:58:56 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: annalex


The dome of the Church of the Ascension

Pavlov Posad, Moscow Eparchy

35 posted on 05/09/2013 5:59:32 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
John
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  John 16
16 A little while, and now you shall not see me; and again a little while, and you shall see me: because I go to the Father. Modicum, et jam non videbitis me ; et iterum modicum, et videbitis me : quia vado ad Patrem. μικρον και ου θεωρειτε με και παλιν μικρον και οψεσθε με οτι υπαγω προς τον πατερα
17 Then some of the disciples said one to another: What is this that he saith to us: A little while, and you shall not see me; and again a little while, and you shall see me, and, because I go to the Father? Dixerunt ergo ex discipulis ejus ad invicem : Quid est hoc quod dicit nobis : Modicum, et non videbitis me ; et iterum modicum, et videbitis me, et quia vado ad Patrem ? ειπον ουν εκ των μαθητων αυτου προς αλληλους τι εστιν τουτο ο λεγει ημιν μικρον και ου θεωρειτε με και παλιν μικρον και οψεσθε με και οτι εγω υπαγω προς τον πατερα
18 They said therefore: What is this that he saith, A little while? we know not what he speaketh. Dicebant ergo : Quid est hoc quod dicit : Modicum ? nescimus quid loquitur. ελεγον ουν τουτο τι εστιν ο λεγει το μικρον ουκ οιδαμεν τι λαλει
19 And Jesus knew that they had a mind to ask him; and he said to them: Of this do you inquire among yourselves, because I said: A little while, and you shall not see me; and again a little while, and you shall see me? Cognovit autem Jesus, quia volebant eum interrogare, et dixit eis : De hoc quæritis inter vos quia dixi : Modicum, et non videbitis me ; et iterum modicum, et videbitis me. εγνω ουν ο ιησους οτι ηθελον αυτον ερωταν και ειπεν αυτοις περι τουτου ζητειτε μετ αλληλων οτι ειπον μικρον και ου θεωρειτε με και παλιν μικρον και οψεσθε με
20 Amen, amen I say to you, that you shall lament and weep, but the world shall rejoice; and you shall be made sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy. Amen, amen dico vobis : quia plorabitis, et flebitis vos, mundus autem gaudebit ; vos autem contristabimini, sed tristitia vestra vertetur in gaudium. αμην αμην λεγω υμιν οτι κλαυσετε και θρηνησετε υμεις ο δε κοσμος χαρησεται υμεις δε λυπηθησεσθε αλλ η λυπη υμων εις χαραν γενησεται

36 posted on 05/09/2013 6:00:31 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: annalex
16. A little while, and you shall not see me; and again, a little while, and you shall see me, because I go to the Father.
17. Then said some of his disciples among themselves, What is this that he said to us, A little while, and you shall not see me; and again, a little while, and you shall see me, and, Because I go to the Father?
18. They said therefore, What is this that he said, A little while? We cannot tell what he said.
19. Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask him, and said to them, Do you enquire among yourselves of that I said, A little while, and you shall not see me; and again, a little while, and you shall see me?
20. Verily, verily, I say to you, That you shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice; and you shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

CHRYS. Our Lord after having relieved the spirits of the disciples by the promise of the Holy Spirit, again depresses them: A little while, and you shall not see Me. He does this to accustom them to the mention of His departure, in order that they may bear it well, when it does come. For nothing so quiets the troubled mind, as the continued recurrence to the subject of its grief.

BEDE. He said, A little while, and you shall not see Me alluding to His going to be taken that night by the Jews, His crucifixion the next morning, and burial in the evening, which withdrew Him from all human sight.

CHRYS. But then, if one examines, these are words of consolation: Because I go to the Father. For they show that His death was only a translation; and more consolation follows: And again, a little while, and you shall see Me: an intimation this that He would return and, after a short separation, come and live with them for ever.

AUG. The meaning of these words however was obscure, before their fulfillment; Then said some of His disciples among themselves, What is this that He said to us, A little while, and you shall not see Me; and again, a little while, and you shall see Me; and, Because I go to the Father?

CHRYS. Either sorrow had confused their minds, or the obscurity of the words themselves prevented their understanding them, and made them appear contradictory. If we shall see Thee, they say, how do You go? If you go, how shall we see you? What is this that He said to us, A little while? We cannot tell what He said.

AUG. For above, because He did not say, A little while, but simply, I go to the Father, He seemed to speak plainly. But what to them was obscure at the time, but by and by manifested, is manifest to us. For in a little while He suffered, and they did not see Him; and again, in a little while He rose again, and they saw Him. He says, And you shall see Me no more; for the mortal Christ they saw no more.

ALCUIN. Or thus, It will be a little time during which you will not see Me, i.e. the three days that He rested in the grave; and again, it will be a little time during which you shall see Me, i.e. the forty days of His appearance amongst them, from His Passion to His ascension. And you shall see Me for that little time only, Because I go to the Father; for I am not going to stay always in the body here, but, by that humanity which I have assumed, to ascend to heaven.

It follows: Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask Him, and said to them, Do you enquire among yourselves of that I said, A little while, and you shall not see Me; and again, a little while, and you shall see Me? Verily, verily, I say to you, That you shall weep and lament. Their merciful Master, understanding their ignorance and doubts, replied so as to explain what He had said.

AUG. Which must be understood thus: viz. that the disciples sorrowed at their Lord's death, and then immediately rejoiced at His resurrection. The world (i.e. the enemies of Christ, who put Him to death) rejoiced just when the disciples sorrowed, i.e. at His death: You shall weep and lament, but the world shall rejoice; and you shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.

ALCUIN. But this speech of our Lord's is applicable to all believers who strive through present tears and afflictions to attain to the joys eternal. While the righteous weep, the world rejoices; for having no hope of the joys to come, all its delight is in the present.

Catena Aurea John 16
37 posted on 05/09/2013 6:01:01 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: annalex


Ascension of Christ

Andrea di Vanni d'Andrea

1355-60
Tempera on wood, 68 x 28 cm
The Hermitage, St. Petersburg

38 posted on 05/09/2013 6:01:29 PM PDT by annalex (fear them not)
[ 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 9, 2013:

Christ ascended into heaven of his own power; the rest of us need a little help from our friends. What lifts your beloved up – a sunny day? a warm bath? a massage? an offer to do one of his/her chores? Jump up and lift up your beloved today.


39 posted on 05/09/2013 6:09:04 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: All
Insight Scoop

Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger on what "the feast of the Ascension wants to teach us"

 

From Images of Hope: Meditations on Major Feasts, in a chapter titled, "The Beginning of a New Nearness":

You are surely familiar with all those precious, naïve images in which only the feet of Jesus are visible, sticking out of the cloud, at the heads of the apostles. The cloud, for its part, is a dark circle on the perimeter; on the inside, however, blazing light. It occurs to me that precisely in the apparent naïveté of this representation something very deep comes into view. All we see of Christ in the time of history are his feet and the cloud. His feet—what are they? We are reminded, first of all, of a peculiar sentence from the Resurrection account in Matthew's Gospel, where it is said that the women held onto the feet of the Risen Lord and worshipped him. As the Risen One, he towers over earthly proportions. We can still only touch his feet; and we touch them in adoration. Here we could reflect that we come as worshippers, following his trail, close to his footsteps. Praying, we go to him; praying, we touch him, even if in this world, so to speak, always only from below, only from afar, always only on the trail of his earthly steps. At the same time it becomes clear that we do not find the footprints of Christ when we look only below, when we measure only footprints and want to subsume faith in the obvious. The Lord is movement toward above, and only in moving ourselves, in looking up and ascending, do we recognize him. When we read the Church Fathers something important is added. The correct ascent of man occurs precisely where he learns, in humbly turning toward his neighbor, to bow very deeply, down to his feet, down to the gesture of the washing of feet. It is precisely humility, which can bow low, that carries man upward. This is the dynamic of ascent that the feast of the Ascension wants to teach us. 

Read another excerpt from the same book, "Primacy in Love."

40 posted on 05/09/2013 7:09:09 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Insight Scoop

The Image of Man Has Been Raised Up: On the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord

 



The Image of Man Has Been Raised Up: On the Feast of the Ascension of the Lord | Carl E. Olson 

"You ascended into glory, O Christ our God, and You delighted the disciples with the promise of the Holy Spirit. Through this blessing, they were assured that You are the Son of God, the Redeemer of the World."
Troparion for the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, Feast of the Ascension of our Lord Jesus Christ

"Christ's Ascension is therefore not a spectacle for the disciples but an event into which they themselves are included. It is a sursum corda, a movement toward the above into which we are all called. It tells us that man can live toward the above, that he is capable of attaining heights. More: the altitude that alone is suited to the dimensions of being human is the altitude of God himself. Man can live at this height, and only from this height do we properly understand him. The image of man has been raised up, but we have the freedom to tear it down or to let ourselves be raised."
Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, from Images of Hope: Meditations On Major Feasts (Ignatius Press, 2006)


Readings:

• Acts 1:1-11
• Psa. 47:2-3, 6-7, 8-9
• Eph. 1:17-23 or Heb. 9:24-28; 10:19-23
• Lk 24:46-53

"As he blessed them he parted from them and was taken up to heaven." (Lk 24:51)

With these simple, matter-of-fact words, Luke describes the Ascension of Jesus, expressed even more concisely in the Creed: "He ascended into heaven." This event is so important for Luke that the Acts of the Apostles opens with a description of the same event. As the disciples looked on, Luke records, Jesus "was lifted up, and a cloud took him from their sight" (Acts 1:9). Mark's account, heard today, is equally direct and succinct: "So then the Lord Jesus, after he spoke to them, was taken up into heaven and took his seat at the right hand of God" (Mk. 16:19).

This dramatic moment has been celebrated in the Church on the fortieth day after Easter since the earliest centuries. Some of the Church Fathers, including Augustine, said that the feast had been observed since the time of the apostles, although the earliest evidence of its celebration dates to the fifth century. In the Latin Rite in the United States the Feast of the Ascension is one of six solemnities, the others being the solemnities of Mary, Mother of God (January 1); the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (August 15); All Saints (November 1), the Immaculate Conception (December 8), and the Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ (December 25).

Despite being a solemnity and a holy day of obligation, the Feast of the Ascension is sometimes completely overlooked or not given much attention. Ask Catholics what is the significance of the Feast and answers aren't always immediate. The rather mysterious nature of the Feast is heightened in some ecclesiastical provinces by its transference from the sixth Thursday of Easter to the following Sunday. In a way, the Solemnity bears a resemblance to the sacrament of Confirmation, the exact meaning of which is not always understood well and suffers for not being more clearly explained and comprehended.

This occasional murkiness is unfortunate because the Ascension is such a joyful event in the work and life of Jesus Christ, as well as being a vital reality in the ongoing life and mission of the Church. To appreciate this joy and vitality we should keep in mind what the Catechism of the Catholic Church states about the liturgical calendar: The Church, "in the course of the year, . . . unfolds the whole mystery of Christ from his Incarnation and Nativity through his Ascension, to Pentecost and the expectation of the blessed hope of the coming of the Lord" (CCC, 1194).

Hinted at here are revealing parallels between the Incarnation and the Ascension and between the Nativity and Pentecost. In the Incarnation the eternal Son of God took on human nature in order to save mankind. By the power of the Holy Spirit, divinity and humanity were united in one Person; the Word became flesh (Jn 1:14) and lowered Himself to the level of dust and death. The Nativity is the physical, outward revelation of this reality: the Christ Child is born and history and the world are never the same.

At the Ascension the crucified, risen Son of God returns to His Father. Having descended to dusty earth, He now returns to heavenly glory. Having conquered death, He ascends to eternal life. But He returns to the right hand of the Father not just as the Word, but as the Incarnate Word. The doors of heaven are now open and humanity can now approach the throne room of God, the way having been paved by the life, death, and resurrection of the God-man. Pentecost, finally, is the manifestation of the God-man's Church, which is both human and divine. The Church was revealed to the world on that day—fifty days after Easter—by the power of the Holy Spirit.

All of this theology is nice enough, but what does it mean for us? It means the Feast of the Ascension is a celebration of salvation won. The Catholic Encyclopedia notes that "in the Eastern Church this feast was known as analepsis, the taking up, and also as the episozomene, the salvation, denoting that by ascending into His glory Christ completed the work of our redemption." The tendency is often to think of the Resurrection as the culmination of Jesus' salvific work, but it is the Ascension that places the final stamp of approval on the sacrificial and victorious work of our Savior. This is beautifully expressed in the first chapter of Paul's epistle to the Ephesians:

May the eyes of your hearts be enlightened, that you may know what is the hope that belongs to his call, what are the riches of glory in his inheritance among the holy ones, and what is the surpassing greatness of his power for us who believe, in accord with the exercise of his great might: which he worked in Christ, raising him from the dead and seating him at his right hand in the heavens ... (Eph. 1:17-20).
Now that the Incarnate Son of God has ascended into heaven and sits in the throne room of God, mankind can follow. United to the Son through baptism and deepening communion with Him through reception of the Holy Eucharist and the other sacraments, the hope of heaven is ours.

"The ascension of Christ is our elevation," declared Leo the Great in a sermon on the Ascension, "Hope for the body is also invited where the glory of the Head preceded us. Let us exult, dearly beloved, with worthy joy and be glad with a holy thanksgiving. Today we not only are established as possessors of paradise, but we have even penetrated the heights of the heavens in Christ." Where the sin of the first Adam closed the gates of Paradise, the righteousness of the new Adam has opened them wide.

Jesus promised His disciples that He would prepare a place for them (Jn. 14). Because of the Ascension, we know He has prepared a place for those who are His. Because of the Ascension, we have the hope of His return and of our future passage into glory. "The Ascension, then," Pope John Paul II explained in May 2000, "is a Trinitarian epiphany which indicates the goal to which personal and universal history is hastening. Even if our mortal body dissolves into the dust of the earth, our whole redeemed self is directed on high to God, following Christ as our guide."

Our Guide has come, died, rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven. Let us celebrate the Feast!

(This article was originally published in 2004 in Our Sunday Visitor in a slightly different form.)

41 posted on 05/09/2013 7:11:07 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: All
Vultus Christi

Nos Tuo Vultu Saties

 on May 8, 2013 7:36 PM |
 
ascensio.jpg

The Ascension of the Lord

Forty-one years ago, in the springtime of my monastic journey, my Father Master -- he must have been all of 34 at the time -- told me that of all the festivals of the Church Year none was more intrinsically contemplative than the Ascension of the Lord. He spoke to me of the virtue of hope, calling it the most monastic of virtues, and meditated with me on the Vespers hymn of the Ascension, the incomparable Fourth Mode, Jesu, Nostra Redemptio. The melody is perfectly suited to the text. It has been, in some way, the musical accompaniment to my monastic journey with its sorrows and joys, with its valleys of darkness and glimmers of light. It expresses better than any other hymn the prayer of yearning by which, already here and now, a monk can hope to be united to his love and his desire. I translated the metred Latin text into prose.

Jesu, nostra redemptio,
Amor et desiderium,
Deus Creator omnium,
Homo in fine temporum.

O Jesus, our redemption,
our love, and our desire,
God, Creator of all things,
become Man in the fullness of time.

Quae te vicit clementia,
Ut ferres nostra crimina,
Crudelem mortem patiens,,
Ut nos a morte tolleres!

What tender love, what pity
compelled Thee to bear our crimes,
to suffer a cruel death
that we, from death, might be saved?

Inferni claustra penetrans,
Tuos captivos redimens,
Victor triumpho nobili
Ad dextram Patris residens:

Into death’s dark cloister didst Thou descend,
and from it captives free didst bring;
Thy triumph won, Thou didst take Thy place,
Thou, the Victor, at the Father’s right.

Ipse te cogat pietas,
Ut mala nostra superes,
Parcendo, et voti compotes
Nos tuo vultu saties.

'Twas a tender love, a costly compassion
that pressed Thee our sorrows to bear;
granting pardon, Thou didst raise us up
to fill us full with the splendour of Thy face.

Tu esto nostrum gaudium,
Qui es futurus praemium:
Sit nostra in te gloria
Per cuncta semper saecula.

Thou art already the joy of all our days,
Thou Who in eternity will be our prize;
let all our glory be in Thee,
forever, and always, and in the age to come.


42 posted on 05/09/2013 7:22:35 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Vultus Christi

Chapter I. Of the Several Kinds of Monks and Their Way of Life
8 Jan. 9 May. 8 Sept.
It is well known that there are four kinds of monks. The first are the cenobites: that is those in monasteries, who live under a rule or an Abbot.

Cenobites

The word monk (Latin: monachus; Greek: μοναχός) is, in itself, a whole program of life. The word means a solitary or one who, seeking God, lives alone or apart. By extension, it can refer to a man whose heart belongs to the one imperishable treasure revealed in Christ. "Where thy treasure is, there is thy heart also" (Matthew 6:21). The monk is that man of the Gospel (Matthew 13:44-45) who, having found a treasure hidden in the field, went, full of joy, and, having sold all that he had, bought the field. Again, he is like the merchant seeking good pearls, who when he found one pearl of great price, went his way, sold all that he had, and bought it.

Saint Benedict's monk has one focus in life: the Unum Necessarium (one thing necessary) that Our Lord revealed to Saint Martha at Bethany when He said, "Martha, Martha, thou art careful, and art troubled about many things, but one thing is necessary. Mary hath chosen the best part, which shall not be taken away from her" (Luke 10:41-42).

The word cenobite is derived from two Greek words: κοινός, meaning common, and βίος meaning life. Some commentators would say that the first cenobites were the Christians of the primitive Apostolic community, insofar as they lived together, under authority, following the teaching of the Apostles.

And all they that believed, were together, and had all things common. Their possessions and goods they sold, and divided them to all, according as every one had need. And continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they took their meat with gladness and simplicity of heart; praising God, and having favour with all the people. (Acts 2:44-46).

A cenobite, or cenobitic monk, according to Saint Benedict's description, lives in community with other monks, under a rule and an Abbot. Today, the Holy Rule of Saint Benedict is, more often than not, interpreted by a complementary text called Constitutions or Declarations. In a small monastery, such as ours, the Father of the community is called a prior, rather than an abbot. His responsibilities, however, are the same as those of an abbot.

There are, then, three components of cenobitic monasticism: 1) life together in a single monastery; 2) corporate submission to a rule; 3) under the authority and care of an abbot.

Solitaries

The second are the Anchorites or Hermits: that is those who, not in the first fervour of religious life, but after long probation in the monastery, have learned by the help and experience of many to fight against the devil; and going forth well armed from the ranks of their brethren to the single-handed combat of the desert, are able, without the support of others, to fight by the strength of their own arm, God helping them, against the vices of the flesh and their evil thoughts.

Saint Benedict presents anchorites or hermits as veterans of the cenobitic life. The experience of bearing patiently, day after day, and year after year, with other men marked by "infirmities of body or mind" (Chapter LXXVII) is precious and indispensable. It constitutes the best purification of the heart, the most fruitful ascetical exercise, and the highest school of charity.

Only after long years of manfully struggling, in the midst of his brethren, against the eight principal vices enumerated by Saint John Cassian -- gluttony, lust, greed, hubris, wrath, envy, listlessness, and boasting -- is a monk in any way prepared for a life of complete solitude. The monk who enters the solitude of the desert prematurely will find himself vomited out of it, for the desert is a severe and uncompromising host for the man who enters it tainted with self-absorption and not entirely resolved to die to the world and and to all things passing.

In the meantime, Benedictine life, such as we live it, offers hours and spaces of solitude that provide the cenobite with a prudently measured experience of the desert. Unlike the Cistercians, who often privilege the common life at all times and in all places, to the point of sleeping in a dormitory, and of reading and studying in a scriptorium, our observance would be marked by a certain affection for the solitude of the cell: the monk's ordinary place of lectio divina, study and, sometimes, work.

Sarabites

A third and most baneful kind of monks are the Sarabites, who have been tried by no rule nor by the experience of a master, as gold in the furnace; but being as soft as lead, and still serving the world in their works, are by their tonsure to lie to God. These in twos or threes, or even singly, without a shepherd, shut up, not in the Lord's sheepfolds, but in their own, make a law to themselves in the pleasure of their own desires: whatever they think fit or choose to do, that they call holy; and what they like not, that they consider unlawful.

The Sarabites have no reference outside themselves: no rule, no abbot, no received tradition. They are "cafeteria monks", choosing from among things monastic whatever strikes their fancy, and sneering at the rest. Lest one become too smug in one's judgment of the Sarabites, I must add that there is in every monk -- myself included -- at least at certain hours, a touch of the Sarabite. The devil can fill a cenobite with loathing for the rule, antipathy towards the abbot, and a biting criticism of tradition. The Sarabite syndrome can be summed up as: "I want to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, in the way I want to do it."

Gyrovagues

The fourth kind of monks are those called "Girovagi," who spend all their lives-long wandering about divers provinces, staying in different cells for three or four days at a time, ever roaming, with no stability, given up to their own pleasures and to the snares of gluttony, and worse in all things than the Sarabites. Of the most wretched life of these it is better to say nothing than to speak. Leaving them alone therefore, let us set to work, by the help of God, to lay down a rule for the Cenobites, that is, the strongest kind of monks.

The Gyrovagues described here by Saint Benedict are restless wanderers, never content with what they find in one place, ever itching for novelty. The temptation to seek out a change of scenery, of diet, of brethren, and even of liturgical praxis is a classic demonic ploy. The Gyrovague is a man incapable of submission or, if you will, a kind of monastic philanderer ever moving from cloister to cloister, the way some men move from one relationship to another without ever making a life-long commitment.

This being said, one must be careful not to judge one's brother (or sister) a Gyrovague, because one is never in full possession of all the facts. I think immediately of Mectilde de Bar (1614-1698), the "Teresa of Avila" of the Benedictine Order in the 17th century, a reformer and mystic of outstanding significance in the history of spirituality. Mectilde began her religious life as an Annonciade, in an Order of Franciscan obedience. Forced out of monastery by the vicissitudes of the Thirty Years War, she and her companions took refuge with a community of reformed Benedictines; there Mectilde discovered the Rule of Saint Benedict, asked to be received as a novice, and made profession as a Benedictine. This profession was later contested by the Friars Minor who judged her a "fake Benedictine." It took a decision of the Holy See to silence those who questioned the validity of her Benedictine profession.

Benedictine though she was, and this to the very core of her being, stability and enclosure were not to be the lot of Mother Mectilde de Bar. Diverse circumstances, in which it is permitted to see an action of Divine Providence, swept Mectilde from one place to another. At one point she was sorely tempted to drop out entirely, to disappear by running away to a mountainous desert place in the south of France. Once she accepted God's will that she should, even in the face of poverty, political intrigues, and virulent opposition, establish monasteries of Benedictine life marked by perpetual adoration of the Most Holy Sacrament, her interior stability became immovable. Her stability was in the Sacred Host. Until the end of her life, like Saint Teresa of Avila, she traveled extensively, consumed with a burning desire to offer Our Lord victims of adoration and reparation who would, like so many grains of incense, consume themselves in the fire of His Eucharistic Love.

With effects no less devastating than those of the Thirty Years War in the 17th century, monastic life in the West, with very few exceptions, was struck by a kind of revolution. The year 1968 is often cited as marking the beginning of an age of "bare, ruined choirs." Many men of that time who, like myself, entered monastic life in search of the pax benedictina safeguarded and fostered by fidelity to tradition, were told, instead, that there were no absolutes and no certainties, and that everything, beginning with the sacred liturgy itself, had to be re-invented. Benedictine stability was, in many places, stripped of the very elements that made it possible and desirable. Some took to the road like Saint Benedict-Joseph Labre. Others sought out small communities where there appeared to be a glimmer of hope; most of these ended in delusion and heartbreak. Still others entered the few continental abbeys where the classic Benedictine life was alive and thriving in its most traditional expression.

The post-Conciliar years were profoundly destabilizing. The men and women whom critics were quick to label Gyrovagues may have been poor destabilised seekers of God, spiritually homeless, waiting for the return of the serenity without which a true discernment and an enduring commitment to stability are not possible. "Let us go forth therefore to him without the camp, bearing his reproach. For we have not here a lasting city, but we seek one that is to come. By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise always to God, that is to say, the fruit of lips confessing to his name. "(Hebrews 13:13-15)

Are there still Gyrovagues then? I leave that to the judgment of God and of Saint Benedict, giving the last word to the prophet Jeremias:

Blessed be the man that trusteth in the Lord, and the Lord shall be his confidence. And he shall be as a tree that is planted by the waters, that spreadeth out its roots towards moisture: and it shall not fear when the heat cometh. And the leaf thereof shall be green, and in the time of drought it shall not be solicitous, neither shall it cease at any time to bring forth fruit. The heart is perverse above all things, and unsearchable, who can know it? I am the Lord who search the heart and prove the reins: who give to every one according to his way, and according to the fruit of his devices. (Jeremiah 17:7-10).

43 posted on 05/09/2013 7:24:52 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

I Am a Witness to You
| SPIRITUAL LIFE | SPIRITUALITY
Ascension Thursday

 

Luke 24:46-53

And Jesus said to them, "Thus it is written that the Messiah would suffer and rise from the dead on the third day and that repentance, for the forgiveness of sins, would be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold I am sending the promise of my Father upon you; but stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high." Then he led them out as far as Bethany, raised his hands, and blessed them. As he blessed them he parted from them and was taken up to heaven. They did him homage and then returned to Jerusalem with great joy, and they were continually in the Temple praising God.

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: Lord, help me to praise you and spread your message everywhere.

1. We Too Are Witnesses to the Work of Jesus Christ: What a beautiful scene. Our Lord suffered, died, rose on the third day and then spent 40 days with the apostles and the disciples. Now, just before he ascends into heaven, he leaves his Church with this message of love — mercy and forgiveness. The apostles experienced Our Lord’s mercy. Now he gives them the commission to go out into the whole world and preach forgiveness of sins in the power of the most holy of names: “Jesus.” Because the apostles preached as Christ had told them, we are all beneficiaries of Our Lord’s mercy. We have experienced this in our hearts. We, too, must bear witness to the work of Jesus Christ.

2. Clothe Me with Your Holy Power, Lord Jesus: We know that an apple seed, if given proper nourishment, will become an apple tree and produce many apples through many seasons. We know this through experience. God made the apple seed, and he gave it power to become an apple tree. Now Christ tells the apostles he will clothe them with power from on high so that they will be blessed with something that is well beyond their own human nature and power. They will be given the power to bear abundant fruit for the kingdom of Christ. Two thousand years later, Christ is still clothing people with this power from on high: with the gifts of the Holy Spirit, which we received when we were baptized and in greater proportion when we were confirmed. Through prayer we begin to see with supernatural vision the person we can be and the fruit we can produce.

3. May I Give You Only Praise and Adoration: The apostles were sad and dejected when Our Lord told them he would be leaving. Now, they are filled with awe and praise. The scales have fallen from their eyes. The shadow of the cross no longer strikes the same fear in their hearts. Christ has conquered sin and death, and they are witnesses to this, for they have experienced it in their own lives. This past Lent we accompanied Our Lord during his passion and death. We then witnessed his resurrection. Now we see him ascending into heaven. Like the apostles, we, too, are so moved to stand in awe of so great a God that we are compelled to sing his praises day and night. This attitude goes hand-in-hand with being messengers of his love to all peoples.

Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, I want to be a holy dwelling place for the Holy Spirit. Your gift to me is your Spirit of truth and love. You nourish me with the things of heaven. May I decrease so that you may increase.

Resolution: I will speak well of others today and shun all tendency to judge others or speak badly of them.


44 posted on 05/09/2013 7:33:34 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: All

Where Is God?

 

by Food For Thought on May 9, 2013 ·

In today’s Gospel, we see that the disciples do not understand what
Jesus has been saying. In particular, they do not understand what Jesus
is talking about when he tells them that they will not see him, and
then a little later they will see him again. They do not know what he
is talking about.

It seems obvious to us that Jesus was talking about his death and
resurrection. But we Christians today have the benefit of hindsight. So
what seems obvious to us would not have been so clear to the disciples.
They could not have understood that Jesus was talking about dying, and
then rising again and appearing to them.

Some of the most difficult moments in our lives are when we do not
understand what God’s plan is for us, like times when life is filled
with suffering, and we do not understand why God would allow this
happen to us. Or times when we feel that Jesus has deserted us, right
at the moment when we really need him. Or when a crushing blow
unexpectedly threatens to derail us. Or when we struggle with that
all-important question: Its is during these moments we seem to ask
ourselves “Where is God?”

We do not always understand Jesus. If we did, then he will not be God.
Perhaps, if we can always understood his plan for us, then perhaps we
will not be living by faith. Faith is believing in Jesus even though we
do not see him, even when we do not always understand his plan for us.

Let us continue to trust Jesus in good times and especially in
difficult times. Let us be reminded to ask him to help us, to strength
our faith and trust in him, especially during those times when we need
him the most.


45 posted on 05/09/2013 7:47:12 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body

 


<< Thursday, May 9, 2013 >>
 
Acts 18:1-8
View Readings
Psalm 98:1-4 John 16:16-20
 

HELP WANTED

 
"When Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul began to occupy himself totally with preaching the word." —Acts 18:5, RNAB
 

St. Paul came alone to the Greek city of Corinth (Acts 18:1-3). Paul had been given the spiritual gift of teaching. However, he was an outreach team of one, and so his impact was limited. He found work as a tentmaker to support himself (Acts 18:3). It is certainly possible to work a full-time job and evangelize effectively; for example, many in Presentation Ministries have full-time secular jobs and still volunteer our free time to evangelize. Nonetheless, it is clear that Paul's evangelistic outreach was multiplied when his co-workers Silas and Timothy arrived (Acts 18:5).

Paul's two co-workers were exercising the spiritual gift of assistance or "helps" (see 1 Cor 12:28). Their practical and financial support apparently freed Paul from having to spend so much time as a tentmaker. Now that Silas and Timothy were in Corinth to round out the outreach team, Paul could be totally occupied with evangelization, preaching, and teaching (Acts 18:5).

Some of you who read this have also been called by God to be helpers or assistants (1 Cor 12:28). When that gift is not being used or welcomed, the spread of God's Word will be limited. Preachers, evangelists, and teachers need spirit-filled assistants and helpers. If you have this calling, you generally won't receive top billing on the program. However, "be content with what you have" (Heb 13:5) and use your gift bountifully. Those who minister cannot be as fruitful without the Spirit working freely through their helpers.

 
Prayer: Father, during the upcoming Pentecost Novena, raise up many assistants and helpers to bring our nation back to You.
Promise: "You will grieve for a time, but your grief will be turned into joy." —Jn 16:20
Praise: Juan repented and went to Confession for the first time in fifteen years. Now he leads a Bible Study at his workplace.

46 posted on 05/09/2013 7:50:38 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: All
Celebrate The Sanctity of Life
 
Celebrate the Sanctity of Life!

47 posted on 05/09/2013 7:52:31 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: All

http://resources.sainteds.com/showmedia.asp?media=../sermons/homily/2013-05-12-Homily%20Fr%20Gary.mp3&ExtraInfo=0&BaseDir=../sermons/homily


48 posted on 05/19/2013 7:06:31 PM PDT by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | 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