Skip to comments.Catholic Caucus:Daily Mass Readings, 07-26-13, M,Sts. Joachim and Anne, Parents/Blessed Virgin Mary
Posted on 07/25/2013 9:29:48 PM PDT by Salvation
July 26, 2013
Reading 1 Ex 20:1-17
In those days:
God delivered all these commandments:
“I, the LORD, am your God,
who brought you out of the land of Egypt, that place of slavery.
You shall not have other gods besides me.
You shall not carve idols for yourselves
in the shape of anything in the sky above
or on the earth below or in the waters beneath the earth;
you shall not bow down before them or worship them.
For I, the LORD, your God, am a jealous God,
inflicting punishment for their fathers’ wickedness
on the children of those who hate me,
down to the third and fourth generation;
but bestowing mercy down to the thousandth generation
on the children of those who love me and keep my commandments.
“You shall not take the name of the LORD, your God, in vain.
For the LORD will not leave unpunished
him who takes his name in vain.
“Remember to keep holy the sabbath day.
Six days you may labor and do all your work,
but the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD, your God.
No work may be done then either by you, or your son or daughter,
or your male or female slave, or your beast,
or by the alien who lives with you.
In six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth,
the sea and all that is in them;
but on the seventh day he rested.
That is why the LORD has blessed the sabbath day and made it holy.
“Honor your father and your mother,
that you may have a long life in the land
which the LORD, your God, is giving you.
“You shall not kill.
“You shall not commit adultery.
“You shall not steal.
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house.
You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife,
nor his male or female slave, nor his ox or ass,
nor anything else that belongs to him.”
Responsorial Psalm Ps 19:8, 9, 10, 11
R. (John 6:68c) Lord, you have the words of everlasting life.
The law of the LORD is perfect,
refreshing the soul;
The decree of the LORD is trustworthy,
giving wisdom to the simple.
R. Lord, you have the words of everlasting life.
The precepts of the LORD are right,
rejoicing the heart;
The command of the LORD is clear,
enlightening the eye.
R. Lord, you have the words of everlasting life.
The fear of the LORD is pure,
The ordinances of the LORD are true,
all of them just.
R. Lord, you have the words of everlasting life.
They are more precious than gold,
than a heap of purest gold;
Sweeter also than syrup
or honey from the comb.
R. Lord, you have the words of everlasting life.
Gospel Mt 13:18-23
Jesus said to his disciples:
“Hear the parable of the sower.
The seed sown on the path is the one who hears the word of the Kingdom
without understanding it,
and the Evil One comes and steals away
what was sown in his heart.
The seed sown on rocky ground
is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy.
But he has no root and lasts only for a time.
When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word,
he immediately falls away.
The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word,
but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word
and it bears no fruit.
But the seed sown on rich soil
is the one who hears the word and understands it,
who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirtyfold.
Found the first reading, but when it was posted three years ago — the Gospel is about St. Mary Magdalene at the empty tomb.
From: Exodus 20:1-17 (USA usage. The USCCB uses the Proper of Seasons
Reading for this Memorial; the Proper of Saints Readings are used elsewhere.
The Proper of Saints Gospel is used universally.)
The Ten Commandments
 And God spoke all these words, saying,  I am the LORD your God, who
brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
 You shall have no other gods before me.
 You shall not make for yourself a graven image, or any likeness of anything
that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water un-
der the earth;  you shall not bow down to them or serve them; for I the LORD
your God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children
to the third and the fourth generation of those who hate me,  but showing
steadfast love to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
 You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain; for the LORD will
not hold him guiltless who takes his name in vain.
 Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.  Six days you shall labor, and
do all your work;  but the seventh day is a sabbath to the LORD your God; in
it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your manservant,
or your maidservant, or your cattle, or the sojourner who is within your gates; 
for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them,
and rested the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day and
 Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in
the land which the LORD your God gives you.
 You shall not kill.
 You shall not commit adultery.
 You shall not steal.
 You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.
 You shall not covet your neighbors house; you shall not covet your neigh-
bors wife, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ass, or any-
thing that is your neighbors.
20:1-21. Decalogue comes from the Greek, meaning ten words (cf. the literal
sense of Deut 4:13). It consists of the Ten Commandments or moral code, recor-
ded here and in Deuteronomy 5:6-21. The Decalogue is dealt with in a very spe-
cial way here: for one thing, it is embedded in the account of the theophany, slot-
ted in between 19:19 and 20:18; for another, attached to the concise command-
ments (identical in Exodus and Deuteronomy) are other more elaborate command-
ments (giving reasons and explanations) which differ as between the two versions.
The fact that the Decalogue (and not any other legal code of the Pentateuch) is
repeated practically verbatim in Exodus and Deuteronomy and has from ancient
times been reproduced separately, as the Nash papyrus (2nd century BC) shows,
indicates the importance the Decalogue always had among the people of Israel
as a moral code.
On the supposition that the versions in Exodus and Deuteronomy can be reduced
to a single original text, the variations between them can be explained in terms of
the applications of the commandments to the circumstances of the period when
each version was made; the final redaction, which we have here, is the one held
to be inspired. The apodictic form (future imperative, second person: You shall
not kill) is that proper to biblical commandments and it differs from the casuisti-
cal type of wording that Israel shares with other Semitic people, as can be seen
from the Code of the Covenant (chaps 21-23).
The ten commandments are the core of Old Testament ethics and they retain
their value in the New Testament. Jesus often reminds people about them (cf. Lk
18:20) and he fills them out (cf. Mt 5:17ff). The Fathers and Doctors of the Church
have commented on them at length because, as St Thomas points out, all the
precepts of the natural law are contained in the Decalogue: the universal precepts,
such as Do good and avoid evil, which are primary and general, are contained
therein as principles in their proximate conclusions, while conversely, those which
are mediated by the wise are contained in them as conclusions in their principles
(Summa Theologiae, 1-2, 100, 3).
The commandments tend to be divided up in two different ways: thus, Jews and
many Christian confessions divide the first commandment into twothe precept
to adore only one God (vv. 2-3) and that of not making images (vv. 3-6); whereas
Catholics and Lutherans (following St Augustine) make these commandments
one and divide into two the last commandments (not to covet ones neighbors
wife: the ninth; and not to covet his goods: the tenth).
There is nothing sacrosanct about these divisions (their purpose is pedagogi-
cal); whichever way the commandments are divided, the Decalogue stands. In
our commentary we follow St Augustines division and make reference to the
teaching of the Church, because the Ten Commandments contain the core of
Christian morality (cf. the notes on Deut 5:1-22).
20:2. Hittite peoples (some of whose political and social documents have sur-
vived) used to begin peace treaties with an historical introduction, that is, by re-
counting the victory of a king over a vassal on whom specific obligations were
being imposed. In a similar sort of way, the Decalogue begins by recalling the
Exodus. However, what we have here is something radically different from a Hit-
tite pact, because the obligation that the commandments imply is not based on
a defeat but on a deliverance. God is offering the commandments to the people
whom he has delivered from bondage, whereas human princes imposed their
codes on peoples whom they had reduced to vassalage. The commandments
are therefore an expression of the Covenant. Acceptance of them is a sign that
man has attained maturity in his freedom. Man becomes free when he enters
into the Covenant of God? (Aphraates, Demonstrationes, 12). Jesus stressed
the same idea: My yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Mt 11:30).
20:3-6 You shall love God above all things is the wording of the first command-
ment given in most catechisms (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2083)
summarizing the teaching of Jesus (cf. Mk 12:28-31, which quotes the text of
Deuteronomy 6:4-5. In the ten commandments this precept covers two aspects
monotheism (v. 3) and the obligation not to adore idols or images of the Lord
(vv. 4-6). Belief in the existence of only one God is the backbone of the entire
Bible message. The prophets will openly teach monotheism, holding that God
is the sovereign Lord of the universe and of time; but this ban on other gods it-
self implies the sure conviction that there is only one true God. You shall have
no other gods before [or, besides] me, implies a belief in one God, that is mo-
The ban on images was something that marked Israel as different from other peo-
ples. The ban not only covered idols or images of other gods, but also represen-
tations of the Lord.
The one true God is spiritual and transcendent: he cannot be controlled or mani-
pulated (unlike the gods of Israels neighbors). On the basis of the mystery of the
incarnate Word Christians began to depict scenes from the Gospel and in so do-
ing they knew that this was not at odds with Gods freedom nor did it make for
idolatry. The Church venerates images because they are representations either
of Jesus who, being truly man had a body, or of saints, who as human beings
were portrayable and worthy of veneration. The Second Vatican Council recom-
mended the veneration of sacred images, while calling for sobriety and beauty:
The practice of placing sacred images in churches so that they be venerated by
the faithful is to be maintained. Nevertheless their number should be moderate
and their relative positions should reflect right order. For otherwise the Christian
people may find them incongruous and they may foster devotion of doubtful ortho-
doxy (Sacrosancturn Concilium, 125).
20:5-6. A jealous God: an anthropomorphism emphasizing the uniqueness of
God. Since he is the only true God, he cannot abide either the worship of other
gods (cf. 34:14) or worship of idols. Idolatry is the gravest and most condemned
sin in the Bible (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2113). Those in charge
of worship in the temple are described as being jealous for the Lord (cf. Num
25:13; 1 Kings 19:10, 14), because they have to watch to ensure that no devia-
tions occur. When expelling the money-changers from the temple (Jn 2:17), Je-
sus refers to this aspect of priests responsibility; Zeal for thy house has con-
sumed me (Ps 69:9).
On the Lords merciful retribution, cf. the note on Ex 34:6-7.
20:7. Respect for Gods name is respect for God himself. Hence this prohibition
on invoking the name of the Lord to gain credence for evil, be it at a trial (by com-
mitting perjury), or by swearing to do something evil, or by blasphemy (cf. Sir 23:
7-12). In ancient times, Israels neighbors used the names of their gods in magi-
cal conjuration; in such a situation the invoking of the Lords name is idolatrous.
In general, this commandment forbids any abuse, any disrespect, any irreverent
use of the name of God. And, to put it positively, The second commandment
prescribes respect for the Lords name. Like the first commandment, it belongs
to the virtue of religion and more particularly it governs our use of speech in sa-
cred matters (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2142).
20:8-11 Israels history evidently influenced the formulation of the sabbath precept,
given that the usual apodictic mode is not used and that the prescriptions concer-
ning this day are very well developed.
The commandment includes three ideas: the sabbath is a holy day, dedicated to
the Lord; work is forbidden on it; one reason for it is to imitate God, who rested
from creation on the seventh day.
The sabbath is a holy day, that is, different from ordinary days (cf. Lev 23:3) be-
cause it is dedicated to God. No special rites are prescribed but the word rem-
ember (different from observe in Deuteronomy 5:10) is a word with cultic asso-
ciations. Whatever the etymology or social origin of the sabbath was, in the Bible
it is always something holy (cf. 16:22-30).
Sabbath rest implies that there is an obligation to work on the previous six days
(v. 9). Work is the only justification for rest. The Hebrew word sabat actually
means sabbath and rest. But on this day rest acquires a cultic value, for no
special sacrifices or rites are prescribed for the sabbath: the whole community,
and even animals, render homage to God by ceasing from their labors.
20:12 The fourth is the first commandment to do with interpersonal relationships
(the subject of the second table as ancient Christian writers used to term these
commandments: cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2197). Like the sabbath
precept, it is couched in a positive way, its direct reference is to family members.
The fact that it comes immediately after the precepts that refer to God shows its
importance. Parents, in effect, represent God within the family circle.
The commandment has to do not only with young children (cf. Prov 19:26; 20:
20; 23:22;; 30:17), who have a duty to remain subject to their parents (Deut 21:
18-21), but to all children whatever their age, because it is offenses committed
by older children that incur a curse (cf. Deut 17:16).
The promise of a long life to those who keep this commandment shows how im-
portant it is for the individual, and also the importance the family has for society.
The Second Vatican Council summed up the value of the family by calling it the
domestic church (Lumen Gentium, 11; cf. Bl. John Paul II, Familiaris Con-
20:13. The fifth commandment directly forbids vengeful killing of ones enemy,
that is, murder; so it protects the sacredness of human life. The prohibition on
murder already comes across in the account of the death of Abel (cf. Gen 4:10)
and the precepts given to Noah (cf. Gen 9:6): life is something that belongs to
Revelation and the teaching of the Church tell us more about the scope of this
precept: it is only in very specific circumstances (such as social or personal self-
defense) that a person may be deprived of his or her life. Obviously, the killing of
weaker members of society (abortion, direct euthanasia) is a particularly grave
The encyclical Evangelium Vitae spells out the Churchs teaching on this com-
mandment which has absolute value when it refers to the innocent person. [...]
Therefore, by the authority which Christ conferred upon Peter and his Succes-
sors, and in communion with the Bishops of the Catholic Church, I confirm that
the direct and voluntary killing of an innocent human being is always gravely im-
moral (Bl. John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae, 57).
Our Lord taught that the positive meaning of this commandment was the obliga-
tion to practise charity (cf. Mt 5:21-26): In the Sermon on the Mount, the Lord
recalls the commandment, You shall not kill (Mt 5:21), and adds to it the pro-
scription of anger, hatred and vengeance. Going further, Christ asks his disciples
to turn the other cheek, to love their enemies (cf. Mt 5:22-28). He did not defend
himself and told Peter to leave his sword in its sheath (cf. Mt 26:52)? (Cate-
chism of the Catholic Church, 2262).
20:14. The sixth commandment is orientated to safeguarding the holiness of mar-
riage. In the Old Testament there were very severe penalties for those who com-
mitted adultery (cf. Deut 22:23ff; Lev 20:10). As Revelation progresses, it will be-
come clear that not only is adultery grave, because it damages the rights of the
other spouse, but every sexual disorder degrades the dignity of the person and is
an offense against God (cf., e.g., Prov 7:8-27; 23:27-28). Jesus Christ, by his life
and teaching, showed the positive thrust of this precept (cf. Mt 5:27-32): Jesus
came to restore creation to the purity of its origins. In the Sermon on the Mount,
he interprets Gods plan strictly: You have heard that it was said, You shall not
commit adultery. But I say to you that every one who looks at a woman lustfully
has already committed adultery with her in his heart (Mt 5:27-28). What God has
joined together, let not man put asunder (cf. Mt 19:6). The tradition of the Church
has understood the sixth commandment as encompassing the whole of human
sexuality (Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2336).
20:15. Because the Decalogue is regulating inter-personal relationships, this
commandment condemns firstly the abducting of persons in order to sell them
into slavery (cf. Deut 24:7) but obviously it covers unjust appropriation of ano-
thers goods. The Church continues to remind us that every violation of the right
to property is unjust (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2409); but this is
particularly true if actions of that type lead to the enslavement of human beings,
or to depriving them of their dignity, as happens in traffic in children, trade in hu-
man embryos, the taking of hostages, arbitrary arrest or imprisonment, racial se-
gregation, concentration camps, etc. The seventh commandment forbids acts
or enterprises that for any reasonselfish or ideological, commercial or totalita-
rian -lead to the enslavement of human beings, to their being bought, sold and
exchanged like merchandise, in disregard for their personal dignity. It is a sin a-
gainst the dignity of persons and their fundamental rights to reduce them by vio-
lence to their productive value or to a source of profit. St Paul directed a Chris-
tian master to treat his Christian slave no longer as a slave but more than a
slave, as a beloved brother...both in the flesh and in the Lord (Philem 16) (Ca-
techism of the Catholic Church, 24 14).
20:16. Giving false testimony in court can cause ones neighbor irreparable da-
mage because an innocent person may be found guilty. But, given that truth and
fidelity in human relationships is the basis of social life (cf. Vatican II, Gaudium
Et Spes, 26), this commandment prohibits lying, defamation (cf. Sir 7:12-13),
calumny and the saying of anything that might detract from a neighbors dignity
(cf. Jas 3:1-12). This moral prescription flows from the vocation of the holy peo-
ple to bear witness to their God who is the truth and wills the truth. Offenses a-
gainst the truth express by word or deed a refusal to commit oneself to moral
uprightness: they are fundamental infidelities to God and, in this sense, they un-
dermine the foundations of the covenant (Catechism of the Catholic Church,
20:17. The wording of this precept is different from that in Deuteronomy: there
the distinction is made between coveting ones neighbors wife and coveting his
goods (cf. Deut 5:21). St John distinguishes three kinds of covetousness or con-
cupiscence: lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes and pride of life (cf. 1 Jn 2:16). In
the Catholic catechetical tradition, the ninth commandment forbids carnal concu-
piscence; the tenth forbids coveting anothers goods (Catechism of the Catholic
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.
Exodus 20:1-17 ©
God spoke all these words. He said, ‘I am the Lord your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery.
‘You shall have no gods except me.
‘You shall not make yourself a carved image or any likeness of anything in heaven or on earth beneath or in the waters under the earth; you shall not bow down to them or serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God and I punish the father’s fault in the sons, the grandsons, and the great-grandsons of those who hate me; but I show kindness to thousands of those who love me and keep my commandments.
‘You shall not utter the name of the Lord your God to misuse it, for the Lord will not leave unpunished the man who utters his name to misuse it.
‘Remember the sabbath day and keep it holy. For six days you shall labour and do all your work, but the seventh day is a sabbath for the Lord your God. You shall do no work that day, neither you nor your son nor your daughter nor your servants, men or women, nor your animals nor the stranger who lives with you. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth and the sea and all that these hold, but on the seventh day he rested; that is why the Lord has blessed the sabbath day and made it sacred.
‘Honour your father and your mother so that you may have a long life in the land that the Lord your God has given to you.
‘You shall not kill.
‘You shall not commit adultery.
‘You shall not steal.
‘You shall not bear false witness against your neighbour.
‘You shall not covet your neighbour’s house. You shall not covet your neighbour’s wife, or his servant, man or woman, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is his.’
Psalm 18:8-11 ©
Lord, you have the message of eternal life.
The law of the Lord is perfect,
it revives the soul.
The rule of the Lord is to be trusted,
it gives wisdom to the simple.
Lord, you have the message of eternal life.
The precepts of the Lord are right,
they gladden the heart.
The command of the Lord is clear,
it gives light to the eyes.
Lord, you have the message of eternal life.
The fear of the Lord is holy,
abiding for ever.
The decrees of the Lord are truth
and all of them just.
Lord, you have the message of eternal life.
They are more to be desired than gold,
than the purest of gold
and sweeter are they than honey,
than honey from the comb.
Lord, you have the message of eternal life.
Accept and submit to the word
which has been planted in you
and can save your souls.
Blessed are those who,
with a noble and generous heart,
take the word of God to themselves
and yield a harvest through their perseverance.
Matthew 13:18-23 ©
Jesus said to his disciples, ‘You are to hear the parable of the sower. When anyone hears the word of the kingdom without understanding, the evil one comes and carries off what was sown in his heart: this is the man who received the seed on the edge of the path. The one who received it on patches of rock is the man who hears the word and welcomes it at once with joy. But he has no root in him, he does not last; let some trial come, or some persecution on account of the word, and he falls away at once. The one who received the seed in thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this world and the lure of riches choke the word and so he produces nothing. And the one who received the seed in rich soil is the man who hears the word and understands it; he is the one who yields a harvest and produces now a hundredfold, now sixty, now thirty.’
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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 priestsThis 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.
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: II 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
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.
From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:
"Pray for Obama. Psalm 109:8"
PLEASE JOIN US -
A Prayer for PriestsO my God, help those priests who are faithful to remain faithful; to those who are falling, stretch forth Your Divine Hand that they may grasp it as their support. In the great ocean of Your mercy, lift those poor unfortunate ones who have fallen, that being engulfed therein they may receive the grace to return to Your Great Loving Heart. Amen. Precious Blood of Jesus, protect them!
The Most Precious Blood of Jesus
July is traditionally associated with the Precious Blood of Our Lord. It may be customary to celebrate the votive Mass of the Precious Blood on July 1.
The extraordinary importance of the saving Blood of Christ has ensured a central place for its memorial in the celebration of this cultic mystery: at the centre of the Eucharistic assembly, in which the Church raises up to God in thanksgiving "the cup of blessing" (1 Cor 10, 16; cf Ps 115-116, 13) and offers it to the faithful as a "real communion with the Blood of Christ" (1 Cor 10, 16); and throughout the Liturgical Year. The Church celebrates the saving Blood of Christ not only on the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ, but also on many other occasions, such that the cultic remembrance of the Blood of our redemption (cf 1 Pt 1, 18) pervades the entire Liturgical Year. Hence, at Vespers during Christmastide, the Church, addressing Christ, sings: "Nos quoque, qui sancto tuo redempti sumus sanguine, ob diem natalis tui hymnum novum concinimus." In the Paschal Triduum, the redemptive significance and efficacy of the Blood of Christ is continuously recalled in adoration. During the adoration of the Cross on Good Friday the Church sings the hymn: "Mite corpus perforatur, sanguis unde profluit; terra, pontus, astra, mundus quo lavanturflumine", and again on Easter Sunday, "Cuius corpus sanctissimum in ara crucis torridum, sed et cruorem roesum gustando, Deo vivimus (194).
Devotion to the Drops of Blood Lost by our Lord Jesus Christ on His Way to Calvary (Prayer/Devotion)
Chaplet of the Most Precious Blood
Catholic Word of the Day: PRECIOUS BLOOD, 12-03-11
The Traditional Feast of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ (Catholic Caucus)
Devotion to the Precious Blood
DOCTRINE OF THE BLOOD OF CHRIST
,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,And More on the Precious Blood
Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ
NOTHING IS MORE POTENT AGAINST EVIL THAN PLEADING THE PRECIOUS BLOOD OF CHRIST
Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus
World Youth Day. That World Youth Day in Brazil may encourage all young Christians to become disciples and missionaries of the Gospel.
Asia. That throughout Asia doors may be open to messengers of the Gospel.
Gospel Reading: From: Matthew 13:1-23
Parable of the Sower
 "Hear then the parable of the sower.  When any one hears the Word of the Kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what is sown in his heart; this is what was sown along the path.  As for what was sown on rocky ground, this is he who hears the Word and immediately receives it with joy;  yet he has no root in himself, but endures for a while, and when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the Word, immediately he falls away.  As for what was sown among thorns, this is he who hears the Word, but the cares of the world and the delight in riches choke the Word, and it proves unfruitful.  As for what was sown on good soil, this is he who hears the Word and understands it; he indeed bears fruit, and yields, in one case a hundredfold, in another sixty, and in another thirty."
19. He does not understand because he does not love--not because he is not clever enough: lack of love opens the door of the soul to the devil.
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.
Saint Joachim and Saint Anne, parents of the blessed Virgin Mary - Memorial
Commentary of the day
Blessed Guerric of Igny (c.1080-1157), Cistercian abbot
2nd sermon for the Annunciation ; SC 202 (trans. copyright Cistercian Fathers series)
Mary is the good, fruitbearing soil
Today “the Word was made flesh and began to dwell among us”... So today Wisdom began to build himself the house of our body in the Virgin's womb... Without the intervention of man he fashioned for himself from a virginal body the flesh of our redemption. From this day “the Lord of hosts is with us, the God of Jacob is our champion,” because today we are exalted in the Lord so that “glory may dwell in our land”.
Indeed today, Lord, you did “bless that earth” of yours, “blessed among women”. Today you did bestow the kinndess of the Holy Spirit, so that “our earth might yield the blessed fruit of her womb” and, as the heavens dropped down dew from above a virginal womb, might bring forth a Savior. Accursed is the earth on account of the Accursed one, bringing forth as it does, even when cultivated, thorns and thistles to the heirs of the curse. But now, blessed is the earth in the work of the Redeemer, for it brings to birth the remission of sins and the fruit of life to all and frees the sons of Adam from the doom with which their origin was cursed.
Indeed that earth is blessed which, wholly untouched, not dug nor sown, from heaven's dew alone brings forth a Savior and provides mortal men with the Bread of angels and the Food of eternal life. So this earth which was not cultivated, seemed to be derelict but it was full of rich fruit; it seemed to be a lonely waste but it was a paradise of happiness. Truly the waste was a garden of God's delight.
( Biblical references : Jn 1,14; 1Co 1,24; Pr 9,1; Ps 46,8; Ps 85,10.2; Lk 1,28; Ps 85,13 & Lk 1,42; Is 45,8; Gn 3,17-18; Jn 8,44; Ps 78,25)
Thanks once again. In about another 10 days I will be out of the period where I broke my arm and someone else was posting. Then it will be easier to find.
| Friday, July 26, 2013
Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Memorial)
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The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary:
Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word.
And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us.
Saint Joachim & Anne,
Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Joos van Cleve
St Anne with the Virgin and Child and St Joachim
Musées Royaux des Beaux-Arts, Brussels
Wood, 109 x 74 cm
Joachim (whose name means Yahweh prepares), was the father of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Anne (Hebrew, Hannah, grace; also spelled Ann, Anne, Anna) is the traditional name of the mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Tradition grounded on very old testimonies, very early hailed Saints Joachim and Anne as the father and mother of the Mother of God.
(Principal source - Catholic Encyclopedia - 1913 edition)
O Lord, God of our Fathers,
who bestowed on Saints Joachim and Anne this grace,
that of them should be born the Mother of your incarnate Son,
grant, through the prayers of both,
that we may attain the salvation
you have promised to your people.
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.
First Reading: Ecclesiasticus 44:1, 10-15
Let us now praise famous men, and our fathers in their generations. But these were men of mercy, whose righteous deeds have not been forgotten; their prosperity will remain with their descendants, and their inheritance to their children's children. Their descendants stand by the covenants; their children also, for their sake. Their posterity will continue for ever, and their glory will not be blotted out. Their bodies were buried in peace, and their name lives to all generations. Peoples will declare their wisdom, and the congregation proclaims their praise.
Gospel Reading: Matthew 13:16-17
[Jesus said,] "blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. Truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it".
Feast Day: July 26
Patron of: Fathers, Grandparents
Information: St. Anne, Mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Feast Day: July 26
Patron of: Housewives, women in labor, cabinet-makers, and miners
St. Joachim and St. Anne
Feast Day: July 26
St. Anne and St. Joachim are the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the grandparents of Jesus. They spent their lives worshiping God and doing good. For many years after they were married, God did not bless them with children and this made them sad. For years and years, Anne had begged the Lord to give her a child and she promised to consecrate the baby to him.
When she was already old, God answered her prayer in a far better way than she could ever have dreamed. The child born to St. Joachim and St. Anne was the Immaculate Virgin Mary. Mary, the holiest of all women was to become the Mother of God. Anne took tender care of little Mary for a few years. Then she gave her to the service of God, as she had promised she would.
Mary went to live in the holy Temple of Jerusalem. St. Joachim and St. Anne continued their lives of prayer until they died and God called them home to heaven. Christians have always been especially devoted to St. Anne. Many beautiful churches have been built in her honor. Perhaps one of the most famous is the Shrine of St. Anne de Beaupre in Canada. Great crowds go there all year around to ask St. Anne's help in their sufferings.
Reflection: Today, let us pray especially for the gift of our grandparents as we wish them a happy feast day.
|English: Douay-Rheims||Latin: Vulgata Clementina||Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)|
|18.||Hear you therefore the parable of the sower.||Vos ergo audite parabolam seminantis.||υμεις ουν ακουσατε την παραβολην του σπειροντος|
|19.||When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, there cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart: this is he that received the seed by the way side.||Omnis qui audit verbum regni, et non intelligit, venit malus, et rapit quod seminatum est in corde ejus : hic est qui secus viam seminatus est.||παντος ακουοντος τον λογον της βασιλειας και μη συνιεντος ερχεται ο πονηρος και αρπαζει το εσπαρμενον εν τη καρδια αυτου ουτος εστιν ο παρα την οδον σπαρεις|
|20.||And he that received the seed upon stony ground, is he that heareth the word, and immediately receiveth it with joy.||Qui autem super petrosa seminatus est, hic est qui verbum audit, et continuo cum gaudio accipit illud :||ο δε επι τα πετρωδη σπαρεις ουτος εστιν ο τον λογον ακουων και ευθυς μετα χαρας λαμβανων αυτον|
|21.||Yet hath he not root in himself, but is only for a time: and when there ariseth tribulation and persecution because of the word, he is presently scandalized.||non habet autem in se radicem, sed est temporalis : facta autem tribulatione et persecutione propter verbum, continuo scandalizatur.||ουκ εχει δε ριζαν εν εαυτω αλλα προσκαιρος εστιν γενομενης δε θλιψεως η διωγμου δια τον λογον ευθυς σκανδαλιζεται|
|22.||And he that received the seed among thorns, is he that heareth the word, and the care of this world and the deceitfulness of riches choketh up the word, and he becometh fruitless.||Qui autem seminatus est in spinis, hic est qui verbum audit, et sollicitudo sæculi istius, et fallacia divitiarum suffocat verbum, et sine fructu efficitur.||ο δε εις τας ακανθας σπαρεις ουτος εστιν ο τον λογον ακουων και η μεριμνα του αιωνος τουτου και η απατη του πλουτου συμπνιγει τον λογον και ακαρπος γινεται|
|23.||But he that received the seed upon good ground, is he that heareth the word, and understandeth, and beareth fruit, and yieldeth the one an hundredfold, and another sixty, and another thirty.||Qui vero in terram bonam seminatus est, hic est qui audit verbum, et intelligit, et fructum affert, et facit aliud quidem centesimum, aliud autem sexagesimum, aliud vero trigesimum.||ο δε επι την γην την καλην σπαρεις ουτος εστιν ο τον λογον ακουων και συνιων ος δη καρποφορει και ποιει ο μεν εκατον ο δε εξηκοντα ο δε τριακοντα|
Friday, July 26
Liturgical Color: Green
Today the Church commemorates St.
Evaristus, pope. He was the 4th
successor to Peter. After his martyrdom
in 107 A.D., he was buried near the
tomb of St. Peter.
Daily Readings for: July 26, 2013
(Readings on USCCB website)
Collect: O Lord, God of our Fathers, who bestowed on Saints Joachim and Anne this grace, that of them should be born the Mother of your incarnate Son, grant, through the prayers of both, that we may attain the salvation you have promised to your people. 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.
Ordinary Time: July 26th
Memorial of Sts. Joachim and Anne, parents of Mary
Old Calendar: St. Anne, Mother of the Blessed Virgin Mary
It was in the home of Joachim and Ann where the Virgin Mary received her training to be the Mother of God. Thus, devotion to Ann and Joachim is an extension of the affection Christians have always professed toward our Blessed Mother. We, too, owe a debt of gratitude to our parents for their help in our Christian formation.
According to the 1962 Missal of Bl. John XXIII the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite, today is the feast of St. Ann; St. Joachim's feast in this rite is celebrated on August 16.
Sts. Joachim and Ann
Who does not know about the great shrine of Ste. Anne de Beaupre in Canada, where miracles abound, where cured cripples leave their crutches, and where people come from thousands of miles to pray to the grandmother of Jesus? At one time, July 26 was the feast of St. Anne only, but with the new calendar the two feasts of the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary have been joined and are celebrated today. Our information about Mary's parents comes from an apocryphal Christian writing, the Protoevangelium Jacobi (or Gospel of James), written about the year 170. According to this story, Joachim was a prominent and respected man who had no children, and he and his wife, Anne, looked upon this as a punishment from God. In answer to their prayers, Mary was born and was dedicated to God at a very early age.
From this early Christian writing have come several of the feast days of Mary, particularly the Immaculate Conception, the Nativity of Mary, and her Assumption into Heaven. Very early also came feast days in honor of SS. Joachim and Anne, and in the Middle Ages numerous churches, chapels, and confraternities were dedicated to St. Anne. The couple early became models of Christian marriage, and their meeting at the Golden Gate in Jerusalem has been a favorite subject of Christian artists.
Anne is often shown in paintings with Jesus and Mary and is considered a subject that attracts attention, since Anne is the grandmother of Jesus. Her two great shrines — that of Ste. Anne d'Auray in Britanny, France, and that of Ste. Anne de Beaupre near Quebec in Canada — are very popular. We know little else about the lives of Mary's parents, but considering the person of Mary, they must have been two very remarkable people to have been given such a daughter and to have played so important a part in the work of the Redemption.
There is a church of St. Anne in Jerusalem and it is believed to be built on the site of the home of SS. Joachim and Anne, when they lived in Jerusalem.
Excerpted from The One Year Book of Saints by Rev. Clifford Stevens
Anne: against poverty; barren; broommakers; cabinetmakers; carpenters; childless couples; equestrians; grandmothers; grandparents; homemakers; housewives; lace makers; lace workers; lost articles; miners; mothers; old-clothes dealers; pregnancy; pregnant women; horse riders; seamstresses; stablemen; sterility; turners; women in labour; Brittany; Canada; France; Quebec; archdiocese of Detroit, Michigan; diocese of Norwich, Connecticut; Santa Ana Indian Pueblo; Taos, New Mexico.
Joachim: fathers, grandfathers, grandparents.
Anne: Book, symbol of her careful instruction of Mary; flowering rod; crown; nest of young birds; door; Golden Gate of Jerusalem; book; infant Virgin in crib; Shield has silver border masoned in black, with silver lily on a blue field referring to the girlhood of the Virgin.
Often Portrayed As: Woman holding Mary or Jesus in her arms or lap; Woman at her betrothal to Joachim; Mother teaching Mary to read the Bible; Woman greeting Saint Joachim at Golden Gate; Woman with a book in her hand.
Joachim: Basket containing doves; model of Golden Gate of Jerusalem.
Often Portrayed As: Man bringing a lamb to the altar and being turned away by the priest; greeting and/or kissing Saint Anne at the Golden Gate; elderly man carrying a basket of doves and a staff; elderly man with the child Mary.
Things to Do:
This feast falls right in the middle of summer season, so keep in mind the variety of wonderful summer fruits and make something special with them, particularly fruit pies or tarts. A Continual Feast: A Cookbook to Celebrate the Joys of Family and Faith Throughout the Christian Year mentions that "[i]n both France and French Canada what would commonly be served on this occasion is a fruit tart: such exquisite desserts are traditional at all patronal festivals (as well as other special occasions), especially those falling in the summer, when such a luscious assortment of fruits is available." She includes two recipes, plum tart and apple tart. From Ignatius Press another cookbook called Cooking With the Saints includes recipes for St. Anne's Cream (Crème Sainte-Anne) and Anna Torte (Gateau Sainte-Anne).
One could also try to find "Bible foods" that St. Anne or the Blessed Virgin Mary would have cooked in their time. (But usually those aren't very festive!) This site gives some ideas on Biblical foods.
Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
“I am the Lord your God.” (Exodus 20:2)
The Ten Commandments flow out of two closely related realities: who God is, and who we are. Because God made us in his image, he knows how we function best. So his commandments are meant to help us live the life he intended for us from the start—a life that helps us grow more fully into his own image and likeness. So let’s take a look at the commandments to see how each one is rooted in who God is.
God is One. He is unique. He deserves to come first in our lives, before every other relationship or goal.
God created us for worship. When we idolize something other than him, every other aspect of our lives falls out of order.
Because God is holy, we should speak his name with great reverence—and with great gratitude for the way he shares his holiness with us.
God rested on the seventh day. So he gave us a special day to gather as a family and worship him. He wants us to step aside from the work that threatens to absorb all our energies.
God is a community of love. He created the human family as the fundamental unit of society—a unit built on mutual honor and respect.
God created each human being in his image. And so every person is of infinite value. Every life is sacred and should not be taken by another.
God is faithful. He created us for love, and he knows that we become most fully ourselves in lifelong committed relationships.
As Creator, God owns everything. What he has given to us is only on loan and to glorify him. When one person snatches from another, he violates this role of stewardship.
As the eternal Word, our God is truth. The lies we speak always boomerang to injure us because of their offense against God’s purposes.
God wants us to love him freely. No possession can possibly take his place. We miss our purpose when we covet anything less than him.
May we all know the freedom he created us to experience!
“Father, thank you for showing me how to live in your light.”
Psalm 19:8-11; Matthew 13:18-23
SAINTS JOACHIM AND ANN
Feast day: July 26
THE LEGEND portrays Joachim and Ann as bound to each other by love. They were God-fearing and wealthy. For the longest time they had no children (like the parents of Samuel and of John the Baptist). Their neighbors accordingly suspected that all was not right with their piety (since childlessness was considered to be a punishment for personal sins).
Joachim and Ann were deeply saddened by all this. They began to converse with God over the childlessness. Joachim withdrew for forty days into the desert, to do penance with God through fasting and prayer. Ann lamented her childlessness (as did Samuels mother) before Yahweh.
Gods Intervention. By message from God, Joachim and Ann received the promise of offspring. Both were overjoyed and went forth to meet each other. The scene of the spouses reunion is described with feeling: And lo, Joachim came leading his flocks, and Ann stood at the door and saw him coming. She ran to him and clung to his neck, saying, Now I know that the Lord God has richly blessed me. For now the widow is no longer a widow, and I, childless, am to bear a child.
The pregnancy began with the spouses coming together, and after nine months Mary was born. The legend of Marys birth came to a close: And so, just as she herself was miraculously born of a barren woman, she also, was, through an incomparable miracle in which she remained a virgin, to bring into the world the Son of the Most High the Savior of all nations.
All in all: the major concern of this legend is clearly the statement that Mary was chosen by God in a special way, and has a particular role in the history of salvation. Joachim and Ann are simply background figures.
Joachim and Ann. Yet the pair do not fade into the background. They are portrayed as holy people in the Old Testament sense. Joachim constantly brings double his portion of gifts to the Temple. Each dwells with Yahweh as a matter of course. God is evidently pleased with their piety.
And yet, he does test their faithfulness (as He also tested the piety of Job). The fate of childlessness (which they had to take as a sign of divine punishment) burdened them, but it did not shake their trust in God. The wrestled with God, just as the patient on in the Old Testament did. God finally gave them an answer, showing that He had heard their prayer.
Their faith in God is also manifest in that they gave their three-year-old daughter over to the Temple (in fulfillment of the vow Ann had made before the birth) and allowed her to live in the Temple. They gave back generously to God what God had sent them as a gift, without wishing to cling to it for themselves.
Joachim and Ann: faithful to God even in trials of faith, they take their proper place in the history of salvation (namely, to be the parents of Mary) and place themselves completely at Gods disposal through their child. They are a standard for all who bear their names.
Note: Taken from Albert Schneider OMI, COMMUNION WITH THE SAINTS, Chicago, Illinois: Franciscan Herald Press, 1983, pages 289-291.
Daily Marriage Tip for July 26, 2013:
Today is the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, grandparents of Jesus. What lesson about marriage or parenting have you learned from your or your spouses parents?
CHAPTER XXXVII. Of Old Men and Children
16 Mar. 16 July. 15 Nov.
Although human nature is of itself drawn to feel pity for these two times of life, namely, old age and infancy, yet the authority of the Rule should also provide for them. Let their weakness be always taken into account, and the strictness of the Rule respecting food be by no means kept in their regard; but let a kind consideration be shewn for them, and let them eat before the regular hours.
Young and Old
At Silverstream Priory the youngest brother is twenty-five years old and the oldest monk is sixty-one. I don't think that we would qualify as having old men and children at this point in our history. There are, nonetheless, principles in this chapter of the Holy Rule that apply in all circumstances.
In Saint Benedict's day there would have been children in the monastery: little boys like Saint Placid, entrusted to the monks and offered to God. There would have been youths also, like the adolescent Saint Maurus, the holy Patriarch's trusted disciple. And there would have been elders, men in their declining years; fifty years would have been considered a good old age.
Principles of Compassion
The human heart is naturally moved to pity at the sight a child's weakness or an elder's frailty. Nonetheless, Saint Benedict, knowing the vagaries of human sentiments, provides for children and elders with the authority of the Rule. The first principle he sets forth is this: "Let their weakness be always taken into account." The second is this: "Let a kind consideration be shewn for them." There is not a monastery, nor a parish, nor a family in which these two principles of compassion will not find concrete applications, for the Church, in all her various configurations, includes the little, the frail, and the poor.
|Fighting the Good Fight of Faith|
Memorial of Saint Joachim and Saint Anne, parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Jesus said to his disciples: "Hear then the parable of the sower. The seed sown on the path is the one who hears the word of the Kingdom without understanding it, and the Evil One comes and steals away what was sown in his heart. The seed sown on rocky ground is the one who hears the word and receives it at once with joy. But he has no root and lasts only for a time. When some tribulation or persecution comes because of the word, he immediately falls away. The seed sown among thorns is the one who hears the word, but then worldly anxiety and the lure of riches choke the word and it bears no fruit. But the seed sown on rich soil is the one who hears the word and understands it, who indeed bears fruit and yields a hundred or sixty or thirty fold."
Introductory Prayer: Lord, I believe in your Incarnation. You became flesh for love of us. You were not forced to leave the bliss and glory of heaven. You chose to leave in order to save us. I believe in you. I hope in you. I love you. You took the first step of love toward me. I want to respond in kind.
Petition: Grant me the grace to follow you with conviction and willpower.
1. Sheltering the Word in My Heart: Our Lord often speaks of the enemy of God, the devil, as a real being, who has real influence over our lives. When we hear the Word of God, good intentions grow within us. The Evil One attempts to “steal” these intentions away from our heart. The Catechism of the Catholic Church tells us that the devil and demons made a radical and irrevocable free choice to reject God and his reign (no. 392). The devil tries to uproot our good resolutions with the same goal in mind. We must make a firm commitment to allow God’s word to take root and grow in our lives.
2. Convictions over Emotions: The seed sown on rocky ground represents those who receive the word with joy at first, in other words, those easily governed by emotions and sentiments. When they feel joy, they respond to God positively. When they receive comforts from Christ, they are ready to follow him. But when their moods are bad or gloomy, they leave aside their previous resolutions and abandon the Lord for the wide and spacious road of ease and comforts. They are not seeking Christ but rather their own consolation. Above all they want warm, cozy feelings. Christ shows us the way of true loyalty and love by his crucifixion and death on the cross for love of his Father and souls.
3. Oxygen for the Soul: One of the saddest categories of people in the Parable of the Sower are those who receive the word but allow “worldly anxiety and the lure of riches” to “choke the word” so that it “bears no fruit” in their lives. Materialism is an all-pervasive temptation in our world today. The only way to conquer this assault on our faith is to make the firm resolution to make time for God. We must make the proactive decision to insert moments for him in our day. Prayer, the sacraments (Mass, confession), spiritual reading and the Rosary are examples of ways to do this.
Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus, in my mind you are my first priority. In reality, though, I allow other priorities to topple your rightful position in my life. I allow my feelings to govern my actions instead of my faith and convictions. Strengthen my resolve to make you the True King of my heart in my concrete choices and decisions.
Resolution: I will go over my daily and weekly schedule and, if necessary, make more quality time for the Lord.
Prejudice can make a man blind to everything which he does not wish to
see. Many people refuse to listen to the truth which condemns them.
There is the hearer with the mind like the shallow ground. This is the
type of person who is at the mercy of every new craze. They take a
thing up quickly and just as quickly drop it. They must always be in
There are people who begin to acquire some new accomplishment with
enthusiasm and when things become difficult, they abandon it. When he
hears the word of God he may be swept off his feet with an emotional
reaction but his enthusiasm diminishes after a while like a slowly
Then there is the hearer of the word of God who has so many interests
in life that certain things, and often the most important things get
crowded out. It is characteristic of modern life that it becomes
increasingly crowded and increasingly fast. A person becomes too busy
Finally there is the person who is like the good ground. His mind is
open. He is at all times willing to learn. He is never too proud or
too busy to listen. He has reflected on the word of God and knows what
it means for him, and is prepared to accept it. He then translates his
hearing into action. He produces the good fruit of the good seed. The
real hearers of the word of God is the person who listens, who
understands and who obeys.
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