Elijah’s Whisper – My Whisper

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Elijah’s Whisper – My Whisper

Bubbles2 Then the LORD said (to Elijah), “Go outside and stand on the mountain before the LORD; the LORD will be passing by.”  A strong and heavy wind was rending the mountains and crushing rocks before the LORD – but the LORD was not in the wind.  After the wind there was an earthquake – but the LORD was not in the earthquake. After the earthquake there was fire – but the LORD was not in the fire. After the fire there was a tiny whispering sound.  When he heard this, Elijah hid his face in his cloak and went and stood at the entrance of the cave. A voice said to him, “Elijah, why are you here?” 1 Kings 19:11-13

Why are YOU here, beloved?

Was it to discover magnificent colors? Was it to find colorful music or awesome videos? Was it just curiosity? Was it accidental? Were you really looking for God, for Hope, for true LOVE somewhere in this menagerie we call the web?

silenceOr were you just hiding in a cave, waiting on the Lord to Whisper in your ear – a Word – LIFE! Life, it’s in You! And YOU are beautiful in the Eyes of God, no matter what the world may say or think.

You are Loved!!

Every day the Lord whispers in our ears – Words of HOPE, Words of LOVE, and maybe not even words – just His JOY in our hearts.

Let’s follow the Scriptures of our daily Mass and see if we can catch those Words – simple but beautiful – Whispers to the Wind . . .

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07-21-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 21, 2018
(St. Lawrence of Brindisi, Priest and Doctor of the Church)
Jesus warned those He healed, not to make him known.  This was to fulfill what had been spoken through Isaiah the prophet:

“Behold, my servant whom I have chosen,
my beloved in whom I delight;
I shall place my Spirit upon him,
and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles.
He will not contend or cry out,
nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets.
A bruised reed he will not break,
a smoldering wick he will not quench,
until he brings justice to victory.
And in his name the Gentiles will hope.” 
Mt_12:14-21

The gentle healer!
Our Hope

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07-20-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 20, 2018
When Hezekiah was mortally ill, the prophet Isaiah, son of Amoz, came and said to him: “Thus says the LORD: Put your house in order, for you are about to die; you shall not recover.” . . .  ( Well, as the story went, Hezekiah prayed earnestly to God that death might pass him by.  And God responded with lenience.) Hezekiah asked, “What is the sign that I shall go up to the temple of the LORD?” Isaiah answered: “This will be the sign for you from the LORD that he will do what he has promised: See, I will make the shadow cast by the sun on the stairway to the terrace of Ahaz go back the ten steps it has advanced.”  Is_38:1-6,21-22,7-8

Jesus said to the Pharisees, “If you knew what this meant, I desire mercy, not sacrifice, you would not have condemned these innocent men.  For the Son of Man is Lord of the sabbath.”  Mt_12:1-8

Sometimes we seem to have such an issue with Time.  We have our alarm clocks, our calendars, our birthdays, and our deadlines.  And if we’re not careful, we just might find ourselves obsessed with time; obsessed to the point of allowing time to control our very lives.  And in the process, time can actually become – our substitute god!

And yet, we know that our true God is the Master of all time.  We know that in His Eternal Being, there really – isno time.  And it’s in this context, that we reflect on today’s Scriptures.

In our first reading, King Hezekiah was facing the end of his earthly life.  His life was at – what he and we would consider: the “early age” – of 39 years.  He had already done so much in his 14-years, as King of Judah, by bringing his people back to the Lord.  And He wanted to DO so very much more!  And just like any of us would do in the same situation, Hezekiah whole-heartedly prayed to God for an extension of Time.

But, you know what, I don’t think that God could care less about  how much Time Hezekiah had left.  And yet, we know that our God is a God of compassion and mercy.  And if it BE His will, as it was in the case of Hezekiah, out of His boundless love, God not only granted Hezekiah’s desire, but He granted it in abundance:

– Fifteen-years were added to Hezekiah’s life,
– The entire city was rescued from its enemies,
– And God promised the whole city’s protection for the rest of Hezekiah’s life.

Then, just to add a little comic relief to the whole, Time-related episode, God gave Hezekiah that infamous, 3-daysof Time – for healing and restoration, which also happened to be prophetic of the three days between the death and resurrection of Jesus.

And then, to prove or seal His promise with Hezekiah – God  actually had time go backwards, on the city’s ancient sundial.

It was Lovein abundance and with humor to show the silliness of worry about time!

Hezekiah was so filled with joy and thanksgiving, that his famous “Song of Thanksgiving,” that we heard as our Responsorial Psalm today, has become one of the primary readings in the morning prayer of the Liturgy of the Hours.

Then quickly stepping into our Gospel Reading today, we again see another conflict with Time, as we look at our ever-familiar contention between Jesus and the Pharisees.

Here the Pharisees, of course with all kinds of ulterior motives, were nit-picking Jesus about all of those Sabbath rules again.  And despite their Pharisaic legalism, Jesus proved their hypocrisy by showing how they, themselves regularly broke the same rules for their own selfish benefit.

Jesus told them that just because it was a Sabbath, that didn’t give them the right to act inhumanely to people in need.  Temple sacrifices, He said, should never take priority over compassion and mercy.

You see, it all has to do with TIME!

When we prioritize God over time, when we prioritize mercy over schedules, God will always see to it that we have all the time we’ll ever need.  Whether we enjoy this life for just a few moments, or for 100-years, the Son of Man, our Jesus, is the Lord of and for all Time!

AMEN!

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07-19-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 19, 2018
Jesus said: “Take my yoke upon you and learn from me,
for I am meek and humble of heart;”   Mt_11:28-30

You know, beloved, sometimes being meek and humble of heart can be a pretty hard thing to do.  Jesus tells us that if we can do that, He will give us and we will find – rest!  Boy do we love to hear that part!  Who doesn’t want rest!

But it really does take a little work to earn that rest, it takes carrying a yoke.  Once we can get over our pride and egotism and learn to be meek and humble, learn to let go of the anger, learn to let go of the competition, learn to push aside the slings and arrows that are constantly being shot at us, then we’ll find a peace that we never knew was possible.  It’s the peace of Jesus.  It’s true rest, in Him.  Take His yoke, beloved!  Learn those Beatitudes (from Mt_5:3-12) and slowly begin to live them!

And OH how very BLESSED will you be!

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07-18-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 18, 2018
(St. Camillus de Lellis, Priest)
Jesus exclaimed: “I give praise to you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, for although you have hidden these things from the wise and the learned you have revealed them to the childlike.” Mt_11:25-27

In order to see the world with God’s eyes, beloved, we have to become as dependent as children, as believing as little ones, as trusting as those who rely on us for wisdom and truth and love.  God wants us to be like the child in order for us to truly understand Him.  Come beloved, let’s play again!
And truly live in Christ!

 

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07-17-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 17, 2018
Jesus began to reproach the towns where most of his mighty deeds had been done, since they had not repented.  “Woe to you, . . .”  Mt_11:20-24

Well!  It was bad enough that His own hometown neighbors rejected Jesus, and thus, He was not able to perform any “mighty deeds” for them because of their lack of faith.  But coming back to some of the other towns that had witnessed His power and healing love, and seeing them in the same state of sinfulness they were in before His miracles, was pushing the limits of His blessings!  Some people can just be so rude, so ignorant, so unappreciative.

Jesus came to teach them the power of their own faith!  And that power, and that faith was useless if they didn’t change their hearts from themselves to God.

Every day, beloved, we are graced with miracle after miracle from God.  From the air we breathe to the food we have to eat.  From our jobs, and our survival even if we don’t have them, to our shelter, our families, our Faith Communities, we have been blessed beyond measure.  Is it changing us, beloved?  Are WE appreciative?  Are we giving up all those “iniquities” within us and replacing them with a sincere love for Jesus, a love for God?  This is what we’re called to do!  And in doing so, Jesus tells us that we will be rewarded in this life and the next, beyond what we even understand today.  All it takes FAITH!  All it takes LOVE!  All it takes is openness to change!

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07-16-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 16, 2018
(Our Lady of Mt. Carmel)
Jesus said, “Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; and whoever does not take up his cross and follow after me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.”  Mt_10:34-11:1

So, where is God in your priority list, beloved?  Is He in your every thought?  Maybe every other thought?  Maybe just a couple of times a day?  Jesus is asking us to lose our lives for Him.  That means, well, whatever it means for us, but keeping Him on top of the list!

Was just thinking, it’s only 162 more days ’til Christmas.  No more bugs.  No more high 90s temperatures.  And best of all, our list-topper, Jesus!  Incarnation – for love of us!
OH what love!

Mount Carmel, Israel

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07-15-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 15, 2018
(15th Sunday Ordinary Time, B)
May the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ
enlighten the eyes of our hearts,
that we may know what is the hope
that belongs to our call.
Alleluia Verse, Eph_1:17-18

Today’s Scriptures speak about God’s call.  His call of the simple shepherd named Amos to prophesy to Israel.  His call of the early Christians of Ephesus in Asia Minor.  His call of the Apostles on their first missionary endeavor.  And His call to us to be followers of them all, as mirrors of Jesus.  Jesus wants everyone to know of God’s great love for them, the Good News of the Kingdom!  And that call of ours may be one of prayer, it may be teaching the young, it may be serving in many different functions of your own Church community.  Whatever it may be for you, beloved, do with your whole heart and do it sharing God’s love that lives in your heart!

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07-14-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 14, 2018
(St. Kateri Tekakwitha, Virgin)
The Prophet Isaiah, after seeing a vision of angels, heard them cry out, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts! All the earth is filled with his glory!”  At the sound of that cry, the frame of the door shook and the house was filled with smoke. . . .  One of the seraphim flew to me, holding an ember that he had taken with tongs from the altar.  He touched my mouth with it and said, “See, now that this has touched your lips, your wickedness is removed, your sin purged.”  Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?” “Here I am,” I said; “send me!”   Is_6:1-8

Cleansed by the Blood of the Lamb, nourished by the Body that removes our sin as it touches our lips, we are worthy to say “Here I am Lord.  Send me!”  For Holy, Holy, Holy is our Lord God of Hosts!  May the fire of his love inflame our hearts.  May the rafters of our being shake with joy.  May we live always in His presence, as we proclaim His kingdom for all!  In Jesus’ Name we pray!

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07-13-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 13, 2018
Jesus said to his Apostles: “Behold, I am sending you like sheep in the midst of wolves; so be shrewd as serpents and simple as doves.
. . . do not worry about how you are to speak or what you are to say.  You will be given at that moment what you are to say. For it will not be you who speak but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” Mt_10:16-23

When love is in your heart beloved, nothing can take that love from you, not even persecution and trial.  Jesus said many times over, “don’t worry.”  When love is in your heart, that is the Spirit of God!  And the Spirit of God will not let anything harm you Spiritually!

So don’t worry, beloved, God has got you covered.  And when we think it’s too difficult to find the words, just let go and God will take over.  And afterwards, we will be dumbfounded by the awesomeness of God within ourselves, as we ask ourselves, “Where did that come from?”  He’s got us covered!

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Happy 30th to my beloved youngest son, Fr. James, TOR.  God blesses you with His most awesome love, in Christ Jesus, now and forever! 

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07-12-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 12, 2018
Jesus said to his Apostles: “As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’  Cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse the lepers, drive out demons.  Without cost you have received; without cost you are to give.”   Mt_10:7-15

Without cost – you are to give!!

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07-11-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 11, 2018
(St. Benedict of Nursia, Abbot)
Jesus summoned his Twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits to drive them out and to cure every disease and every illness. . . . He said, “As you go, make this proclamation: ‘The Kingdom of heaven is at hand.’”   Mt_10:1-7

The apostles had two directives:  1. To cure physical and spiritual ailments and 2. To proclaim the Good News of Jesus.

If you ever went to a technical school, a nursing school or even a med school, after some years of training, practice with one another and close observation of your teachers, you would eventually have to take that step to “do it on your own.”  They call it practicum or residency.  Or in my undergrad training we had COOP.  It was our first solo flight on the job.  And yet, it was still on kind-of a trial basis.  The light jobs, the easy customers.

Today Jesus is sending his select few disciples, the 12-Apostles, out on their first practicum.  It was a missionary trip.  They were given clear instructions as to what they were supposed to do and how they were supposed to speak.  They were instructed to go only to the Jewish people, because those people would know exactly what the “Kingdom of Heaven” meant.  And they would be able to make the tie that linked the Kingdom and the healing together.  The lesson would show the people, by the example of the Apostles and by their hospitality and words, that the long-awaited time of their salvation was finally at hand.  Their long-awaited Savior, Jesus, was actually among them.

And if the Apostles experienced difficulties on their journeys, Jesus gave them escape plans as well.  You see, just like any earthly endeavor, be it a crafty hobby or a professional occupation, there are always glitches.  And in the case of these new missionaries, there would be the unbelievers, there would be scoffers and there would be temptations even to themselves.  Temptations to quit.  Temptations to strike back.  Temptations to leave Jesus all together.

And that’s why Jesus didn’t send them out all by themselves, but in groups, in community to support each other against attacks by the evil of the world.

The Prophet Hosea also fought the evil in his world, through the Words of God Himself.

And our revered saint of the day, St. Benedict, followed in the footsteps of Jesus, by organizing monastic communities, that today we call the Benedictine order.  Benedictines all over the world pray for our healing.  They pray in exorcism of evil.  And they help lead us closer to Jesus, as we seek His Face and live His Kingdom in our own communities of His Love!

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07-10-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 10, 2018
Jesus said to his disciples, “The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.”   Mt_9:32-38

How do we labor for the Lord’s harvest, beloved?  Maybe it’s serving the poor.  Maybe it’s visiting the sick or elderly.  Maybe it’s just bringing the joy of Christ to our workplace.  They’re all wonderful and very needed missions.

However, we also need priests to administer our Sacraments to keep US fed!  So, how then are we encouraging our youth to consider the priesthood as their vocation?  We really do have some awesome kids, who would make wonderful priests.

And then how, too, are we supporting our own priests?  Do we help them in their administration?  Do we encourage and congratulate them on their accomplishments?  We are their family!  And we should treat them just like a brother or father or favorite cousin.  They are our spiritual life blood!

LOVE your priest today!

And remember to say “Thanks!”

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07-09-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 9, 2018
Every day will I bless you, and I will praise your name forever and ever.  Great is the LORD and highly to be praised; his greatness is unsearchable. . . .
The LORD is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and of great kindness. The LORD is good to all and compassionate toward all his works.  Ps 145

Praise the LORD, our souls!

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07-08-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 8, 2018
(14th Sunday Ordinary Time, B)
Brothers and sisters:  That I, Paul, might not become too elated, because of the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, an angel of Satan, to beat me, to keep me from being too elated.  Three times I begged the Lord about this, that it might leave me, but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”  2_Cor_12:7-10

Sometimes, beloved, those “thorns” can make us pretty miserable.  Whether it is psychological or physical, life can get pretty tough. St. Paul gave us examples of both.  And yet, following in the footsteps of the Lord, Paul not only survived it (all the way unto death), but he did joyfully, because the Holy Spirit within him brought Him strength!  We too can have that strength, beloved, if only we allow the Holy Spirit in our lives.  His grace is always sufficient!

Link to today’s homily:
Rejected, but not Defeated!

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07-07-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 7, 2018
Jesus said, “No one patches an old cloak with a piece of unshrunken cloth, for its fullness pulls away from the cloak and the tear gets worse.  People do not put new wine into old wineskins.  Otherwise the skins burst, the wine spills out, and the skins are ruined.”  Mt_9:14-17

Some things are just common sense!!!

Sometimes, don’t you just wish it were a disease!

Then everyone might have it!

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07-06-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 6, 2018
(St. Maria Goretti, Virgin and Martyr)

The Prophet Amos said, “Hear this, you who trample upon the needy and destroy the poor of the land!  ‘When will the new moon be over,’ you ask, ‘that we may sell our grain, and the sabbath, that we may display the wheat?  We will diminish the containers for measuring, add to the weights, and fix our scales for cheating!  We will buy the lowly man for silver, and the poor man for a pair of sandals; even the refuse of the wheat we will sell!'”   Am_8:4-6,9-12

The Pharisees said to Jesus’ disciples, “Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?” He heard this and said, “Those who are well do not need a physician, but the sick do.  Go and learn the meaning of the words, I desire mercy, not sacrifice. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.”  Mt_9:9-13

Did you know that today is the 13th Friday of the Church Calendar?  Boy I’m glad that we’re Catholic.  Otherwise we might be worried about full moons and black cats, about walking under ladders and open umbrellas in the house; because, as Catholics, we don’t believe in superstitions that cause Fear for unfounded Reasons.

In the time of Amos the Prophet, the Israelites had lost sight of the Reasons behind their Sabbath fast and their new moon feasts.  To them, all the precepts of the priests just seemed to prohibit the evil that was rooted in their hearts.  Evils that were just aching to come out in their actions, like: cheating for selfish gain, taking advantage of the poor, always complaining, judging others, and never being satisfied.  All because they forgot the God who created and cared for them.

You see beloved, the whole point of the Feasting and Fasting was to constantly remind them of the Goodness of God’s Law:  to love God and their neighbor.  Unfortunately, even today, we all still fight an internal battle to determine who is in control of our lives.  Is it ME or is it God?

Do I really have ALL the answers?

And when I don’t, do I stoop to cheating and hurting others, to build myself up when things don’t quite go the way I want them to go?

Do I understand that it is not magic:

– that people act funny on full moons, that because black cats cannot be seen very easily at night, they CAN be pretty easy to trip over, that paint and hammers often DO get dropped from ladders, and that open umbrellas can poke eyes and knock over china inside a house?

When we can understand the fact that superstitious fear is simply the ignorance of a healthy respect for the experiences of those who came before us, then we can begin to understand the fact that God’s commands, and rules, and precepts weren’t given to inhibit, or suppress, or oppress us; they were given to bring us:

Freedom from the fear of the unknown,
Light in the darkness of ignorance,
and Lives filled with Joy and Peace and Hope.

And it’s that same Parental Care that Jesus was trying to teach the Pharisees.

You see, the sinners and the tax collectors who came to Jesus were longing and searching for the Mercy and Love that Jesus had to offer; unlike the judgment and condemnation that they got from the Pharisees; who, just like the Israelites in the time of the Prophet Amos, lost the Reason for the very Laws they were supposed to be embracing and teaching . . .

Where the true Reason for the Law was Love, and Mercy, and Healing, the Pharisees instead used that same Law to instill Fear through ignorance and selfishness.

You see, when the Book of Life is closed,
the Wisdom of its Word
will never find its true home.

But when we keep God in control of our lives, when we stay ever-present in His Word, through the Scriptures, when we use our Sunday sabbath to reflect on God’s love for us and our love for one another and when we live in the Grace of the Sacraments, then, not only will our lives be Free from fear, but we will become God’s “doctors for the healing of the soul of a very needy world.”

Thanks be to God in Christ Jesus,
our redeemer.
AMEN!

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07-05-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 5, 2018
(St. Elizabeth of Portugal)
Jesus said to the disbelieving scribes, “Why do you harbor evil thoughts?  Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’?  But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” – he then said to the paralytic, “Rise, pick up your stretcher, and go home.”  He rose and went home.   Mt_9:1-8

Do we truly have faith, beloved?  Faith to believe that Jesus forgives us and loves us despite our errors in missing the mark of righteousness.  Do we have the faith to rise from our sins, to rise from our hurts, to rise from our infirmities, to pick up our cross and go home?   Oh how we long to go home!!!  Jesus, help us to endure this journey.  Help us to trust that through all the trials we will make it back.  Help us to recognize all the grace you have given us to keep our faith strong.  For you are our hope and our salvation!

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07-04-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 4, 2018
Seek good and not evil, that you may live; Then truly will the LORD, the God of hosts, be with you as you claim!  Hate evil and love good, and let justice prevail at the gate;   Am_5:14-15,21-24

 Admonitions worth our attention, beloved!

For LIFE!

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07-03-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 3, 2018
(St. Thomas, Apostle)
Brothers and sisters: You are no longer strangers and sojourners, but you are fellow citizens with the holy ones and members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the Apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone.

Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.  Eph_2:19-22

Ever enter a new Church or visit one while on a vacation and feel as though you were a total stranger and unwelcome in a strange land?

I’ve been to those.  And yet, I’ve also been to those where I felt completely welcome.  You see, as Catholics we should always feel welcome wherever we go.  We will, at least, be very familiar with the liturgy.  But what about the people?  What about the “Body” that St. Paul so often speaks about?

Now take those feelings back to your own Church.  Are we, ourselves, welcoming to the stranger?  Do we judge by their dress or their level of comfort there?  Maybe they too feel unwelcome in our Churches.  You know, we CAN make the difference, not only to the stranger, but even to the every-week Mass attendee.  Let the Spirit of Christ enliven our welcomes, beloved, so that ANYONE who comes, visitor or new parishioner, into our “house” will be excited to come back and truly become One in body with us and with Jesus!

May God bless us and keep us always in His love!

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07-02-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 2, 2018
A scribe approached and said to him (Jesus), “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.” Jesus answered him, “Foxes have dens and birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to rest his head.”   Mt_8:18-22

And so, are you still willing to follow Jesus with no place to call your home?  Can you rely on a business with no storefront, no website and no phone number?  Jesus has none of the those.  And yet, He makes His guarantee despite any of that.  It is a guarantee written in His own blood.  For it is the blood of life.  IF with faith we DO rely on Him.  IF we are willing to move on without the chain to a home or a job or even a friend, Jesus will fill our hearts beyond what any of those “crutches” in this life may temporarily offer us.  Follow Him, beloved, beyond anything in our temporal world, and He will fill you with LIFE for eternity.  And THAT’s guaranteed!

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07-01-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

July 1, 2018
(13th Sunday Ordinary Time, B)
Jesus took the child by the hand and said to her, “Talitha koum,”
which means, “Little girl, I say to you, arise!”   Mk_5:21-43

“Your faith has saved you.”

Jesus continually informs people throughout the Gospels of the mighty power of their faith.  From healing the incurable to reviving the dead.  If we had faith just the size of a tiny mustard seed, we could move mountains.  In a world where we can’t seem to trust anything or anyone anymore, we truly need faith in someone.  Jesus WILL save us, beloved!  Have faith!  And even in death we will be saved!  Trust in Him!

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06-30-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 30, 2018
When Jesus entered Capernaum, a centurion approached him and appealed to him, saying, “Lord, my servant is lying at home paralyzed, suffering dreadfully.”  He said to him, “I will come and cure him.”  The centurion said in reply, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you enter under my roof; only say the word and my servant will be healed. . . .  And Jesus said to the centurion, “You may go; as you have believed, let it be done for you.”  And at that very hour his servant was healed.   Mt_8:5-17

A very familiar chant for all Catholics, “Lord, I am not worthy . . .

Context: the Centurion recognized his place among the Jews, as an untouchable Gentile.  And he knew that Jews were not even allowed to enter the dwelling places of Gentiles, lest it would make them unclean.  And yet, the centurion believed that Jesus had the power to heal his servant.  Of course, as any parent would know, we would do ANYTHING for the well-being of our children.  This was the mindset of the centurion.  IF there was ever any possibility of saving his servant, Jesus had the very best of odds!

All of that is the perfect analogy for our own lives, beloved.  Not only are we Gentiles like the centurion, but we are truly not worthy of Jesus, beneath all of our sins.  Yet, when we have the Faith to believe in Jesus, as St. Paul says, all things are possible.

Which leaves us with that ever-present question, How strong IS our faith, beloved?  Jesus will open doors when knocked upon – when we believe!  Jesus will respond to requests – when we believe.  And Jesus will love us no matter what our mindset is, belief or not, NO MATTER WHAT!   So why not make the best of His offer, beloved!

BELIEVE.
with all your heart,
BELIEVE!

. . . and it shall be done for you!

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06-29-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 29, 2018
(Ss. Peter and Paul, Apostles)
Jesus asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”  They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.”  He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 

Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.  And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.”  Mt_16:13-19

And who do YOU say that Jesus is, beloved?  Is He an untouchable, invisible, all-powerful God?  Is He a boss?  Is He a friend?  Is He a best friend!!!  Search you heart beloved, and discover the true Jesus!  The One who died for YOU!  He is seeking to be your very best of friends and companions – AND to be your God as well!

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06-28-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 28, 2018
(Saint Irenaeus, Bishop and Martyr)
Jesus said to his disciples: “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven.”   Mt_7:21-29

When we come to those pearly gates, beloved, will Jesus truly “know” us?  Do we know Him enough to say, “Look, here is the life I gave for you, not just in word, but in deed as well!”  It really does go beyond thinking that going to Mass will save us, when we spend the rest of the week worshiping money or sports or ourselves.  Jesus wants us to know Him through our interactions with others, even with those who challenge us.  Are we relying on Him always?  Are we offering those sufferings to His glory?  Are we loving even when love hurts?  This is the will of my Father.  And THIS will open that narrow gate to His Kingdom, now and forever!

The peace and love of Christ be with you always!

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And a big “Happy Birthday” to my beloved grandson, Isaac!
Twelve, and many, many more to come!
We are So proud of you!

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06-27-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 27, 2018
(St. Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop and Doctor of the Church)
King Josiah had all the elders of Judah and of Jerusalem summoned together before him. The king went up to the temple of the LORD with all the men of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem: priests, prophets, and all the people, small and great.  He had the entire contents of the book of the covenant that had been found in the temple of the LORD, read out to them. Standing by the column, the king made a covenant before the LORD that they would follow him and observe his ordinances, statutes and decrees with their whole hearts and souls, 2_Kgs_22:8-23:3

Jesus said to his disciples: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves.  By their fruits you will know them.”   Mt_7:15-20

Beginning with the grandson of King David, the roster of the kings of Judah and Israel read like a ping-pong match of good and bad kings.  The good kings, being those who led the people back to the Lord their God and followed His commands.  And the bad kings were those who worshiped false gods of wood and stone, and often led their people through oppressive power.

Of course, many of those bad kings were not perceived, at the time, as being bad, because they promised prosperity, loose living and relief from suffering – as long as their subjects were devoted to them and to their gods.  In essence, the people were being led, like sheep to the slaughter.  And they never even knew it.

And when evil is repeated – year after year, king after king, the people eventually, totally forget what it is like – to live under the protection of their TRUE God.

Their Covenant promise with God had gotten so far out of sight, that they didn’t realize how far they had wandered.  And those who tried to remind them, the Prophets, found themselves silenced by imprisonment or even executed because of their words.

But every once in a while, a GOOD king would surface.  And today we hear of one, by the name of Josiah.

Josiah began his reign of Judah at the age of 8, and reunited the Judean people with their God – through the Covenant that God had made with Moses.

Of course, just like today, any good that a leader tries to impose or promote – will always be opposed by an equal or greater force of evil.  And the greater the good, the bigger the battle . . . From the protection of our borders, the right to life of the unborn, prayer in the White House, and a stance for the environment, the economy and global peace, the enemy will turn every Good into an evil from their prospective, so that their own evil will prevail.

And we must be very, very careful
as to what we believe.

Jesus tells us today to beware of false prophets.  He tells us that we can tell who they are by their fruits.
– The fruit of evil is hatred and death.
– The fruit of ignorance are lies and nonsense.
– The fruit of untruth is sensationalism and hysteria.

But the fruit of God’s Truth are love and peace.

The fruit of compassion is a Kingdom of loving sisters and brothers of Jesus!

And the fruit of obedience is the reward of eternal life.

Jesus said to His disciples and to us, “Behold, I am sending you like sheep in the midst of wolves; so be as shrewd as serpents and as simple as doves.” Mt_10:16  And in doing so, beloved, we will always be safe in the loving arms of our Father.

And that’s a GOOD thing!

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06-26-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 26, 2018
Jesus said to His disciples, “Do to others whatever you would have them do to you.  This is the Law and the Prophets.

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and those who enter through it are many.”   Mt_7:6,12-14

Notice, Jesus didn’t say, Do to others whatever evil they did to you.  He didn’t say, What’s good for the gander is good for the goose.  He didn’t say, Revenge is sweet.

What He DID say, is GIVE whatever you would hope to get.  And expect that, in reality, you may not really get it.  But then, instead of having given the evil that we would never want upon ourselves, we would have given the very best of what God would expect us to give.

While the world (and especially many liberal radicals in our own country – and those lost in following them) are yelling and screaming their venom of hatred and spreading lies to create hatred, WE are offering LOVE.  We are offering TRUTH and REASON.  We are loving and praying for their lost souls, even while, as Jesus warns His disciples, we are not giving . . . “what is holy to dogs, or throw(ing) your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces”  ibid.  We are not stupid.  But we are loving, just as Jesus taught us! (A broad brush with sharp edges.)

And yet, we fully understand that what we are trying to BE is NOT easy!  It is a “narrow gate” that we’re striving to enter!  But we have Jesus as our guide, the Holy Spirit as our strength and one another as our support system.  Be strong beloved and never let go of Jesus!  He will never let go of YOU!

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06-25-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 25, 2018
Jesus said, “How can you say to your brother, ‘Let me remove that splinter from your eye,’ while the wooden beam is in your eye? You hypocrite, remove the wooden beam from your eye first; then you will see clearly to remove the splinter from your brother’s eye.”  Mt_7:1-5

In one way or another, beloved, we all have splinters in our eyes.  They may be toothpicks or they may be two-by-fours.  But the point is that we should not be judging anyone harshly, and  especially for those things they may not even realize.

Yes, we may lovingly correct – when the time is right and in a way that doesn’t harm their integrity.  The key is “lovingly!”  And sometimes we just have to deal with our own perfectionism, knowing that in our very next breath we just may make the same mistake they did, the same mistake we’re blaming them for!

Thanks be to the Holy Spirit for giving us His PATIENCE, and understanding, in LOVE!

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06-24-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 24, 2018
(Nativity of St. John the Baptist)
Hear me, O coastlands, listen, O distant peoples.  The LORD called me from birth, from my mother’s womb he gave me my name. . . .  You are my servant, he said to me, . . . and I am made glorious in the sight of the LORD, and my God is now my strength! . . .  To me He said, “I will make you a light to the nations, that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.”  Is_49:1-6

Lighthouse in Storm — Image by © John Lund/Corbis

Out from the darkness of storm and sea,
the lighthouse is there to comfort and lead me.
If I trust in Him both now and here,
He will assuredly replace my fear,
with a strength that only in Him could I bear.
He is my light and my salvation.
He is the sweetness of all Creation.
Within my heart will He place His light,
that I may make His world ever bright.
So come to Jesus my brethren dear,
that you may join in His LOVE,
(and His JOY, and His Hope)
OH so near!

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06-23-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 23, 2018
Jesus said to his disciples: “No one can serve two masters.  He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other.  You cannot serve God and mammon. . . .   But seek first the Kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself.”  Mt_6:24-34

How can we possibly forsake the One who loves us THAT incredibly much?

Jesus IS our life!!!

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06-22-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 22, 2018
Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and decay destroy, and thieves break in and steal. But store up treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor decay destroys, nor thieves break in and steal.  For where your treasure is, there also will your heart be.  Mt_6:19-23

Well, maybe we’re not looking for treasures, but just a break from our suffering.  Maybe we just don’t have the resources to store up anything, but are just trying to live life day-to-day.  Maybe our hearts are simply seeking survival in a world that’s turned colder than ice.  Where we are afraid that even a look may be construed as something it was never meant to be, let along be cared about by others.

Take heart beloved!  There still are good people out there.  People who understand the moral compass and follow it.  People who can discern the difference between truth and deceit.  People who love as Jesus loved.  If we are those people, then take heart, for we actually ARE the treasure so many others are seeking.  And we couldn’t be so, without our 100% trust in Jesus!  Now it’s time to shine those lights and change the world!

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06-21-18 Catholic Daily Mass Quotes

June 21, 2018
(St. Aloysius Gonzaga, Religious)
Like a fire there appeared the prophet Elijah whose words were as a flaming furnace. . . .
You were taken aloft in a whirlwind of fire, in a chariot with fiery horses. You were destined, it is written, in time to come to put an end to wrath before the day of the LORD, to turn back the hearts of fathers toward their sons, and to re-establish the tribes of Jacob.  Blessed is he who shall have seen you, and who falls asleep in your friendship.  Sir_48:1-14

Ahhh, to fall in love with the prophets!  In the midst of their cruel and deranged generations, the prophets overcame, the prophets taught, and the prophets gave the example, time after time, of the life and the love of God. Jesus often referred to the prophet’s words in His teachings.  And Elijah greeted Jesus in his transfiguration (Mt_17:3).  Jesus even referred to John the Baptist as Elijah (Mt_11:13-14), as the messenger, the one who would prepare the way for the Lord (Is_40:3).

When we actually think about it – we might ask, How many testimonies does the world need to finally believe?  Jesus IS the Christ, the Savior, the Son of God.  And the prophets are there to point our way.  Even God, the Father, Himself tells us to “Listen” (Mt_17:5)!

And in our belief, we follow His command, “to Love” (Jn_15:12).

And in our listening, gee, we never know when Elijah, when God the Holy Spirit will be chatting with us through a friend or even a stranger.  Listen and Love!

God is there with you always, beloved; lifting and encouraging, strengthening and inspiring YOU to BE Elijah too!

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