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Advent Reflection – 13 December – How can we hope to achieve a world in which all will seek the path of God? 

Advent Reflection – 13 December – Monday of the First week of Advent, Year A – Readings: Isaiah 4:2-6, Psalm 122:1-9, Matthew 8:5-11

“Amen, I say to you, in no-one in Israel have I found such faith.
I say to you, many will come from the east and the west and will recline with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the banquet in the kingdom of heaven.” 

Matthew 8:10-11

Vatican Council II – “Gaudium et Spes” #45
Constitution on the Church in the Modern World

“While helping the world and receiving many benefits from it, the Church has a single intention – that God’s kingdom may come and that the salvation of the whole human race may come to pass.   For every benefit, which the People of God, during its earthly pilgrimage can offer to the human family, stems from the fact, that the Church is “the universal sacrament of salvation”, (Lumen Gentium), simultaneously manifesting and actualising the mystery of God’s love.

For God’s Word, by whom all things were made, was Himself made flesh, so that, as perfect man, He might save all men and sum up all things in Himself.   The Lord is the goal of human history, the focal point of the longings of history and of civilisation, the centre of the human race, the joy of every heart and the answer to all its yearnings.   He it is, Whom the Father raised from the dead, lifted on high and stationed at His right hand, making Him judge of the living and the dead.   Enlivened and united in His Spirit, we journey toward the consummation of human history, one which fully accords with the counsel of God’s love:  “To re-establish all things in Christ, both those in the heavens and those on the earth” (Eph. 1:10).

The Lord Himself speaks:   “Behold I come quickly and my reward is with me, to render to each one according to his works.   I am the Alpha and the Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end,” (Rv 22:12-13).”matthew 8 10-11 amen i say to you in no-one in israel - centurion - for gods words - gaudium et spes no 45 2 dec 2019.jpg

Reflections
Christ is the ultimate centre of meaning in the universe.   It is through Christ that all people will be led to the Father.   How can we hope to achieve a world in which all will seek the path of God?   Only when men and women are working to achieve the unity that Christ’s redemption promises us.

“The Lord always goes beyond, goes first.   We take one step and He takes ten.   Always.   The abundance of grace, of His love, of His tenderness that never tires of seeking us.   Even, at times, with small things – we think that encountering the Lord would be something magnificent, like that man of Syria, Naaman, who was a leper [did].   And it’s not simple… And he too had a great surprise at God’s way of acting.
And our God is the God of surprises, the God that is seeking us, is awaiting us and asks of us only the little step of good will.”

Pope Francis – Santa Marta, 28 November 2016monday firsdt week advent 2 dec 2019 the lord always goes first - pope francis.jpg

Advent Action
Perform an act of kindness for someone you do not know.

Our Lives Multiply by Giving Them Away
Fr Henri Nouwen

“The fruitfulness of our little life, once we recognise it and live it, as the life of the Beloved, is beyond anything we can imagine.   One of the greatest acts of faith is to believe that the few years we live on this earth are like a little seed planted in very rich soil.   For this seed to bear fruit, it must die.   We often see, or feel, only the dying but, the harvest will be abundant, even when we ourselves are the harvesters.
How different would our life be, were we truly able to trust, that it multiplied in being given away?
How different would our life be, if we could believe, that every little act of faithfulness, every gesture of love, every word of forgiveness, every little bit of joy and peace, will multiply and multiply, as long as there are people to receive it … and that – even then – there will be left-overs!”

Posted in CATHOLIC Quotes, IGNATIAN/JESUIT SJ- Reflections, Jesuit Saints and more, MARTYRS, QUOTES on DEATH, SAINT of the DAY, The WORD, VATICAN II - Documents

One Minute Reflection – 23 November – God has called man and still calls him ….

One Minute Reflection – 23 November – Saturday of the Thirty Third Week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 20:27–40 and the Memorial of Blessed Miguel Pro – Martyr (1891-1927)

“He is not God of the dead but of the living…” … Luke 20:38

REFLECTION – “It is in the face of death that the riddle a human existence grows most acute.   Not only is man tormented by pain and by the advancing deterioration of his body but even more so, by a dread of perpetual extinction.   He rightly follows the intuition of his heart when he abhors and repudiates the utter ruin and total disappearance of his own person.   He rebels against death because he bears in himself an eternal seed which cannot be reduced to sheer matter.   All the endeavours of technology, though useful in the extreme, cannot calm his anxiety; for prolongation of biological life is unable to satisfy that desire for higher life, which is inescapably lodged in his breast.

Although the mystery of death, utterly beggars the imagination, the Church has been taught by divine revelation and firmly teaches, that man has been created by God for a blissful purpose beyond the reach of earthly misery.   In addition, that bodily death from which man would have been immune had he not sinned, will be vanquished, according to the Christian faith, when man, who was ruined by his own doing, is restored to wholeness, by an almighty and merciful Saviour.   For God has called man and still calls him, so that with his entire being, he might be joined to Him, in an endless sharing of a divine life beyond all corruption.   Christ won this victory when He rose to life, for by His death, He freed man from death.   Hence to every thoughtful man, a solidly established faith, provides the answer to his anxiety about what the future holds for him.   At the same time, faith gives him the power to be united in Christ with his loved ones who have already been snatched away by death, faith arouses the hope, that they have found true life with God.” … Vatican Council II – Constitution on the Church in the modern world “ Gaudium et spes ” # 18luke 20 38 he is not god of the dead - for god has called man - gaudium et spes no 18.jpg

PRAYER – O God, source and origin of all fatherhood, who kept the Martyr, Blessed Miguel Pro, faithful to the Cross of Your Son, even to the shedding of his blood, grant, through his intercession, that, spreading Your love among our brothers and sisters, we may be Your children both in name and in truth and thus come to our resurrection with Jesus Christ, Your Son.   Through our Lord Jesus Christ, Who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever, amen.bl miguel pro pray for us 23 nov 2019.jpg

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One Minute Reflection – 18 October – “I too have decided … to write it down..”

One Minute Reflection – 18 October – The Feast of St Luke the Evangelist, Gospel: Luke 10:1-9

And he said to them, “The harvest is plentiful but the labourers are few, pray therefore, the Lord of the harvest, to send out labourers into his harvest.” … Luke 10:2

Saint Luke’s testimony – “I too have decided, after investigating everything accurately to write it down in an orderly sequence” (Luke 1:3)

REFLECTION – “Among all the Scriptures, even those of the New Testament, the Gospels have a special pre-eminence and rightly so, for they are the principal witness for the life and teaching of the incarnate Word, our Saviour.   The Church has always and everywhere, held and continues to hold, that the four Gospels are of apostolic origin.  For what the Apostles preached in fulfilment of the commission of Christ, afterwards, they themselves and apostolic men, under the inspiration of the divine Spirit, handed on to us in writing – the foundation of faith, namely, the fourfold Gospel, according to Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.

Holy Mother Church has firmly and with absolute constancy, held and continues to hold, that the four Gospels just named, whose historical character the Church unhesitatingly asserts, faithfully hand on what Jesus Christ, while living among men, really did and taught for their eternal salvation until the day He was taken up into heaven (Acts 1:1-2). Indeed, after the Ascension of the Lord the Apostles handed on to their hearers what He had said and done.   This they did with that clearer understanding which they enjoyed after they had been instructed by the glorious events of Christ’s life and taught by the light of the Spirit of truth (Jn 14:26).

The sacred authors wrote the four Gospels, selecting some things from the many which had been handed on by word of mouth or in writing, reducing some of them to a synthesis, explaining some things in view of the situation of their churches and preserving the form of proclamation but always, in such fashion, that they told us the honest truth about Jesus.   For their intention in writing, was that either from their own memory and recollections, or from the witness of those who “themselves from the beginning were eyewitnesses and ministers of the Word” we might know “the truth concerning those matters about which we have been instructed” (Lk 1, 1-4). … Vatican Council II – Dogmatic Constitution on Revelation “ Dei Verbum ” # 18-19luke 1 3 - i too have decided - luke 10 2 the harvest is plentiful 18 oct 2019 feast of st luke.jpg

PRAYER – Lord God, You chose St Luke to reveal the mystery of Your love in his preaching and his writings.   Grant, we pray, that we may grow in love for the Holy Face of Christ, His words and His directions, revealed to us in the Gospels, in the example of your saints.   Today, on his feast, we especially look to St Luke, to guide, teach and pray for us.   We make our prayer through our Lord Jesus Christ, with the Holy Spirit, one God with You, forever and ever, amen.st-luke-pray-for-us-18-oct-2017-no-2.jpg

Posted in CATHOLIC-PRAYERS OF THE CHURCH, Our MORNING Offering, PRAYERS of the CHURCH, The HOLY SPIRIT, VATICAN II - Documents, VATICAN Resources

Our Morning Offering – 8 October – Holy Spirit, Enlighten our Hearts

Our Morning Offering – 8 October – Tuesday of the Twenty Seventh week in Ordinary Time, Year C

Holy Spirit, Enlighten our Hearts
Prayer recited before the Sessions
of the Second Vatican Council

Holy Spirit, enlighten our hearts.
Give us light and strength to know Your will,
to make it our own
and to live it in our lives.
Guide us by Your wisdom,
supports us by Your power.
You desire justice for all,
enable us to uphold the rights of others,
do not allow us to be misled
by ignorance or corrupted by favour.
Unite us to Yourself in the bond of love
and keep us faithful to all that is true.
Help us to temper justice with love,
so that all our decisions
may be pleasing to You
and bring us the inheritance,
promised to good and faithful servants.
Amenprayer of the second vatican council - holy spirit enlighten our hearts 8 oct 2019.jpg

Posted in MORNING Prayers, The WORD, VATICAN II - Documents

One Minute Reflection – 18 August –  Injustice and error lead to division and war. 

One Minute Reflection – 18 August – Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Luke 12:49-53

“Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth?   No, I tell you but rather division.” … Luke 12:51

REFLECTION – “God has come into the world with a message of peace (cf Lk 2:14) and reconciliation (cf Rom 5:11).   By resisting, through sin, the redeeming work of Christ, we become His opponents.   Injustice and error lead to division and war.   “Insofar as men are sinners, the threat of war hangs over them and will so continue until the coming of Christ but, insofar, as they can vanquish sin by coming together in charity, violence itself will be vanquished and make these words come true – “They shall turn their swords into plough-shares and their spears into sickles.   Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more” (Is 2,4).” … Vatican II – Gaudium et spes #78 – Constitution on the Church in the modern worldluke 12 51 - do you think i have come to estalibsh peach - god has come into the world - 18 aug 2019 gaudium et spes 78.jpg

PRAYER – Father of might and power, every good and perfect gift comes to us from You. Implant in our hearts the love of Your name and Your creatures.   Increase our zeal for Your service and Your peace.   Nourish in us what good and tend it with watchful care. Grant that the prayers and caring love of the Blessed Virgin, our Mother, may help us to spread peace in our world.   We make our prayer through Christ, our Lord in the union of the Holy Spirit, one God for all eternity, amen.blessed virgin holy mother pray for us

Posted in Blessed JOHN HENRY Cardinal NEWMAN, FEASTS and SOLEMNITIES, MARIAN QUOTES, MARIAN REFLECTIONS, Pope BENEDICT XVI, THE ASSUMPTION, VATICAN II - Documents

Quote of the Day – 15 August – On the Assumption

Quote of the Day – 15 August – Solemnity of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven

“In the bodily and spiritual glory
which she possesses in heaven,
the Mother of Jesus,
continues in this present world
as the image and first flowering of the Church,
as she is to be perfected in the world to come.
Likewise, Mary shines forth on earth,
until the day of the Lord shall come (cf 2 Peter 3:10),
as a sign of certain hope
and comfort for the pilgrim People of God.”

Lumen Gentiumlumen gentium no 68 on the assumption in the bodily and spiritual glory 15 aug 2019.jpg

Dogmatic Constitution on the Church #68.

“While she lived on this earth
she could only be close to a few people.
Being in God, who is close to us,
actually, “within” all of us,
Mary shares in this closeness of God.
Being in God and with God,
she is close to each one of us,
knows our hearts, can hear our prayers,
can help us with her motherly kindness
and has been given to us,
as the Lord said, precisely as a “mother”
to whom we can turn at every moment.”

Pope Benedict XVIwhile she lived on earth - pope benedict assumption 15 aug 2019.jpg

“As soon as we apprehend by faith,
the great fundamental truth, that Mary is the Mother of God,
other wonderful truths follow in its train and one of these, is that,
she was exempt from the ordinary lot of mortals,
which is not only to die but to become earth to earth,
ashes to ashes, dust to dust.”

Bl John Henry Cardinal Newman (1801-1890)as-soon-as-we-apprehend-by-faith-bl-john-henry-19-aug-2018 and 2019.jpg

Posted in CCC, MORNING Prayers, Papa FRANCIS, PRACTISING CATHOLIC, QUOTES on HEAVEN, QUOTES on HELL, QUOTES on the CHURCH, QUOTES on TIME, SAINT of the DAY, The HOLY SPIRIT, The LAST THINGS, The WORD, VATICAN II - Documents

One Minute Reflection – 30 July – “I will come to an end.   I will not remain forever.”

One Minute Reflection – 30 July – Tuesday of the Seventeenth week in Ordinary Time, Year C, Gospel: Matthew 13:36–43 and the Memorial of St Peter Chrysologus (c 400-450) Father & Doctor of the Church

“Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father.   He who has ears, let him hear.” … Matthew 13:43

REFLECTION – Christians of the first centuries said, “The world was created for the sake of the Church” (Hermas).   God created the world for the sake of communion with His divine life, a communion brought about by the “convocation” of men in Christ and this “convocation” (ecclesia) is the Church.   The Church is the goal of all things and God permitted such painful upheavals as the angels’ fall and man’s sin only as occasions and means for displaying all the power of His arm and the whole measure of the love He wanted to give the world:   “Just as God’s will is creation and is called “the world,” so His intention is the salvation of men and it is called “the Church” (St Clement of Alexandria).

The gathering together of the People of God, began, at the moment when sin destroyed the communion of men with God and that of men among themselves. the gathering together of the Church is, as it were, God’s reaction to the chaos provoked by sin.   This re-unification is achieved secretly in the heart of all peoples:  “In every nation anyone who fears him and does what is right is acceptable” to God (Acts 10,35).   The remote preparation for this gathering together of the People of God begins when He calls Abraham and promises that He will become the father of a great people (Gn 12,2).   Its immediate preparation begins with Israel’s election as the People of God (Ex 19,5).   By this election, Israel is to be the sign of the future gathering of all nations (Is 2,2)….

It was the Son’s task to accomplish the Father’s plan of salvation in the fullness of time. It’s accomplishment was the reason for His being sent… To fulfil the Father’s will, Christ ushered in the Kingdom of heaven on earth, the Church “is the Reign of Christ already present in mystery” (Vatican II, LG 3)…   “The Church . . . will receive its perfection only in the glory of heaven,” (LG 48) at the time of Christ’s glorious return…   Until that day, “the Church… longs for the full coming of the Kingdom… The Church and through her, the world, will not be perfected in glory without great trials.   Only then will “all the just from the time of Adam, ‘from Abel, the just one, to the last of the elect,’ be gathered together in the universal Church in the Father’s presence” (LG 2). … CCC #760-769matthew 13 43 then the righteous shall shine like the sun - it was the son's task ccc 760-766 30 july 2019.jpg

“This week, let’s ask the Holy Spirit for the wisdom of time, the wisdom regarding the end, the wisdom of the resurrection, the wisdom of the eternal encounter with Jesus, that we are able to understand that this wisdom is in our faith.   It will be a day of joyful encounter with Jesus.   Let us pray that the Lord prepare us for this.   Let each one of us end this week thinking about the end – “I will come to an end.   I will not remain forever. How would I like to come to an end?”… Pope Francis (Santa Marta, 27 November 2018)matthew 13 43 then the righteous shall shine - this week let us ask - 30 july 2019.jpg

PRAYER – Almighty Father, send forth Your Spirit, that we may be created and Thou shall renew the face of the earth.   O, God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit, did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations.   Through Christ Our Lord, Amen.   St Peter Chrysologus, pray for us! st peter chrysologus pray for us.jpg