One Minute Reflection – 11 December – “I tell you that Elijah has already come … ” – Matthew 17:12

One Minute Reflection – 11 December – Saturday of the Second week of Advent, Readings: Sirach 48:1-4, 9-11; Psalm 80:2ac and 3b, 15-16, 18-19; Matthew 17: 9-13

I tell you that Elijah has already come and they did not recognise him but did to him, whatever they pleased.” – Matthew 17:12

REFLECTION – “Our Lord bore witness that John is the greatest of the prophets, yet he received the Spirit according to a certain degree, since John received a spirit like that of Elijah.

Just as Elijah went to dwell in solitude, so God’s Spirit led John to dwell in the wilderness, mountains and caves. A raven flew to Elijah’s help by feeding him; John ate locusts. Elijah wore a leather belt and John wore a leather loincloth round his hips. Elijah was persecuted by Jezebel; Herodias persecuted John. Elijah rebuked Ahab; John rebuked Herod. Elijah divided the waters of the Jordan; John opened up baptism. Elijah’s double measure of spirit came to rest on Elisha; John placed his hands on Our Lord, Who then received the Spirit without measure (Jn 3:34). Elijah opened Heaven and went up; John saw the Heavens opened and the Spirit of God descending and resting on our Saviour.” – St Aphrahat “Jacob” (c 280-c345) Monk and Bishop near Mosul (The Demonstrations, no 6, 13).

PRAYER – Almighty God, let the splendour of Your glory dawn in our hearts. May the coming of Your only Son, dispel all darkness and reveal that we are children of light and Truth. and may His Holy Mother always intercede for us in this vale of tears. We make our prayer through Our Lord Jesus Christ, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God with You, now and forever, amen.

The long list of Syriac writers whose works have come down to us, is headed by Aphraates (fourth century), surnamed the “Persian Sage”. The few biographical data which we possess of this illustrious author are gleaned from his own writings. From these we learn that he was born of pagan parents during the last half of the third century, very probably on the frontier region of the Persian empire.
After his conversion to Christianity he embraced the religious life and was later elevated to the episcopate, on which occasion he assumed the Christian name of Jacob. The adoption of this name subsequently led to a confusion of identity, and for centuries the works of Aphraates were ascribed to the famous Jacob, Bishop of Nisibis (died 338). It was not until the tenth century that the “Persian Sage” was finally identified with Aphraates, the name under which he is known to modern scholars. The writings of Aphraates consist of twenty-three “Demonstrations,” or homilies on moral and controversial topics.


Advent Reflection – 14 December – Restore us, O God, let thy face shine, that we may be saved!   

Advent Reflection – 14 December – Saturday of the Second week of Advent, Year A, Readings: Sirach 48:1-4, 9-11, Psalm 80:2-3, 15-16, 18-19, Matthew 17:10-13 and the Memorial of St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the ChurchSAT OF THE SECOND WEEK OF ADVENT - 14 DEC 2019.jpg

Let us adore the Lord, the king who is to come.

“… but I tell you that Elijah has already come and they did not recognise him but did to him, whatever they pleased.   So also will the Son of Man suffer at their hands…” … Matthew 17:12

REFLECTION – “God fixed a time for His promises and a time for fulfilling what he had promised.   The period of His promises was from the time of the prophets, up to John the Baptist and the period for fulfilling what He had promised is from John and henceforward, to the end.   God is faithful, He made Himself our debtor, not by accepting anything from us but by promising us such great blessings.   The promise was not enough, He even chose to be bound by writing, creating for us a kind of bond for His promises, so that, when He began to fulfil His promises, we might contemplate in scripture, the order of their accomplishment.   The period of prophecy, therefore, as we have before now frequently said, was the announcement of the promises.

He promised everlasting salvation and an unending life of blessedness with the angels, an unfading inheritance (1Pt 1:4), everlasting glory, His own dear face, His sanctuary in heaven and, by the resurrection of the dead, no further fear of death.   This is, as it were, His final promise, towards which all our endeavours tend and after we have received it, we shall seek nothing more, demand nothing more.

Nor has He passed over in silence in His promises and prophecies, how that final state will be reached.   He promised us the divine nature, to mortals, immortality, to sinners, justification, to castaways, a state of glory.” … St Augustine (354-430) Father and Doctor of the Church

MEDIATION – “In giving us His Son, His only Word,
He spoke everything to us at once
in this sole Word – and He has no more to say…
because what He spoke before to the prophets in parts,
He has now spoken all at once by giving us
the ALL Who is His Son.” … St John of the Cross (1542-1591) Doctor of the Churchin giving us his son his only word - st john of the cross 14 dec 2019.JPG

ADVENT ACTION – He gave us His ALL, perhaps today, we can give Him ourselves.   May we be free of earthly things, just for today.    Restore us, O God, let thy face shine, that we may be saved!   Psalm 80:3

PRAYER – “O blessed Jesus, give me stillness of soul in You.
Let Your mighty calmness reign in me. Rule me, O King of Gentleness,
King of Peace.” … St John of the Cross (1542-1591)o-king-of-gentleness-st-john-of-the-cross-14dec2018 and 14dec2019