Category Archives: Daily readings with reflections

Readings & Reflections: Monday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time & St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, November 20,2017

Readings & Reflections: Monday of the Thirty-third Week in Ordinary Time & St. Rose Philippine Duchesne, November 20,2017

“Terrible affliction was upon Israel” when they attempted to concoct their own happiness by abandoning their faithfulness  to the covenant and following their own misguided ideas and plans. The blind man, on the other hand, does just the opposite: he appeals to Jesus’ fidelity to the covenant – he calls him “Son of David.” Only such fidelity is the source of miraculous events. Faith saves us. read more

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time A & St. Agnes of Assisi, November 19,2017

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time A & St. Agnes of Assisi, November 19,2017

Why does the master call the two servants “good and faithful”? Because, when entrusted with a vast amount of money, they do not run off or spend the money on themselves. Rather, they invest what was given them as their way of revering their relationship with their master. His reply is, “Since you were faithful, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share my joy.” Which means, come and be my equal. The worthy wife is valued “far beyond pearls” because she loves her husband and family with just such gratuitous, self-sacrificing love. We are “children of the light” in as much as we have been given an all-surpassing Master and the chance to glorify him by our obedience. read more

Readings & Reflections: Saturday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & Dedication of St. Peter & St. Paul Basilicas, November 18,2017

Readings & Reflections: Saturday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & Dedication of St. Peter & St. Paul Basilicas, November 18,2017

This feast celebrates the dedications of two of the four major basilicas of Rome.

Saint Peter’s Basilica was originally built in 323 by the emperor Constantine.  The basilica was constructed over the tomb of Peter the Apostle, the Church’s first Pope.  After standing for more than a thousand years, Pope Julius II ordered the building to be torn down due to structural concerns.  The construction of the new church spanned over 200 years before its completion. It was dedicated on Nov. 18, 1626.  It is considered the most famous church in Christendom. read more

Readings & Reflections: Friday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St.  Elizabeth of Hungary, November 17,2017

Readings & Reflections: Friday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St.  Elizabeth of Hungary, November 17,2017

As a young child, Elizabeth, the daughter of Andrew, the King of Hungary, was sent to the palace of Wartburg in Thuringia to be raised alongside her future husband, Ludwig. She was married to Ludwig, landgrave of Thuringia, at the age of fourteen, and together they had three children. She was devoted to her husband. He, for his part, grew to love Elizabeth’s open handed care of the poor. “So long as she does not sell the castle, I am happy with her!” he declared. She was a prodigy of charity. From the age of fourteen, when she became queen, she served the poor with her own hands. It is said that on one occasion, Elizabeth hurried from the palace with her apron full of bread for the hungry, but was stopped by her angry husband. She opened the apron and a bunch of red roses tumbled out. Ludwig died while on his way to the Crusades in 1227 A.D. After his death, Elizabeth entered the Franciscan Third Order and gave herself over to diligent prayer, penance, and tending the poor and nursing the sick in the hospital she founded at Marburg, where she personally tended the sick and dying. When her spiritual director questioned her, she told him that she “received from the poor special grace and humility.” She died in 1231 A.D. in the habit of the Franciscan Third Order at the age of twenty-four. read more

Readings & Reflections: Thursday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Margaret of Scotland, November 16,2017

Readings & Reflections: Thursday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Margaret of Scotland, November 16,2017

Of royal Saxon lineage, Margaret was born in England, educated in Hungary, and did her great work in Scotland. The daughter of the Saxon king Edmund “the Exile,” Margaret married King Malcolm III of Scotland around 1070 A.D. She bore him eight children. Margaret was an influential force in both her marriage and her nation. She read aloud to her illiterate husband, encouraging in him a love of learning and a spirit of prayer. “Whatever she refused, he refused also,” her biographer tells us, “whatever pleased her, he also loved for the love of her.” King and country followed the queen in her works of mercy on behalf of the sick and the impoverished. Under Margaret the churches were adorned with art, and monastic life flourished. She unified the Scots by introducing the liturgy in Latin, and encouraged attention to the poor by her own diligent example. The Queen’s Ferry was another innovation: it brought travelers to the shrine of Saint Andrew. Margaret died in 1093 A.D. She is one of Scotland’s patron saints. read more

Readings & Reflections: Wednesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Albert the Great, November 15,2017

Readings & Reflections: Wednesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Albert the Great, November 15,2017

Born of noble parents at Lauingen, along the Danube River in Bavaria, Germany, Albert entered the Dominican Order and rose to become an esteemed scholar in Paris and Cologne. He became a “Master of Theology” at the University of Paris in 1244. Nothing escaped his gaze. Albert’s voluminous writings cover all areas of science, philosophy, theology and morality. Confident of the use of reason in the service of faith, Albert interpreted the works of Aristotle for the Medieval schoolmen. His paraphrase of Aristotle’s writings provided the basis for the work of his student, Thomas Aquinas. He was the great scientist of his age, devoted to careful observation. “The aim of natural science is not simply to accept the statement of others, but to investigate the causes that are at work in nature,” he said. Toward the end of his life, Albert suffered from memory loss. He died in 1280 A.D., in his Dominican habit, surrounded by his fellow friars. When naming him a Doctor of the Church in 1931, Pope Pius XI taught that Albert “is precisely the saint whose example should inspire the present age, which seeks peace so ardently and is so full of hope in the scientific discoveries.” read more

Readings & Reflections: Tuesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Gertrude the Great, November 14,2017

Readings & Reflections: Tuesday of the Thirty-second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Gertrude the Great, November 14,2017

When we have done all that we have been commanded, we are to say, “We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were oblige to do.” Such humility preserves us from lethal presumption and makes us “just.” And God finds the just “worthy of himself”; “the faithful shall abide with him in love.” “The just are in the hand of God.” read more

Readings & Reflections: Monday of the Thirty Second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, November 13,2017

Readings & Reflections: Monday of the Thirty Second Week in Ordinary Time & St. Frances Xavier Cabrini, November 13,2017

Frances was born of a pious family in Lombardy, Italy, in 1850 A.D. She took private religious vow at age twenty-seven, adding “Xavier” to her name in honor of the great Jesuit missionary to the East. She founded the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in 1880 A.D. with the aim of evangelizing in China, yet Pope Leo XII advised her to go “not to the east, but to the west.” Responding to Bishop (now Blessed) Scalabrini’s plea for aid to Italian immigrants, Frances and her sisters went to New York in 1889 A.D. They immediately gathered orphan children into a home. When asked to open a hospital, Frances pleaded her ignorance of health care. The Blessed Mother appeared to her in a dream, tending the sick. “I am doing the work you refuse to do,” she told Frances. Columbus Hospital was Frances’ next effort. In twenty-eight years she founded sixty-seven schools, orphanages, convents, and hospitals in the United States and beyond. Frances died in 1917 A.D. read more

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s Video: Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time A & St. Josaphat, November 12,2017

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s Video: Thirty-second Sunday in Ordinary Time A & St. Josaphat, November 12,2017

Why do the five wise virgins not share their oil with the five foolish ones? Because it is something that simply cannot be shared. The oil is our personal virtue. “The wise maidens represent all those who possess the ensemble of virtues which characterize a complete Christian life. The burning oil lamps which they carry… symbolically portrays Christian wisdom…. This Christian wisdom empowers all those who embrace prudence and the other moral virtues to fulfill the requirements of an integral and holy life” (R. Cessario). “God, through Jesus, will bring with him those who” seek wisdom with the same ardor with which the wise virgins seek the bridegroom. For Christ is the Bridegroom. read more

Readings & Reflections: Saturday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time & St. Martin of Tours, November 11,2017

Readings & Reflections: Saturday of the Thirty-first Week in Ordinary Time & St. Martin of Tours, November 11,2017

Born in 336 A.D., of pagan parents in Pannonia in present-day Hungary, and became a catechumen of his own initiative at the age of ten,  Martin served in the Roman army in Italy and witnessed to his fellow soldiers by his charity until he left to pursue the monastic life near Liguge, France. “Hitherto I have served you as a soldier,” he told Caesar, “Allow me now to become a soldier to God.” Martin founded a monastic community in Liguge, France, on a land given him by Saint Hilary of Poitiers. He was elected bishop of Tours in 372 A.D., where, according to his biographer, he was known for the “humility in his heart” and the “homeliness in his garments.” Martin traveled yearly through his extensive diocese, preaching, consoling, and razing the heathen temples. Miraculous cures, visions, and prophecy attended his ministry. Anticipating his death in 397 A.D., Martin prayed, “Lord, if your people still need me, I do not refuse the work. Your will be done.” Martin’s Vita, the story of his life, spread throughout Europe. read more