Tag Archives: 2017

Readings & Reflections: Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time & St. Adrian of Canterbury, January 9,2018

Readings & Reflections: Tuesday of the First Week in Ordinary Time & St. Adrian of Canterbury, January 9,2018

Hannah, in her “deep sorrow and misery,” long for the authority that amazes the people in the synagogue. For the divine power at work in Jesus “raises the needy from the dust” and makes “the barren wife” fertile. Our astonishment moves us to beg, “Remember me, do not forget me.”

AMDG+

Opening Prayer

Lord, enable me to respond with my whole heart with to the question: “How shall I make a return to the Lord for all the good He has done for me?”  Enable me to reciprocate in my service for You and your people. In your Name, I pray. Amen. read more

Readings & Reflections: Saturday before Epiphany & St. André Bessette, January 6,2018

Readings & Reflections: Saturday before Epiphany & St. André Bessette, January 6,2018

Orphaned at the age of twelve, young Andre tried many jobs before finally entering the Congregation of the Holy Cross in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. A poor student and frequently sick, after taking vows he was assigned to be doorkeeper at the local College of Notre Dame. Over many years he listened to the needs of thousands of people. Hundreds were miraculously cared through his prayers to Saint Joseph. Andre never took any credit. “I am ignorant,” he said. “If there were anyone more ignorant, the good God would choose him in my place.” After he died in 1937, almost a million people came to pay their respects. read more

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Feast of The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph B & St. Sylvester, December 31,2017

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Feast of The Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph B & St. Sylvester, December 31,2017

“The family is the privileged setting where every person learns to give and receive love…. The family is an intermediate institution between individuals and society, and nothing can completely take its place…. The family is a necessary good for peoples, an indispensable foundation for society and a great and lifelong treasure for couples. It is a unique good for children, who are meant to be the fruit of the love, of the total and generous self-giving of their parents…. The family is also a school which enables men and women to grow to the full measure of their humanity…. O God, who in the Holy left us a perfect model of family life lived in faith and obedience to your will, help us to be examples of faith and love for your commandments” (Pope Benedict XVI). read more

Readings & Reflections: The Sixth Day within the Octave of the Nativity of the Lord & St. Egwin, December 30,2017

Readings & Reflections: The Sixth Day within the Octave of the Nativity of the Lord & St. Egwin, December 30,2017

Having lived through the joy of Elizabeth, we cannot help but smile as we read about the aged Anna in the Temple. She has lived a devout life, not loving the things of the world. And we know that once she meets the Christ Child, her world will change. And so will ours.

AMDG+

Opening Prayer:

Ever-living God,
in the birth of your Son
our religion has its origin and its perfect fulfillment.
Help us to share in the life of Christ
for he is the salvation of all,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. read more

Readings & Reflections: The Fifth Day in the Octave of Christmas & St. Thomas Becket, December 29,2017

Readings & Reflections: The Fifth Day in the Octave of Christmas & St. Thomas Becket, December 29,2017

The elated Simeon takes the child Jesus into his arms and turns to his Mother and says, “And you yourself a sword will pierce.” Even before Jesus can walk, Mary is resolved “to walk just as he will walk” to his crucifixion. “Remember the sufferings of Christ,… the crown that came from those sufferings which gave new radiance to the faith… All saints give testimony to the truth that without real effort, no one ever wins the crown” (St. Thomas Becket). read more

Readings & Reflections: Feast of the Holy Innocents, Martyrs, December 28,2017

Readings & Reflections: Feast of the Holy Innocents, Martyrs, December 28,2017

The prophet Jeremiah poetically described the agony of the Jews as they were taken into Babylon: “Rachel mourns for her children, she refuses to be consoled because her children are no more!” (Jer 31:15). Rachel, wife of the patriarch Jacob, is said to be lamenting the exile of the people formed from her issue. When Christ entered the world, Jeremiah’s poetry was revealed as prophecy. Herod the Great had been elected “King of the Jews” by the Roman Senate in 40 B.C. Saint Matthew tells us that when King Herod heard from the Magi that a new king of the Jews had been born, “he was greatly troubled” (Mt 2:3). Herod could think of nothing but wiping out the threat to his throne. When the Magi, warned in a dream, failed to return and give him precise information about the child, Herod had all male children under the age of two brutally slaughtered in and around Bethlehem. The Jewish mothers lamented their children, killed in Christ’s instead. The sacrifice of the Holy Innocents testifies to Christ’s utter poverty as he descends to our pitiful state, a state of murder and mayhem. At his hand, the Church received her first martyrs. Little children, they were innocent of sin. By virtue of their bloody martyrdoms, they attained baptismal innocence, washed clean in the blood of the Lamb (cf. Rv 7:14). The canonization of the Holy Innocents testifies to God’s timeless mercy. As Saint Augustine says, they are the “flores martyrum” – the first buds of martyrdom. read more

Readings & Reflections: Feast of Saint John, Apostle and Evangelist, December 27,2017

Readings & Reflections: Feast of Saint John, Apostle and Evangelist, December 27,2017

Tradition identifies John with the “disciple whom Jesus loved.” Privileged witness to the Lord’s Transfiguration and the agony in Gethsemane, John shared a familiarity with Jesus that is most aptly expressed at the Last Supper, where he reclined with his head upon Jesus’ breast. John’s Gospel records Jesus’ majestic final discourses, meditations on the mysterious communion of the Father and the Son. John is the  author of the fourth Gospel, epistles, and the Book of Revelation, is often represented as an eagle, one the “four living creatures” from Revelation 4:6-8. John’s Gospel begins by placing Jesus Christ within the context of eternity, as the eternal logos (Word) of the Father. Often the first Greek texts read by students of Scripture, his epistles are simple, luminous lessons on God’s love. Saint Augustine says that John “soars like an eagle above the clouds of human infirmity, and gazes upon the light of the unchangeable truth with those keenest and steadiest eyes of the heart.” John is said to have traveled to Asia Minor and composed his works in Ephesus. He died there around the year 100 A.D. read more

Readings & Reflections: Feast of Saint Stephen, First Martyr, December 26,2017

Readings & Reflections: Feast of Saint Stephen, First Martyr, December 26,2017

In the days following the birth of Christ, the Church presents us with three feasts that exemplify three kinds of “martyrdom.” Saint Stephen’s is the martyrdom willed and endured. Saint John willed to be a martyr (like his fellow Apostles), but did not die as one. The Holy Innocents, little children, did not will to be martyrs, but endured it nevertheless. They are the “first buds of martyrdom.” Stephen’s martyrdom, willed and endured, is the prototype of what it will look like to live as a Christian in the first four centuries of the Church. Stephen, whose name means, “crown” or “garland” was the first to gain the crown of martyrdom in the Church. The account of Stephen’s death is a short course in the martyrdom that would define Christian life in its first four centuries. After engaging in a debate with Hellenistic Jews, Stephen recounts for them their own history as having been fulfilled in Christ. To the ears of his accusers, Stephen’s words are blasphemy. Stephen’s marvelous countenance – “like an angel” – is a further irritant. They drag him outside the city to stone him. Stephen, “filled with the Holy Spirit,” has a vision of Christ – “looking up to heaven, saw the glory of God and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.”  Before he dies, he forgives his tormentors. read more

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s Video: Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord, December 25,2017

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s Video: Solemnity of the Nativity of the Lord, December 25,2017

“God’s sign is the baby in need of help and in poverty. Exactly the same sign has been given to us…. God’s sign is simplicity…. God’s sign is that he makes himself small for us. This is how he reigns. He does not come with power and outward splendor. He comes as a baby – defenseless and in need of our help. He does not want to overwhelm us with his strength. He takes away our fear of his greatness. He asks for our love: so he makes himself a child. He wants nothing other from us than our love, through which we spontaneously learn to enter into his feelings, his thoughts, and his will – we learn to live with and to practice with him that humility of renunciation that belongs to the very essence of love. God made himself small so that we could understand him, welcome him, and love him…. Christmas has become the Feast of gifts in imitation of God who has given himself to us. Let us allow our heart, our soul, and our mind to be touched by this fact!” (Pope Benedict XVI). read more

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Fourth Sunday of Advent B & Christmas at Greccio, December 24,2017

Readings & Reflections with Cardinal Tagle’s video: Fourth Sunday of Advent B & Christmas at Greccio, December 24,2017

When “the revelation of the mystery kept secret for long ages” gets manifested to Mary, the Virgin believes it because it corresponds completely to what her perfect human heart is yearning for. God will continue to be with us wherever we go – but now in the flesh. And since Mary was betrothed to Joseph, she knew that what God had long ago promised King David – “I will raise up your heir after you” – would come true though her eyes, for Joseph was “of the house of David.” read more