JESUS IS LORD. ALWAYS!

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Do not be afraid. Come follow Me.

COME AND FOLLOW ME. DO NOT BE AFRAID. LOOK AT THE BIRDS IN THE SKY. MY HEAVENLY FATHER FEEDS THEM. YOU ARE MORE VALUABLE THAN THE BIRDS.

"When the days for Jesus’ being taken up were fulfilled, he resolutely determined to journey to Jerusalem, and he sent messengers ahead of him.......

"As they were proceeding on their journey someone said to him, “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.”

"And to another he said, “Follow me.” But he replied, “Lord, let me go first and bury my father.” But he answered him, “Let the dead bury their dead. But you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” And another said, “I will follow you, Lord, but first let me say farewell to my family at home.” To him Jesus said, “No one who sets a hand to the plow and looks to what was left behind is fit for the kingdom of God.” (Luke 9: 51 - 62).

Three enthusiastic would be disciples of Jesus received similar answer to their application to follow Jesus:
You must count carefully the cost of discipleship.  How far and how long are you prepared to follow Me? What will you do when the going gets tough?  I will show you what a prudent and faithful disciple looks like.  That disciple followed Me from the beginning of my ministry to the end.

Are you called to serve the Lord? The marching order is intimidating. Don't waste time about who died and burial rites. “Follow me, and let the dead bury their dead.” On another occasion, Jesus commanded the disciples:
"More than anything else, put God’s work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well." (Matthew 6: 33 CEV).

Pope St John Paul II writing on faithfulness says:
It is good to be faithful for one day.
It is better to be faithful for ten years.
It is excellent and blessed to be faithful day after day to the end.

Will you quit if the cost of discipleship becomes unbearable?  Jesus had no apartment or home.  He did not have a servant or income. He had no horse or donkey.

“Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”  (Luke 9: 60)
"Come and follow me."

6. 26.  "Holding His Heart in His hand, Jesus once said to St. Gertrude: “Behold My most magnificent Heart, the melodious harp whose notes ravish the Holy Trinity. I give It to thee, and as a faithful and diligent servant It will be at thy disposal to supply for all thy powerlessness.”  (Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, June 24, 2022

The Feast of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

IN THE END, MY IMMACULATE HEART WILL TRIUMPH!
AMEN. DEAREST OF MOTHERS. WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH! AND WE TRUST IN THE TRIUMPH OF YOUR IMMACULATE HEART.

"Each year Jesus’ parents went to Jerusalem for the feast of Passover, and when he was twelve years old, they went up according to festival custom. After they had completed its days, as they were returning, the boy Jesus remained behind in Jerusalem, but his parents did not know it. Thinking that he was in the caravan, they journeyed for a day and looked for him among their relatives and acquaintances, but not finding him, they returned to Jerusalem to look for him. After three days they found him in the temple, sitting in the midst of the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions, and all who heard him were astounded at his understanding and his answers. When his parents saw him, they were astonished, and his mother said to him, “Son, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been looking for you with great anxiety.” And he said to them, “Why were you looking for me? Did you not know that I must be in my Father’s house?” But they did not understand what he said to them. He went down with them and came to Nazareth, and was obedient to them; and his mother kept all these things in her heart.
The Gospel of the Lord." (Luke 2: 41 - 51).

Saturday 25th June 2022, of the 12th Week of Ordinary Time is the Saturday after the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The Church honors the Immaculate Heart of Mary today.

You recognize the Gospel of today as the subject of the 5th Joyful Mystery of the Holy Rosary.

Why this feast? The Church in her wisdom and discernment instituted this feast to encourage us to have great confidence in approaching the Most Holy and Immaculate Heart of Mary for all our spiritual and material needs. By placing the feast of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary back to back, we know by filial instinct that both Hearts are not in competition. It is the will of God that She who is filled with grace and who the Lord God is with in a preeminent manner will play a significant role in salvation history. We do well to approach her constantly to be free from the chain and deceits of Satan.

For the naive and ignorant who imagine that to honor Mary is to depreciate the honor of Jesus, please consider this: Can you fail to honor the ambassador representing the President because of the foolish thought that honoring the ambassador might diminish the President's prestige? If you do this, be ready to taste the wrath of the President.
Mary, the holy handmaid of the Lord does not seek honor for herself. She is in no way in competition with her Lord who has done great things for her.

The Holy Spirit prophesied that all generations will call Mary blessed.
During her 60 years or so on earth, her life was hidden in Christ Jesus. But now that she is assumed into heaven, all generations call her Blessed every day. How? Billions of Hail Marys said every day to honor Mary. Universities, Cathedrals, Institutes all over the world are named after the humble Virgin of Nazareth. Her patronages are countless.

To learn about the 15 Promises of Mary to those who say the Holy Rosary, click the link below:
http://seekfirst.blogspot.com/2020/08/the-15-promises-of-mary-to-those-who.html?m=1

6. 25.  The Sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Two Hearts. One pulse!

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Thursday, June 23, 2022

The Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

3 OF THE 12 PROMISES OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS TO THE DEVOTEES OF HIS SACRED HEART:
1. I WILL GIVE THEM ALL THE GRACES NECESSARY FOR THEIR STATE OF LIFE.
2. I WILL GIVE PEACE IN THEIR FAMILIES.
3. I WILL CONSOLE THEM IN ALL THEIR TROUBLES.

"Jesus addressed this parable to the Pharisees and scribes: “What man among you having a hundred sheep and losing one of them would not leave the ninety-nine in the desert and go after the lost one until he finds it? And when he does find it, he sets it on his shoulders with great joy and, upon his arrival home, he calls together his friends and neighbors and says to them, ‘Rejoice with me because I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you, in just the same way there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous people who have no need of repentance." (Luke 15: 3 - 7).

Friday 24th June 2022, in the 12th Week of Ordinary Time is the Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Jesus requested St Margaret Mary Alacoque to have a solemn feast instituted the Friday after Corpus Christi to honor His Sacred Heart. Jesus providentially placed St Claude de la Colombiere of the Society of Jesus to be Margaret's confessor and spiritual director to help her with this assignment.

Why the feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus? The heart of Jesus was pierced on the cross for love of us. Men's hearts have grown very cold towards Jesus. Jesus chose to dwell in the Blessed Sacrament of the Altar round the clock all year round for the sake of His love for us. He waits for visitors but no one comes. Most churches are locked up during the day like a security prison.

Jesus is the Good Shepherd in the Gospel of today who celebrates for finding one lost sheep.

The feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus is instituted to counter the irrational apathy and chill towards Jesus. Jesus is the King of mercy who delights in mercy. He yearns to pour out His mercy on sick souls.

The Church teaches:
"The prayer of the Church venerates and honors the Heart of Jesus just as it invokes his most holy name. It adores the incarnate Word and his Heart which, out of love for men, he allowed to be pierced by our sins. Christian prayer loves to follow the way of the cross in the Savior's steps. The stations from the Praetorium to Golgotha and the tomb trace the way of Jesus, who by his holy Cross has redeemed the world.". (CCC 2669).

O Sacred Heart of Jesus wounded for our sins, bestow on us in mercy the boundless treasures of Your love.  Amen.

Speaking to a Benedictine mystic, Jesus says:
"Nothing so grieves My divine Heart as the doubt of My merciful love. Sin in all its forms and manifestations offends Me and grieves My most loving Heart, but one who doubts of My merciful love grieves Me in a way that you cannot imagine. It is because I am love, and all love; it is because My mercy is the expression of My love towards sinners, that My Heart suffers when these same sinners close themselves to Me by doubting that I am all love and ready to forgive all." (IN SINU JESU).

For the 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart, Prayer of Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Litany of the Sacred Heart, etc click the link below:
http://seekfirst.blogspot.com/2021/06/consecrate-yourself-to-sacred-heart-of.html?m=1

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Wednesday, June 22, 2022

The Solemnity of the Nativity of John the Baptist.

JESUS MEANS SAVIOR. JOHN MEANS GOD IS GRACIOUS. THE GRACIOUS FAVOR OF THE SAVIOR, THE WORD OF GOD HAS GIVEN US JOHN, THE VOICE OF GOD AS A BRIGHT LIGHT FOR OUR JOURNEY OF FAITH.

"When the time arrived for Elizabeth to have her child she gave birth to a son. Her neighbors and relatives heard that the Lord had shown his great mercy toward her, and they rejoiced with her. When they came on the eighth day to circumcise the child, they were going to call him Zechariah after his father, but his mother said in reply, “No. He will be called John.” But they answered her, “There is no one among your relatives who has this name.” So they made signs, asking his father what he wished him to be called. He asked for a tablet and wrote, “John is his name,” and all were amazed.....

“What, then, will this child be?” For surely the hand of the Lord was with him.
The child grew and became strong in spirit, and he was in the desert until the day of his manifestation to Israel." (Luke 1: 57.....66, 80 ).

Thursday 23rd June 2022, in the 12th Week in Ordinary Time is the Solemnity of the Nativity of St John the Baptist.  How many Birthdays are celebrated in the Church's 365 days Liturgical Calendar? Only Three:

1. Christmas, Birthday of Christ the Lord - 25th December.
2. Birthday of the Blessed Virgin Mary - 8th September.
3. Birthday of St. John the Baptist - 24th June.

This indicates that John the Baptist is a significant persona in salvation history. Let us sketch a profile of St John the Baptist:

#1 His name is John: "God is gracious."
#2.  He was sanctified in his mother's womb. He kicked his mother hard in the womb with excitement when Mary visited Elizabeth.
#3. John was chosen by the Father to be forerunner of Jesus Christ and to prepare His way.
#4. John baptized Jesus in the River Jordan.
#5. His humility is supreme. He said: "He [Jesus] must increase. I must decrease." And he allowed his disciples to switch allegiance and follow Jesus.
#6. John gave his life for Jesus. He was a great martyr for Jesus.

"[John's] birth brought great rejoicing;
even in the womb he leapt for joy
at the coming of human salvation.
He alone of all the prophets
pointed out the Lamb of redemption.
And to make holy the flowing waters,
he baptized the very author of Baptism
and was privileged to bear him supreme witness
by the shedding of his blood."  (From the Preface of the Mass of the Feast.)

Jesus paid St John the Baptist one of the greatest compliments:
"For I say unto you, Among those that are born of women there is not a greater prophet than John the Baptist: but he that is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he."  (Luke 7: 28 KJB).

John is the Voice. He is not the Word.
I am just a servant of the Word. He must increase. I must decrease. O Lord Jesus Christ, may all Your servants decrease so that You increase in us.

6. 23. FRIDAY JUNE 24TH IS THE SOLEMNITY OF THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS. THIS IS WHY THE CHURCH MOVED THE SOLEMNITY OF THE NATIVITY OF JOHN THE BAPTIST USUALLY CELEBRATED ON JUNE 24TH TO THE 23RD OF JUNE. JESUS EXPRESSLY ORDERED THE SOLEMNITY OF HIS SACRED HEART BE CELEBRATED ON THE FRIDAY AFTER CORPUS CHRISTI.
HONOR THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS BY ATTENDING HOLY MASS AND RECEIVING HOLY COMMUNION THIS FRIDAY.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Feast of Saints Thomas More, John Fisher and Paulinus of Nola.

THE SHOEMAKER  MAKES SHOES. THE TAILOR MAKES CLOTHES. THE PRIEST MAKES SACRIFICES.  THE TREE MAKES ITS KIND OF FRUIT. CHRISTIAN BEWARE OF TEACHERS AND PROPHETS WHO MAKE FALSE DOCTRINES.

"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. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Just so, every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. So by their fruits you will know them.”  (Matthew 7: 15 - 20).

Wednesday 22nd June 2022, of the 12th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast day of three giants of the Christian Church:
St Paulinus of Nola (355 - 431). French Bishop. Over a thousand years separated him from the two English martyrs we honor today. St John Fisher (1469 - 1535). Bishop and scholar. And his friend, St Thomas More (1477 - 1535). Lawyer, Statesman and Chancellor of Exchequer of King Henry VIII. St Thomas More is revered all over the world as the patron saint of lawyers.
St John Fisher and St Thomas More were martyred under Henry VIII for refusing to compromise the teachings of the Church.

When a Bishop lacks the grace of fortitude of his high office, he succumbs to the threats of tyrants like King Henry VIII. That is what the world saw in the England of the 1520s. King Henry, one single man born of a woman succeeded in intimidating the whole the English hierarchy. About 300 Bishops denied their Catholic Faith. Only Bishop John Fisher stood up to him and stood his ground. He refused to deny his holy faith. St Thomas More a layman stood his ground too. Both men suffered martyrdom. Today both men are celebrated all over the world. Henry VIII, where is your kingdom? Where are your 7 wives?

The false prophets may dress and talk like the genuine one. But ask which Way of life they promote? The Broadway in all likelihood. Follow the Narrow Way as Jesus taught.

Our Lord and Teacher says that" "You will know them by their fruits."
Sometimes fruits take long in coming but they surely come. Look at religious people who abused children under their care. For some of them, the bitter fruits take decades to show but they come.

By contrast, the good fruits produced by good teachers and prophets are formed by the Holy Spirit and show up in the lives of good Christians. They are :

1. Charity   🍏
2. Joy        🍊
3. Peace     🍐
4. Patience πŸ“
5. Kindness 🍍
6. Goodness πŸ₯
7. Generosity πŸ‰
8. Gentleness 🍎
9. Faithfulness πŸ‹
10. Modesty     🍠
11. Self-control 🌰
12. Chastity       πŸ₯”

The most destructive fruits of the false teachers and prophets are:
"Immorality, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions, occasions of envy, drinking bouts and orgies." (Galatians 5: 19 - 21).

Beware of such teachers and prophets. You are warned. If you are uncertain of how to discern their fruits, ask a seasoned and approved pastor or teacher in your Church.

6. 22. "O SACRED Heart of Jesus, Thy Kingdom come. EUCHARISTIC Heart of Jesus, increase in us faith, hope and charity. HEART of Jesus, burning with love of us, inflame our hearts with love of Thee. O DIVINE Heart of Jesus, convert sinners, save the dying, free the holy souls in Purgatory." (Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus).

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Monday, June 20, 2022

The Feast of St Aloysius Gonzaga, SJ.

"WHENEVER WE BEHOLD A PICTURE OF THE SACRED HEART, LET US MAKE AN ACT OF LOVE, SAYING WITH OUR HEART AND LIPS: "O MY JESUS, I LOVE THEE, I GIVE THEE MY HEART; GIVE ME THY HOLY LOVE!" A SINGLE ACT OF LOVE IS OF IMMEASURABLE MERIT." (ST ALOYSIUS GONZAGA, SJ).

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces.

“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. How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few.” (Matthew 7: 6, 12 - 15).

Tuesday 21st June 2022, in the 12th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Aloysius Gonzaga of the Society of Jesus. (1568 - 1591). Italian. Aloysius was heir to the Duke of Lombardy. He renounced his title and entered the Society of Jesus. Aloysius died at the age of 24 in the Jesuit House of Formation in Rome of the pandemic which he contracted while ministering to the victims.
Aloysius is known for his holiness, purity and chastity and humility. He had a powerful devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. He is the patron saint of the youth.

Many of us are familiar with our key Scripture: Broadway and Narrow Way. Now that you know the way that leads to Heaven, blessed are you if you follow it. (Cf John 13: 17).
The choice is stark. Choose high life, pleasures and amusements, and all the deceits of the Devil called the good life, you are on the Broadway that many choose.
The opposite is the Narrow Way. This is the Way of Jesus who says: I am the Way, the Truth and Life. He who follows me is on the Way to eternal life.  The Narrow Way is the way of prayer, the word of God, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Examination of Conscience, Spiritual Reading and Sharing your faith through ministry.

6. 21. "Because Christ himself is present in the sacrament of the altar, he is to be honored with the worship of adoration. "To visit the Blessed Sacrament is . . . a proof of gratitude, an expression of love, and a duty of adoration toward Christ our Lord" (CCC #1418).
(Paul VI, MF 66).

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Sunday, June 19, 2022

NO COMPLAIN. NO CRITICIZE. NO CONDEMN.

YESTERDAY I ATTENDED THE 25TH EUCHARISTIC CONGRESS IN A BIG METROPOLIS. I LEARNED THAT THERE IS A VITAL AND INTIMATE CONNECTION BETWEEN THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS, THE EUCHARIST AND THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY.
ANYONE WHO CAN THROW LIGHT ON THIS, PLEASE SHARE.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Stop judging, that you may not be judged. For as you judge, so will you be judged, and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you. Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye? 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.”  (Matthew 7: 1 - 5).

What is Jesus teaching us in the Gospel for today? You may call it: Lesson in - No Complain, No Criticize, No Condemn.

If you can deal with complaining in your life,  you can eliminate temptation to criticize and condemn people indiscriminately. If you find that you must reprove a sinful behavior, pray to discern whether the task of gentle and fraternal correction is part of your gifts. If you must correct the offender, pray for the grace of wisdom and counseling. All these prayers can be made in seconds. "HOLY SPIRIT GIVE ME WISDOM AND COUNSEL TO HANDLE THIS SITUATION."

One way I deal with the fatal character flaw in me of complaining, criticizing and condemning people is using the power of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. St Philip Neri who is a renowned confessor and spiritual director teaches that frequent and good Confessions is one of the best ways to acquire humility. Think about it: Isn't pride the cause of our complaining, criticizing and condemning other people?

6. 20.  "Once, on the Feast of St. John the Apostle, Our Lord appeared to St. Margaret Mary and made known to her that the devotion to His Sacred Heart was, as it were, the last effort of His love to save mankind. He said that by this devotion He desired to annihilate the dominion of sin in the hearts of men and to establish in its place the dominion of love. In no way is this twofold purpose accomplished more perfectly than by the frequent and worthy reception of Holy Communion."  (DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS).

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Saturday, June 18, 2022

The Solemnity of of Corpus Christi.

THE EUCHARIST IS THE SOURCE AND SUMMIT OF CHRISTIAN LIFE. (CCC 1324). THE EUCHARIST IS ALSO THE NEW COVENANT RATIFIED WITH THE BLOOD OF JESUS. (MARK 14: 24).

"Jesus spoke to the crowds about the kingdom of God, and he healed those who needed to be cured. As the day was drawing to a close, the Twelve approached him and said, “Dismiss the crowd so that they can go to the surrounding villages and farms and find lodging and provisions; for we are in a deserted place here.” He said to them, “Give them some food yourselves.” They replied, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have, unless we ourselves go and buy food for all these people.”

"Now the men there numbered about five thousand. Then he said to his disciples, “Have them sit down in groups of about fifty.” They did so and made them all sit down. Then taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven, he said the blessing over them, broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the crowd. They all ate and were satisfied. And when the leftover fragments were picked up, they filled twelve wicker baskets."  (Luke 9: 11 - 17).

All things are not just possible for God, all things are easy.

Sunday June 19th 2022, Solemnity of Corpus Christi (the Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus).

Today, the Church demonstrates her faith in the most precious Eucharist: the source, center and summit of her life. It is also the occasion of great thanksgiving for this immense gift and the radical faithfulness of Jesus to His Bride all these 2000 plus years.
The Church and the world needs the Eucharist desperately.

"The Church and the world have a great need for Eucharistic worship. Jesus awaits us in this sacrament of love. Let us not refuse the time to go to meet him in adoration, in contemplation full of faith, and open to making amends for the serious offenses and crimes of the world. Let our adoration never cease." (CCC 1380).

Jesus Christ is everyday inviting everyone to come to the Eucharist. "Come and eat bread without money." The more we respond to this invitation, the more we experience the salvation Jesus Christ won for us.

The Eucharist brings us immense peace. Do you lack peace of soul? Then go often to the Eucharist. The Prince of Peace is waiting to heal your heart and mind of fears, worries and doubts. He will heal you and immerse you in peace.  When you cannot receive Jesus physically, make a Spiritual Communion. You will be blessed. 
Are you hungry for the Eucharist? How strong is your faith in the Real Presence? "They all ate and were satisfied."

Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in the Eucharist.
Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament.
Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in me in the Sacrament of the Present Moment.

The mode of Christ's presence in these three forms is unique and very real. The whole of Jesus is present in each of these modes.

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Friday, June 17, 2022

Why do you worry like the pagans?

DO YOU YOU WANT TO SUCCEED IN LIFE GOD'S WAY? NEVER MIX GOD AND MONEY.  MONEY TAINTS & CORRUPTS EVERYTHING IT TOUCHES. NO MAN CAN SERVE GOD AND MONEY AT THE SAME TIME.  LET YOUR MOTTO BE: SEEK FIRST THE KINGDOM OF GOD IN EVERYTHING YOU DO. YOU WILL SUCCEED GOD'S WAY!

"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.

“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they? Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span? Why are you anxious about clothes?.....

"So do not worry and say, ‘What are we to eat?’ or ‘What are we to drink?’ or ‘What are we to wear?’ All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. 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. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.”
(Matthew 6: 24.....34).

Saturday 18th June 2022, in the 11th Week in Ordinary Time.

The Gospel of today from Matthew 6: 24 - 34 is the crème de la crème of the Sermon on the Mount.
Why are we full of fear, worry and doubt? Because we are of little faith.

We may go to Church and live in the Church. We may be involved deeply in several ministries in our parish.
But deep deep down, we are no different from the pagans if we do not trust in the promises of God. How? Jesus says in the Gospel of today that pagans worry a lot about what to eat, what to wear, which car to drive or fine house to live in. Stop behaving like pagans. You have a Father in Heaven who knows exactly what you need and when you need it.

How do we come by the faith that trusts God the Provident and Gentle Father and stop behaving like pagans?
Go back to the basics. Start praying. Mother St Teresa of Kolkata says: "The fruit of prayer is faith." As you commit to daily prayer and listening to God in His word, your faith start growing and fears, worries and doubts start receding.

Jesus concludes the teaching in today's Gospel by giving the supreme remedy for trusting and enjoying the merciful and powerful Providence of God:

"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. Sufficient for a day is its own evil.” (Matthew 6: 33 - 34).

6. 18.  "TRUE devotion to the Sacred Heart demands, further, reparation and atonement. If you truly love the Heart of Jesus, you will grieve that this Divine Heart is so little loved, so often forgotten, reviled, grieved and offended, and you will grieve in particular at the infidelity, the ingratitude and the outrages that are committed against this loving Heart in the Most Blessed Sacrament." (DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS).

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Thursday, June 16, 2022

Where is your treasure?

YOUR TREASURE HAS AN INFLEXIBLE EXPIRATION DATE. SO IS YOUR LIFE. EACH DAY, YOU COME CLOSER TO LOSING YOUR LIFE AND YOUR TREASURE. GET SMART. STORE YOUR TREASURE IN HEAVEN.

"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.
“The lamp of the body is the eye. If your eye is sound, your whole body will be filled with light; but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be in darkness. And if the light in you is darkness, how great will the darkness be.”  (Matthew 6: 19.... 21).

Friday 17th June 2022, of the 11th Week in Ordinary Time.

Do you believe that your heart is always where your treasure is? This is a spiritual law. We cannot do anything about it. Consider these six areas most people consider as treasure:

Health, family, money, job, tools and possessions and food. Each of these has an expiration date. There is no security in anything with an expiration date.

How do we store up treasures in heaven while living on earth? Consider the following:

"Blessed are the poor in spirit; for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven."
The poor in spirit understand that every material thing is subject to decay and loss. So they do not cling tightly to them.

The teaching of Jesus today on treasure and the heart is good news for many who need to hear it. It is truth that can give us victory and freedom in  life:

“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." (Matthew 6: 19 - 20).

During the great Depression in 1929, some people who stored up their treasures in the stock market committed suicide when the stock market crashed. These guys lost hope about the future. They are losers.

"I sought the Lord, and he answered me, delivered me from all my fears." (Psalm 34: 5).
The supreme remedy for greed, idolatry and materialism is given by Jesus:

"But first and most importantly seek (aim at, strive after) His kingdom and His righteousness [His way of doing and being right—the attitude and character of God], and all these things will be given to you also." (Matthew 6: 33 AMP).

Those who are entrusted with material wealth like Abraham have the responsibility of using their wealth to help others.
Those who seek the will of God in their lives on wealth will find it.
Father, in Your will is our peace. 

6. 17. "Do not let the past disturb you, just leave everything in the Sacred Heart and begin again with joy." (St Teresa of Kolkata).

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Wednesday, June 15, 2022

ABC of FORGIVING OTHERS.

I CANNOT SAY: FORGIVE ME MY SINS AS I FORGIVE THOSE THAT SIN AGAINST ME, IF I CONTINUE TO HARBOR A GRUDGE AGAINST ANYONE.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “In praying, do not babble like the pagans, who think that they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them. Your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
“This is how you are to pray:
‘Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy Kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who ­trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.’
“If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your transgressions.”
(Matthew 6: 7 - 15).

Thursday 16th June 2022, in the 11th Week of Ordinary Time.

Why did Jesus conclude the teaching on Our Father, the Lord's Prayer by stating unequivocally a precondition for the forgiveness of our sins and reconciliation with the Father? This is obviously an important theme for Jesus because He taught it in Matthew 18:21–35, which concluded thus: "Then in anger his master handed him [the unforgiving servant] over to the torturers until he should pay back the whole debt. So will my heavenly Father do to you, unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart.”

Reconciliation is crucial to enjoying the privileges of filial adoption. A girl who ran away from home and lived a lawless life for a couple of years may be hesitant as she approaches home. The prodigal son understands that there are consequences to vagrancy and knows the importance of Reconciliation.
Many people claim that forgiveness of the other is hard. Lessons that help forgiveness:

#1. Forgive at once.

#2. Forgive everyone without discrimination.

#3. Forgive always.

#4. Forgive everywhere.

#5. "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." Forgive everyone. This step is modeled for us from the Cross.  Jesus forgave in real time those who were killing Him. He did not wait until Easter Sunday when He rose from the dead to forgive.

#6.  Pray everyday for all those whom you have offended, known or unknown to forgive you and set you free.
Jesus Christ invites us to a life of continual conversion so that we can pray Our Father (the Lord's Prayer) with confidence.

NEVER FORGET THE SWEETEST WORD IN ALL OF SCRIPTURE:"Your Father knows what you need before you ask him. "

6. 16.  “May the Heart of Jesus Christ be our school!
Let us make our abode there.
Let us study its movements
and attempt to conform ours to them.
Yes, O Divine Jesus, I want to live there.” (St Claude de la Colombiere, SJ).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Love your enemies.

LOVE & FORGIVE YOUR ENEMIES.
"YOU CANNOT REMAIN A PRISONER OF THE PAST." POPE ST JOHN PAUL II.
FORGIVE AT ONCE. FORGIVE EVERYONE. FORGIVE ALL OFFENSES. OVERCOME EVIL BY GOOD.

“Jesus said to his disciples: “You have heard that it was said, You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brothers only, what is unusual about that? Do not the pagans do the same? So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect.”  (Matthew 5:  43 - 48).

Tuesday 14th June 2022, in the 11th Week of Ordinary Time.

The new law proclaimed by Jesus Christ is for children of the heavenly Father. The law inaugurated by Moses is different. "While the law was given through Moses, grace and truth came through Jesus Christ." (John 1: 17).

The new law is the Covenant of grace. We become members of the New Covenant through faith. "But to those who did accept him [Jesus] he gave power to become children of God, to those who believe in his name, who were born not by natural generation nor by human choice nor by a man’s decision but of God." (John 1: 11 - 13).

Now that we understand that we live under the Covenant of grace, we see that it is not impossible to live the command of Jesus Christ in our key Scripture in our own strength:
"Love your enemies, and pray for those who persecute you."  For we are now sons and daughters and no longer slaves. The Spirit of Abba Father lives in us. The Spirit helps us to take full possession of our inheritance.

Our Father in Heaven makes His sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.

Abba Father, make us love all men for Your sake. Father, in Your will is our peace.

6. 14. “The Blessed Sacrament is the Invention of Love. It [the Blessed Sacrament] is life and fortitude for souls, a remedy for every fault, and viaticum for the last passage from time to eternity. In it, sinners recover life for their souls; tepid souls true warmth, fervent souls tranquility…saintly souls wings to fly toward perfection…pure souls sweet honey…” (St Margaret Mary Alacoque, the Apostle of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Ask for a double portion.

O HOLY SPIRIT, SPIRIT OF TRUTH, COME INTO OUR HEARTS: SHED THE BRIGHTNESS OF YOUR LIGHT ON ALL NATIONS, THAT THEY BE OF ONE FAITH AND PLEASING TO YOU. AMEN.

“When the Lord was about to take Elijah up to heaven in a whirlwind, he and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal. Elijah said to Elisha, “Please stay here; the Lord has sent me on to the Jordan.”.....

"When they had crossed over, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask for whatever I may do for you, before I am taken from you.” Elisha answered, “May I receive a double portion of your spirit.” “You have asked something that is not easy,” Elijah replied. “Still, if you see me taken up from you, your wish will be granted; otherwise not.” As they walked on conversing, a flaming chariot and flaming horses came between them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind. When Elisha saw it happen he cried out, “My father! my father! Israel’s chariots and drivers!” But when he could no longer see him, Elisha gripped his own garment and tore it in two.... .” (2 Kings 2: 1, 6....4).

Wednesday 15th June 2022, 11th Week in Ordinary Time.

Pentecost Sunday is barely two weeks ago. Our key Scripture presents us with the theme of a lavish outpouring of the Holy Spirit! In the Bible, there are multiple outpouring of the awesome Spirit. How many outpouring of the Holy Spirit can we expect? Some believe one and others two or three, viz Baptism, Confirmation and Holy Orders.

Actually Scripture shows that we can receive not just a double portion of the Holy Spirit but multiple portions. "With joy you will draw water from the fountains of salvation." (Isaiah 12: 3).
This water refers to the Holy Spirit who is available for multiple outpouring.

"The Lord’s acts of mercy are not exhausted, his compassion is not spent; They are renewed each morning— great is your faithfulness!
The Lord is my portion, I tell myself,
therefore I will hope in him." (Lamentations 2: 23 - 24).

Do not limit the Holy Spirit that God intends to replenish every morning. God does not ration the Holy Spirit.

"Whoever believes in me, as scripture says: ‘Rivers of living water will flow from within him." (John 7: 38).

The Prophet Elisha had a great intimation of God's generous plan for us when he asked:
“May I receive a double portion of your spirit.”

We should come to God in prayer like Elisha:  With bold confidence! Did Jesus not say that the Father does not ration the Holy Spirit?
Elijah replied Elisha: “You have asked something that is not easy." (2 Kings 2: 9 - 10).
For God all things are easy and possible.

Ask and you will receive. I will ask for a double portion of the Holy Spirit. I will ask for a fresh outpouring of the Holy Spirit every morning because God promises:
God renews His favors every morning because great is God's faithfulness!

6. 15. "I take Thee, O Sacred Heart, for the sole object of my love, the protection of my life, the pledge of my salvation, the remedy of my frailty and inconstancy, the reparation for all the defects of my life, and my secure refuge at the hour of my death." (Act of Consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Feast of St Anthony of Padua OFM, Doctor of the Church.

O DEAR ST ANTHONY, FAITHFUL FRIEND OF YOUR FRIENDS, COME QUICKLY TO MY HELP AT THIS MOMENT OF NEED. I LOST MY KEYS, WALLET, SPECTACLES, BOOK, ETC..
TEACH ME HOW TO BE GRATEFUL FOR ALL GOD'S MERCIFUL LOVE. TEACH ME TOO HOW TO GLORIFY JESUS BY HONORING THE SAINTS. AMEN.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “You have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth. But I say to you, offer no resistance to one who is evil. When someone strikes you on your right cheek, turn the other one to him as well. If anyone wants to go to law with you over your tunic, hand him your cloak as well. Should anyone press you into service for one mile, go with him for two miles. Give to the one who asks of you, and do not turn your back on one who wants to borrow." (Matthew 5: 38 - 42).

Monday 13th June 2022, in the 11th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Anthony of Padua (1195 - 1231), Franciscan Priest and Doctor of the Church. Born in Lisbon, Portugal, trained in Italy, his outstanding talent as a preacher took him to Africa and France. Anthony is a great miracle worker and is fondly remembered for his help in finding lost objects. After he helped me find an important object, he became one of my patron saints.

Offer no resistance to one who you know to be a thief, a liar, an oppressor, a violent person, etc. What is Jesus teaching us here? Let us note that it is impossible to go through life without meeting the type of person the Lord calls "evil."

Our key Scripture for today evokes some word associations: Forgiveness, Retaliation, Litigation, etc.
What archetypes of evil does the Bible place the wicked person? "immorality, impurity, licentiousness,  idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy, outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness, dissensions, factions,  occasions of envy, drinking bouts, orgies, and the like." (Galatians 5: 19 - 21). In the same passage it says that those with such behavior will never see the Kingdom of God.
Now, if we desire to see the Kingdom of God, we must practice what Jesus teaches: Forgiveness and not retaliation. Reconciliation and not litigation.

When we live as Christians in the power of the Holy Spirit, we will produce the fruits of the Spirit which are:  love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. (Galatians 5: 22 - 23).

"If we live in the Spirit, let us also follow the Spirit." (Galatians 5: 25).
This is the core teaching of our key Scripture for today?

6. 13. "We will show Thee our love and gratitude, O Sacred Heart of Jesus, by keeping Thy sacred precepts, by rendering Thee atonement and reparation, by honoring the image of Thy Divine Heart and by confiding in Thine all-powerful assistance."  (DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Saturday, June 11, 2022

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity.

I DO NOT UNDERSTAND THE MYSTERY OF THE TRINITY. I PRAY TO ABBA FATHER USING THE LORD'S PRAYER TAUGHT US BY JESUS OUR TEACHER. I PRAY TO OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST, SON OF GOD AND SON OF MARY. I EXPERIENCE THE HOLY SPIRIT IN PRAYER, IN HIS INSPIRATIONS AND POWER. THIS IS HOW I KNOW THAT THE TRINITY IS REAL. I BELIEVE BECAUSE THE CHURCH TAUGHT ME TO BELIEVE.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.” (John 16: 12 - 15).

Sunday 12th June 2022 is the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity. The Godhead, the adorable Blessed Trinity. One God, three co-equal Persons. Father, Son and Holy Spiri is the revelation of the Son, Jesus Christ, the second Person of the Blessed Trinity. This truth did not come to us from a philosophical deduction.

It is interesting that the mystery of the Holy Trinity was revealed at the end of Christ's earthly ministry. This mystery was revealed in the context of Baptism and Mission of the Church. What could this mean? Jesus Christ became Man so that man can know God, love Him and serve Him and live with God forever.

The Trinity is a great mystery beyond the intellect of man. We make the sign of the Cross in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. We are baptized in the name of the Father and of the Son and the Holy Spirit.

The Creed teaches us all we need to know about the Holy Trinity, the One Undivided Unity.

"We believe in one God, the Father, the Almighty, Maker of all that is, seen and unseen.

"We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ, the only Son of God, eternally begotten of the Father.

"We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, who proceeds from the Father and the Son, who with the Father and the Son he is worshipped and glorified."

This is the Faith of our Fathers. The Faith revealed by Jesus Christ.
We believe!

Glory be to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Spirit, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, June 10, 2022

Feast of St Barnabas, Great Apostle & Evangelist.

SAINTS PAUL & BARNABAS!
AWESOME & GREAT APOSTLES & EVANGELISTS.
THE CHURCH WAS NOT BUILT IN ONE DAY. A JOURNEY OF 1000 MILES STARTS WITH THE FIRST STEP.  IF YOU TAKE THE FIRST STEP TODAY, YOU ARE GUARANTEED TO ARRIVE IN THE HOUR OF YOUR DESTINY.

"In those days a great number who believed turned to the Lord. The news about them reached the ears of the Church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to go to Antioch. When he arrived and saw the grace of God, he rejoiced and encouraged them all to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart, for he was a good man, filled with the Holy Spirit and faith. And a large number of people was added to the Lord. Then he went to Tarsus to look for Saul, and when he had found him he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the Church and taught a large number of people, and it was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians.....

"Now there were in the Church at Antioch prophets and teachers: Barnabas.... and Saul.....

"While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” Then, completing their fasting and prayer, they laid hands on them and sent them off." (Acts of the Apostles11:21.... 26; 13:1... 3).

Saturday 11th June 2022, 10th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of the Apostle Barnabas (+ 61).

St Barnabas, a Jew from Cyprus is profiled in Sacred Scripture as: "a good man, filled with the holy Spirit and faith." You won't find many Bible characters profiled with similar language. What else do we know about St Barnabas?
He was a levite. He discipled Paul the Apostle and mentored John Mark. He was generous in using all his time, talent and treasure in serving the Lord. He was a prophet, teacher and evangelist. Barnabas was martyred in Cyprus under the reign of Emperor Nero in 61 AD. Although Barnabas was not one of the original 12 Apostles, Barnabas like Paul had been assigned the title Apostle since ancient times.

"While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul [Paul] for the work to which I have called them.” (Acts 13: 2).

The Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Evangelization and Mission commissioned the first Missionary Journey of Paul and Barnabas.

The Church prays on the Feast of St Barnabas :
"O God, who decreed that Saint Barnabas, a man filled with faith and the Holy Spirit, should be set apart to convert the nations, grant that the Gospel of Christ, which he strenuously preached, may be faithfully proclaimed by word and by deed. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son." Amen.

6. 11.  Morning Offering Prayer to the Sacred Heart of Jesus:

O Sacred Heart of Jesus, I offer you through the Immaculate Heart of Mary all my prayers and desires, all my sufferings, delays, disappointments and obstacles; all my time, talent and treasure, all my fears, worries and doubts as well as all my weaknesses.  I offer all these on all the altars in the world where the Eucharist is celebrated today and on every Altar where Your Eucharistic Face is present.  I offer them for the remission of my sins, for my family and [Mention the specific intention] and for the Holy Father Pope Francis.  Amen.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Thursday, June 09, 2022

The Heart that loves us so blindly.

WHY DID JESUS CHOOSE THE ORGAN OF THE HEART AS A SYMBOL OF HIS TENDER LOVE & AFFECTION FOR US?
THE SON OF GOD AND SON OF MARY CAME TO SAVE ALL MANKIND. HE CHOSE A SYMBOL OF LOVE THAT IS UNIVERSAL TO ALL PEOPLE.

"The designs of his Heart are from age to age, to rescue their souls from death and to keep them alive in famine." (Psalm 33: 11, 19).

Friday 10th June 2022 of the 10th Week of Ordinary. We honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus with a votive celebration.

Our key Scripture is from the Entrance Antiphon. Jesus loves each and every one of us with an intimate and unique affection before the foundation of the world. He came to save us from sin so that we may be with Him for all eternity. The obstacle to that union is sin. Jesus lays down a necessary prescription in the Gospel of today.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “You have heard that it was said, You shall not commit adultery. But I say to you, everyone who looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one of your members than to have your whole body thrown into Gehenna. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one of your members than to have your whole body go into Gehenna." (Matthew 5: 27.... 32).

Consider this point my brethren:
What does it profit a man or a woman to be president, billionaire, ceo, miss world, etc for 10 to 40 years at the most and when he dies loses his immortal soul in hell? To save ALL from this faith, Jesus was born into poverty, lead a humble self-sacrificing life and at the end of it was crucified. Jesus desires all people to know of His great love for us. This is why He gave us the Sacred Heart Devotion.

6. 10. "Love Demands a Return of Love: Every pulsation of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, from the first moment of the Incarnation to Its last throb on the Cross, was for purest love of mankind. True devotion to the Sacred Heart demands that we love Him in return, for love demands a return of love."  (Anonymous. Likely author: Fr Lukas Etlin, O.S.B. (1864-1927).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Night Prayer

Prayer Before Going to Bed.

Let us pray.

Lord Jesus Christ, meek and humble of heart, you offer to those who follow you a yoke that is good to bear, a burden that is light.

Accept, we beg you, our prayer and work of this day, and grant us the rest we need that we may be ever more willing to serve you, who live and reign for ever and ever. Amen.

SeekFirstcommunity.com 

Wednesday, June 08, 2022

Feast of St Ephrem the Deacon, Doctor of the Church.

"WHEN PEOPLE SEE THAT THEY HAVE LOST EVERYTHING, THAT RICHES DO NOT ENDURE & CARNAL DESIRES NO LONGER EXIST, THAT BEAUTY & POWER DISAPPEAR & VANISH, THEN THEY RECOLLECT THEMSELVES & ARE FILLED WITH REMORSE." (ST EPHREM, DEACON & DOCTOR OF THE CHURCH).

How much are you aware of the love of Jesus for you? A little or great?

"Jesus said to his disciples: “I tell you, unless your righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the Kingdom of heaven.
“You have heard that it was said to your ancestors, You shall not kill; and whoever kills will be liable to judgment. But I say to you, whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, and whoever says to his brother, Raqa, will be answerable to the Sanhedrin, and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ will be liable to fiery Gehenna."  (Matthew 5: 20.... 26).

Thursday 9th June 2022, 10th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Ephrem the Syrian (306 - 373). Deacon and Doctor of the Church. There is so much to write about the accomplishments of Ephrem the Syrian. Let us consider these:
Ephrem had a keen intellect. His pen was like a sharp sword. Part of his genius is that he used poems and hymns to combat the heresies of his time. He expounded the mysteries of Christ and the Glorious Virgin Mary. Ephrem had a great devotion to Mary and was not shy about it.

Are you a minimalist or one who lives Magis in everything. Magis simply means More. It is an attitude of the heart and mind that goes for More in everything and never for the least or minimum.  This is a core principle of St Ignatius Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus.

In Matthew 5: 20, Jesus says that the Minimum will never get you into Heaven.  For example, the Church law states that you must receive Holy Communion "at least" once a year. The minimalist rejoices and says to himself:  "This is great. I can do this."

"Dearest Lord,
teach me to be generous;
teach me to serve You as You deserve;
to give and not to count the cost,
to fight and not to heed the wounds,
to toil and not to seek for rest,
to labour and not to ask for reward
save that of knowing I am doing Your Will."  (St Ignatius Loyola).

6. 9. "In our age of religious indifference, when fervor and charity have grown cold, Jesus exhibits to the world His Sacred Heart as the symbol of God’s infinite love—the symbol of His own generous self-sacrificing love for men. Jesus shows His Divine Heart as a furnace whose burning rays of love are able to reanimate faith and rekindle love in hearts grown cold and ungrateful." (Anonymous. Likely author: Fr Lukas Etlin, O.S.B. (1864-1927).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, June 07, 2022

Teacher be ware.

"NOT MANY OF YOU SHOULD BECOME TEACHERS, MY FELLOW BELIEVERS, BECAUSE YOU KNOW THAT WE WHO TEACH WILL BE JUDGED MORE STRICTLY" (JAMES 3: 1).

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill. Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter will pass from the law, until all things have taken place. Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do so will be called least in the Kingdom of heaven. But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments will be called greatest in the Kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5: 17 - 19).

Wednesday June 8th 2022 of the 10th week of Ordinary Time.

Teacher beware! You teach not only by what you say. Every action of yours is closely scrutinized. People talk about teachers and preachers in these terms: "He is real. He is not real."

Hear St James: "Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you realize that we will be judged more strictly, for we all fall short in many respects. If anyone does not fall short in speech, he is a perfect man, able to bridle his whole body also." (James 3: 1 - 2).
Are you concerned or discouraged by the warnings? No need to be.  We take consolation from the promise of the Spirit:

"Live by the Spirit and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh......  In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.  (Galatians 5: 16, 22-23).

We are not qualified to take credit for anything in our ministry. Our qualification comes from God,  who has indeed qualified us as ministers of a new covenant by giving us the Holy Spirit. (Cf 2 Corinthians 3: 4 - 6).

6. 8. "THE Church, governed and taught by the Holy Ghost, has approved and recommended devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and has enriched it with many indulgences. She has instituted the Feast of the Sacred Heart, which, in the course of years, has increased in extent and solemnity until now it is celebrated solemnly with an octave by the universal Church on the Friday after the Octave of Corpus Christi."

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Monday, June 06, 2022

Christian, you are the salt and the light of the world.

YOU ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH. WHAT IS SALT? SALT IS A MINERAL SUBSTANCE OF GREAT IMPORTANCE TO HUMAN & ANIMAL HEALTH. THE TEACHING OF JESUS IS UNCORRUPTED SALT? IT IS PURITY OF DOCTRINE. THE CORE & UNBENDING TRUTH WHICH THE CHURCH OFFERS TO THE WORLD, SEASON & OUT OF SEASON. WELCOMED OR NOT.

In our core Scripture for today, Jesus said to His disciples: You are the salt of the earth. You are the light of the world.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “You are the salt of the earth. But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned? It is no longer good for anything but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket; it is set on a lampstand, where it gives light to all in the house. Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.” (Matthew 5: 13  - 16).

Tuesday 7th June 2022, of the 10th Week in Ordinary Time.

Our Lord Jesus Christ calls Himself the Light of the world. How did Jesus transmit this light to the world?

Primarily through His teaching. The public ministry of Jesus covers a number of activities, viz: healing people, casting out demons, feeding people, etc. It is through teaching that Jesus is primarily known by all and sundry. The common people, the doctors of the law, the Pharisees all know Jesus as Rabbi, Teacher.
The Mission of Jesus Christ is to bring light to a world covered in darkness. (Isaiah 49: 6).

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus said to His disciples: You are the salt of the earth. You are the light of the world.
The message of Jesus Christ is pure and uncorrupted. This salt of the earth is found in the Creed of the Church which was fleshed out at the Council of Nicaea, in Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition and the teaching of Sacred Magisterium.

The Lumen Christi (Light of Christ) is to be mediated to the world through teaching and preaching.
Christians are commissioned by virtue of their Baptism to be the Light of the world. How is this done in practice?

Baptism incorporates the Christian fully into the Body of Christ. When the Church gather in worship, it catechizes the Christian through the act of worship, reading and breaking open the word of God, homilies and songs. At the end of the Service, the Christian is sent forth into his community and the world to go and be the light of the world. He indicates his understanding and acceptance of the commissioning by answering "Thanks be to God."

Christians, God called us to be the
light of the world so that His salvation will reach the ends of the earth. Do not therefore hide your lamp under the bed. Place it on the Internet, emails, text messages, conversations, etc.

6. 7.  Four of the twelve Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus to Christians who honor His Sacred Heart:
1. I will give them all the graces necessary for their state of life.   
2. I will give peace in their families.
3. I will console them in all their troubles.
4. They shall find in My Heart an assured refuge during life and especially at the hour of death.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Sunday, June 05, 2022

The Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Mother of the Church.

WHAT IS THE ROLE OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY IN THE
CHURCH? MARY IS THE ONLY PERSON WHO KNEW JESUS FROM WOMB TO TOMB TO RESURRECTION TO ASCENSION TO PENTECOST! THIS KNOWLEDGE & EXPERIENCE QUALIFIES MARY AS MOTHER AND TEACHER IN THE CHURCH.

"The disciples devoted themselves with one accord to prayer with Mary, the mother of Jesus." (Cf Acts 1: 14).
 
Today is Monday after Pentecost 2022,
of the 10th week in Ordinary Time. Today the Church celebrates the Memorial of Mary, Mother of the Church.

“Standing by the cross of Jesus were his mother and his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary of Magdala. When Jesus saw his mother and the disciple there whom he loved, he said to his mother, “Woman, behold, your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold, your mother.” And from that hour the disciple took her into his home.” (John 19: 25..... 34).

The Blessed Virgin Mary is the only human being that witnessed all the mysteries of our salvation from Conception to Death of Jesus to the Birth of the Church on Pentecost Sunday. Is this an accident or mere coincidence?

O God, Father of mercies, Your Only Begotten Son, as he hung upon the Cross, chose the Blessed Virgin Mary, his Mother, to be our Mother also; grant with the help of the Blessed Virgin Mary that Your Church will grow to embrace all people. (Cf Collect of the feast).

"Happy are you, holy Virgin Mary, and most worthy of all praise,
for from you arose the sun of justice, Christ our God." (Gospel Acclamation).

6. 6. The Church honors the Sacred Heart of Jesus in June:  [The Sacred Heart Devotion]  "wholly consists, properly speaking, in an ardent love of Jesus Christ, constantly residing amongst us in the adorable Eucharist, and in testifying this ardent love by our grief at seeing Him so little loved and so little honoured, and by the means we take to repair this contempt and this want of love."

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Saturday, June 04, 2022

The Solemnity of Pentecost, Birthday of Mother Church.

O HOLY SPIRIT, POUR YOUR DEW ON OUR DRY HEARTS. WASH THE STAINS OF OUR GUILT AWAY. BEND OUR STUBBORN HEART AND WILL. MELT THE FROZEN, WARM THE CHILL; GUIDE THE STEPS THAT GO ASTRAY. AMEN.

“On the evening of that first day of the week, when the doors were locked, where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. The disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.” And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. Whose sins you forgive are forgiven them, and whose sins you retain are retained." (John 20: 19  - 23).

Sunday June 5th 2022 is the Solemnity of Pentecost.

Brethren, this is Pentecost! This is the Birthday of our Mother, the Church. She is Mother and Teacher. Very old and ever young and beautiful. Virgin and Mother of many children. Queen of Peace and Seat of Wisdom. Happy Birthday Mother Church!

The Holy Spirit descended on the disciples in the Cenacle "like a strong driving wind, and it filled the entire house in which they were." (Acts 2: 2). The Novena, the waiting and praying are over. The Father has delivered the Big Gift He promised. "I promised. I will do it." Thank You Abba Father.

"Come, Holy Spirit, come!
And from your celestial home
Shed a ray of light divine!
Come, Father of the poor!
Come, source of all our store!
Come, within our bosoms shine.
You, of comforters the best;
You, the soul’s most welcome guest;
Sweet refreshment here below;
In our labor, rest most sweet;
Grateful coolness in the heat;
Solace in the midst of woe.... " (The Pentecost Sequence).

"The Spirit prepares men and goes out to them with his grace, in order to draw them to Christ. The Spirit manifests the risen Lord to them, recalls his word to them and opens their minds to the understanding of his Death and Resurrection." (CCC 737).

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in us the fire of your love.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, June 03, 2022

The testimony of this disciple is true.

THE HOLY SPIRIT IS THE SOURCE OF GRACE. THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY IS THE MEDIATRIX OF ALL GRACES. ON THE EVE OF PENTECOST, LET US ASK THE HUMBLE VIRGIN OF NAZARETH WHO IS FULL OF GRACE TO INTERCEDE FOR US FERVENTLY TO BE FILLED WITH THE FIRE, GIFTS AND FRUITS OF THE HOLY SPIRIT.

"It is this disciple who testifies to these things and has written them, and we know that his testimony is true.  There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written." (John 21: 24 - 25)

Saturday 4th June 2022 of the 7th Week of Easter. We honor the Blessed Virgin Mary on this First Saturday in June.

A summary of the key Scripture for today might be: The word of God, Sacred Tradition and Apostolic Magisterium.

#1. The word of God: John the Evangelist whom we believe is the author of the Gospel according to St John testifies to the veracity of the word of God he committed to writing under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit.

#2. Sacred Tradition: John warns that it is an error to limit God's word to what is written. There is so much more. The Holy Spirit is promised to lead the Church into the fullness of truth.

#3. Apostolic Magisterium: Anyone who doubts that full teaching authority is given to the Apostles headed by St Peter and his successors should read the New Testament prayerfully. This authority was foreshadowed in the Old Testament by the authority given to Moses and the Prophets to teach and interpret Scripture. God is not the author of confusion.

On the eve of Pentecost, let us pray to God to restore unity of heart and mind in the Church.

6. 4.  "What is meant by Devotion to the Sacred Heart of our Lord Jesus Christ, and in what it consists. THE particular object of this devotion is the immense love of the Son of God, which has induced Him to die for us, and to give Himself wholly to us in the Adorable Sacrament of the Altar, and this, although He foresaw all the ingratitude and outrages which He was to meet with in this state of a victim immolated till the end of ages; preferring rather to expose himself daily to the insults and contempt of mankind, than to fail in showing us, by the greatest of all wonders, to what an excess He loves us."  (DEVOTION TO THE SACRED HEART OF JESUS - Fr. John Croiset, SJ).

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Thursday, June 02, 2022

The Feast of St Charles Lwanga and Companion Martyrs.

FEED MY SHEEP.
AN AFRICAN MAXIM STATES THAT LOVE ENTERS THROUGH THE STOMACH. FOOD & FEEDING ARE IMPORTANT CONCEPTS IN THE SCRIPTURES.
IN THE EUCHARIST, THE LORD JESUS FEEDS US THROUGH THE PRIESTS WITH THE BREAD OF LIFE & NOURISHES US WITH THE WORD OF GOD. FEED MY SHEEP.

"After Jesus had revealed himself to his disciples and eaten breakfast with them, he said to Simon Peter, “Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?” Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.” He then said to Simon Peter a second time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Simon Peter answered him, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.” He said to him, “Tend my sheep.” He said to him the third time, “Simon, son of John, do you love me?” Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time, “Do you love me?” and he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep." (John 21: 15.....19).

Friday 3rd June 2022, in the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of St Charles Lwanga and 22 companion martyrs. (+1886 - 1887). Ugandans. On the feast of Ascension 1886, the powerful but corrupt King Mwanga of Uganda mercilessly killed Charles Lwanga and 14 teenage companions who resisted resolutely his homosexual advances. Eight of the companions were killed later.
The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christianity, said the African theologian, Tertulian. Martyrdom is the greatest testimony/witness to the faith.  The Greek word martyr actually means witness. The testimony of the absolute love of Jesus for us is that He gave His life to prove it. What is most impressive about the martyrs of Uganda is that most of them were teenagers and  some were catechumens. Yet they all chose to die for the faith they had come to love.

Our key Scripture for today recalls the triple denials of Peter.  After the Resurrection, Jesus met the Apostles on the shores of Lake Tiberius. Jesus offered Peter the opportunity for complete reconciliation. Peter confirmed three times that he loves Jesus dearly. Jesus confirmed Peter's leadership of the Church. "Feed my lamb."

What if Jesus asks us: Do you love me more than your family? Do you love me more than your country? Consider carefully how you respond to the Lord. Peter was very presumptuous before the Passion of Christ to claim that he loved Jesus more than anything in the world.

Our love for Jesus may not be perfect. But this love can grow through our openness to receive the gifts and fruits of the Holy Spirit. The highest proof of love is for a man to lay down his life for his friends. This is what our saints of the day did. St Charles Lwanga and his companion martyrs died for the Catholic faith. As Tertulian prophesied: "The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christianity." The Church is flourishing today in Africa, a continent of over a billion souls.  

6. 3. "Lord Jesus, I present myself before Thy Eucharistic Face today, placing myself in spirit close to that tabernacle in the world, where Thou art most forsaken, most ignored, and most forgotten. Since Thou hast asked me for it, I offer Thee my heart, the heart of a priest, to keep company with Thy priestly and Eucharistic Sacred Heart. I adore Thee in a spirit of reparation for all the priests of the Church, but especially for those who never, or hardly ever, stop in Thy presence, there to put down their burdens, and to receive from Thee new strength, new lights, new capacities to love, to pardon, and to bless. I do not want to leave this tabernacle today."  (IN SINU JESU).

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Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus this Friday by attending Holy Mass and receiving Holy Communion.

June 3rd, First Friday in June 2022.

The 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus:  Jesus promised 12 special favors to all those who will honor His Sacred Heart especially on the First Friday of every month by attending Holy Mass and receiving Holy Communion.  In the 6th month of the year 2022, we look at Promise #6.

#6.  "Sinners shall find in My Heart the source and infinite ocean of mercy."

I am a sinner. You are a sinner. We all need the mercy of Jesus. Ask for mercy. Be merciful to others. Completely and confidently trust Jesus for mercy.

June is the Month the Church honors the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

"O Sacred Heart of Jesus, living and life-giving fountain of eternal life, infinite treasure of the Divinity, and glowing furnace of love, You are my sanctuary.  O adorable and glorious Savior, consume my heart with that burning fire that ever inflames Your Heart.
Pour down on my soul those graces which flow from Your Love.  Let my heart be one with, and in all things conformed to, Yours. May Your Will be the rule of both my desires and my actions. Amen."  (St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church).

Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus this Friday by attending Holy Mass and receiving Holy Communion.

For the 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sacred Heart devotional prayers and prayer intentions click the link below:

http://seekfirst.blogspot.com/2020/08/12-promises-of-sacred-heart-of-jesus.html?m=1

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Wednesday, June 01, 2022

Feast of Saints Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs.

"TO BELIEVE IN CHRIST MEANS TO DESIRE UNITY; TO DESIRE UNITY MEANS TO DESIRE THE CHURCH; TO DESIRE THE CHURCH MEANS TO DESIRE THE COMMUNION OF GRACE THAT CORRESPONDS TO THE FATHER’S PLAN FROM ALL ETERNITY." (POPE ST JOHN PAUL II).

"Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed saying: “I pray not only for these, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, so that they may all be one, as you, Father, are in me and I in you, that they also may be in us, that the world may believe that you sent me. And I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may be brought to perfection as one, that the world may know that you sent me, and that you loved them even as you loved me. Father, they are your gift to me. I wish that where I am they also may be with me, that they may see my glory that you gave me, because you loved me before the foundation of the world." (John 17: 20.... 26).

Thursday 2nd June 2022, of the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of two early martyrs of the Church:  St. Marcellinus, Priest and Peter, Exorcist (+ 304). In prison, they converted many of their fellow prisoners including the jailer. Both were martyred under Emperor Diocletian.

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus prayed for Church Unity. He wants Christians to be of one heart and one mind so that the world would look at Christians and see Jesus in us.  The standard for this unity is: "Just as you [Father] are in me and I am in you, so they will be in us, and the world will believe you sent me."

Today there may be more than 40,000 denominations in the world.  You may wonder: What type of answer is this to the Prayer of Jesus for unity of His disciples?
Why did God permit Christian disunity? This is surely a mystery of Divine Providence.

One of the greatest obstacles to Unity is that a sizable number of Christian denominations do not believe in the type of Unity that Jesus prayed for His Church. Number one obstacle to unity without doubt is Sin. Sin exists in all churches. Let us pray that the Holy Spirit deals  with sins in the churches. Can we still hope to see visible unity in our lifetime?

6.2. "Let the soul who is desirous of advancing in perfection hasten to My Sacred Heart." (St Gertrude the Great).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, May 31, 2022

The Feast of St Justin Martyr.

THE CHURCH DEDICATES THE MONTH OF JUNE TO HONORING THE MOST SACRED HEART OF JESUS. WE WILL PROVIDE A SNIPPET OF TEACHING ON THE SACRED HEART FROM TRUSTED SOURCES EVERY DAY IN JUNE. 

"Lifting up his eyes to heaven, Jesus prayed, saying: “Holy Father, keep them in your name that you have given me, so that they may be one just as we are one....

"I do not ask that you take them out of the world but that you keep them from the Evil One. They do not belong to the world any more than I belong to the world. Consecrate them in the truth. Your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I sent them into the world. And I consecrate myself for them, so that they also may be consecrated in truth.” (John 17: 11.... 19).

Wednesday 1st June 2022, of the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of St Justin Martyr (+ 165). Born in Samaria in Palestine, he is an eminent philosopher and the first apologist in the Church. He defended the Christian faith in his writings in Rome where he established a school of public debate. St Justin was beheaded under Emperor Marcus Aurelius.
Justin is the patron saint of apologists, philosophers, teachers and speakers.

In the high priestly prayer on the night before His Passion, Jesus prayed to His Father that His disciples should be consecrated in the truth. God's word is truth. Jesus, the Word of God is truth. To consecrate means to set apart, to sanctify, to purify for holy purposes.

Have you ever seen a new Altar or Chalice consecrated by the Bishop? It is a worthwhile experience. It will help to appreciate the prayer of Jesus in our key Scripture. What will you do if you walk into your church and find gansters partying around the Altar and drinking beer with the Chalice? Calling the police will not make the Altar and Chalice pure, holy and consecrated again. The sacred objects have been desecrated. They have been made unholy through sacrilegious action. The Bishop may  order both objects to be destroyed or he may decide to reconsecrate the expensive Altar and have the Chalice destroyed and buried.

You are consecrated by Baptism for Mission and Witness. When one fails through a serious sin, the person has become desecrated. Our Supreme High Priest, Jesus the Christ who delights in mercy has made provision for our re-consecration through the Sacrament of Reconciliation.

When you live as one consecrated to the truth, you will avoid conforming yourself to the ways and habits of this world. Rather through daily renewal of your mind by the word of God the Holy Spirit will transform your mind. When being fed by the Scriptures becomes your habitual manner of living, discerning what is the will of God for you becomes a habit. The will of God is our peace and prosperity.

6.1. "Jesus knew and loved us each and all during his life, his agony and his Passion, and gave himself up for each one of us: "The Son of God. . . loved me and gave himself for me."  He has loved us all with a human heart. For this reason, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, pierced by our sins and for our salvation,  "is quite rightly considered the chief sign and symbol of that. . . love with which the divine Redeemer continually loves the eternal Father and all human beings" without exception." (CCC 478).

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Monday, May 30, 2022

Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

IF "THE FERVENT PRAYER OF A RIGHTEOUS PERSON IS VERY POWERFUL," HOW MUCH MORE THE PRAYER OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY, THE MOTHER OF GOD? "SON, THEY HAVE NO WINE.... DO WHATEVER HE TELLS YOU." (CF JAMES 5: 16, JOHN 2: 5).

"And Mary said:
“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant.
From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me,
and holy is his Name." (Luke 1: 39..... 56).

Tuesday 31st May 2022 of the 7th Week of Easter is the feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her cousin Elizabeth.

The Church celebrates today the visit of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her elderly pregnant cousin, Elizabeth.  Why is this feast very important?
Because of two key prophecies that were uttered in the course of the exchange between the Virgin Mary and Elizabeth:

#1  “Most blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb.  And how does this happen to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?"  (Luke 1: 42 - 44).  Inspired by the Holy Spirit, Elizabeth recognized Mary as Theotokos, "The Mother of my Lord."

#2  “My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord; my spirit rejoices in God my savior.
For he has looked upon his handmaid’s lowliness; behold, from now on will all ages call me blessed."  (Luke 1:  46 - 48).
All generations throughout the world continue to call Mary the Theotokos, the Mother of God.

"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen."

Billions of Hail Marys are said all over the world every day.

5. 31. "From this day all generations will call me blessed: the Almighty has done great things for me, and holy is his Name."

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Sunday, May 29, 2022

The Holy Spirit is the Source of All inspiration and power.

"I HAVE SAID THESE THINGS TO YOU WHILE STILL WITH YOU; BUT THE ADVOCATE, THE HOLY SPIRIT, WHOM THE FATHER WILL SEND IN MY NAME, WILL TEACH YOU EVERYTHING AND REMIND YOU OF ALL I HAVE SAID TO YOU" (John 14: 25 – 26)

“it happened that while Apollos was in Corinth, Paul made his way overland as far as Ephesus, where he found a number of disciples. When he asked, ‘Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers? They answered, ‘No, we were never even told that there was such a thing as a Holy Spirit.’ He asked, ‘Then how were you baptized?’ They replied, ‘With John’s baptism.’ Paul said, ‘John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance; but he insisted that the people should believe in the one who was to come after him – namely Jesus.’ When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus, and the moment Paul had laid hands on them, the Holy Spirit came down on them, and they began to speak with tongues and to prophesy.” (Acts 19: 1 – 17).

Monday 30th May 2022 of the 7th Week of Easter.

Our first Reading from Acts of the Apostles remind me of my encounter with the Most Awesome Spirit many years ago.

We might smile to learn that some early disciples of Jesus did not know that “there was such a thing as a Holy Spirit.”

Many years ago in the midst of my desert experience, I received the message from a trustworthy friend that “all that I need is the Holy Spirit.” I wondered: “What is the relevance of the Holy Spirit to my pressing problems of unemployment, money, health and a host of other issues?” Because I considered the messenger trustworthy, I did not discard the message.

I did the Novena to the Holy Spirit before Pentecost of that year and on the final day of the Novena, following the instruction in the booklet I used, I knelt down and pleaded with all my heart for the Holy Spirit. I opened wide my mouth and took a deep breath. When I got up, I accepted in faith as instructed that the Holy Spirit was in me.

I felt two emotions immediately.  One was a deep feeling of peace and joy.  The other was an urge to read the Bible immediately.  The first words I read from the holy book were:  “All wisdom comes from the Lord and with him it remains forever.”  (Sirach 1:1). 

The Holy Spirit is Wisdom. I needed no further confirmation.  The Holy Spirit truly was within me.  I am His temple.  He is the Advocate who pleads my cause with the Father.  How great!  How wonderful!  His presence is peace and tranquility.  I knew that whenever I pray to the Holy Spirit my prayer will receive a hearing. 

My joy in the Holy Spirit continued to grow throughout the years. Then one day a  couple of years ago, I discovered this amazing truth from the Roman Missal: “God is the source of all inspiration and power.” This is the truth I have been seeking.  The Holy Spirit is all that I need. It is true! He is the source of all inspiration and power. Inspiration and source of unlimited ideas and God's power to accomplish what the Holy Spirit inspires one to do. For example:  The Holy Spirit inspired me one day to start SeekFirstcommunity.com Blog. Then He inspired me to join WhatsApp and Facebook to extend my reach in evangelization. He has taught me how to prepare some very appetizing dishes. He helps me in shopping. He points out which books to read. He helps me to prepare for the Sacrament of Penance by pointing out what He wants me to take to the priest in-persona-Christi in Reconciliation. The list is simply endless.

5.30.  “Let us run to Mary, and, as her little children, cast ourselves into her arms with a perfect confidence.”  (St Francis de Sales, Bishop and Doctor of the Church).

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