JESUS IS LORD. ALWAYS!

Friday, August 12, 2022

Feast of Saints Pontian and Hippolytus.

"GIVE ONLY GOOD EXAMPLE, TO THE CHILDREN; NEVER CORRECT THEM, WHEN OUT OF HUMOR OR IMPATIENT. WE MUST WIN THEM BY AN APPEAL TO THEIR PIETY AND TO THEIR HEARTS. SOFTEN YOUR REPRIMANDS WITH KIND WORDS; ENCOURAGE AND REWARD THEM. THAT IS, IN SHORT, OUR WAY OF TEACHING." (ST MADELINE SOPHIE BARAT).

“Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.” After he placed his hands on them, he went away." (Matthew 19: 13 - 15).

Saturday 13th August 2022, 19th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of a Pope and an anti Pope: Saints Pontian, Pope and Hippolytus, anti Pope (priest). St Pontian was elected Pope in 230 and St Hippolytus challenged him and set up himself as a rival. By a mysterious design of Divine Providence, both waring clerics found themselves in the the same prison at the same time. They reconciled and were martyred together under the Emperor Maximinus Thrax. (+ 235).

In the Gospel for today the disciples rebuked children and their mothers who prayed that Jesus might lay His hands on them. But Jesus said,
“Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the Kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Have you ever been annoyed by unrestrained and noisy children during Mass?  I discovered something curious and very beautiful about this recently. Little children love the house of God in a natural way. At first, I thought that little children might mistake the Sanctuary for a super market like Walmart. A little reflection convinced me that this is not the case.  There is something about the solemnity of the assembly gathered for Mass that gets even to little children. They see something in the House of God that we distracted adults don't see. After one Sunday Mass, I saw a young child suddenly detach himself from the gripping hold of the mother and ran to the side Altar, the Shrine of the Blessed Virgin Mary. He was gazing at the beautiful statue of the Blessed Virgin. I have learned to leave the little ones alone.

"Blessed are you, Father,
Lord of heaven and earth, for revealing the mysteries of the kingdom to mere children." (Matthew 11: 25).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Thursday, August 11, 2022

The Feast of St Jane Frances de Chantal. Cofounder of the Visitation Order.

"GOD HATES DIVORCE." (MALACHI 2: 16). THE CHURCH HAS DIVINE AUTHORITY TO INTERPRET THE SACRED SCRIPTURES. (CCC 2382 to 2385).

"Some Pharisees approached Jesus, and tested him, saying, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any cause whatever?” He said in reply, “Have you not read that from the beginning the Creator made them male and female and said, For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore, what God has joined together, man must not separate.”  (Matthew 19: 3... 12).

Friday 12th August 2022 of the 19th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Jane Frances Chantal (1572 - 1641). Religious. French.
At the age of 20, Jane married a noble man, Baron de Chantal. After her husband died, Jane settled her children and embraced the ideals of religious life: chastity and poverty. Jane cofounded the Order of the Visitation with St Francis de Sales (Bishop and Doctor of the Church).
Jane Frances left Behind a large quantity of letters between her and St Francis de Sales that offer great insight on spiritual direction.

Is divorce permitted?

The Pharisees asked Jesus.  Jesus used this question to teach us God's original plan for marriage between one man and one woman.  God joined man and woman together to become one for life.
If this is so, what is the reason for the prevalent heart-wrenching divorces? Hardness of heart or sin is the cause, Jesus answered.

This is how the Church explains the progression of the hardness of heart that leads to divorce:

"The harmony in which they had found themselves, thanks to original justice, is now destroyed: the control of the soul's spiritual faculties over the body is shattered; the union of man and woman becomes subject to tensions, their relations henceforth marked by lust and domination. Harmony with creation is broken: visible creation has become alien and hostile to man. Because of man, creation is now subject "to its bondage to decay".Finally, the consequence explicitly foretold for this disobedience will come true: man will "return to the ground", for out of it he was taken. Death makes its entrance into human history."  (CCC 400).

What sin has torn asunder, Jesus Christ has reconciled in His body by giving man and woman the means and tools to live in harmony.  The Church accompanies the married couples on their journey of faith with these Sacraments: Matrimony, Eucharist, Reconciliation. The Church provides a number of effective tools as aid to harmony: marriage preparation classes, counseling, Cursillo, Encounters, etc.

Like any vocation, it is impossible for marriage to work outside the framework of sacraments, tools and resources provided by the Providence of God for the institution today.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Feast of St Clare. Virgin and Founder of the Poor Clares.

"UNLESS YOU ARE WILLING TO DO THE RIDICULOUS, GOD WILL NOT DO THE MIRACULOUS."
(MOTHER ANGELICA OF EWTN, A  POOR CLARE).

"Peter approached Jesus and asked him, “Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him? As many as seven times?”

"Jesus answered, “I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times. That is why the Kingdom of heaven may be likened to a king who decided to settle accounts with his servants. When he began the accounting, a debtor was brought before him who owed him a huge amount. Since he had no way of paying it back, his master ordered him to be sold, along with his wife, his children, and all his property, in payment of the debt. At that, the servant fell down, did him homage, and said, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back in full.’

"Moved with compassion the master of that servant let him go and forgave him the loan. When that servant had left, he found one of his fellow servants who owed him a much smaller amount. He seized him and started to choke him, demanding, ‘Pay back what you owe.’ Falling to his knees, his fellow servant begged him, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay you back.’

"But he refused. Instead, he had the fellow servant put in prison until he paid back the debt. Now when his fellow servants saw what had happened, they were deeply disturbed, and went to their master and reported the whole affair.

"His master summoned him and said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?’ Then in anger his master handed him 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.” (Matthew 18: 21.... 19: 1).

Thursday 11th August 2022 of the 19th week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Clare. (1193 - 1253). Italian. At 18, Clare was not only beautiful but her parents were very wealthy. She gave up everything to follow the original Little One, Jesus Christ our Savior. Imitating St Francis of Assisi, the little poor man of Assisi, Clare embraced radical poverty. She founded the Poor Clares and modeled its constitution from what she learned from St Francis of Assisi. The Poor Clares continue to serve the Church today.

I know one Poor Clare Nun, who made a great contribution to the world. Mother Angelica (+ 2016). She founded EWTN which is the only global Catholic Television Network in the world. For me, Mother Angelica is a saint. She prayed and worked. She suffered persecution from inside and outside the Church. She experienced much ill health most of her life. She remained a Poor Clare all her life. "Santo Subito!"

The Gospel today deals with the sensitive topic of Forgiveness. I reflected on this topic a couple of times and presumed that I am a forgiving person and understand a few things about Forgiveness. My attitude changed today when I looked closely at Peter's question. “Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him? As many as seven times?”
I reflected thus: If someone offends me once on something serious, I am disposed by grace to forgive the person even immediately. If the same person repeats the same offense three or four times, that's a different ballgame. Then I realized that I had never understood Jesus teaching on Forgiveness.

When Jesus answered Peter, “I say to you, not seven times but seventy-seven times." Jesus is saying: You have to be perfect as My Father is perfect. His mercy has no limit. Let your own mercy be limitless. Think about this: Many of us who use the Sacrament of Reconciliation confess the same sins over and over again. For example:  "Forgive me Father for I have sinned....I lied 5 times in the past 4 weeks."  Many of us come back in the next few weeks and repeat:
"Forgive me Father for I have sinned....I lied 7 times in the past 4 weeks."
The priest who is acting in persona Christi in the Sacrament of Confession gives us absolution in the name of Jesus.

If we do not make effort to forgive those who offend us without counting the number of times we are offended, we will hear from Jesus:

"You wicked servant! I forgave you your entire debt because you begged me to. Should you not have had pity on your fellow servant, as I had pity on you?"

"My Mother, on the other hand, raises souls when they fall; she instills in them a confidence in My loving mercy, a readiness to believe in My merciful love, a desire to come into My presence and to expose to Me, the divine physician, the wounds suffered in spiritual combat. My Mother is the Mother of Holy Hope. She is the Mother of Holy Confidence. One who entrusts himself to My Mother will never fall into the pit of despair. Even when sorely tempted, there will remain in that soul enough confidence to turn to Me, and to make an act of abandonment to My merciful love that will touch My Heart and release from it a torrent of forgiveness, healing, and mercy." (IN SINU JESU page 203).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, August 09, 2022

The Feast of St Lawrence. Martyr. Doyen of Deacons.

"LEARN, UNHAPPY MAN, HOW GREAT IS THE POWER OF MY GOD; FOR YOUR BURNING COALS GIVE ME REFRESHMENT. BUT THEY WILL BE YOUR ETERNAL PUNISHMENT." (ST LAWRENCE THE DEACON).

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit. Whoever loves his life loses it, and who­ever hates his life in this world will preserve it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me, and where I am, there also will my servant be. The Father will honor whoever serves me.”  (John 12: 24 - 26).

Wednesday 10th August 2022 of the 19th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Lawrence, Deacon and Martyr. (+258). St Lawrence, Roman citizen born in Spain. Archdeacon in the Church of Rome during the pontificate of Pope St Sixtus II. St Lawrence spent his life in the service of the poor of Rome. He perished in a gruesome torture under the persecution of Emperor Valerian. St Lawrence is the Doyen of all the Deacons of the Church. Happy feast day all you holy deacons out there.

Lavishly Lawrence gave to the poor; his generosity shall endure forever; his horn shall be exalted in glory. (Cf Responsorial Psalm 112).

"Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows bountifully will also reap bountifully." (2 Corinthians 9: 6).
St Lawrence sowed bountifully and the Lord rewarded him and made him the Doyen of Deacons and patron Saint of many charities.

During the trial of St Lawrence, the  judge asked: “Where are the riches of the Church?” But Lawrence extended his hand toward the poor and said: “These are the riches of the Church.”

Lawrence cared for the poor, the ill, and the abandoned of Rome and became their patron. St Lawrence is the patron saint of deacons, librarians, cooks, seminarians and students, butchers, etc.

St Lawrence answered the call to the clerical state when that calling was a certain death sentence. Jesus empowered Lawrence with His grace and the Holy Spirit enabled Lawrence to produce large harvest.

"The attack on My priesthood that appears to be spreading and growing is, in fact, in its final stages. It is a satanic and diabolical onslaught against My Bride the Church, an attempt to destroy her by attacking the most wounded of her ministers in their carnal weaknesses; but I will undo the destruction they have wrought and I will cause My priests and My Spouse the Church to recover a glorious holiness that will confound My enemies and be the beginning of a new era of saints, of martyrs, and of prophets." (IN SINU JESU page 149).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Monday, August 08, 2022

St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross, OCARM. Virgin and Martyr.

"REMEMBER THAT NOTHING IS SMALL IN THE EYES OF GOD. DO ALL THAT YOU DO WITH LOVE." (ST THERESE THE LITTLE FLOWER).

“The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?” He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, “Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.

““See that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that their angels in heaven always look upon the face of my heavenly Father.   (Matthew 18: 1 - 5, 10, 12...14).

Tuesday 9th August 2022 of the 19th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of the St Teresa Benedicta of the Cross. (1891 - 1942). Virgin & Martyr. Polish.  Teresa was born Edith Stein of Jewish parents and converted to the Church after reading the books of St Teresa of Avila. Some years after her conversion to the Catholic Church, she followed St Teresa of Avila into the Carmelite Order.  Edith Stein was a well established philosopher in the universities in Germany.  The Gestapo arrested her on August 2nd 1942 and sent her to Auschwitz where she died in the gas chambers on August 9th.

Jesus praises the humility of a little child.  What is humility?
Just like love, humility is patient and kind.  Humility is not jealous, conceited or proud. It does not keep a record of wrongs. In short, humility is love.

The little child is the face of innocence in whom the Holy Spirit likes to dwell and play. The little child manifests the fruits of the Holy Spirit.

Aim to become like a little child and the Kingdom of God will be yours and all the rest as well.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Sunday, August 07, 2022

The Feast of St Dominic, OP. Founder of the Dominicans.

"ARM YOURSELF WITH PRAYER INSTEAD OF A SWORD; BE CLOTHED WITH HUMILITY INSTEAD OF FINE RAIMENT." (ST DOMINIC, OP).

"As Jesus and his disciples were gathering in Galilee, Jesus said to them, “The Son of Man is to be handed over to men, and they will kill him, and he will be raised on the third day.” And they were overwhelmed with grief.

"When they came to Capernaum, the collectors of the temple tax approached Peter and said, “Does not your teacher pay the temple tax?” “Yes,” he said. When he came into the house, before he had time to speak, Jesus asked him, “What is your opinion, Simon? From whom do the kings of the earth take tolls or census tax? From their subjects or from foreigners?” When he said, “From foreigners,”

"Jesus said to him, “Then the subjects are exempt. But that we may not offend them, go to the sea, drop in a hook, and take the first fish that comes up. Open its mouth and you will find a coin worth twice the temple tax. Give that to them for me and for you.” (Matthew 17: 22 - 27).

Monday 8th August 2022, 19th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Dominic, OP. Born August 8th, 1170. Died August 6th 1221. Priest. Spanish. St Dominic founded the Order of Preachers, popularly known as Dominicans. They fought and marginalized the Albigensian heresy in France. The Blessed Virgin Mary gave Dominic the Holy Rosary as a potent tool in the fight against all heresies. The Holy Rosary with its mysteries is the Whole of the Gospel and a nuclear weapon against heresies. I have said the Rosary every day for 26 years to protect the Daily Bible Verse ministry against heresy. Think about this: The Dominican order has contributed to the mission of the Church for some 800 years. The Dominicans promote the study of Sacred Scripture and the Holy Rosary.

There are two tracks in today's Gospel:
#1. How did Jesus handle tax matters?
#2. How did Jesus handle money?

The first is easy. Jesus paid His taxes.
Throughout His ministry, there is no single incident where we see Jesus handling money directly. Jesus and the Twelve had a bursar who was charged with keeping the donations and buying the necessities for the Group. Jesus seemed to have a disdain for money. He called money  dishonest wealth and the Bible calls it filthy lucre. Money taints and corrupts everything it touches.

When Jesus sent His disciples to evangelize, He discouraged them from carrying large amounts of cash. Trust completely in the mighty and merciful Providence of God to provide all your needs.

When the Temple Tax collectors challenged Jesus over tax, Jesus and the Twelve probably had no money in their purse. Not wanting to delay the payment of the Temple tax, Jesus did an interesting thing.

"But that we may not offend them, go to the sea, drop in a hook, and take the first fish that comes up. Open its mouth and you will find a coin worth twice the temple tax. Give that to them for me and for you.” Jesus knew precisely where the fish with the golden coin in its mouth would be hiding.

In our work for the Gospel, we trust in the mighty and merciful Providence of Jesus, to provide our necessities.

"His Eucharistic love surpasses all the laws of perishable nature: there is no greater miracle on the face of the earth than the real presence of my Son in the Sacrament of the Altar." (Mary in IN SINU JESU page 184).

The greatest miracle according to Jesus and His Mother is the Presence of Jesus in the Holy Eucharist. Do we appreciate this?

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Saturday, August 06, 2022

Watch and Pray is the only way to wait for the Lord.

"THE HOLY SPIRIT LEADS US LIKE A MOTHER. HE LEADS HIS CHILD BY THE HAND.... AS A SIGHTED PERSON LEADS A BLIND PERSON." (ST JOHN VIANNEY).

"Jesus said to his disciples:
“Gird your loins and light your lamps and be like servants who await their master’s return from a wedding, ready to open immediately when he comes and knocks. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival. Amen, I say to you, he will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them. And should he come in the second or third watch and find them prepared in this way, blessed are those servants.

"Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour when the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” (Luke 12: 32....48).

Sunday August 7th of the 19th week of Ordinary Time.

Today's message could be personal. Are you waiting for something to happen? An answer to prayer for example. How do you know when God will deliver the answer? The Church answers the question thus:

"In prayer the disciple keeps watch, attentive to Him Who Is and Him Who Comes...... In communion with their Master, the disciples' prayer is a battle; only by keeping watch in prayer can one avoid falling into temptation." (CCC 2612).

When you keep watch in prayer, you will know the appointed time, the fullness of time. When you do not keep watch in prayer, you will fall into a dreadful sleep and temptation and see your bus speed by while you are not paying attention. In the 1st Reading, we are told:

"The night of the Passover was known before hand to our forefathers." (Wisdom 18: 6). How did our ancestors in the faith know that "THIS IS THE HOUR. THIS IS THE NIGHT?" Because they were told by the word of God through the ministry of Moses and Aaron. If you keep watch in prayer, God will be pleased to give you the privilege of knowing that the appointed time has come.

Live in hope. Rejoice in hope. God Never Fails!

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, August 05, 2022

The Feast of the Transfiguration.

"BY HIS LOVING FORESIGHT, HE ALLOWED THEM TO TASTE FOR A SHORT TIME, THE CONTEMPLATION OF ETERNAL JOY, SO THAT THEY MIGHT BEAR PERSECUTION BRAVELY." (POPE ST LEO THE GREAT).

"Jesus took Peter, John, and James and went up a mountain to pray. While he was praying his face changed in appearance and his clothing became dazzling white. And behold, two men were conversing with him, Moses and Elijah, who appeared in glory and spoke of his exodus that he was going to accomplish in Jerusa­lem.

"Peter and his companions had been overcome by sleep, but becoming fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As they were about to part from him, Peter said to Jesus, “Master, it is good that we are here; let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” But he did not know what he was saying.

"While he was still speaking, a cloud came and cast a shadow over them, and they became frightened when they entered the cloud. Then from the cloud came a voice that said, “This is my chosen Son; listen to him.” After the voice had spoken, Jesus was found alone. They fell silent and did not at that time tell anyone what they had seen." (Luke 9: 28 - 36).

Saturday 6th August 2022 of the 18th Week of Ordinary is the great Feast of the Transfiguration of the Lord.

What is the Transfiguration?
In the presence of Peter, James and John, witnesses chosen by Him, Jesus' face and clothing became dazzling with light. Moses and Elijah were present conversing with Jesus. The voice of the Father was heard testifying "This is My beloved Son. Listen to Him."
Why is the Transfiguration such an important event?
#1 To have 3 eyewitnesses to the testimony of the Father to Jesus as the beloved Son of God.
#2 To confirm the testimony of Moses and Elijah. [the Law and the Prophet].
#3. To show clearly the divinity of Jesus as God.
#4 To reveal the future of mankind. We shall be like Jesus at the Resurrection.
#5 To note the command of the Father to listen to Jesus as the Father's anointed Messenger.
These three witnesses of the Transfiguration: Peter, James and John were to become witnesses to the Resurrection and Ascension of Jesus Christ. They bore witness to these eye witness events with their lives. Our faith as Christians is built on solid foundation and not on "cleverly deviced myths." (2 Peter 1: 16 - 19).

The Transfiguration of Jesus gives us a foretaste of Christ's second coming when the Elect will be transformed and become like Jesus as He appeared in the Transfiguration. The Transfiguration prepares us for the great mystery of our own Resurrection.

Because of the Transfiguration, we see Christ as our hope. We also understand that the victory over death and sin will come via the Cross.  The Cross is the Means of Salvation, Redemption, Glorification and Eternal life. This is the gracious and mysterious will of the Father.

"When a soul is abandoned to Me in obedience and in trust, I am free to carry out in her and around her all that I desire to do to satisfy the yearnings of My Heart and for the glory of My Father. Be that soul, abandoned to Me in obedience and in trust, and you will not be disappointed in your hope." (IN SINU JESU page 46).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Thursday, August 04, 2022

The Feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of St Mary Major.

DENY YOURSELF IS THE FIRST AND GREAT LESSON IN THE SCHOOL OF JESUS CHRIST.

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and ­follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.

"What profit would there be for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life? Or what can one give in exchange for his life? For the Son of Man will come with his angels in his Father’s glory, and then he will repay each according to his conduct. Amen, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his Kingdom.” (Matthew 16: 24 - 28).

Friday August 5th of 18th Week of Ordinary Time 2022 is the Feast of the Dedication of the Basilica of St Mary Major. It is also the First Friday of August 2022.
This Basilica was dedicated after the definition of the Dogma of Mary as the Mother of God in the Council of Ephesus in 431.  It was the oldest Marian Church in Rome and was consecrated by Pope Sixtus III about 435. The great Church was later renamed as St Mary Major. Pope St John Paul II wrote that it is an objective truth that the Mother of God is the Mother of the Church. Ephesus hailed Mary as Theotokus, Mother of God. Vatican II acclaimed Mary as the Mother of the Church.

Our Gospel this Friday is one of the greatest. Understand and embrace the message and you will understand the whole message and meaning of Christianity. Embrace the message and you will be happy forever.
We labor and are burdened in life over: Health, Family, Money, Job, Tools, Food, Future issues.  As the catechumens are advised in the Rite of Acceptance, the Cross of Christ is the only answer.   

Jesus laid down the grim cost of discipleship:
#1 Take up your cross and follow me. Your cross are the trials that you can't escape: health, joblessness, poverty, etc.
#2 Be prepared to pay the ultimate sacrifice with your life if it becomes necessary. "For whoever loses his life for my sake will find it."
As the God-Man filled with the Holy Spirit and Wisdom, Jesus knew that no one will respond to His challenge unless the bait is bigger than the sacrifice. And it is.

Here is what Jesus promises:
1. The Holy Spirit is promised with His gifts and fruits.
2. The Presence of Jesus is always with the disciple.
3. Peace, comfort and joy, courage, contentment are always there on tap.

These are real and substantial benefits.  Think of this for a moment: How did so many Christians made up of mature men and women, boys and girls, princesses and peasants, clerics and lay faithful chose to give up their lives for the sake of Jesus Christ? Because they knew and believed that there is a better life waiting for them.

The saints who took up the challenges of discipleship believed Jesus. Do you believe Jesus?
"For the Son of Man will come with his angels in his Father’s glory, and then he will repay everyone according to his conduct." (Matthew 16: 27).
I believe that Jesus has designed a yoke for each of us that fits each perfectly and the burden we are given to carry from day by day is light.

"The exercise of faith increases faith. The exercise of confidence causes confidence to grow. One who approaches My tabernacle in faith is giving evidence of a complete reliance on My merciful love. The Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar is My Heart, open to receive those who will respond to My timeless invitation: “Come unto Me, all you that labour, and are burdened, and I will refresh you. Take My yoke upon you, and learn of Me, because I am meek and humble of heart, and you shall find rest to your souls. For My yoke is sweet, and My burden light.” (IN SINU JESU, Wednesday, January 10, 2012).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

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

August 5th, 2022 - First Friday in August.

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 8th month of the year, we look at Promise #8.

#8.  "Fervent souls shall speedily rise to great perfection."

Who are the fervent souls?
Fervent souls are people who hear the word of God and take it to heart. They allow the word to influence their thoughts, words and actions. They place the Kingdom of God and holiness of life above every other thing. Even while living in the world raising children and holding down jobs, they experience the peace, joy and contentment of the Blessed. Because they trust and honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus, they grow from strength to strength and experience the promised blessings.

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

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Wednesday, August 03, 2022

Feast of St John Vianney, Patron Saint of Priests.

"A PRIEST GOES TO HEAVEN OR A PRIEST GOES TO HELL WITH A THOUSAND PEOPLE BEHIND HIM." (ST JOHN VIANNEY, PATRON SAINT OF PRIESTS).

"Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi and he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”

"Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Then he strictly ordered his disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ."  (Matthew 16: 13.... 23).

Thursday 4th August 2022 of the 18th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast day of the patron saint of parish priests, the Curé of Ars, St John Vianney (1786 - 1859). French. What do you want from your parish priest?

#1 Celebrate Mass with reverence and devotion.
#2 Always be available for the Sacrament of Reconciliation and be the face of the loving mercy of Jesus Christ.
#3 Assist the poor as best as they can.
#4. Be ready and available to assist you at the moment of death.

St John of Vianney set an excellent example as a parish priest. The Church noticed and made him the Patron Saint of Parish Priests.

St John Vianney said à propos the role of the priests in the mystery of salvation:
"Without the priest, the passion and death of our Lord would be of no avail.... What use would be a house filled with gold, were there no one to open its door?” John opened the door to the merciful love of Jesus to sinners through the Sacrament of Reconciliation where he spent hours upon hours every day.

Our Gospel of today is key to understanding Qahal, Ecclesia, Assembly, Church (all meaning the same thing) that Jesus Christ has built.

Jesus asked His disciples, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter answered for the 12:
“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Was Jesus astonished by Peter's answer?  Jesus said to Peter in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”  (Matthew 16: 13... 23).

Jesus builds His Church on the rock of Peter's Confession. A Church that is defined as:

+ The People of God.
+ The Body of Christ.
+ The Temple of the Holy Spirit.

A Church which manifests these characteristics:

#1. Pillar and Foundation of truth.
#2. Always under attack by the Enemy.
#2a. Victorious and Invincible.
#3. Missionary and Catholic.
#4. Infallibility in doctrine by Peter and his successors.
#5. Hierarchy and sacred priesthood.
#6. The Church of the Eucharist.

Do you love the Church?  Saint Augustine writes, “We, therefore, receive the Holy Spirit if we love the Church, if we are joined together by charity, if we make the Catholic name and faith our joy. Believe it, brethren, to the extent that one loves the Church, to that extent he has the Holy Spirit within him”.

St John of Vianney is a trustworthy servant-priest. Let us pray constantly to the Lord to send numerous priests like St. John Vianney to the harvest.

"Yes, here I was speaking of the Eucharist, the gift of My abiding presence to My Bride, the Church, and this until the end of time. Not one soul who belongs to Me is left friendless in this world so long as the Church continues to do what I commanded on the night before I suffered, in memory of Me. The Most Holy Eucharist is not only My Sacrifice offered to the Father, although in a bloodless manner; it is not only the sustenance of souls, nourishing them with My very Body and Blood; it is also the Sacrament of My divine friendship, the pledge of My burning desire to remain close to all who seek Me, to all who need Me, to all who would spend time in My company." IN SINU JESU page 54).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, August 02, 2022

Woman your faith is great. Have what you desire and deserve.

"WHAT IS FAITH?
IT IS THE CONFIDENT ASSURANCE THAT SOMETHING WE WANT IS GOING TO HAPPEN. IT IS THE CERTAINTY THAT WHAT WE HOPE FOR IS WAITING FOR US, EVEN THOUGH WE CANNOT SEE IT UP AHEAD." (HEBREWS 11: 1 TLB).

"At that time Jesus withdrew to the region of Tyre and Sidon. And behold, a Canaanite woman of that district came and called out, “Have pity on me, Lord, Son of David! My daughter is tormented by a demon.” But he did not say a word in answer to her.

"His disciples came and asked him, “Send her away, for she keeps calling out after us.” He said in reply, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” But the woman came and did him homage, saying, “Lord, help me.” He said in reply, “It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.”

"She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters.” Then Jesus said to her in reply, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed from that hour." (Matthew 15: 21 - 28).

Wednesday 3rd August 2022 of the 18th Week of Ordinary Time.

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus said to the Canaanite woman: “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed from that hour." (Matthew 15: 28).

What is faith?
Before the Annunciation of the Angel Gabriel, Mary knew God as Almighty, All-knowing, All-powerful, All-loving, All-merciful, etc. Her profound personal knowledge of God is the foundation of her faith.

The Canaanite woman is a believer who was searching desperately for a miraculous healing for her child. She heard about Jesus from a friend or a neighbor. She believed immediately what she heard about the miraculous powers of Jesus. She packed her bag and went in search of Jesus. Her strong faith and expectations created resilience in her. She was prepared to be rebuffed by Jesus and was determined to have her miracle.

The Bible praises faith as one of the greatest gifts of God and a profound mystery. A little child is capable of great faith as a very old woman. Saints Catherine of Siena and Therese the Little Flower came to great faith at the age of six.

Some quotes on faith:

#1 "The just shall live by faith." We live by faith and not by sight or feeling. Like the Blessed Virgin Mary, we live by the word of God that cannot fail.
#2 "We are saved by grace through faith."
#3 Faith comes by hearing the personal word of God to you and saying a firm Amen to it.
#4 God's grace is abundant to save us and fulfill the desires of our heart but you must accept the word you receive in faith.

The 11th Chapter of Hebrews is the list of some of the most important people in the Bible. They all achieved fame and greatness through their faith.

You too can overcome every challenge through faith. Two great tools to help develop your faith:
#1 Daily consumption of the word of God.
#2 Daily conversation with God through prayer.
Since you know this, you will be blessed if you do it.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Monday, August 01, 2022

The Feast of St Peter Eymard, Founder of the Blessed Sacrament Fathers?

THERE IS NO ESCAPE FROM FEAR, WORRY AND DOUBT IN LIFE WITHOUT TRUST IN A PERSONAL GOD WHO KNOW YOU AND WHOM YOU HAVE COME TO KNOW AS ALMIGHTY, LOVING AND FAITHFUL TO HIS WORD.

"Jesus made the disciples get into a boat and precede him to the other side of the sea, while he dismissed the crowds. After doing so, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone.

"Meanwhile the boat, already a few miles offshore, was being tossed about by the waves, for the wind was against it. During the fourth watch of the night, he came toward them, walking on the sea.

"When the disciples saw him walking on the sea they were terrified. “It is a ghost,” they said, and they cried out in fear. At once Jesus spoke to them, “Take courage, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter said to him in reply, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.”

"Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus. But when he saw how strong the wind was he became frightened; and, beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Immediately Jesus stretched out his hand and caught him, and said to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” After they got into the boat, the wind died down. Those who were in the boat did him homage, saying, “Truly, you are the Son of God.”  (Matthew 14: 22.... 36)

Tuesday 2nd August 2022 of the 18th week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Peter Julian Eymard (1811 - 1868). French. After his ordination, Peter joined the Marist Congregation in 1840. He then had an intense experience of the merciful love of Jesus in the Eucharist and the Blessed Sacrament. This experience changed the course of his life and gave him a new mission. He fostered Eucharistic Adoration throughout the rest of his life and founded the Priests of the Blessed Sacrament who are priest-adorers of the Most Blessed Sacrament.

August 2nd is also the feast of St Eusebius of Vercelli in Sardinia in Italy.(+ 371). Bishop.   St Eusebius and St Athanasius fought the Arian heresy tooth and nail. The Arians  denied the Divinity of Jesus Christ. The Arians tortured and exiled St Eusebius.

Have you ever faced a deep paralyzing fear in your life? For example: Being fired from a job, facing an ugly divorce, or doctor's life and death verdict? Have you ever lost a child for a couple of days as the Blessed Virgin Mary experienced? Or facing imminent death in a deadly weather disaster? All these are occasions for crippling fear.

In our key Scripture, we find the Apostles facing such a moment. Peter becomes the type for all of us in this drama.
“Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.”  He said, “Come.” Peter got out of the boat and began to walk on the water toward Jesus.
So far so good. But things changed quickly.

"But when he [Peter] saw how [strong] the wind was he became frightened; and, beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!”
Why did Peter panic? He took his eyes off Jesus. You too will panic in any crisis if you take your eyes off Jesus. 

Fear entered Peter's mind through his eyes.  Fear, worry and doubt enter into us often through our physical senses.  The first order of business in combating fear, worry and doubt is to control our senses. The best defense in this case is offense. Make a habit of feeding your mind with God's word.  Learn to pray constantly.  You can close your eyes and block your ears. Prepare for any emergency in your morning prayer.

As Christians, we are urged to be prepared always. The enemy of mankind who is also the Merchant of Fear and Death does not sleep. He prowls everywhere seeking for the careless sheep to devour. Deny him every opportunity.

Fear is useless; what is needed is trust in Jesus our Good Shepherd.

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Sunday, July 31, 2022

The Feast of St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church. Founder of the Redemptorists.

"HE WHO TRUSTS IN HIMSELF IS LOST. HE WHO TRUSTS IN GOD CAN DO ALL THINGS." (ST ALPHONSUS LIGUORI).

August is the Month dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Mary says: "In the end. My Immaculate Heart will triumph." I love this.

"[Jesus] said to them, “There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.”  But they said to him, “Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.”  Then he said, “Bring them here to me.” (Matthew 14: 16 - 18).

Monday 1st August 2022 of the the 18th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Alphonsus Liguori (1696 - 1787). Italian. Bishop and Doctor of the Church. St Alphonsus founded the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer (Redemptorists). Trained in civil and canon law, he was a great moral theologian and sought after for his gifts as a confessor. St Alphonsus Liguori is the patron saint of moral theologians.

In our Gospel of today, Jesus fed "five thousand men, not counting women and children."
This miracle is a foreshadow of the Eucharist.
"They all ate and were satisfied, and they picked up the fragments left over—twelve wicker baskets full."

This action foreshadows the Mass where what remains from distributing the Eucharist is preserved in the Tabernacle and worshiped as the Blessed Sacrament.

St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church, imminent Canon and Civil lawyer, writer and publisher of many books, founder of the Redemptorists was gifted exceptionally by God. He was also a very sick man most of his long life. St Alphonsus Liguori is one of my favorite patron saints. I chuckled as I think of sharing this aspect of his life. Alphonsus was the target of a great deal of clerical envy. Would you imagine your holy bishop or priest envying another priest or bishop of his God given gift? It happens a lot in the Church. The Church is human and divine at the same time. Aaron and Mariam envied Moses. In the first Reading, we note the jealousy of the Prophet Hananiah on Jeremiah. The Apostles juggled for influence and envied one another in the competition. Pray always for the Clergy. They are human beings too.

One of the most delightful contributions of St Alphonsus Liguori is his teaching on the concrete doctrine of Divine Providence. God's mighty, merciful and mysterious Providence governs all things. There
is no exception to
this divine law. 

THE CURE FOR ENVY IS THE EUCHARIST.

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Saturday, July 30, 2022

The man who is rich and a fool.

"I WILL TEAR DOWN MY BARNS AND BUILD LARGER ONES." "O RICH FOOL. THIS NIGHT, YOU SHALL DIE."

“Then Jesus said to the crowd, “Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one’s life does not consist of possessions.”

"Then he told them a parable. “There was a rich man whose land produced a bountiful harvest. He asked himself, ‘What shall I do, for I do not have space to store my harvest?’ And he said, ‘This is what I shall do: I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods and I shall say to myself, “Now as for you, you have so many good things stored up for many years, rest, eat, drink, be merry!”’ But God said to him, ‘You fool, this night your life will be demanded of you; and the things you have prepared, to whom will they belong?’ Thus will it be for all who store up treasure for themselves but are not rich in what matters to God.”   (Luke 12: 13....21).

Sunday July 31st of the 18th week of Ordinary Time.

The Gospel today shows us where prosperity becomes a risk for everlasting life. Man's extremity is God's opportunity. Man's prosperity is Satan's opportunity.
A perfect example of this in very recent history are Poland and Ireland. Two countries that were proud to be called Catholic. Both countries registered Sunday Mass attendance over 80%. Then both countries were invaded almost simultaneously by western economic imperialism. Both countries succumbed to the lies of Satan. To make a long story short, Catholic Mass and devotional practices were abandoned. Vocations plummeted. Promised worldly prosperity, gone with the wind.

The Scriptures invite us in the words of the 2nd Reading from Colossians 3 to seek what is above where Christ is. In the 1st Reading from Ecclesiastes, we hear that all things are vanity. God indeed has created man for Himself and made his heart restless until it rests in God Himself.

"How happy are the poor in spirit:
theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5: 3).

In today's Gospel, when the Rich Fool discovers that his business has succeeded beyond his wildest expectations, his instinct is not to donate to the local charities. "I shall tear down my barns and build larger ones. There I shall store all my grain and other goods." Many Church Fathers commenting on this parable see the consequences of unbridled materialism.

The Scriptures teach that "Man does not live on bread alone" and points to the impossibity of a man trying to drag a camel through the tiny gate of the city. Fool! This very night your soul will be demanded of you.

The Eucharist kills the temptation to greed and materialism.
"I am the bread of life, says the Lord; whoever comes to me will not hunger and whoever believes in me will not thirst." (John 6: 35).

7. 31. We close the page to July, the month we honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, July 29, 2022

The Feast of St Peter Chrysologus, Bishop and Doctor of the Church.

MY WORK IS TO BEAR TESTIMONY TO THE PERSON WHO IS THE TRUTH, THE WAY AND LIFE. WITH MY EXECUTION, I HAVE NOW CONCLUDED THE WORK OF MY LIFE. YOU TOO MUST FIND AND FINISH THE WORK OF YOUR LIFE. JB.

"Herod the tetrarch heard of the reputation of Jesus and said to his servants, “This man is John the Baptist. He has been raised from the dead; that is why mighty powers are at work in him.”

"Now Herod had arrested John, bound him, and put him in prison on account of Herodias, the wife of his brother Philip, for John had said to him, “It is not lawful for you to have her.” Although he wanted to kill him, he feared the people, for they regarded him as a prophet.

"But at a birthday celebration for Herod, the daughter of Herodias performed a dance before the guests and delighted Herod so much that he swore to give her whatever she might ask for. Prompted by her mother, she said, “Give me here on a platter the head of John the Baptist.”

"The king was distressed, but because of his oaths and the guests who were present, he ordered that it be given, and he had John beheaded in the prison. His head was brought in on a platter and given to the girl, who took it to her mother. His disciples came and took away the corpse and buried him; and they went and told Jesus." (Matthew 14: 1 - 12).

Saturday of the 17th week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Peter Chrysologus. (406 - 450). Italian. Bishop and Doctor of the Church. St Peter Chrysologus was the Bishop of Ravenna. At a time when the Church was faced with the scourge of the Monophysite Heresy. (They taught that Jesus Christ is only God and not a Man). St Peter defended the two natures in Jesus Christ: Human nature and Divine nature. His theological teaching and preaching are characterized by exceptional clarity. Peter came down to us from history as a great homilist and his theological work on the nature of the Incarnation and the role of the Blessed Virgin Mary in salvation history has lasting value.

In the Gospel of today, John the Baptist becomes the first casualty of the ministry of Jesus Christ. John's whole life and ministry is to be the Voice of Jesus, to prepare the way for the Way. And finally to pay the supreme price of Discipleship.

Jesus preached openly on the cost of discipleship. My kingdom is not of this world. The best of my rewards will not be in this world, Jesus teaches.

"Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell." (Matthew 10: 28). The disciples of Jesus might have thought of this as a hyperbole. Now John the Baptist has been beheaded.  What may follow?

"The Son of Man must suffer many terrible things,” Jesus said. “He will be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He will be killed, but on the third day he will be raised from the dead.” (Luke 9: 22).

"Happy those who are persecuted
in the cause of right, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven." (Matthew 5: 10).
Lord, grant us the grace to accept all the persecutions You send to us.

7.30. Honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ this July. Only one day left.

"Eternal Father, turn Your merciful gaze upon all mankind and especially upon poor sinners, all enfolded in the Most Compassionate Heart of Jesus. For the sake of His sorrowful Passion show us Your mercy, that we may praise the omnipotence of Your mercy for ever and ever. Amen."

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Thursday, July 28, 2022

Lord Jesus, I believe in the Resurrection of the dead.

"ACTION AND CONTEMPLATION ARE VERY CLOSE COMPANIONS; THEY LIVE TOGETHER IN ONE HOUSE ON EQUAL TERMS. MARTHA AND MARY ARE SISTERS." (ST BERNARD OF CLAIRVAUX).

"Many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to comfort them about their brother [Lazarus, who had died]. When Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him; but Mary sat at home.

"Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise.” Martha said to him, “I know he will rise, in the resurrection on the last day.” Jesus told her, “I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live, and anyone who lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” She said to him,

“Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.” (John 11: 19 - 27).

"I have promised, I will do it, says the Lord."

Friday 29th July 2022 of the 17th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of Saints Martha, Mary and Lazarus.

“This illness is not to end in death, but is for the glory of God, that the Son of God may be glorified through it.”  (John 11: 4)

Our adversity is always an opportunity for God to be glorified.  Lazarus, the brother of Martha and Mary was dead and the sisters sent word to Jesus about it.   Jesus said to Martha:  “Did I not tell you that if you believe you will see the glory of God?”   (John 11:  40).  And Jesus said, “Lazarus, come out!”  (John 11: 43). And then commanded:  “Untie him and let him go.” (John 11: 44).

The faith of Martha in the Resurrection amazes me. “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Messiah, the Son of God, the one who is coming into the world.” (John 11: 27).
The whole equation of our Christian religion hinges on faith. God called Abraham and made a great promise to him. He responded in obedience of faith. God announced the Incarnation to Mary. She too responded in obedience of faith. Chapter 11 of Hebrews is a list of Who is Who in the Bible. The common thing among all of them is Faith. They all accomplished impossible things because of Faith. If you do not have faith, you are simply not in the game. You have to do everything to get faith, to increase faith and to use and enjoy your faith.

Are you bound and "tied hand and feet" by Unbelief?  If God can raise Lazarus from the grave after four days, He certainly can restore your marriage, health, finances, job, etc.
Faith is saying YES to God so that He will do what He promises to do.

"I trust in the LORD; my soul trusts in his word.
More than sentinels wait for the dawn, let Israel wait for the LORD."  (Psalm 30: 5 - 6 RM)

How strong is your faith? What are you doing on daily basis to increase your faith?

A few examples:
#1 Daily Prayer.
#2 Daily Word of God.
#3 Daily Examination of Conscience.
Faithfulness to the above will launch you far.

7. 29. July is the Month dedicated to the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ.

Honor the Precious Blood of Jesus Christ this Friday by attending Holy Mass and receiving Holy Communion.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Wednesday, July 27, 2022

You are the Clay. I Your Maker, I AM the POTTER.

"BUT NOW, O LORD, YOU ARE OUR FATHER; WE ARE THE CLAY, AND YOU ARE THE POTTER; WE ARE ALL THE WORK OF YOUR HAND." (ISAIAH 64: 8).

"Can I not do to you, house of Israel, as this potter has done?—oracle of the Lord. Indeed, like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, house of Israel." (Jeremiah 18: 6).

Of course, O Lord my God.  You can do with me as you please.  You are the Potter.  I am the clay.  "Let it be done to me according to Your will."  (Luke 1: 38)

God challenged the arrogant and independent minded Israelites with the reminder that their destiny is squarely in His hands.  Think about it: Aren't you happy that your destiny is in God's hands? I am.

"Whenever the vessel of clay he was making turned out badly in his hand, he tried again, making another vessel of whatever sort he pleased." (Jeremiah 18: 4).

You recognize that God is the potter.  God knows the plan He has for you and me.  He says under oath (oracle of the Lord) that this plan for our welfare is excellent.   (Jeremiah 29: 11).

Consider this:
"If that which God Himself chooses for you does not content you, from whom do you expect to obtain what you desire?.... Do you know better than God?" (Jean-Pierre de Caussade, SJ).

We are clay in the potter's hands and our attitude should be  like a weaned child in its mother’s arms. (Cf Psalm 131: 2).

" So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." (Isaiah 41:10).

These are some of the clay vessels which were transformed by the Master Potter:
Moses
Jeremiah
St Paul
St Francis of Assisi
St Louis Marie de Montfort

7. 28. July is the Month dedicated to the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ.
"O Blood and Water, which gushed forth from the Heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy for us, I trust in You!"

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

What is the Pearl of the Great Value?

I HAVE SOUGHT THE PEARL OF GREAT VALUE FOR MOST OF MY LIFE. I HAVE FOUND JESUS CHRIST WHOM MY HEART LOVES. I CLING TIGHTLY TO HIS LOVE COME WHAT MAY. 

"Jesus said to his disciples: “The Kingdom of heaven is like a treasure buried in a field, which a person finds and hides again, and out of joy goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. Again, the Kingdom of heaven is like a merchant searching for fine pearls. When he finds a pearl of great price, he goes and sells all that he has and buys it.” (Matthew 13: 44 - 46).

Wednesday 27th July 2022 of the 17th Week of Ordinary Time.

Our key Scripture is about the importance of finding the hidden treasure. Jesus talks constantly about the Kingdom of God. His golden rule is:  Make the Kingdom of God your first priority. 
Consider this question:
What is there about the kingdom of God and the idea of the hiding of very important things? 

Jesus led a hidden life for 30 years. The Blessed Virgin Mary led almost her entire life of about 60 years hidden from the public.
 
Great saints are protected from the prying eyes of the world by hiding them when they are alive. The whole monastic tradition thrive on the idea of hidden life. 
In summary, great things like diamonds are formed in a hidden state. The narrow, hidden way finds the kingdom.

Are you searching for a great treasure?  Faith, love, meaning, peace, contentment?

Jesus Christ is the Pearl of great price.  What must we give up in order to acquire in the fullest sense this priceless treasure when we find it?

"And everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times more, and will inherit eternal life."  (Matthew 19: 29). 

Here are some who heard the promise, believed it and searched and found the great treasure:

St Mary Magdalene: Found the Great Pearl and thereafter got attached to the Pearl.

St Ignatius Loyola: Loved the Pearl passionately and abandoned everything and followed the Pearl everywhere.

St Thomas More:  Gave his life happily for the Pearl.

St Teresa of Kolkata:  Traveled the whole world spreading message about the Pearl.

St Paul the Apostle says:
"More than that, I even consider everything as a loss because of the supreme good of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have accepted the loss of all things and I consider them so much rubbish, that I may gain Christ"  (Philippians 3: 8). 

When you find the Pearl of Great Price, all these things will be added to you: peace and genuine prosperity, contentment and fulfillment in life.

7. 27. In July, we honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ. The Blood that was shed for our salvation. Honor the Precious Blood of Jesus by pleading the Precious Blood over all priests especially those in most need of the mercy of Jesus Christ. 

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.

Monday, July 25, 2022

Feast of St Joachim and Anne, the Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and Grandparents of Jesus.

SAINTS JOACHIM AND ANNE, THE PARENTS OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY AND THE GRANDPARENTS OF JESUS CHRIST RECEIVED BLESSINGS FROM THE LORD AND MERCY FROM GOD THEIR SAVIOR. (CF PSALM 24: 5).

“Jesus dismissed the crowds and went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” He said in reply, “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man, the field is the world, the good seed the children of the Kingdom. The weeds are the children of the Evil One, and the enemy who sows them is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. Just as weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his Kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”  (Matthew 13: 36 - 43).

Tuesday 26th July 2022 of the 17th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and grandparents of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is what the Church says about Anne and Joachim:

"It was in the house of Joachim and Anne that the Virgin Mary received her training to be the Mother of God. Thus, devotion to Anne and Joachim is an extension of the affection Christians have always shown toward our Blessed Mother. We, too, owe a debt of gratitude to our parents for their help in our Christain formation." (Roman Missal).

"I came to you today as the little grandchild of Joachim and Anna. Tell Me that you are happy to have Me in this house, and invite Me to rule over your heart and in your life." (IN SINU JESU page 239).

The disciples asks Jesus to explain the Parable of the weeds in the field. Why did the disciples ask for an explanation of this miracle? First because they sense it is very important in understanding how things work in the Kingdom. Secondly, the action of the Owner of the field is counterintuitive. No wise farmer should have made that decision.

Note the seven elements of the Parable:
1. “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man"
2.  The field is the world
3.  The good seed the children of the kingdom.
4. The weeds are the children of the evil one.
5. The enemy who sows them is the devil.
6. The harvest is the end of the age.
7. The harvesters are angels.

This Parable reflects the state of the Church today. While we are asleep, the enemy sneaks into the field and sowed lies, falsehood and misinformation. Through this, the Devil sets Bishop against Bishop, priest against priest, nuns against nuns. Lay man against lay woman. The clear teaching of Jesus Christ becomes muddled. The casualty is Evangelization. A House divided cannot stand.

This is why the wisdom of God instructs:

"No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them.... My thoughts are not your thoughts and my ways are not your ways."

The wisdom of God tempers the impatience of men in dealing with the evil in the world:
"Trust Me with the timing of ALL THINGS." (Cf IN SINU JESU). To confirm this truth, the Alpha and Omega, the Faithful and True Witness says in the Book of Revelations:

"But I will tell you what will happen to cowards and to everyone who is unfaithful or dirty-minded or who murders or is sexually immoral or uses witchcraft or worships idols or tells lies. They will be thrown into that lake of fire and burning sulfur. This is the second death." (Revelations 21: 8 CEV).

SAINTS JOACHIM AND ANNE, THE PARENTS OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY AND THE GRANDPARENTS OF JESUS CHRIST RECEIVED BLESSINGS FROM THE LORD AND MERCY FROM GOD THEIR SAVIOR. (CF PSALM 24: 5).

“Jesus dismissed the crowds and went into the house. His disciples approached him and said, “Explain to us the parable of the weeds in the field.” He said in reply, “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man, the field is the world, the good seed the children of the Kingdom. The weeds are the children of the Evil One, and the enemy who sows them is the Devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels. Just as weeds are collected and burned up with fire, so will it be at the end of the age. The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will collect out of his Kingdom all who cause others to sin and all evildoers. They will throw them into the fiery furnace, where there will be wailing and grinding of teeth. Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the Kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears ought to hear.”  (Matthew 13: 36 - 43).

Tuesday 26th July 2022 of the 17th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of Saints Joachim and Anne, the parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary and grandparents of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is what the Church says about Anne and Joachim:

"It was in the house of Joachim and Anne that the Virgin Mary received her training to be the Mother of God. Thus, devotion to Anne and Joachim is an extension of the affection Christians have always shown toward our Blessed Mother. We, too, owe a debt of gratitude to our parents for their help in our Christain formation." (Roman Missal).

"I came to you today as the little grandchild of Joachim and Anna. Tell Me that you are happy to have Me in this house, and invite Me to rule over your heart and in your life." (IN SINU JESU page 239).

The disciples asks Jesus to explain the Parable of the weeds in the field. Why did the disciples ask for an explanation of this miracle? First because they sense it is very important in understanding how things work in the Kingdom. Secondly, the action of the Owner of the field is counterintuitive. No wise farmer should have made that decision.

Note the seven elements of the Parable:
1. “He who sows good seed is the Son of Man"
2.  The field is the world
3.  The good seed the children of the kingdom.
4. The weeds are the children of the evil one.
5. The enemy who sows them is the devil.
6. The harvest is the end of the age.
7. The harvesters are angels.

This Parable reflects the state of the Church today. While we are asleep, the enemy sneaks into the field and sowed lies, falsehood and misinformation. Through this, the Devil sets Bishop against Bishop, priest against priest, nuns against nuns. Lay man against lay woman. The clear teaching of Jesus Christ becomes muddled. The casualty is Evangelization. A House divided cannot stand.

This is why the wisdom of God instructs:

"No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them.... My thoughts are not your thoughts and my ways are not your ways."

The wisdom of God tempers the impatience of men in dealing with the evil in the world:
"Trust Me with the timing of ALL THINGS." (Cf IN SINU JESU). To confirm this truth, the Alpha and Omega, the Faithful and True Witness says in the Book of Revelations:

"But I will tell you what will happen to cowards and to everyone who is unfaithful or dirty-minded or who murders or is sexually immoral or uses witchcraft or worships idols or tells lies. They will be thrown into that lake of fire and burning sulfur. This is the second death." (Revelations 21: 8 CEV).

The Church is the seed of the kingdom of God on earth. (Cf CCC 567). It is the Plan and Wisdom of God that the Wheat and the Weed should coexist in the Church till the end of time. The Church will always be a messy institution. This may be one of the great mysteries in religion that St writes about. 

"And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it." (Matthew 16: 18).

7. 26. We honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ in July.

Take and drink. This is My Blood poured out for you... The Blood of the New Covenant.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com


 
"And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it." (Matthew 16: 18).

7. 26. We honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ in July.

Take and drink. This is My Blood poured out for you... The Blood of the New Covenant.

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Feast of St James, Apostle.

"FOR THE ONE WHO DOES NOT PRACTICE MERCY WILL HAVE HIS JUDGMENT WITHOUT MERCY. MERCY TRIUMPHS OVER JUDGMENT." (JAMES 2: 13).

"The mother of the sons of Zebedee approached Jesus with her sons and did him homage, wishing to ask him for something. He said to her, “What do you wish?” She answered him, “Command that these two sons of mine sit, one at your right and the other at your left, in your Kingdom.” Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the chalice that I am going to drink?” They said to him, “We can.” He replied, “My chalice you will indeed drink, but to sit at my right and at my left, this is not mine to give but is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.”  (Matthew 20: 20.... 28).

Monday July 25th 2022 of the 17th week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St James, Apostle.

James and John are sons of Zebedee, both fishermen. They left their nets and followed Jesus when He called them from their fishing occupation. Peter, James and John belong to the inner circle of the group of Apostles.

James was known as the Elder or Greater to differentiate him from his fellow Apostle called James. James was one of the Apostles with Peter and John who witnessed the Transfiguration of Jesus on the Mountain and the Agony in the Garden of Gethsemane.
James was condemned to death under King Agrippa I and beheaded around 44 AD.

James is the patron saint of Spain, Philippines, Guatemala, etc. He is also the patron saint of pharmacists, tanners, others.
In the West of Spain is Santiago de Compostela, a worldwide pilgrimage site where St James is venerated.

In the today's Gospel, to the request of Salome, the Mother of James and John that Jesus makes James Prime Minister and John Foreign Minister in His kingdom, Jesus said in reply, “You do not know what you are asking. Can you drink the chalice that I am going to drink?” They said to him, “We can.” He replied, “My chalice you will indeed drink, but to sit at my right and at my left, this is not mine to give but is for those for whom it has been prepared by my Father.” I like the fact that Salome understands that the word of God is a Command. It accomplishes everything it is sent to. 

Often we do not know what we ask  from God. But to the credit of James and John, they indicated that they were ready to die for Jesus. James was beheaded by King Aggrippa in 44 AD.

7. 25. July is the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ Month.

“I long to drink of his blood, the gift of unending love.”  ( St Ignatius of Antioch).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Saturday, July 23, 2022

God likes the person who asks for big things and asks with persistence.

"YOU PAY GOD A COMPLIMENT BY ASKING GREAT THINGS OF HIM."  (ST TERESA OF AVILA).

I LOVE THIS QUOTE FROM MY PATRON SAINT, ST TERESA OF AVILA. TRUE AND COMFORTING. REMEMBER: ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE FOR GOD. ALL THINGS ARE EASY FOR GOD. GOD WANTS US TO ASK AND ASK BIG.

"He was praying in a certain place, and when he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray just as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say:

"Father, hallowed be your name,
 your kingdom come.
 Give us each day our daily bread
and forgive us our sins for we ourselves forgive everyone in debt to us, and do not subject us to the final test.”

"And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend to whom he goes at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread,  for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey and I have nothing to offer him,’ and he says in reply from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked and my children and I are already in bed. I cannot get up to give you anything.’  I tell you, if he does not get up to give him the loaves because of their friendship, he will get up to give him whatever he needs because of his persistence.

“And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.  What father among you would hand his son a snake when he asks for a fish?  Or hand him a scorpion when he asks for an egg?  If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the holy Spirit to those who ask him?” (Luke 11: 1 - 13).

Sunday July 24th of the 17th week of Ordinary Time. Luke gives us Jesus' delightful teaching on prayer. Let us recap the main points:

#1 Each day, ask the Father for what to eat.
#2 Always remember to ask for forgiveness for your sins. He who says he has no sin is a liar.
#3 The Father is committed to forgiving  all our sins. You must likewise forgive your neighbor.
#4 Pray with perseverance. Ask and keep asking.
#5 Believe me if I tell you this: The best thing to pray for is the Holy Spirit.

Ask for the Holy Spirit and keep asking for Him.
"If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the holy Spirit to those who ask him?” (Luke 11: 13).

"Prayer is an indispensable condition for being able to obey God's commandments. "[We] ought always to pray and not lose heart." (CCC 2098). This is a teaching we can use.

"On the day I called, you answered me, O Lord.
I thank you, Lord, with all my heart:
you have heard the words of my mouth.
In the presence of the angels I will bless you. I will adore before your holy temple." (Psalm 138: 1 - 2)

7.23.  We honor the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ in July.
“How long are you going to be deaf to His call?
Or are you going to lose your soul,
which Jesus Christ bought at the price of His Precious Blood?”
(St John Francis Régis, SJ).

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Friday, July 22, 2022

St Bridget of Sweden, Mother, Wife and Founder.

THE FOOLISHNESS OF GOD IS GREATER THAN THE WISDOM OF MAN. SOW THE WIND AND REPEAP THE WHIRLWIND.

"Jesus proposed a parable to the crowds. “The Kingdom of heaven may be likened to a man who sowed good seed in his field. While everyone was asleep his enemy came and sowed weeds all through the wheat, and then went off. When the crop grew and bore fruit, the weeds appeared as well. The slaves of the householder came to him and said, ‘Master, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where have the weeds come from?’ He answered, ‘An enemy has done this.’ His slaves said to him, ‘Do you want us to go and pull them up?’ He replied, ‘No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them. Let them grow together until harvest; then at harvest time I will say to the harvesters, “First collect the weeds and tie them in bundles for burning; but gather the wheat into my barn.”  (Matthew 13: 24 - 30).

Saturday 23rd July of the 16th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Bridget of Sweden. (1303 - 1373). Housewife, mother of 4 boys and 4 girls. One of the girls, St Catherine of Sweden is a canonized saint. Bridget persuaded her husband to become a Franciscan Tertiary with her. When the husband died, St Bridget moved to Rome where she founded the Order of the Most Holy Redeemer. St Bridget meditated long on the suffering and death of Jesus. God revealed to her the secrets of heaven. St Bridget is a mystic and authored books on ascetical and mystical theology. She is the patron saint of Sweden and co-patron saint of Europe.

Why did Jesus forbid the servants from pulling up the weeds before the harvest time in the Gospel of today? "No, if you pull up the weeds you might uproot the wheat along with them."

What we see as the foolishness of God is wiser than all the wisdom of mankind put together. Here is an example of God's wisdom below:

"But I will tell you what will happen to cowards and to everyone who is unfaithful or dirty-minded or who murders or is sexually immoral or uses witchcraft or worships idols or tells lies. They will be thrown into that lake of fire and burning sulfur. This is the second death." (Revelations 21: 8 CEV).

The Church is the seed of the kingdom of God on earth. (Cf CCC 567). It is the Plan of God that the Wheat and the Weed should coexist in the Church till the end of time.

Jesus asks us:
"Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?" (Matthew 7: 3).

7. 23. July is the Month dedicated to the Most Precious Blood of Jesus Christ.

"O precious Blood of Jesus, infinite price paid for the redemption of sinful mankind. O Divine Blood, drink and laver of our souls, standing between us and the Father pleading mercy, Have mercy on us."

Daily Bible Verse @ SeekFirstcommunity.com

Thursday, July 21, 2022

The Feast of St Mary Magdalene, the Apostle to the Apostles.

MARY MAGDALENE WEPT BEFORE THE EMPTY TOMB. SHE LINGERED THERE WHEN EVERYONE LEFT. LINGER BEFORE THE BLESSED SACRAMENT TABERNACLE AND YOU WILL BE REWARDED.

"On the first day of the week, Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early in the morning, while it was still dark, and saw the stone removed from the tomb. So she ran and went to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and told them, “They have taken the Lord from the tomb, and we don’t know where they put him.”
Mary stayed outside the tomb weeping. And as she wept, she bent over into the tomb and saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet where the Body of Jesus had been. And they said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken my Lord, and I don’t know where they laid him.” When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus there, but did not know it was Jesus. Jesus said to her, “Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you looking for?” She thought it was the gardener and said to him, “Sir, if you carried him away, tell me where you laid him, and I will take him.” Jesus said to her, “Mary!” She turned and said to him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni,” which means Teacher. Jesus said to her, “Stop holding on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and then reported what he told her. (John 20: 1 - 2, 11 - 18).

Friday 22nd July 2022 of 16th Week of Ordinary Time is the feast of St Mary Magdalene. Jewish. One of the handfull of women who followed Jesus as He tramped everywhere preaching the Gospel. These women took care of the welfare of Jesus and His Apostles from their purse. But Mary Magdalene was unique and exceptional among these ladies. Jesus healed her of demonic possession and Mary could not forget this favor all her life.

Mary Magdalene trekked the Via Dolorosa with the other Mary, the Virgin Mother of Jesus. Both women stood under the Cross and watched Jesus die slowly. While the Blessed Virgin Mary did not hurry to the tomb on Easter Sunday because she heard and believed what her Son said about "rising from the dead on the third day," Mary of Magdala hurried to the tomb. She became the first human being to see the Risen Jesus. This is how St Mary Magdalene became the "Apostle to the Apostles."

"Go to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am going to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.’” Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord,” and then reported what he told her." (John 20: 17 - 18).

Mary Magdalene loved Jesus with a pure love that comes from the depth of gratitude for what Jesus did for her. If but we know 1% of what Jesus is doing for us every day, our love for Him will astonish us. St Mary Magdalene will be delighted with the desire and prayer of St Ignatius Loyola:
+ To know the Heart of Jesus intimately.
+ To love Jesus passionately.
+ To follow Jesus everywhere.
O that this will be our prayer and desire too!

"With Me and from Me you have nothing to fear. I am here, in the Sacrament of My love, to be your comfort, your peace, your light, your refreshment, and your joy. Know this! Take it to heart. Believe it and act upon it. If souls believed this of Me, nothing would be able to keep them from seeking Me out in the Sacrament of My love and from remaining in My presence." (IN SINU JESU).

7. 22. “You come to me and unite Yourself intimately to me under the form of nourishment. Your Blood now runs in mine, Your Soul, Incarnate God, compenetrates mine, giving courage and support. What miracles! Who would have ever imagined such!”  (St Maximilian Kolbe).

Daily Bible Verse @ Seekfirstcommunity.com

Wednesday, July 20, 2022

The Feast of St Lawrence Brindisi, OFM, Priest and Doctor of the Church.

"GOD IS LOVE AND ALL HIS OPERATIONS PROCEED FROM LOVE..." (ST LAWRENCE BRINDISI, OFM.) That is, ALL HIS OPERATIONS OF DIVINE PROVIDENCE AFFECTING EVERY ASPECT OF OUR LIVES AND THE GOVERNMENT OF THE WORLD.

"The disciples approached Jesus and said, “Why do you speak to the crowd in parables?” He said to them in reply, “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich; from anyone who has not, even what he has will be taken away. This is why I speak to them in parables, because they look but do not see and hear but do not listen or understand. Isaiah’s prophecy is fulfilled in them, which says:

"You shall indeed hear but not understand, you shall indeed look but never see. Gross is the heart of this people, they will hardly hear with their ears, they have closed their eyes, lest they see with their eyes and hear with their ears and understand with their hearts and be converted and I heal them.

“But blessed are your eyes, because they see, and your ears, because they hear. Amen, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.” (Matthew 13: 10 - 17).

Thursday July 21st 2022 is the Feast of St Lawrence Brindisi, OFM. (1559 - 1613). Priest and Doctor of the Church. Italian. He belonged to the Capuchin Order of the Franciscan family. Lawrence is an extraordinary man who used well the lavish gifts God bestowed on him. The Church remembers him for his profound knowledge and love for Sacred Scripture, the Holy Spirit, Prayer and the Blessed Virgin Mary.

A propos Sacred Scriptures, Lawrence says:
“The Word of the Lord is a light for the mind and a fire for the will, so that man may know and love God.… It is a weapon against a heart stubbornly entrenched in vice. It is a sword against the flesh, the world, and the devil, to destroy every sin.”

In our Gospel for today, Jesus  says: “Because knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom of heaven has been granted to you, but to them it has not been granted. To anyone who has, more will be given and he will grow rich."

Lawrence became an authority in the sacred Word and was recognized all over Europe during his time and became a Doctor of the Church.

What is the knowledge of the Kingdom of God that Jesus speaks of? It is not book knowledge. If it is book knowledge, the Blessed Virgin Mary would not have been Mother and Teacher in the Church. Saints Anthony of Padua, Catherine of Siena, Teresa of Avila, Therese of the Child Jesus and so many other doctors of the Church would never have been doctors of the Church. The Doctors of the Church were taught by the Holy Spirit.

One of the greatest mysteries of the Kingdom of God is the mystery of God's unfathomable mercy.

"Lord, your mercy reaches to heaven; your fidelity, to the clouds."
"How precious is your mercy, O God!" (Psalm 36: 6, 8).

The Blessed Virgin Mary has a profound knowledge of this mystery.  She is childlike and a little one.
"And Mary said,
“My soul magnifies and exalts the Lord, And my spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior....
“And His mercy is upon generation after generation
Toward those who [stand in great awe of God and] fear Him."  (Luke 1: 46 - 50).

Other Little Ones who have knowledge of the mysteries of the kingdom of God are: Saints Catherine of Siena, Therese of the Child Jesus, Lawrence Brindisi, Maria Faustina, Teresa of Avila, Mother St Teresa of Kolkata, etc.

7. 21. "Eternal Father, I offer you the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your Dearly Beloved Son, Our Lord, Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world."  (Divine Mercy Rosary).

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