Saturday, March 07, 2020

The Transfiguration of Jesus strengthens our hope of Resurrection.

“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” (Matthew 17: 5).

Sunday 8th March, 2020 of the 2nd Week of Lent. The Gospel narrative today is the Transfiguration of Jesus.

At the beginning of His public ministry, Jesus journeyed to the River Jordan to be baptized by John the Baptist. Before Jesus journeyed to Jerusalem to begin His Pascal Mystery, He climbed Mount Tabor to confer with Moses and Elijah.
Jesus' Baptism prepared for our Baptism. Baptism makes us a new creation, the adopted children of God.
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.

The Transfiguration of Jesus sustained the faith of the disciples of Jesus in the life and death struggles they faced in the first centuries of Christianity.

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.

Are you fired up by the great promise of the Transfiguration?

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Friday, March 06, 2020

Saints Perpetua and Felicity fearlessly faced their butchers.

"Today you have accepted the Lord’s agreement: he will be your God, and you will walk in his ways, observe his statutes, commandments, and ordinances, and obey his voice.  And today the Lord has accepted your agreement." (Deuteronomy 26: 17 - 18).

Saturday 7th March 2020, of 1st Week of Lent is also the feast of two young martyrs from North Africa: Saints Perpetua and Felicity. (+ 203). Perpetua was mother of a young child and Felicity was pregnant.
Perpetua and Felicity triumphed over their butchers by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death. (Cf Revelation 12: 11).

In our key Scripture for today, Yahweh God signed an agreement with His People. He would protect them and provide all their needs. The People will obey His commandments. Have you heard some televangelists say something like: "God loves you with an infinite love. No matter what you do, it can never effect the degree of God's love for you." You may ask such false teachers: "How about the agreement, the covenant?" Throughout the Bible, breaking of the Covenant has met with severe punishment ranging from crop failure, draught, military defeats and the most severe, exile. Jesus Christ foretold the destruction of Jerusalem because of the unfaithfulness of the People. This happened in 70 AD.

Beware of false teachers.

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Thursday, March 05, 2020

I desire repentance and not condemnation.

"Do I find pleasure in the death of the wicked—oracle of the Lord God? Do I not rejoice when they turn from their evil way and live?" (Ezekiel 18: 23).

Friday 6th March 2020 of the 1st Week of Lent is also the First Friday of March. The dominant theme today is Sin and Reconciliation.

Jesus Christ is the Face of Mercy of God. No sin is too sinister, too big for God to forgive. No time is too soon, too late to ask for mercy. Everyone who asks for mercy will receive mercy.

The Lord is kind and merciful.
Ask for mercy.
Be merciful.
Completely trust Jesus for mercy.

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Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus this First Friday.

First Friday in March, 2020 .

Jesus promised 12 special graces and favors to all those who will honor His Sacred Heart especially on the First Friday of every month.  In the 3rd month of the year 2020, we look at Promise #3.

#3.  "I will console them in all their troubles."

Jesus does not promise us a trouble free life.
"My son, if you aspire to serve the Lord, prepare yourself for an ordeal." (Sirach 2: 1).

Troubles are opportunity to grow spiritually.  "I promise to be your strength in proportion to the trust you place on Me." The more you trust Jesus, the more He is your comfort, strength and security in trials.

Remind the Lord often of these promises. Remind Him also of His promise to answer every prayer. (Matthew 7: 7).

Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus on the First Friday of March, 2020.

For the 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, click the link below:

Wednesday, March 04, 2020

Prayer is the key to your destiny.

"Everyone who asks, receives; and the one who seeks, finds;
and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened." (Matthew 7: 8).

Thursday 5th March 2020 in the 1st Week of Lent. You can call this Thursday "Ask and Receive Thursday" because Confidence in Prayer is the theme of the liturgical texts. Prayer determines your destiny. Do you come to God in prayer with a confident and expectant faith? If you you do not, have you asked why? Could it be any of the following:

#1 Unbelief in God's promises.
#2 Pride.
#3 Unconfessed sin.

If Prayer is the key to receiving all the good things God has planned for us, not to pray and learn to pray well is the gravest injustice against oneself. Jesus calls Prayer a vital necessity. Sacred Scripture bids us:
#1 Pray always.
#2 Pray everywhere.
#3 Pray about everything.

Do this and it shall be well with you.
St Augustine teaches:
If you pray well, you live well.
If you live well, you die well.
If you die well, All is well.

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Tuesday, March 03, 2020

O God have mercy on me.

"When God saw by their actions how they turned from their evil way, he repented of the evil he had threatened to do to them; he did not carry it out." (Jonah 3: 10).

Wednesday 4th March 2020, of 1st Week of Lent is the feast of St Casimir (1458 - 1484). Son of King and Queen of Poland and Lithuania. Compared to his siblings who may be called brood of vipers, Casimir had faith, piety, humility and chastity. He loved the Eucharist and had a great devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary. He died at the age of 26.

Our key Scripture is from Jonah 3: 1 - 10. This Scripture reminds us that God calls us to repentance this Lent 2020. There is no time to waste. God is waiting to see a humble and contrite spirit. He pleads: "Even now, says the Lord, return to me with your whole heart for I am gracious and merciful." (Joel 2: 12 - 13).

Do not delay the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Remember the ABC of Mercy:

A heart contrite and humbled, O God, you will not spur.
Behold, now is the favourable time.
This is the day of salvation.

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Monday, March 02, 2020

St Katharine Drexel heard the call of Jesus and responded fully.

"My word that goes forth from my mouth; shall not return to me empty, but shall do what pleases me, achieving the end for which I sent it." (Cf Isaiah 55: 11).

Tuesday 3rd March 2020, of 1st Week of Lent is the feast of St Katharine Drexel (1858 - 1955), Virgin. Katharine was a wealthy heiress from the rich and famous class of the Philadelphia society. She realized that it profits her nothing to gain the whole world and put her eternal destiny in jeopardy. She listened to the Call of Jesus Christ to teach the message of the Gospel and bring the Eucharist to African-American and Native American people in the South of the United States. In 1915, Katharine founded the Xavier University in New Orleans. At her death in 1955, over 500 of her sisters were teaching in 63 schools.

God’s word to go and proclaim the message of the Gospel did not fall in vain on the heart of St Katharine. It accomplished the end for which God sent the word. A harvest of 100 fold. So shall it be for you and me if we follow the third petition of the Lord's Prayer:
"Your will be done,on earth as in heaven."

Lord Jesus, You blessed St Katharine Drexel with abundant harvest in Your field. Look upon us in Your mercy and bless and prosper the work of our hands.

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Sunday, March 01, 2020

Be holy.

"The Lord said to Moses:  Speak to the whole Israelite community and tell them: Be holy, for I, the Lord your God, am holy." (Leviticus 19: 1 - 2).

Monday 2nd March 2020, of 1st Week of Lent.

God is appealing to us in the first Reading today to be holy. The child of God must emulate the character of the Father. Why do we assume that holiness is impossible for many except a few? This is a big lie of the Devil. Jesus teaches that the shortcut to a happy fulfilled life is to make first priority His Kingdom and His righteousness and everything we need will flow to us. Do you realize that righteousness is another word for holiness?

How do we become righteous or holy? The saints have taught us the secrets since the dawn of Christianity. The simplest formula may be: Embrace God’s gracious and mysterious Will every moment. When you do this, you keep ALL the commandments. Start by praying for the desire to embrace God’s gracious and mysterious Will every moment in your life.

St Ignatius Loyola teaches that Desire is the Key. Desire transforms a man. Desire produces a spiritual kinetic energy that moves you to action. Then in the Last Judgment, you can ask Jesus with a smile on your face:
"Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink?  When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you?  When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?" (Matthew 25: 37 - 39).

"Behold, now is a very acceptable time; behold, now is the day of salvation."

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