Saturday, June 05, 2021

The Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus Christ.

"While they were eating, he took bread, said the blessing, broke it, and gave it to them, and said, “Take it; this is my body.”  Then he took a cup, gave thanks, and gave it to them, and they all drank from it.  He said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which will be shed for many." (Mark 14: 22 - 24).

Sunday June 6th 2021, Solemnity of Corpus Christi (the Most Holy Body and Blood of Jesus). Today, the Church demonstrates her faith in the most precious Eucharist: the source, center and summit of her life. It is also the occasion of great thanksgiving for this immense gift and the radical faithfulness of Jesus to His Bride all these 2000 plus years.

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

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

The Eucharist brings us immense peace. Do you lack peace of soul? Then go often to the Eucharist. The Prince of Peace is waiting to heal your heart and mind of fears, worries and doubts. He will heal you and immerse you in peace.  When you cannot receive Jesus physically, make a Spiritual Communion. You will be blessed. 

Are you hungry for the Eucharist? How strong is your faith in the Real Presence?
Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in the Eucharist.
Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in the Blessed Sacrament.
Jesus I believe in Your Real Presence in me in the Sacrament of the Present Moment.

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

This is Jesus-Emmanuel. God is with us in the Eucharist.  Come receive him, adore him, This is Jesus, our Lord.

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Friday, June 04, 2021

First Saturday in June is also the feast of St Boniface.

"Jesus sat down opposite the treasury and observed how the crowd put money into the treasury. Many rich people put in large sums.  A poor widow also came and put in two small coins worth a few cents." (Mark 12: 41).

Saturday 5th June 2021, in the 9th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Boniface (680 - 754), Bishop and Martyr. The well educated English Benedictine priest was sent by Pope Gregory II to evangelize the German tribes. Boniface was consecrated the first Bishop of Germany. He organized the Church in Germany and was martyred in Friesland (present day Netherlands) when he went to preach there. St Boniface is the patron saint of Germany.

Our key Scripture for today is the contribution of the poor widow to the Temple. Jesus was sitting in a strategic location in the Temple and observed people as they came to make their offerings. When Jesus observed the poor widow make her offering, Jesus called His disciples to himself and said to them, “Amen, I say to you, this poor widow put in more than all the other contributors to the treasury."

On the first Saturday of June, let us reflect on one widow: Mary the Mother of Jesus was a widow for most of her life. Tradition recounts that Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary did not live long enough to see the public ministry of Jesus. From what we gathered from traditional sources, Mary, Joseph and Jesus lived a modest life even when Joseph, the main bread winner was still alive. We can only guess that things did not change much after Joseph died.

What can we learn from Mary the poor widow. We know that after Jesus started His public ministry, Mary followed Her Son everywhere He went. She was at Cana for the first miracle of Jesus. When she got the malicious message that Jesus had gone mad from too much preaching and not eating for days, Mary went with some relatives to check out the story.
At the foot of the Cross, one of the last words of Jesus was to commit Mary to the care of John the Evangelist.  The poor widow Mary earned the title the "first disciple" of Jesus. She learned everything she could about the teaching of Jesus.

The Church honors the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturdays especially on the First Saturday of each month.

"For they have all contributed from their surplus wealth, but she [Mary], from her poverty, has contributed all she had, her whole livelihood.”

What a wonderful Mother we have in Mary.

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Thursday, June 03, 2021

Jesus is the Son of David.

"As Jesus was teaching in the temple area he said, “How do the scribes claim that the Messiah is the son of David?" (Mark 12: 35).

Friday 4th June 2021, in the 9th Week in Ordinary Time is the First Friday of June. The entire month of June is dedicated to honoring the Sacred Heart of Jesus with next Friday June 11th being the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

From our lead Scripture today, we ask: What does it mean that Jesus is the Son of David? Jesus posed the question as He taught in the Temple to correct the erroneous and simplistic assumptions of the teachers of the people. The "Son of David" appears in the Messianic Psalm 110: 1:

"A psalm of David.
The Lord says to my lord:
“Sit at my right hand, while I make your enemies your footstool.”

While the meaning is fairly obvious to us today after 2000 years of Christianity, it was not at all evident to the Jews who heard Jesus. The evocation of "Son of David" brings a rush of patriotic fervor to their hearts. David was the master statesman of Israel who had no equal.

The Son of David simply means that Jesus Christ is 100% Man and 100% God. Who will blame the Jews for not understanding this. It took the Church centuries and multiple Church councils to settle the Christological controversies generated by the gross misunderstanding of the true nature of Christ. Pastors across denominations still patiently explain to their flock that Jesus Christ is truly God and truly Man.
It is one thing to proclaim it in the Creed, it is a different matter to understand it and use the knowledge as part of your living faith.

"I believe in one Lord Jesus Christ,
the Only Begotten Son of God,
born of the Father before all ages.
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made, consubstantial with the Father; through him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation he came down from heaven
and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary, and became man."

Who is the Son of David? He is Christ the Lord.

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First Friday in June 2021, Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

June 4th, First Friday in June 2021.

The 12 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus:  Jesus promised 12 special favors to all those who will honor His Sacred Heart especially on the First Friday of every month.  In the 6th month of the year 2021, we look at Promise #6.

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

June is the Month the Church honors the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Friday June 11th, 2020 is the Solemnity of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

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

"Jesus has loved us all with a human heart. For this reason, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, pierced by our sins and for our salvation, "is quite rightly considered the chief sign and symbol of that love with which the divine Redeemer continually loves the eternal Father and all human beings" without exception."  (CCC 478).

Honor the Sacred Heart of Jesus this Friday by attending Holy Mass,  Holy Hour, Rosary, etc.

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

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Wednesday, June 02, 2021

The Feast of St Charles Lwanga and companion martyrs.

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’  The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself." (Mark 12: 30 - 31).

Thursday 3rd June 2021, in the 9th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Charles Lwanga and 22 companions. (+1886 - 1887). Ugandans. On the feast of Ascension 1886, the powerful but corrupt King Mwanga of Uganda mercilessly killed Charles Lwanga and 14 teenage companions who resisted resolutely his homosexual advances. Eight of the companions were killed later.

The blood of martyrs is the seed of Christianity, said the erudite theologian, Tertulian. Martyrdom is the greatest testimony/witness to faith.  The Greek word martyr actually means witness. The testimony of the absolute love of Jesus for us is that He gave His life to prove it. What is most impressive about the martyrs of Uganda is that all of them are teenagers and Catechumens. Technically, they are not yet Christians since they had not received Baptism. Yet they chose to die for the faith they had come to love.

In our key Scripture for today, Jesus answered the scribe:  Do you want to know the greatest commandment? To fulfill the law perfectly, love God with all your heart and all your being and love your neighbor likewise. Genuine love for God is inseparable from genuine love of neighbor.

If we desire to love God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our mind, and with all our strength, we must love God as Jesus loves Him. How?

Embrace God's holy, gracious and mysterious will in everything, everywhere and always. We must believe and act like Jesus: "My food is to do the will of God." We must believe firmly and repeat often: "Father, in Your will is our peace."

St Alphonsus Liguori, Bishop and Doctor of the Church writes:
"When we will what God wills, it is our own greatest good that we will; for God desires what is for our greatest advantage. Let your constant practice be to offer yourself to God, that He do with you what He pleases."

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Tuesday, June 01, 2021

The Feast of Saints Marcellinus and Peter.

"Jesus said to them, “Are you not misled because you do not know the scriptures or the power of God?" (Mark 12: 24).

Wednesday 2nd June 2021, in the 9th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of two Roman saints: Marcellinus and Peter. (+ 304). Marcellinus was priest and Peter, a senior seminarian in the minor order of Exorcist. Both were martyred the same day under Emperor Diocletian.

We have a very interesting encounter in today's Gospel on the subject of Marriage, Death and Resurrection between the learned Sadducees and Jesus. The Sadducees wanted to embarrass Jesus over the question of marriage and afterlife. They had a reputation for being smart and experts in the Hebrew Scriptures. This is how Jesus answered them:

"Jesus said to them, “Is this not why you are wrong, because you know neither the Scriptures [that teach the resurrection] nor the power of God [who is able to raise the dead]?" (AMP).

We have many scholars today who read the Sacred Scriptures as the Sadducees. They read but do not understand the deeper meaning of  Scriptures which can only be grasped through the illumination of the Holy Spirit.
They do not know the power of God. Even a little child knows that God is all powerful which means that God can do all things and nothing is impossible for Him.

Are there things you find difficult to understand in Sacred Scripture like:
+ The Eucharist.
+ The nature of the Church.
+ Heaven and Hell.
+ The Mystery of Divine Providence.

All these questions have been treated comprehensively in the Catechism of the Catholic Church where the Church has displayed accumulated teaching, knowledge and insights of the past 2000 years.

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Monday, May 31, 2021

The Feast of St Justin Martyr.

"Jesus said to them, ‘Give back to Caesar what belongs to Caesar – and to God what belongs to God’. This reply took them completely by surprise." (Mark 12: 17 JB).

Tuesday 1st June 2021, in the 9th Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Justin Martyr (+ 165). Born in Samaria in Palestine. An eminent philosopher and the first apologist in the Church. He defended the Christian faith in his writings in Rome where he established a school of public debate. St Justin was beheaded under Emperor Marcus Aurelius.
Justin is the patron saint of apologists, philosophers, teachers and speakers.

Just as the Roman philosophers tested the philosophical and rhetorical skills of St Justin Martyr, so did the Pharisees and Herodians did to Jesus in the Gospel of today.
"Is it lawful to pay the census tax to Caesar or not? Should we pay or should we not pay?” (Mark 12: 14).

After examining the coinage in use for transactions in Israel, the Pharisees and Herodians were caught in their own trap when Jesus asked them: "Whose image and inscription is this?” They replied him, “Caesar’s.”

"Jesus said to them, ‘Give back to Caesar what belongs to Caesar – and to God what belongs to God’. This reply took them completely by surprise."

Caesar has a right to his taxes because he got his power from God. Do not deny God what rightly belongs to God, viz: Sunday worship, keeping His commandments, knowing, loving and serving Him.  Jesus  "reply took them completely by surprise."

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Sunday, May 30, 2021

The Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary.

"Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary, who believed that what was spoken to you by the Lord would be fulfilled." (Cf Luke 1: 45 Alleluia Verse).

Monday 31st May 2021, is the feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary to her cousin Elizabeth.

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

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

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

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

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

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