Saturday, November 20, 2021

The Solemnity of Jesus Christ King of the Universe.

“My kingdom does not belong to this world..... “Then you are a king?” [Pilate asked Jesus]. Jesus answered, “You say I am a king. For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.”
(John 18: 33.... 37).

Sunday November 21st 2021 is the Solemnity of Jesus Christ King of the Universe.

Our God and Father anointed our Lord Jesus Christ, with the oil of gladness as eternal Priest and King of all creation. (Preface of the Mass)

Jesus said to Pilate: “You say I am a king. For this I was born and for this I came into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.” 

Pilate was puzzled about the meaning of truth. The Truth was standing before Pilate. Jesus Christ Himself. He is the Ruler of an eternal and universal kingdom,
a kingdom of truth and life,
a kingdom of holiness and grace,
a kingdom of justice, love and peace.

Jesus proclaimed that the truth shall make you free. Where there is truth, there is freedom. Freedom is opposed to slavery as falsehood is opposed to truth.

How do we become truly free and enjoy this heritage of the children of God? Does Christ the King have absolute dominion over your life? Does Jesus reign over your family, health, money, job, etc? It may seem risky and even foolish to surrender everything to Jesus. Pope St John Paul II preaches again and again: "Do not be afraid. Open the door fully to Jesus."
How do I know that this is safe and trustworthy? Simple. Look at the Communion of the Saints. The billions of people who have trusted Jesus with their lives. They are now in Heaven and they are all praying for us and urging us to trust Jesus as they did.

Let us trust Jesus who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, who has made us into a kingdom, priests for his God and Father, to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen. (Cf Revelation 1:5-8).

"The riches of My kingdom are for all whom I have redeemed with My own Blood, but it pleases Me to bestow them through My Mother, the Queen and Mediatrix who stood at the foot of My Cross, offering Me and offering herself with Me. Today she reigns with Me in paradise. All that I won for souls from My Father on the altar of the Cross, with My Mother at My side, I will now pour out on souls through her Heart and through her hands. This, too, is the secret of a fruitful priesthood. In every priestly act and in all of life, place your hands in the hands of My Mother and your heart in her Heart." (IN SINU JESU, Tuesday, January 8, 2008).

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Friday, November 19, 2021

How to save Marriage.

"Jesus said to them, “The children of this age marry and remarry; but those who are deemed worthy to attain to the coming age and to the resurrection of the dead neither marry nor are given in marriage."

Saturday 20th November 2021, in the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time. Let us keep the Memorial of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Queen of All Saints this Saturday.

The Sadducees asked Jesus a question about the Resurrection using marriage between one man and one woman as an example. They assumed that in the Resurrection the married couple will be automatically in Heaven.
Given the disruption of the institution of marriage in our time, we may ask: How can the Church save Marriage today?

Marriage may be saved through:
#1. Re-evangelising the marriage candidates. This may take more than six months. RCIA/OCIA process takes between one year and three years.
#2. Strong and effective catechesis.
#3. Basic sacramentalization especially on the meaning of Baptism in the Christian dispensation.

Jesus Christ provides the healing Sacrament of Reconciliation or Penance which if used with faith and integrity can save many marriages. Below is a typical Examination of Conscience to be used by those seeking healing through this unparalleled free gift of healing.

Examination of Conscience for those who desire a healthy and joyous Marriage:

You shall not commit adultery.
Have I been faithful to my marriage vows in thought and action?  Have I engaged in any sexual activity outside of marriage?  Have I used any method of contraception or artificial birth control in marriage?  Has each sexual act in my marriage been open to the transmission of new life?  Have I been guilty of masturbation?  Have I sought to control my thoughts?  Have I respected all members of the opposite sex, or have I thought of other people as objects?  Have I been guilty of any homosexual activity?  Do I seek to be chaste in my thoughts, words and actions?  Am I careful to dress modestly?

The list above is not exhaustive. Add your personal areas of struggle for example: Texting, Email, Phone, Social Media.

How often do you use Reconciliation? Start with once every month. As you make progress, you can make it twice a month. The great thing about this Sacrament of Jesus is that it is absolutely free. Try to find out how much it will cost to get a marriage counselor or psychotherapist for an hour.

"My priests should be the first to seek Me out in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. They should be the first to run to Me as soon as they experience the pangs of an uneasy conscience and the regret of their sinful weaknesses. The single greatest service My priests can offer one another is the readiness to hear each other’s confessions and to pronounce over each other the healing words of absolution. In this way, they carry out the example I gave you when, at the Last Supper, I washed the feet of My disciples. Frequent confession, weekly confession is, more than ever, necessary to My priests." (IN SINU JESU, Thursday, July 31, 2008).

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Thursday, November 18, 2021

My House is a House of Prayer.

"Jesus entered the temple area and proceeded to drive out those who were selling things, saying to them, “It is written, My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.” (Luke 19: 45..... 48).

Friday 19th November 2021, in the 33rd Week in Ordinary Time.

Jesus entered the Temple and was shocked by what He saw. He censored the traders defiling the holy place:  "My house shall be a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.”

The Temple/Church is a consecrated place for the worship of God. The civil society understands the idea of respect for certain places. The first time I went to a traffic court, I had my baseball cap on as I stepped into the court. The police man shouted at me to remove the cap. I obeyed.

The Church should welcome everyone into its Sanctuary for Sunday worship. The Church teaches that it is Jesus who is the celebrant in the person of the priest whom we see. Have you noticed that on Sundays, the priest is dressed in the best robes. Some people attend Sunday Mass in baseball game outfit? If the mayor or the governor invites you for a lunch, how do you dress? Jesus Christ deserves no less respect.

My house shall be a house of prayer. Please do not make it a marketplace.

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Wednesday, November 17, 2021

The Feast of St Rose Philippine Duchesne.

"As Jesus drew near Jerusalem, he saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If this day you only knew what makes for peace—but now it is hidden from your eyes..... you did not recognize the time of your visitation.” (Luke 19: 41... 44).

Thursday 18th November 2021, 33rd Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Rose Philippine Duchesne. (1769 - 1852). French. Virgin and Religious. The French Revolution disrupted her religious formation. She waited for 11 years to join a new Congregation: The Society of the Sacred Heart. At the age of 49, St Rose undertook her missionary journey to America. She founded schools to educate girls.

In our key Scripture from Luke 19, Jesus wept over Jerusalem for two reasons:
#1. Jerusalem failed to recognize the time of the visitation of her long awaited Messiah.
#2. Jerusalem thirsted desperately for peace but Jerusalem is totally ignorant of what makes for peace.

These two conditions apply to our world today. As we near the end of the Church Year, we are served more and more with Scriptures of the End Times.

Our saint of today left her native country France at the age of 49 to travel to America. She heard the urgency of the Gospel to educate little girls in America and show them the way of Peace of Christ. The Lord blessed her ministry. 170 years after the death of St Rose Philippine Duchesne, Duchesne Academy continues the work of educating girls in America.

Jesus wept for Jerusalem because they did not recognize what makes for peace. Do we recognize what makes for peace? I like the answer provided in Romans 12: 2 :
"Do not conform yourselves to this age but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and pleasing and perfect."

Father, in Your will is our peace!

"When nothing is clear, when nothing is foreseeable, it is the moment to make many acts of confidence. You will repeat them as often as necessary and, in them, you will find peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." (IN SINU JESU, The Vigil of October 13th , Anniversary of the Great Miracle of Fatima).

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Tuesday, November 16, 2021

The Feast of St Elizabeth of Hungary, Mother and Franciscan Tertiary.

"He [Noble man] called ten of his servants and gave them ten gold coins and told them, ‘Engage in trade with these until I return." (Luke 19: 11.... 28).

Wednesday 17th November 2021, 33rd Week in Ordinary Time is also the feast of St Elizabeth of Hungary. (1207 - 1231) Religious. Born Hungarian Princess. Married a German Prince. In her short life of only 23 years, Elizabeth had four children and then became a Franciscan Tertiary after the death of her husband. She spent the rest of her life bringing comfort to the poor, the sick and the aged.

Our Gospel today is the Gold Coins Parable. The Ten Gold Coins represent the Gifts of Time, Talent and Treasure God has entrusted to each of us. I asked myself: What particular talent does God entrust me with? Not Treasure since I have little money and little love for money. Not talent since I do not feel specially gifted in any particular area. But I find that God has gifted me with Abundant Time.
Time for what?
Time for Prayer, Word of God, Eucharist and Ministry.

My great prayer and desire is to hear Jesus say to me:
‘Well done, Emmanuel! You have been faithful in this very small matter; take charge of ten ministries."

The bystanders said to Jesus:
"Sir, Emmanuel has ten gold coins.’ Jesus replied, ‘I tell you, to everyone who has, more will be given, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away."

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Monday, November 15, 2021

The Feast of St Margaret of Scotland & St Gertrude.

"At that time Jesus came to Jericho and intended to pass through the town. Now a man there named Zacchaeus, who was a chief tax collector and also a wealthy man, was seeking to see who Jesus was; but he could not see him because of the crowd, for he was short in stature. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree in order to see Jesus, who was about to pass that way. When he reached the place, Jesus looked up and said, “Zacchaeus, come down quickly, for today I must stay at your house.” (Luke 19: 1....10).

Tuesday 16th November 2021, 33rd Week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Margaret of Scotland (1046 - 1093). Born Hungarian and married to King Malcolm of Scotland. Mother of 8 children who raised her children in the fear of the Lord. She is noted especially for her love for the poor. Margaret is the Patroness of Scotland.

Today is also the feast of St Gertrude. (1256 - 1301). Virgin. German. Known as Gertrude the Great, she was a respected scholar and mystic. Over 300 years before St Margaret Mary Alacoque, Gertrude, a mystic like Margaret Mary introduced the devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus.
Pope Benedict XVI, says that St Gertrude “shows us that the heart of a happy life, of a true life, is friendship with the Lord Jesus.”

Our Gospel for today deals with the lovely story of Zacchaeus. Jesus came to Jericho and intended to pass through the town. Jesus changed his plan in order to stay with Zacchaeus for the night. From what we learn from the Gospel, Zacchaeus is a very interesting and nice man. Jesus delights to hang out with these types of personality. Remember Matthew the Tax Collector who became St Matthew the Apostle and Evangelist?

The story of Zacchaeus teaches us the following lessons:

#1. Zacchaeus is a better human being than many of his critics.
#2. Jesus delights in showing mercy to people like Matthew and Zacchaeus.
#3. Zacchaeus seized the opportunity of his accusations to volunteer a restitution. His wealth did not possess Zacchaeus.
#4. Zacchaeus welcomes Jesus in his home with joy. How do we welcome Jesus after Holy Communion?

Jesus shows His delight with Zacchaeus by saying:
“Today salvation has come to this house because this man too is a descendant of Abraham. For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save what was lost.”

The Son of Man came to seek and save the likes of Zacchaeus and Matthew and us.

"Make it your first care to find the kingdom of God. Matthew 6:33 The kingdom of God is present in all its fullness, though in a hidden manner, in the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar. He who seeks out My Eucharistic presence is seeking the kingdom of God. He who approaches Me in the Sacrament of My love will find the kingdom and therein all that he desires according to My Spirit. Come first to Me in the Sacrament of My love. Let this become the supernatural instinct of your soul: always to come to Me, always to seek My Eucharistic Face." (IN SINU JESU, Monday, August 25, 2008).

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Sunday, November 14, 2021

The Feast of St Albert the Great OP, Bishop and Doctor of the Church.

"As Jesus approached Jericho a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging, and hearing a crowd going by, he inquired what was happening. They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” He shouted, “Jesus, Son of David, have pity on me!” (Luke 18: 35... 43).

Monday of the 33rd week in Ordinary Time is the feast of St Albert the Great (1206 - 1280) German. Bishop, belongs to the Order of Preachers (Dominican), theologian and scientist and Doctor of the Church.
Albert the Great combined his human wisdom and divine faith to advance knowledge and science.
St Albert wrote a great deal on Divine Providence. One of the most comforting is this one below:
“The greater and more persistent your confidence in God, the more abundantly you will receive all that you ask.”

The Gospel of St Mark has Bartimaeus as the name of the man in today's Gospel. Bartimaeus without sight represents a person without faith. Bartimaeus with his sight restored is the type of person who believes. Bartimaeus wanted his sight so badly that he shouted above the noise of the crowd trying to silence him. “Son of David, have pity on me!” Then Jesus stopped and ordered that he be brought to him; and when he came near, Jesus asked him, “What do you want me to do for you?” He replied, “Lord, please let me see.” Jesus told him, “Have sight; your faith has saved you.”

All I have enjoyed in life is as a result of faith.
I am saved by grace through faith.
Scripture says that the man whom God has made righteous shall live by faith. I believe it.
I believe in Prayer.
I believe in the word of God.
I believe in Miracles.
I believe in the mighty, merciful and mysterious Providence of God.
I believe that in the will of God is our peace and prosperity.
I surrender every thing to God.

Bartimaeus immediately received his sight and followed Jesus, giving glory to God. You too can receive anything you ask for with faith.

"Faith in this mystery of the Most Holy Eucharist grows in proportion to the time one gives Me in adoration. It is not enough that My priests should celebrate Holy Mass daily, even correctly and devoutly, if they do not approach Me and remain with Me, who wait for them in the Sacrament of My love. Nothing can replace the intimate experience of My Eucharistic friendship—and this is the experience that I offer to you and to all who seek My Eucharistic Face, all who offer a sacrifice of time to My Eucharistic Heart." (IN SINU JESU, Saturday, October 25, 2008).

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