Saturday, May 20, 2023

The Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord.

The Solemnity of the Ascension of the Lord. 

"The eleven disciples went to Galilee,

to the mountain to which Jesus had ordered them.

"When they saw him, they worshiped, but they doubted.

"Then Jesus approached and said to them,

“All power in heaven and on earth has been given to me.

Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations,

baptizing them in the name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.

"And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age." 

(Matthew 28: 11 - 20 20).

Sunday 21st May 2023 in the 7th Week of Easter is the Solemnity of the Ascension. 

 The Feast of the Ascension is celebrated on the Thursday of the 6th Week of Easter or on the 7th Sunday of Easter depending on the Diocese.

Jesus is taken up into heaven in full view of His disciples. 

During the forty days after His Resurrection, Jesus continued teaching, encouraging and comforting His disciples. 

Now the time of Departure has come. He instructed them to wait in Jerusalem for the promised Gift of the Father. He then turned the work of building the Kingdom of God on earth to them with the Great Commission:

"Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations,

baptizing them in the name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you." 

Every epoch and people respond to the Great Commission with the peculiar gifts and infrastructure provided by God. But the universal and perennial Gift of God is the Holy Spirit. Without the power and gifts of the Holy Spirit we cannot evangelize. Nobody can undertake the onerous missionary work of evangelization without the Holy Spirit.

Two powerful and different examples of evangelization are:

#1. St Therese of the Chlld Jesus (1873 - 1897). She became the Patroness of Missionaries without stepping out of her Carmelite Convent. She offered her prayers and sufferings to support the missionary endeavors of the Church. She gave the world a spirituality of "little ways."  One can be very effective in the spiritual life by doing "little things." She is a Doctor of the Church.

#2. St Francis Xavier of the Society of Jesus (1506 - 1552). Priest and Missionary. Spanish.

Every saint in the Church, that includes you and me are missionaries. Our Baptism gives us the mandate of Mission and Witness.

Do what you are inspired to do. The Holy Spirit will do the rest.

For a Pentecost Novena, click the link below:

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Friday, May 19, 2023

The Feast of St Bernardine OF SIENA OFM, Priest and Doctor of the Church.

The Joy of Answered Prayer. 

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.

"Until now you have not asked anything in my name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

“I have told you this in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures but I will tell you clearly about the Father.

"On that day you will ask in my name, and I do not tell you that I will ask the Father for you. For the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have come to believe that I came from God.

"I came from the Father and have come into the world. Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father." (John 16: 23b - 28). 

Saturday 20th May 2023 in the 6th Week in the Easter Season is the feast of St Bernardine of Siena (1380 - 1444). Italian Franciscan Priest.

St Bernardine had a great charism for preaching. During his relatively short life, he was able to evangelize all Italy. Below is a snippet from his biography.

"When other priests consulted him for advice, Bernardine gave them a simple rule: “In all your actions, seek in the first place the kingdom of God and his glory. Direct all you do purely to his honor. Persevere in brotherly charity, and practice first all that you desire to teach others.”

Bernardine came down to us in history for his special love for the holy name of Jesus.

Here is a great quote from St Bernardine on the name of Jesus:

“The name of Jesus, is in fact,

the great foundation of the faith

that turns people into children of God.

The Catholic Faith indeed,

consists in the news of Jesus Christ, as light of the soul, gate of life and foundation of eternal salvation.”

Two important things to note from the key Scripture for this Saturday.

#1. Asking Abba Father for our needs and gifts in the Name of Jesus.

#2. The joy of of answered prayer.

Before the coming of the Holy Spirit, the disciples have not prayed to Abba Father in the Name of Jesus. When Jesus ascended into Heaven, He was no longer available for His disciples to answer their questions and fulfill their needs. But in His Ascension, the Holy Spirit descended and the disciples could ask the Father directly for their needs in the Name of Jesus. 

Jesus promises:  "Whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you."

If you do not ask with faith, you will never know the joy of answered prayer. It is intense. It is intended to grow your faith.

Prayer is the Activator of Power. God will look silly if He promises to answer all prayers and then equivocate.

"God is not a man, so he does not lie. He is not human, so he does not change his mind. Has he ever spoken and failed to act? Has he ever promised and not carried it through?" (Numbers 23: 19 NTL).

The Holy Trinity wants to share with us the joy of Answered Prayer.

"Let Mary never be far from your Lips and from your heart.

Following her, you will never lose your way.

Praying to her, you will never sink into despair.

Contemplating her, you will never go wrong." (St Bernardine of Siena),

For a Pentecost Novena, click the link below:

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Thursday, May 18, 2023

Your Joy is Secure.

No one will take away your joy from you. 

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.

"When a woman is in labor, she is in anguish because her hour has arrived; but when she has given birth to a child, she no longer remembers the pain because of her joy that a child has been born into the world.

"So you also are now in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.

 On that day you will not question me about anything. Amen, amen, I say to you, whatever you ask the Father in my name he will give you.” (John 16: 20 - 23).

Friday May 19th 2023 in the 6th Week of the Easter Season. 

Many people will be familiar with the daily Scripture verse for today. But did you know that this gem of wisdom was given by Jesus on the night before His death in an intimate monologue with the Twelve in the Cenacle? A couple of weeks before Pentecost, the Scriptures are from the Last Supper Discourse (Chapters  13  to 17 of John). This is to prepare us for the glorious feast of Pentecost, the Birthday of the Church.

What does a woman do when her expected delivery date is in 10 days? She prepares for the big event. She does not focus on anxiety but the joy of the outcome: "a child has been born into the world."

Are you searching for a treasure? Search no further. There are acres of diamond in your backyard.

“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." (Matthew 13: 44).

What is the greatest joy you have experienced? For me, it is the joy of answered prayer. This joy is exceedingly sweet. 

“God might have created a more beautiful world,

He might have made heaven more glorious

but it was impossible for Him, to exalt a creature,

higher than Mary, in making her His Mother.” (St Bonaventure, OFM, Doctor of the Church).

For a Pentecost Novena, click the link below:

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Wednesday, May 17, 2023

The Feast of St John 1st, Pope and Martyr.

The Feast of St John 1st, Pope & Martyr. 

"Jesus said to his disciples:

“A little while and you will no longer see me,

and again a little while later and you will see me.”

"So some of his disciples said to one another,

“What does this mean that he is saying to us,

‘A little while and you will not see me,

and again a little while and you will see me,’

and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?”

"So they said, “What is this ‘little while’ of which he speaks?

We do not know what he means.”

"Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them,

“Are you discussing with one another what I said,

‘A little while and you will not see me,

and again a little while and you will see me’?

"Amen, amen, I say to you,

you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy.” (John 16: 16 - 20).

Thursday 18th May 2023 in the 6th Week of Easter

 is the feast of Pope St John 1, (+ 526). Martyr. St John was martyred by the Arian King Theodoric.

Jesus predicted the persecutions of the disciples in the Last Supper Discourse: "Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy." 

The antagonism to Jesus and His Gospel is more pronounced today than ever. If you are not prepared today to bear witness to Jesus, what is the likelihood that you will be ready tomorrow? 

The Scripture says: O that today you will listen to His voice, harden not your hearts.

Many of us have probably heard the maxim: "He who laughs last, laughs best." Jesus promises us the last laugh. This laugh will be filled with joy and will last forever. 

In the short time, our Savior and Redeemer is asking us to endure all the trials, deprivations and persecutions with the strength that comes from the Holy Spirit.

"I will not leave you orphans, says the Lord; I go, but I will come back to you, and your hearts will be full of joy." (Cf John 14: 18).

"If, in spite of everything, Jesus’ Ascension into heaven leaves a certain taste of sadness in our souls, let us go to his Mother as the apostles did. They returned to Jerusalem…and they prayed with one mind…together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus."  (Acts 1:12-14).

(Saint Josemaría Escrivá).

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Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Jesus has many things to say to us.

I have many things to say to you. 

"Jesus said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now.

"But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth.

"He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming.

"He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. 

"Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.”


When Jesus ascends into Heaven on the Glorious Ascension Day, He hands over the baton of the life and administration of the Church to the Holy Spirit. What are the Things the Holy Spirit will teach the first disciples of Christ? 

  1. The nature of the Church. 

  2. The Hierarchy. 

  3. Sacraments. 

  4. The Sacred Priesthood. 

  5. Canonization of the Sacred Scriptures. 

  6. The Communion of the Saints. 

  7. The place of the Blessed Virgin Mary in the economy of salvation. 

The Holy Spirit is the Best of teachers. Each lesson is laid out for its time. 

Prepare to receive as much as you desire the Gifts and Fruits of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost. The Pentecost Novena was the original way the disciples received the Holy Spirit at the first Pentecost. It is still the best way. 

For a Pentecost Novena, click the link below:

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9 Days Pentecost Novena.

9 Days Pentecost Novena. 

EVERY DAY of the 9 Days. 


O Holy Spirit, Divine Consoler!

I adore you as my True God.

I bless You by uniting myself to the praises

You receive from the angels and saints.

I offer You my whole heart,

and I render You heartfelt thanks

for all the benefits You have bestowed 

and do unceasingly bestow upon the world.

You are the author of all supernatural gifts

and who did enrich with immense favors the soul

of the Blessed Virgin Mary,

the Mother of God,

I beseech you to visit me by Your grace and Your love,

and grant me the favor

I so earnestly seek in this Prayer.. ..

State your request here…(for example) 



2. GIFT OF PERSEVERANCE  Especially in Prayer. 


4. Make the Kingdom of God and not the kingdoms of the world your first priority in everything.]

O Holy Spirit,

spirit of truth,

come into our hearts:

shed the brightness of your light on all nations,

that they may be of one faith and pleasing to You.


Come, O Holy Spirit,

fill the hearts of your faithful,

and kindle in them the fire of Your love.

Litany of the Holy Spirit

Lord, have mercy on us.

Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy on us.

Father all-powerful, have mercy on us. Jesus, Eternal Son of the Father, Redeemer of the world, save us. Spirit of the Father and the Son, boundless life of both, sanctify us. Holy Trinity, hear us.

Holy Spirit, Who proceedest from the Father and the Son, enter our hearts. Holy Spirit, Who art equal to the Father and the Son, enter our hearts.

Promise of God the Father, have mercy on us.

Ray of heavenly light, have mercy on us.

Author of all good, [etc.]

Source of heavenly water

Consuming fire

Ardent charity

Spiritual unction

Spirit of love and truth

Spirit of wisdom and understanding

Spirit of counsel and fortitude

Spirit of knowledge and piety

Spirit of the fear of the Lord

Spirit of grace and prayer

Spirit of peace and meekness

Spirit of modesty and innocence

Holy Spirit, the Comforter

Holy Spirit, the Sanctifier

Holy Spirit, Who governest the Church

Gift of God, the Most High

Spirit Who fillest the universe

Spirit of the adoption of the children of God

Holy Spirit, inspire us with horror of sin.

Holy Spirit, come and renew the face of the earth.

Holy Spirit, shed Thy light in our souls.

Holy Spirit, engrave Thy law in our hearts.

Holy Spirit, inflame us with the flame of Thy love.

Holy Spirit, open to us the treasures of Thy graces.

Holy Spirit, teach us to pray well.

Holy Spirit, enlighten us with Thy heavenly inspirations.

Holy Spirit, lead us in the way of salvation.

Holy Spirit, grant us the only necessary knowledge.

Holy Spirit, inspire in us the practice of good.

Holy Spirit, grant us the merits of all virtues.

Holy Spirit, make us persevere in justice.

Holy Spirit, be Thou our everlasting reward.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,

Send us Thy Holy Spirit.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,

pour down into our souls the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

Lamb of God, Who takest away the sins of the world,

grant us the Spirit of wisdom and piety.

V. Come, Holy Spirit! Fill the hearts of Thy faithful,

R. And enkindle in them the fire of Thy love.

Let us pray. Grant, O merciful Father, that Thy Divine Spirit may enlighten, inflame and purify us, that He may penetrate us with His heavenly dew and make us fruitful in good works, through Our Lord Jesus Christ, Thy Son, Who with Thee, in the unity of the same Spirit, liveth and reigneth, one God, forever and ever.

R. Amen.

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Monday, May 15, 2023

The work of the Holy Spirit in the Church.

The Spirit of truth shall lead the Church into the fullness of truth

"Jesus said to his disciples: “Now I am going to the one who sent me, and not one of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’

"But because I told you this, grief has filled your hearts. But I tell you the truth, it is better for you that I go. For if I do not go, the Advocate will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you.

"And when he comes he will convict the world in regard to sin and righteousness and condemnation: sin, because they do not believe in me; righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will no longer see me; condemnation, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.” (John 16: 5 - 11).

Tuesday 16th May 2023 in the 6th Week of Easter.

Who is the Holy Spirit? The Lord Jesus calls Him here The Spirit of truth.  He is "the Comforter (Counselor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener, Standby)." (AMPC).

Why is the Holy Spirit sent after the Ascension of Jesus? He is sent to take up permanent residence in the disciple.

As the Spirit of power, He will empower the disciple to fulfill the Mission of Jesus Christ and witness to the Lord. The Holy Spirit continues the ministry of Jesus today through the Body of Christ.

Jesus also promised that the Holy Spirit "will guide you [Church] to all truth." This is a very important detail that has divided the Body of Christ. St John the Evangelist writes in the conclusion of his Gospel:

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

The Holy Spirit reveals to the Church through the written and oral sources the truth that concerns Jesus and the Church. All the truth necessary for salvation. The FULLNESS of TRUTH.

An example of this is the stability of doctrine that characterized the early Church up to the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD and continues till today. Only the Holy Spirit could have guaranteed this phenomenon:

One People, One Faith, One Shepherd, Worldwide.

"I will send to you the Spirit of truth, says the Lord; he will guide you to all truth."

 "Each Friday take into your heart, as if for the first time, the words I uttered from the Cross. Contemplate My side pierced by the soldier’s lance; enter into the sanctuary of My open Heart and adore My precious Blood. Receive the outpouring of My Holy Spirit, and withdraw into silence and recollection, as did John with Mary, My Mother, when all is accomplished." (IN SINU JESU)

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Sunday, May 14, 2023

The Feast of St Isidore the Farmer.

Be on alert because you too will testify to Me. 

"Jesus said to his disciples: “When the Advocate comes whom I will send you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, he will testify to me. And you also testify, because you have been with me from the beginning.

“I have told you this so that you may not fall away. They will expel you from the synagogues; in fact, the hour is coming when everyone who kills you will think he is offering worship to God.

"They will do this because they have not known either the Father or me.

"I have told you this so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you.” (John 15: 26 - 16: 4a).

Monday 15th May 2023 in the 6th Week in the Easter Season is the Feast of St Isidore the Farmer (1070 - 1130).

Isidore was a humble Spanish farmer who spent most of his day on the land and managed to attend daily Mass and spend significant time before the Blessed Sacrament. His wife Maria is a canonized saint. His life reminds us that all creation belong to God who requires us to care for the environment that surrounds us. Isidore is the Patron of the National Rural Life Conference in the US.

Two important things to note about the life of St Isidore the Farmer. 

  1. As a farmer, he spent most of his time in the field. How did he manage to attend daily Mass? 

  2. How did Isidore find the time to spend before the Blessed Sacrament? 

"The Spirit of truth will be my witness; and you too will be my witnesses," says Jesus in His Last Supper Discourse. 

Have you ever thought of the possibility that you too will bear witness to Jesus Christ? I wince when I hear preachers say that the world has changed and the age of martyrdom and bearing witness was over. How wrong they are! St Oscar Romero, Archbishop of El Salvador was shot to death while celebrating Mass in the Chapel in 1980.

The English Hierarchy (about 300 Bishops) during the reign of King Henry VIII thought that all was safe. They woke up one morning and were asked to deny their faith under pain of death. Only the Bishop St John Fisher resolved to to bear witness to Jesus. 

Recent statistics and the prouncements of recent popes say that the Church is facing an unprecedented time of persecution which is a golden opportunity to bear witness to Jesus. 

Wake up. Read the Scriptures. Study Church history and pray a lot.

"I will be a witness to You in the world O Lord.  I will spread the knowledge of your name among my brothers, Alleluia! " (Psalm 18:50;  22 :23).

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