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Archive for the tag “Prayer”

What a ride….

Now that 2016 is done, thank God, it is time to set our sights on 2017.

Will it be a financial successful year? Will we all be surprised at how little will actually get done by the newly elected President Trump? Will we get fitter, thinner and healthy?
Maybe we aspire to increase our knowledge, finally understand how sudoku works (well you first must have an interest in sudoku, i do not).

This year Pope Francis has declared that at the World Youth Day the focus will be on Mary, mother of God. Maybe this year my focus should be on praying the rosary more ( I did not say daily). Turning our thoughts to God in anyway possible seems like a good goal to have this year.

So so long 2016 and let’s welcome in 2017 with a prayer!!

Ash Wednesday…….

mmm….a day late….

It begins.

Why did Jesus go into the desert to pray for 40 days and nights?  That is one question I hope that I get to ask.   We learn that He was tempted three times and each time He refused to give in to  temptation.

Lent is to symbolically represent these 40 days and nights that Jesus spent in the desert, alone, praying and fighting off temptation.  We sometimes feel like we are alone, in a desert, fighting off temptation.  However it is much harder for us, since we are not 100% divine and 100% human.   We seek 1% divinity and let God determine our fate.

So as we wander into this desert, let us reflect on how we can improve on what we have done in the past.  As the saying goes “fool me once, shame on you – fool me twice, shame on me”

And all the people said “Amen!”

What will you do after Fat Tuesday?

Why I am catholic ……. the songs

Have you ever been in you car and “that” song comes over the radio, you know, the one you can’t help but belt out in your best and loudest voice, mixed in with the hand jesters that you hope no one sees, but they do and quickly change lanes.

This can happen at any moment of time.   When someone asks a question or makes a remark it seems to me that I quickly relate that to a song.  Why is this?  well it’s because, and this has to be God’s way of talking to us, we remember those musical lyrics,  And God has a plan for us, which I believe is going to be with a “clashing of cymbals” (Psalms 150) we will be celebrating His return!!!

One of my favorite songs is “How Great thou Art” and probably it is because it is my mother’s favorite song (God Bless you Mom!!).  Another one is my wife’s favorite song “Taste and See”, both of these songs bring out my best, out of tune voice, to belt as loud as I can, out of tune of course.

In fact the mass has many memorable songs throughout.   At times I feel that our musical director’s goal is to sing every song listed in the hymnal!  And depending upon which time you attend the music will vary from very old tunes to the newest ones that you hear on your favorite christian radio station.   The most current on that I enjoy now is Matt Maher’s  “Lord, I need You!!

Music does that, it’s brings us close to other which in turn brings us closer to God!  So keep the beat and sing out loud in the shower, car or even in church!!!

Hello God!

Hello God!

Sometimes we forget to say “Hello” to those we care about.   It’s a simple thing to do after all we wake up in the morning and we start setting our plans in motion.  We have to let the dog out, start the coffee, let the dog in and make sure the water bowl is full.  Along the way we check the milk box and pick up the paper.  Decide what to eat and what to wear.  Should we take our lunch or go out today?

So today I forgot to say “Hello God”!  Seems strange that I would forget to do that.  Most of us pray to God at sometime in our day, week or month.  We attend mass and we pray when we are with others.  We may say a quick  “Hail Mary” or “Our Father” when we hear bad news or sad news of someone we can relate to.  But God doesn’t mind if we forget now and then, He knows our intentions.  We can say we are human and that we sin, which is true, but also is it how we treat everyone else?  Did we say “Hello” to the new employee starting today?  Did we say “Hello” to our boss? or bosses boss?  Did we say “Hello” to the coffee vendor?  How about the Xerox repairman here today for the 5th time this week?

So today is a new day!  Today I am saying “HELLO GOD!”  and tomorrow when I wake up (right God?) I am starting my day with a kiss on my wife’s lips and a “Hello God! – Let’s Go have a great day together!”

Lent ……. Day Thirty-Six

Lent ……. Day Thirty-Six

“O Divine Word! You are the Adored whom I love and who alone attracts me…You willed to suffer and die in order to draw souls to the bosom of the…Trinity.” (Story of a Soul, 199)
St. Therese of Lisieux

Dn 3:14-20, 91-92, 95    Today’s readings we are told about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.   How they refused to bow down to King Nebuchadnezzar gods or any other idols.  On top of this they said if God will not save them then so be it that we may burn but we will still not bow down to your god King Nebuchadnezzar!  They called the King’s bluff.   The King fueled the furnace seven times normal.  Then when they were thrown into the fire the King asks why are their four people I see walking around?  The King replies “and the fourth looks like a son of God.”   I realize now that King Nebuchadnezzar recognized the difference between God and his god.   Through God anything is possible!!!  

Jesus, being God, already walked through fire for us.  Then He hung on a cross for us.  He suffered, died and was buried – for us.  The least we can do is show that we love Him by loving each other.

The Nicene Creed

I believe in one God,
the Father almighty,
maker of heaven and earth,
of all things visible and invisible.

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.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate,
he suffered death and was buried,
and rose again on the third day
in accordance with the Scriptures.
He ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory
to judge the living and the dead
and his kingdom will have no end.

I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son,
who with the Father and the Son is adored and glorified,
who has spoken through the prophets.

I believe in one, holy, catholic and apostolic Church.
I confess one Baptism for the forgiveness of sins
and I look forward to the resurrection of the dead
and the life of the world to come.

Amen.

 

Lent ……. Day Thirty-Five

Lent ……. Day Thirty-Five

“I experienced already what God reserved for those who love Him…I wanted to love Jesus with a passion giving Him a thousand proofs of my love while it was possible.” (Story of a Soul, 102)
St. Therese of Lisieux

Today is Saint Joseph’s day.   Who shows more proof of one’s love for God than Joseph.  When he said yes to take Mary as his wife and this after the fact that Mary said yes!   Joseph then had to have the loving and caring nature to protect Mary by providing for her and our Lord.   Here is an example of unselfishness, of his love!!

Happy Saint Joseph’s Day!!!

Lent ……. Day Twenty-Three

Lent ……. Day Twenty-Three

Hang in there people!!!!

“The beautiful day of my wedding (commitment to Carmel) finally arrived; without a single cloud; however, the preceding evening a storm arose within my soul the like of which I’d never seen before.” (Story of a Soul, 166)
St. Therese of Lisieux

Jesus lays asleep in the boat.    Wind and rain are causing some massive waves in the sea.  The apostles are running about the deck tieing everything down and trying to prepare for that next big wave.  Jesus lays asleep in the boat.   The wind picks up and the rain falls even harder on them, the sky turns completely dark and those on deck can not see even an outline of the next wave that comes crashing overboard again and again.  Finally  a group of them awake Jesus.  (think of how you feel after a nice deep sleep!)  Jesus awakes and rebukes the sea , wind and rain.    Then He turns to His disciples “Why are you afraid?  Have you no faith?”

I don’t recall any other time we are told that Jesus was sleeping.   He prayed an awful lot, but sleep?   Here He is teaching us a lesson of faith.   How even in the most turbulent times and trials, when we think God is doing nothing for us, He is there – have faith.   When we feel under water and everything is crashing upon us,  have faith – God is there.     Why are we more apt to pray in times of trouble?  Maybe is because we think God is asleep and we need to wake Him up with our prayers!   But God never left, He is always with us, He is always there.  Have Faith and do not be afraid!

Lent ……. Day Twenty-Two

Lent ……. Day Twenty-Two

“…there is no joy comparable to that which the truly poor in spirit experience.”  (Story of a Soul, 226)
St. Therese of Lisieux

“Blessed are the are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”  Matthew 5:3

(These are my notes from a retreat we hold for kids coming into full communion with the Church at the Mother Cabrini Shrine.)

* What is the opposite of humble?  Pride/Ego – full of yourself  – anger and revenge only bring sadness and misery.   Not – no money or to be sad.  * Jesus is telling us to be humble and to place all our trust in God.  Knowing God is always there.  *  Rely on God knowing that all our talents and gifts come from God.  * When we trust God & put Him in charge we are humbled.   *  simple message is this: Talk to God – Trust Him  — Tell Him your troubles  (song I sang as a kid “Let us have a little talk with Jesus , Let us tell Him all about our troubles.”)   * What’s our return/reward?  Kingdom of Heaven.

Lent ……. Day Twenty

Lent ……. Day Twenty

“To you alone will be the glory which you will make me merit…deign to answer my Prayer.  It is bold, I know; however, I dare to ask you to obtain for me YOUR TWOFOLD LOVE.” (Story of a Soul, 195-196)
St. Therese of Lisieux

Well I had to look it up.     

deign     /dān/   verb,   Do something that one considers to be beneath one’s dignity.

In my own egotistical way, I never considered myself really below God in my prayers.  It never occurred to me until today (thank you St. Thesese!) ,  but it is very true.  We are created in the image of God, but we are not God.   I think of Adam and Eve in the garden, everything they ever needed was there except maybe an ice cream parlor  (if they could of only waited for it…) and satan tempted them.    Genesis 2:4 – 5″   The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” 

Here we are stuck today “thinking” we are God.   From the top to the bottom, and we are our own worse enemy.   We, well I,  constantly stumble over our own two feet.  We can not get out of our own way sometimes.   And at times it feels like an avalanche.  If we could learn some humility and listen to what Jesus taught us, that we should learn to serve and love others first.   Most of us always try to put ourselves first.  Look at our world it is all about self-preservation and wanting to put us first,  always looking good.  

 So let us give Thanks to God for providing us with those who came before us and have shown us the way through their sacrifice, humility and love for others.  And we ask them to pray for us and ask God to deign to answer our prayers.
Thank you;
Saint Therese of Lisieux
Saint Francis Xavier Cabrini
Saint Elizabeth Anne Seton
Saint Thomas Aquinas
and a litany of saints!!   (arranged and sung by Matt Maher) 
 

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