Archive for June, 2012


Sunday Bible Reflections by Dr. Scott Hahn

Arise!

Readings:
Wisdom 1:13-15, 2:23-24
Psalm 30:2, 4-6, 11-13
2 Corinthians 8:7, 9, 13-15
Mark 5:21-24, 35-43

God, who formed us in His imperishable image, did not intend for us to die, we hear in today’s First Reading. Death entered the world through the devil’s envy and Adam and Eve’s sin; as a result, we are all bound to die.

But in the moving story in today’s Gospel, we see Jesus liberate a little girl from the possession of death.

On one level, Mark is recounting an event that led the disciples to understand Jesus’ authority and power over even the final enemy, death (see 1 Corinthians 15:26). On another level, however, this episode is written to strengthen our hope that we too will be raised from the dead, along with all our loved ones who sleep in Christ (see 1 Corinthians 15:18).

Jesus commands the girl to “Arise!” – using the same Greek word used to describe His own resurrection (see Mark 16:6). And the consoling message of today’s Gospel is that Jesus is the resurrection and the life. If we believe in Him, even though we die, we will live (see John 15:25-26).

We are called to have the same faith as the parents in the Gospel today – praying for our loved ones, trusting in Jesus’ promise that even death cannot keep us apart. Notice the parents follow Him even though those in their own house tell them there is no hope, and even though others ridicule Jesus’ claim that the dead have only fallen asleep (see 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18).

Already in baptism, we’ve been raised to new life in Christ. And the Eucharist, like the food given to the little girl today, is the pledge that He will raise us on the last day. 

We should rejoice, as we sing in today’s Psalm, that He has brought us up from the netherworld, the pit of death. And, as Paul exhorts in today’s Epistle, we should offer our lives in thanksgiving for this gracious act, imitating Christ in our love and generosity for others.

An Invitation For Non-Catholic Young Adults

Posted: June 27, 2012 by CatholicJules in Upcoming Events

An event for non-Catholic young adults from the ages of 20 to 35. Catholics are most welcome to come along with their invited non-Catholic friends for an afternoon to discover more of what life has to offer us. Tea and snacks will be provided.

Event Date : 29 Jul 12, 3:30 pm – 29 Jul 12, 6:30 pm
Location : 73 Taman Mas Merah S128195
Organised By : Verbum Dei Missionaries
Booking information : Verbum Dei Missionaries 62740251 or 97932605

Email: verbumdeispore@yahoo.com.sg

Dvd Movie – The Way

Posted: June 24, 2012 by CatholicJules in DVD Review

Cast: Martin Sheen, Emilio Estevez, Deborah Kara Unger, Yorick van Wageningen, James Nesbitt, Tcheky Karyo, Ángela Molina, Carlos Leal, Simón Andreu, Eusebio Lazaro
Director: Emilio Estevez
Rated: PG-13
Running Time: 1 hr. 55 min. Genre: Drama, Action & Adventure, Comedy

image

Sypnosis “The Way” is a powerful and inspirational story about family, friends, and the challenges we face while navigating this ever-changing and complicated world. Martin Sheen plays Tom, who comes to St. Jean Pied de Port, France to collect the remains of his adult son , killed in the Pyrenees in a storm while walking the Camino de Santiago,. Rather than return home, Tom decides to embark on the historical pilgrimage to honor his son’s desire to finish the journey. What Tom doesn’t plan on is the profound impact the journey will have on him. From the unexpected and, oftentimes, amusing experiences along “The Way,” Tom begins to learn what it means to be a citizen of the world again. Through his unresolved relationship with his son, he discovers the difference between “the life we live and the life we choose.”

A powerful movie with strong spirituality blowing gently amidst the backdrop. A movie which depicts transformation, Pilgrims set on a solus journey on Camino de Santiago ‘The Way of St James’ become a community. Everyone is changed one way or another….
A film for the whole family.

One of Martin Sheen’s finest performance ever in a movie directed by his son. The family background which led to the movie is intriguing and can be found in the special features.

June 24th 2012 – Birth of John the Baptist

Posted: June 23, 2012 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections

Sunday Bible Reflections by Dr. Scott Hahn

He Must Increase

Readings
Isaiah 49: 1–6
Psalm 139: 1–2, 13–15
Acts 13:22–26
Luke 1:57–66, 80

The people in this week’s Gospel are frightened and amazed by the mysterious events surrounding the birth of John.

Only his mother and father, Elizabeth and Zechariah, know what this child will be.

John the Baptist was fashioned in secret, knit by God in his mother’s womb, as we sing in this Sunday’s Psalm. From the womb he was set apart, formed to be God’s servant, as Isaiah declares in this week’s First Reading.

The whole story of John’s birth is thick with Old Testament echoes, especially echoes of the story of Abraham. God appeared to Abraham, promising that his wife would bear him a son; He announced the son’s name and the role Isaac would play in salvation history (see Genesis 17:1, 16, 19).

The same thing happened to Zechariah and Elizabeth. Through his angel, God announced John’s birth to this righteous yet barren couple. He made them call John a special name—and told them the special part John would play in fulfilling His plan for history (see Luke 1:5–17).

As Paul says in today’s Second Reading, John was to herald the fulfillment of all God’s promises to the children of Abraham (Luke 1:55, 73). John was to bring the word of salvation to all the people of Israel. More than that, he was to be a light to the nations—to all those groping in the dark for God. 

We often associate John with his fiery preaching (see Matthew 3:7–12). But there was a deep humility at the heart of his mission. Paul alludes to that when he quotes John’s words about not being worthy to unfasten the sandals of Christ’s feet.

John said, “[Christ] must increase. I must decrease” (John 3:30).

We must have that same attitude as we seek to follow Jesus. The repentance John preached was a turning away from sin and selfishness and a turning of our whole hearts to the Father.

We must decrease so that like John we can grow strong in the Spirit, until Christ is made manifest in each of us.

The Lord of My Lord

Psalm 110, used in the Liturgy for the Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ (Year C), is frequently cited and alluded to in the New Testament.

Jesus testified that Psalm 110 prophesies about Him – that He is the “Lord” who David refers to as “my Lord” in the opening verse (see Matthew 22:41-45).

And key images from the Psalm resound in the teaching and preaching of the New Testament:

* Jesus enthroned at God’s right hand (see Psalm 110:2; Matthew 26:64; Mark 16:19; Acts 2:33-34; Romans 8:34; Ephesians 1:20; Colossians 3:1; Hebrews 1:3; 8:1; 10:12; 12:2).

* The enemies of Jesus put under His foot, made His “footstool” (see Psalm 110:2; 1 Corinthians 15:25,27; Ephesians 1:22; Hebrews 2:8; 10:13).

The Liturgy for the Solemnity invokes these images along with the image of Melchizedek, the mysterious high priest who offers bread and wine and bestows blessings on Abram.

As interpreted in the New Testament, the Psalm speaks of Jesus when the Lord swears: “You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek” (see Psalm 110:4; Hebrews 6:20-7:1-3, 15-17; 20-26).


By virtue of our baptism we are all commissioned to go and spread the good news though each of us have been given different gifts to do so…..

  • Evangelisation needs to come naturally.  You must want to talk about Jesus.
  • Evangelisation is about conversion, it is about planting a seed.
  • You can start at home then the Church, community and then outside the community.
  • Evangelisation reminds us all that God reigns overall, it is our responsibility to God to share His love with all.
  • Let us not be paralysed by fear….
  • Most think that the Devil uses the ultimate weapon ‘Hatred’ but over the years we can see that it is actually ‘Fear’ which causes inacti0n. “And in what we have failed to do…..”
  • William Shakespeare once said,”A coward dies a thousand deaths, a brave one dies but one.

Here are four simple steps we can take to begin :-

  1. Prayer – We all can do at least one thing together and that is pray.  We can pray for the conversion of others, healing, mercy, and most importantly for our enemies or those that most have given up on.
  2. Listen first then speak second.  Listening is key, we have two ears and one mouth that should already be telling us that we should be listening twice as hard.  But it is essential that we speak up too. We may not have all the answers but we can certainly speak about God’s love and mercy. And again most importantly we should speak in the name of Jesus.
  3. Do something. – We should all be doing something! Move our feet into action and walk…..We have been reminded over and over again that the kingdom of God is at hand. And He will come like a thief in the night…..so let us be prepared…let us start today…whatever we have been called to do…we start now!
  4. Inner Conversion – Our Transfiguration.  We have to be a different people. We must change, we must want to change. We must strive to be a people of mercy and compassion. To be Holy and perfect as our Heavenly Father is Holy and perfect.

 

In my personal experience, I use to cringe at the thought of Evagelisation, because I had always thought that I had to be knowledgeable about my faith before I could even attempt to talk about Jesus.  I also knew that if I didn’t at least try to start somewhere I would likely never ever do so.  So with a prayer to the Holy Spirit, I began to try and talk about Jesus. I found it was easy to start with simply what Jesus has done for me in my life.  How I have grown in faith and turned my life around and of how, I now experience inner joy and peace which I have not known before.  Most people like to listen to stories, so why not tell my personal story? ( True living experience )

In my journey, I have found that family members and some closest friends are usually the toughest audience and more often than naught you will get grieve from them. But do not despair, you are not called to convert them but simply plant the seed of love.  God will do the rest over time.  I have witnessed this myself in my own family life.

Join me now as we participate with Jesus Christ to save the human race….

 

During a worship session…..

Posted: June 20, 2012 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Meditations, Memory Book

Do not let the cares of the world overwhelm you, sit by my side and I will give you living water to drink. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(SACCRE Ablaze Rally at Church Of The Holy Cross And A Talk by Jim Murphy ICCRS – Theme “The Royal Commission”)


Sunday Bible Reflections with Dr. Scott Hahn

Tree of Righteousness

Readings:
Ezekiel 17:22-24
Psalm 92:2-3, 13-14, 15-16
2 Corinthians 5:6-10
Mark 4:26-34
________________________________________

Through the oracles of the Prophet Ezekiel, God gave his people reason to hope. It would have been a cryptic message to his hearers, long centuries before the Lord’s coming.

Ezekiel glimpsed a day when the Lord God would place a tree on a mountain in Israel, a tree that would “put forth branches and bear fruit.” Who could have predicted that the tree would be a cross, on the hill of Calvary, and that the fruit would be salvation?

Ezekiel foresees salvation coming to “birds of every kind”—thus, not just to the Chosen People of Israel, but also to the Gentiles, who will “take wing” through their new life in Christ. God indeed will “lift high the lowly tree,” as he solemnly promises at the conclusion of the passage from the prophet.

Such salvation surpasses humanity’s most ambitious dreams. And so we express our gratitude in the Responsorial Psalm: “Lord, it is good to give thanks to you.” It is indeed good to give thanks, and better still to give thanks with praise. The Psalmist speaks of those who are just upon the earth, but looks to God as the source and measure of justice,
of righteousness. Like Ezekiel, he evokes the image of a flourishing tree to describe the lives of the just. The image, again, suggests the cross as the measure of righteousness.

The cross is a challenge to those who would rather “flourish” according to worldly terms. It is a sign of contradiction. And so Saint Paul repeatedly emphasizes, to the Corinthians, the necessity of courage. Our faith makes us strong, and it is proved in our deeds. The
Apostle reminds us that we will be judged by the ways our faith manifested itself in works: “so that each may receive recompense, according to what he did in the body, whether good or evil.”
Faith. Courage. God himself will empower the works he expects from us; though we may freely choose to correspond to his grace.

In the prophetic oracles, in the Psalms that were sung in Jerusalem, he scattered the small seed that sprang up and became the mustard tree, large enough to accommodate all the birds of the sky, just as Ezekiel had foretold. He gave this doctrine to the disciples, as he still does today, in terms they were able to understand, and he provided a full explanation.

In the sacraments he provides still more: the grace of faith and the courage we need to live in the world as children of God.