Archive for June, 2013

Posted: June 29, 2013 by CatholicJules in Holy Pictures

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June 30th 2013 – 13th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted: June 29, 2013 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections

Sunday Bible Reflections with Dr. Scott Hahn

Taking the Call

Readings:
1 Kings 19:16-21
Psalm 16:1-2, 5, 7-11
Galatians 5:1,13-18
Luke 9:51-62


 

In this week’s First Reading, Elijah’s disciple is allowed to kiss his parents goodbye before setting out to follow the prophet’s call.

But we are called to follow a greater than Elijah, this week’s Liturgy wants us to know.

In Baptism, we have put on the cloak of Christ, been called to the house of a new Father, been given a new family in the kingdom of God. We have been called to leave behind our past lives and never look back – to follow wherever He leads.

Elijah was taken up in a whirlwind and his disciple was given a double portion of his spirit (see 2 Kings 2:9-15).

Jesus too, the Gospel reminds us, was “taken up” (see Acts 1:2,11,22), and He gave us His Spirit to live by, to guide us in our journey in His kingdom.

As this week’s Epistle tells us, the call of Jesus shatters the yoke of every servitude, sets us free from the rituals of the old Law, shows us the Law’s fulfillment in the following of Jesus, in serving one another through love.

His call sets our hands to a new plow, a new task – to be His messengers, sent ahead to prepare all peoples to meet Him and enter into His Kingdom.

Elijah called down fire to consume those who wouldn’t accept God (see 2 Kings 1:1-16). But we have a different Spirit with us.

To live by His Spirit is to face opposition and rejection, as the Apostles do in this week’s Gospel. It is to feel like an exile, with no lasting city (see Hebrews 13:14), no place in this world to lay our head or call home.

But we hear the voice of the One we follow in this week’s Psalm (see Acts 2:25-32; 13:35-37). He calls us to make His faith our own – to abide in confidence that He will not abandon us, that He will show us “the path to life,” leading us to the fullness of joy in His presence forever.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: June 29, 2013 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

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Today is the Solemnity of St Peter and St Paul and we remember them for their great faith and love for our Lord Jesus Christ.

Like us they too were sinners, in his weakness St Peter denied Jesus; in his blind zeal for the law, St Paul persecuted and killed Christians. But the love of Christ embraced them and empowered them to break free from the bondage of sin and the slavery of the law. They lived their new lives in Christ In peace, love and charity for others. They used all the gifts and Graces they received from God to give glory to Him, by preaching His love, enriching the lives of all they met through the proclamation of the Word, healing of the sick and the conversion of sinners.

Through the intercession of St Peter and St Paul let us fight the good fight and run the race to end as we serve and glorify God through the Church He established and build up His Kingdom by bringing all we meet to faith. Through Christ our Lord. Amen

GOSPEL Matthew 16:13–19

When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Philippi he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said in reply, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus said to him in reply, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.”

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: June 27, 2013 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

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For our salvation, our Lord came down to us. He desires to heal us spiritually from within and physically. All we need do is cry out to Him in true faith. Do we do Him homage by seeking Him out with a contrite heart and reverence?Do we worship Him as the leper did? For the leper did not come to Him seeking out a physician but for the Son of God to heal Him.

By Jesus example we give all Glory and Praise to God our Father seeking none for ourselves. And are obedient to the laws of the Church He established. Amen

GOSPEL Matthew 8:1–4

When Jesus came down from the mountain, great crowds followed him. And then a leper approached, did him homage, and said, “Lord, if you wish, you can make me clean.” He stretched out his hand, touched him, and said, “I will do it. Be made clean.” His leprosy was cleansed immediately. Then Jesus said to him, “See that you tell no one, but go show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses prescribed; that will be proof for them.”

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: June 26, 2013 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

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Are we truly following Jesus and all His teachings? Are we truly His disciples? Or have we abandoned some of His doctrines? Have we lacked faith and conviction to seek out the truth?

Is performing miracles in Jesus name by the grace of God important or following God’s Will? To worship only Him and to love and serve our neighbour, our brethren?

The love of our Lord Jesus Christ is calling out to us today. Not to be fooled and led astray by worldly values but for us to build our foundation on Him, His love. A commitment to embrace Him wholly. He is our rock and through the foundation we build through the depth of His love from within; cannot be contained but poured out for all. We are perfected in Him; holy in communion. Amen

GOSPEL Matthew 7:21–29

Jesus said to his disciples:“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name? Did we not drive out demons in your name? Did we not do mighty deeds in your name?’ Then I will declare to them solemnly, ‘I never knew you. Depart from me, you evildoers.’

“Everyone who listens to these words of mine and acts on them will be like a wise man who built his house on rock. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. But it did not collapse; it had been set solidly on rock. And everyone who listens to these words of mine but does not act on them will be like a fool who built his house on sand. The rain fell, the floods came, and the winds blew and buffeted the house. And it collapsed and was completely ruined.”

When Jesus finished these words, the crowds were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: June 26, 2013 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

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Who are the false prophets amongst us? Are they those who preach their own interpretations of scripture which lead others away from the Church? Away from the Church that Christ Himself established? To start their very own Church? Do they cause strife instead of unity? Are they those that lead others away from Christianity all together?

Or are the false prophets amongst us those who are give outward appearances of piety? outward show of reverence? Who fast outwardly and give alms? But lead others away from their faith by their actions and their words? By their hypocrisy? Do they gossip? Do they snap at others in irritation or anger? Are they secretly plotting against another? Are they vengeful? Spiteful? What are their fruits?

By virtue of our baptism we too are called to be prophets? Are we false prophets ourselves? By our very own behaviour? By the way we lead our lives?

Are we fruitful? Do we lead fruitful lives? Or do we give excuses for not being fruitful? Do we just say we don’t know our faith enough? Or that we are not good at talking or sharing? We are introverts by nature? We say we will act one day but that day never seems to come? What happens then to those who are in our midst and who were hungry to know God? Those who needed Jesus desperately in their lives? Those who needed hope? Those who needed help?

What would you do if you love apples and decided to plant an apple tree in your garden,  you care for it, nurture it and it grows into a crooked tree without any apples whatsoever. What would you do with the tree?

Let us pray…

God our Father, you feed Your people with the finest wheat and give us water to drink from the rock, who is Christ. Sustain all those who hunger and thirst for You. By Your grace, may all of us by our virtue of our baptism grow in our love and in our faith; that we may be fruitful in every word and deed so as to glorify You and build Your heavenly Kingdom. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen   

GOSPEL Matthew 7:15–20

Jesus said to his disciples:“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but underneath are ravenous wolves. By their fruits you will know them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Just so, every good tree bears good fruit, and a rotten tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a rotten tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire. So by their fruits you will know them.”

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: June 25, 2013 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

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Many will never accept the truth in fact they are likely to distort and change it to suit their needs. They will even try to destroy your belief system and your faith. Then there are those who choose to trample on the truth and defile it. Do we think we can change their minds with the truth? Will the seed ever take root?   When they proclaim things like Jesus and the Church are man made ideologies to fulfill self serving interests. Or no one has the right to oppose same sex marriages as they go against the individual’s right to happiness. It’s a woman’s own body and so she has the right to choose whatever she wants to do with it and no one has even the right to voice alternatives if she so decides to go with an abortion. Gender change is every individual’s right and it goes against human dignity to force them to live out a particular gender.  Condoms save lives! especially against sexually transmitted diseases. How can you sit there like a doormat and allow them to walk all over you? You must show them what you are made of! You must sue! You must teach them a lesson they will never forget!

It is by far easier to choose the wider and broad road of the world where the invitation to join the masses are always appealing. It doesn’t even seem to matter that this very road ahead is cloaked in hazy darkness and eventually will lead us to destruction.

Jesus reminds us today that the road to peace, love, happiness and life is by way of Him; the Truth and the light. Let us choose the narrow path and lead others towards it. Amen

GOSPEL Matthew 7:6, 12–14

Jesus said to his disciples:“Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces. “Do to others whatever you would have them do to you. This is the Law and the Prophets. “Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the road broad that leads to destruction, and those who enter through it are many. How narrow the gate and constricted the road that leads to life. And those who find it are few.”