Archive for November, 2017

On Today’s Gospel 

Posted: November 17, 2017 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Everywhere and all around us we have the grandeur of God our Father’s creation. Do we make time to marvel in awe of its beauty. The flowers, trees, birds, even clouds in the sky some of the numerous treasures of which to behold.

Have we been blinded by sin that we cannot see? So entrenched in the ways of the world that we have lost our connection with the Lord our God? If we do not awake to the power of His redemptive love then we will be lost forever. So with contrite hearts let us turn to Jesus so that He can set us free to live in His glory.

Sweet heart of Jesus keep me awake and sober in Your love and service. Amen

First reading
Wisdom 13:1-9

Naturally stupid are all men who have not known God
and who, from the good things that are seen, have not been able to discover Him-who-is, or, by studying the works, have failed to recognise the Artificer.
Fire however, or wind, or the swift air, the sphere of the stars, impetuous water, heaven’s lamps, are what they have held to be the gods who govern the world.

If, charmed by their beauty, they have taken things for gods, let them know how much the Lord of these excels them, since the very Author of beauty has created them.
And if they have been impressed by their power and energy, let them deduce from these how much mightier is he that has formed them, since through the grandeur and beauty of the creatures we may, by analogy, contemplate their Author.

Small blame, however, attaches to these men,
for perhaps they only go astray in their search for God and their eagerness to find him; living among his works, they strive to comprehend them
and fall victim to appearances, seeing so much beauty.
Even so, they are not to be excused: if they are capable of acquiring enough knowledge to be able to investigate the world,
how have they been so slow to find its Master?

Luke 17:26-37

Jesus said to the disciples:
‘As it was in Noah’s day, so will it also be in the days of the Son of Man. People were eating and drinking, marrying wives and husbands, right up to the day Noah went into the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. It will be the same as it was in Lot’s day: people were eating and drinking, buying and selling, planting and building, but the day Lot left Sodom, God rained fire and brimstone from heaven and it destroyed them all. It will be the same when the day comes for the Son of Man to be revealed.
‘When that day comes, anyone on the housetop, with his possessions in the house, must not come down to collect them, nor must anyone in the fields turn back either. Remember Lot’s wife. Anyone who tries to preserve his life will lose it; and anyone who loses it will keep it safe. I tell you, on that night two will be in one bed: one will be taken, the other left; two women will be grinding corn together: one will be taken, the other left.’ The disciples interrupted. ‘Where, Lord?’ they asked. He said, ‘Where the body is, there too will the vultures gather.’

On Today’s Gospel 

Posted: November 16, 2017 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

We seek to be wiser than others, thinking often we are better, brighter and more knowledgeable. Even on matters of faith! How ignorant and arrogant we can become….

Wisdom of the Lord our God is what we should seek always. For true holiness comes from the wisdom and knowledge of Him. And He will impart His wisdom to those who love Him with all their heart. It is not for us to know the time of days, only that we must be obedient unto the Lord our God each and every day.

Jesus my lord, grant me the wisdom to know Your will. Amen

First reading
Wisdom 7:22-8:1

Within Wisdom is a spirit intelligent, holy, unique, manifold, subtle, active, incisive, unsullied, lucid, invulnerable, benevolent, sharp, irresistible, beneficent, loving to man,
steadfast, dependable, unperturbed, almighty, all-surveying, penetrating all intelligent, pure and most subtle spirits; for Wisdom is quicker to move than any motion; she is so pure, she pervades and permeates all things.
She is a breath of the power of God, pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty;
hence nothing impure can find a way into her.
She is a reflection of the eternal light, untarnished mirror of God’s active power, image of his goodness.
Although alone, she can do all; herself unchanging, she makes all things new.
In each generation she passes into holy souls,
she makes them friends of God and prophets; for God loves only the man who lives with Wisdom.
She is indeed more splendid than the sun, she outshines all the constellations; compared with light, she takes first place, for light must yield to night, but over Wisdom evil can never triumph. She deploys her strength from one end of the earth to the other, ordering all things for good.

Luke 17:20-25

Asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God was to come, Jesus gave them this answer, ‘The coming of the kingdom of God does not admit of observation and there will be no one to say, “Look here! Look there!” For, you must know, the kingdom of God is among you.’
He said to the disciples, ‘A time will come when you will long to see one of the days of the Son of Man and will not see it. They will say to you, “Look there!” or, “Look here!” Make no move; do not set off in pursuit; for as the lightning flashing from one part of heaven lights up the other, so will be the Son of Man when his day comes. But first he must suffer grievously and be rejected by this generation.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: November 15, 2017 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

There is only one almighty and ever living God who created everything in His love. He has blessed us abundantly. Do we honour, praise and give Him thanks from within? Each and everyday? For the power of true love can only be received with gratitude.

If we are given any power from on high, we are to use it for His glory. To lead one and all accordance to His Will;Especially the least of our brethren. We need to care for and love them as He does. Healing, Peace and love comes from Him alone. For those who come into power will be judged by what they do by the all powerful ever living God.

Thank You Lord, praise You Lord! We love and worship You. With grateful hearts we lift songs of praise to You O Lord our God. Now and forever. Amen

First reading
Wisdom 6:1-11

Listen, kings, and understand; rulers of remotest lands, take warning; hear this, you who have thousands under your rule, who boast of your hordes of subjects.
For power is a gift to you from the Lord, sovereignty is from the Most High; he himself will probe your acts and scrutinise your intentions.

If, as administrators of his kingdom, you have not governed justly nor observed the law, nor behaved as God would have you behave, he will fall on you swiftly and terribly.
Ruthless judgement is reserved for the high and mighty; the lowly will be compassionately pardoned,
the mighty will be mightily punished.
For the Lord of All does not cower before a personage,
he does not stand in awe of greatness, since he himself has made small and great
and provides for all alike;
but strict scrutiny awaits those in power.

Yes, despots, my words are for you, that you may learn what wisdom is and not transgress; for they who observe holy things holily will be adjudged Holy, and, accepting instruction from them, will find their defence in them.
Look forward, therefore, to my words; yearn for them, and they will instruct you.

Luke 17:11-19

On the way to Jerusalem Jesus travelled along the border between Samaria and Galilee. As he entered one of the villages, ten lepers came to meet him. They stood some way off and called to him, ‘Jesus! Master! Take pity on us.’ When he saw them he said, ‘Go and show yourselves to the priests.’ Now as they were going away they were cleansed. Finding himself cured, one of them turned back praising God at the top of his voice and threw himself at the feet of Jesus and thanked him. The man was a Samaritan. This made Jesus say, ‘Were not all ten made clean? The other nine, where are they? It seems that no one has come back to give praise to God, except this foreigner.’ And he said to the man, ‘Stand up and go on your way. Your faith has saved you.’

Watchmen Retreat 9-12 Nov 17

Posted: November 14, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Two months from the vineyard retreat, I would wake most of the time at 4am to pray the divine office. But after a while I slipped to praying it off and on and much later.

I have been doing daily reflections on the daily readings now, for about 7 years but hardly ever read the bible on my own even though I wanted to. Thankfully I have folks around the world following by reflections otherwise I might have even, given that up when I sinned and did not feel like doing them.

I signed up for the Watchmen retreat immediately when it was launched, as I longed to grow deeper in the faith. As the weeks were drawing near, I found myself committing habitual sins once at least every two weeks. However because I was one of the facilitators for LISS and running reflections for my communities from time to time I found myself going for reconciliation practically every week. In fact to prepare myself for the retreat I went for recon on Wed 8th Nov just before the lunchtime EC. I was very disappointed with myself for continuing to slip so often and cried out to the Lord to help me. The message I received was very clear, I had not been dwelling on His Word and discerning His Will for me through scripture.

I left my smartphone at home and bought a dumb one, just so I could call my daughter Hannah on her birthday on Sat the 11th. I even bought a Malaysian SIM card months before. And so when they asked us to surrender our phones, I did not do so. In the end I decided not to switch it on at all for the sake of my Lord, even though it pained me not to call Hannah as I had told her that I would.

The first day as we were praying and reflecting, I received three very strong messages. “Stop comparing yourself with others, stop loving others superficially, love them with my love…. Unconditionally!” And “if I placed a little child in front of you with a message from me, are you humble enough to listen and follow my instructions?”

Later that day during Adoration, I saw visions of Saints with hands in an ouran position. I was prompted to do likewise with three fingers on each hand while the two remaining fingers on each were to be bent over more. I asked the Lord,”Is this position not reserved for the priests?” Then I was given the understanding that he wanted me to be a ‘priest’ in the sense of offering sacrifices for others and to be a bridge for them; to lead them to Him.

The next day after reconciliation, I was feeling a little lost on what I needed to do and how to overcome the moments where I succumb to being enraged with some or unloving towards them. Then during spiritual counselling I was reminded of the Lord’s words, “Father forgive them for they not what they do.”

I think I heard a message for ‘Julian’ that night during adoration but I guess it was not meant for me as I did not hear it, only the name being mentioned. It did not help that apparently there were two other Julians in the retreat. I had however another vision, this time of the Lord carrying a lamb over His shoulder and felt so loved that I wept.

Day three night during Adoration, again the message was very clear for me even though I had hoped it was for one of the other Julians. “Julian the Lord is waiting for you, to have integrity of heart and integrity of faith!” Then at adoration at the praying over the Lord whispers in my ear. “Anger and impatience are not my ways. In my time, not yours.” Needless to say it played on my mind the whole night and carried over to the next day.

The Sunday’s Eucharist celebration was awesome with much consolations poured out on us. Then later midway during father’s talk he looks at me and says,”Julian something is on your mind. Work at it”

Praise You Lord! Thank you Lord! Alleluia!

On Today’s Gospel 

Posted: November 14, 2017 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

We are all wonderfully made special children of God our Father who loves us dearly and wants for us eternal life with Him. Let not sinful or sinful desires separate us from the love of the Lord our God.

We honour and serve Him because we love Him, with all our hearts, minds, souls, and strength. Serving Him well with our all is enough reward. For God our Father who loves us, His children dearly provides for whatever we need and is best for us.

We love You Lord, we praise You Lord, we worship You. Now and forever. Amen

First reading
Wisdom 2:23-3:9

God made man imperishable, he made him in the image of his own nature;it was the devil’s envy that brought death into the world, as those who are his partners will discover.

But the souls of the virtuous are in the hands of God, no torment shall ever touch them.
In the eyes of the unwise, they did appear to die, their going looked like a disaster, their leaving us, like annihilation; but they are in peace.
If they experienced punishment as men see it, their hope was rich with immortality; slight was their affliction, great will their blessings be.
God has put them to the test and proved them worthy to be with him; he has tested them like gold in a furnace, and accepted them as a holocaust.
When the time comes for his visitation they will shine out; as sparks run through the stubble, so will they.
They shall judge nations, rule over peoples, and the Lord will be their king for ever.
They who trust in him will understand the truth, those who are faithful will live with him in love; for grace and mercy await those he has chosen.

Luke 17:7-10

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Which of you, with a servant ploughing or minding sheep, would say to him when he returned from the fields, “Come and have your meal immediately”? Would he not be more likely to say, “Get my supper laid; make yourself tidy and wait on me while I eat and drink. You can eat and drink yourself afterwards”? Must he be grateful to the servant for doing what he was told? So with you: when you have done all you have been told to do, say, “We are merely servants: we have done no more than our duty.”

On Today’s Gospel 

Posted: November 13, 2017 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Integrity of heart and faith is what we are called to have and to exercise them in holy virtues. How can we lead others closer to God our Father if we are not right by Him ourselves? If we continue living two separate lives? In doing so we become obstacles for others instead of a bridge.

Seek the Lord with all your heart and you will find Him. He will heal and transform you to be a great blessing for others. Forgive readily just as He has forgiven you. And start putting all your faith and trust in our Lord Jesus Christ whom loves you deeply.

Lord Jesus, increase my faith this day. Amen

First reading
Wisdom 1:1-7

Love virtue, you who are judges on earth, let honesty prompt your thinking about the Lord, seek him in simplicity of heart;
since he is to be found by those who do not put him to the test, he shows himself to those who do not distrust him.
But selfish intentions divorce from God; and Omnipotence, put to the test, confounds the foolish.
No, Wisdom will never make its way into a crafty soul
nor stay in a body that is in debt to sin; the holy spirit of instruction shuns deceit,
it stands aloof from reckless purposes, is taken aback when iniquity appears.

Wisdom is a spirit, a friend to man, though she will not pardon the words of a blaspheme, since God sees into the innermost parts of him, truly observes his heart, and listens to his tongue.
The spirit of the Lord, indeed, fills the whole world, and that which holds all things together knows every word that is said.

Luke 17:1-6

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Obstacles are sure to come, but alas for the one who provides them! It would be better for him to be thrown into the Sea with a millstone put round his neck than that he should lead astray a single one of these little ones. Watch yourselves!
If your brother does something wrong, reprove him and, if he is sorry, forgive him. And if he wrongs you seven times a day and seven times comes back to you and says, “I am sorry,” you must forgive him.’
The apostles said to the Lord, ‘Increase our faith.’ The Lord replied, ‘Were your faith the size of a mustard seed you could say to this mulberry tree, “Be uprooted and planted in the sea,” and it would obey you.’

Thirty Second Sunday in Ordinary Time 

Posted: November 11, 2017 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections

Members of the Wedding: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Thirty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

Wisdom 6:12-16
Psalm 63:2-8
1 Thessalonians 4:13-17
Matthew 25:1-13

According to marriage customs of Jesus’ day, a bride was first “betrothed” to her husband but continued for a time to live with her family. Then, at the appointed hour, some months later, the groom would come to claim her, leading her family and bridal party to the wedding feast that would celebrate and inaugurate their new life together.

This is the background to the parable of the last judgment we hear in today’s Gospel.

In the parable’s symbolism, Jesus is the Bridegroom (see Mark 2:19). In this, He fulfills God’s ancient promise to join himself forever to His chosen people as a husband cleaves to his bride (see Hosea 2:16-20). The virgins of the bridal party represent us, the members of the Church.

We were “betrothed” to Jesus in baptism (see 2 Corinthians 11:2; Ephesians 5:25-27) and are called to lives of holiness and devotion until He comes again to lead us to the heavenly wedding feast at the end of time (see Revelation 19:7-9; 21:1-4).

As St. Paul warns in today’s Epistle, Jesus is coming again, though we know not the day nor the hour.

We need to keep vigil throughout the dark night of this time in which our Bridegroom seems long delayed. We need to keep our souls’ lamps filled with the oil of perseverance and desire for God – virtues that are extolled in today’s First Reading and Psalm.

We are to seek Him in love, meditating upon His kindness, calling upon His name, striving to be ever more worthy of Him, to be found without spot or blemish when He comes.

If we do this, we will be counted as wise and the oil for our lamps will not run dry (see 1 Kings 17:16). We will perceive the Bridegroom, the Wisdom of God (see Proverbs 8:22-31,35; 9:1-5), hastening toward us, beckoning us to the table He has prepared, the rich banquet which will satisfy our souls.