Archive for February, 2023

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 28, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

From Fat Tuesday to a much thinner one, apart from physical changes has the seedlings of our faith journey started to sprout? Has change begun in us? Are we drawing closer to our Lord, through our Lenten observances?

Most when asked to list the seven top priorities for their life, will list the Lord our God first, followed by six most pressing priorities and often family will rank second. This is usually when asked by a fellow Christian. It may change if asked by anyone else; for some, even God is omitted. And they will rationalise by saying, He is first always in my heart; everyone else does not need to know.

Unfortunately, many while their mouth is sweet to say God is first. The actual truth is that even as they utter the Our Father, it is lived in reverse. Work, games and so on comes first! Give me my daily bread first! I will forgive when I am ready. Guard me against all evil! Do not put obstacles in my, clear them! I will forgive when I am ready. Then I will surely bring my family to Church on Sundays.  The life transforming Word of the Lord our God is absent from their lives. Lent is just another season that will pass and fade quickly.

Truth’s shining light guides me in my choices and decisions; the revelation of your Word makes my pathway clear Lord. Amen


First reading

Isaiah 55:10-11 ·

The word that goes out from my mouth does not return to me empty

Thus says the Lord: ‘As the rain and the snow come down from the heavens and do not return without watering the earth, making it yield and giving growth to provide seed for the sower and bread for the eating, so the word that goes from my mouth does not return to me empty, without carrying out my will and succeeding in what it was sent to do.’



Matthew 6:7-15

How to pray

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘In your prayers do not babble as the pagans do, for they think that by using many words they will make themselves heard. Do not be like them; your Father knows what you need before you ask him. So you should pray like this:

‘Our Father in heaven,

may your name be held holy,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as in heaven.

Give us today our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts, as we have forgiven those who are in debt to us.

And do not put us to the test,

but save us from the evil one.

‘Yes, if you forgive others their failings, your heavenly Father will forgive you yours; but if you do not forgive others, your Father will not forgive your failings either.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 27, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

By the very colour of Lent I am first reminded that I am clothed in the purple robes of empowerment from on high. By my very baptism, I am priest, prophet and king! I wear these colour in my heart which remind me that my Lord of lords, King of kings wore it through an act of derision by Pilate, He bore the shame and suffered for my sins.  He loved me from the cross, can I do any less for my sisters and brothers whom He has left in my charge? That I should love them as He loved me.

Jesus our Lord reminds us today of a fact we often rationalise away. Especially when it concerns someone who might have hurt us or of whom we dislike. He said “I tell you solemnly, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me.” With this in our minds we will surely see all He sends our way in a different light.

Lord Jesus let my thoughts and words be filled with You. Let me always do what I am called to do and not what I want to do. Through You, with and in You. Amen


First reading

Leviticus 19:1-2,11-18 ·

Only pass judgement on your neighbour according to justice

The Lord spoke to Moses; he said: ‘Speak to the whole community of the sons of Israel and say to them:

    ‘“Be holy, for I, the Lord your God, am holy.

    ‘“You must not steal nor deal deceitfully or fraudulently with your neighbour. You must not swear falsely by my name, profaning the name of your God. I am the Lord. You must not exploit or rob your neighbour. You must not keep back the labourer’s wage until next morning. You must not curse the dumb, nor put an obstacle in the blind man’s way, but you must fear your God. I am the Lord.

    ‘“You must not be guilty of unjust verdicts. You must neither be partial to the little man nor overawed by the great; you must pass judgement on your neighbour according to justice. You must not slander your own people, and you must not jeopardise your neighbour’s life. I am the Lord. You must not bear hatred for your brother in your heart. You must openly tell him, your neighbour, of his offence; this way you will not take a sin upon yourself. You must not exact vengeance, nor must you bear a grudge against the children of your people. You must love your neighbour as yourself. I am the Lord.”’



Matthew 25:31-46

I was naked and you clothed me; sick, and you visited me

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘When the Son of Man comes in his glory, escorted by all the angels, then he will take his seat on his throne of glory. All the nations will be assembled before him and he will separate men one from another as the shepherd separates sheep from goats. He will place the sheep on his right hand and the goats on his left.

    ‘Then the King will say to those on his right hand, “Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take for your heritage the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you made me welcome; naked and you clothed me, sick and you visited me, in prison and you came to see me.” Then the virtuous will say to him in reply, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you; or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and make you welcome; naked and clothe you; sick or in prison and go to see you?” And the King will answer, “I tell you solemnly, in so far as you did this to one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did it to me.”

    ‘Next he will say to those on his left hand, “Go away from me, with your curse upon you, to the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. For I was hungry and you never gave me food; I was thirsty and you never gave me anything to drink; I was a stranger and you never made me welcome, naked and you never clothed me, sick and in prison and you never visited me.” Then it will be their turn to ask, “Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty, a stranger or naked, sick or in prison, and did not come to your help?” Then he will answer, “I tell you solemnly, in so far as you neglected to do this to one of the least of these, you neglected to do it to me.”

    ‘And they will go away to eternal punishment, and the virtuous to eternal life.’

First Sunday Of Lent

Posted: February 25, 2023 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections
Tags: ,

Tale of Two Adams: Scott Hahn Reflects on the First Sunday of Lent


Genesis 2:7–9; 3:1–7

Psalm 51:3–6; 12–14, 17

Romans 5:12–19

Matthew 4:1–11

In today’s Liturgy, the destiny of the human race is told as the tale of two “types” of men—the first man, Adam, and the new Adam, Jesus (see 1 Corinthians 15:21–22; 45–59).

Paul’s argument in the Epistle is built on a series of contrasts between “one” or “one person” and “the many” or “all.” By one person’s disobedience, sin and condemnation entered the world, and death came to reign over all. By the obedience of another one, grace abounded, all were justified, and life came to reign for all.

This is the drama that unfolds in today’s First Reading and Gospel.

Formed from the clay of the ground and filled with the breath of God’s own Spirit, Adam was a son of God (see Luke 3:38), created in His image (see Genesis 5:1–3). Crowned with glory, he was given dominion over the world and the protection of His angels (see Psalms 8:6–8; 91:11–13). He was made to worship God—to live not by bread alone but in obedience to every word that comes from the mouth of the Father.

Adam, however, put the Lord his God to the test. He gave in to the serpent’s temptation, trying to seize for himself all that God had already promised him. But in His hour of temptation, Jesus prevailed where Adam failed—and drove the devil away.

Still, we sin after the pattern of Adam’s transgression. Like Adam, we let sin in the door (see Genesis 4:7) when we entertain doubts about God’s promises, when we forget to call on Him in our hours of temptation.

But the grace won for us by Christ’s obedience means that sin is no longer our master.

As we begin this season of repentance, we can be confident in His compassion, that He will create in us a new heart (see Romans 5:5; Hebrews 8:10). As we do in today’s Psalm, we can sing joyfully of our salvation, renewed in His presence.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 25, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned. Isa 9:2 Yes, we know, with all our hearts that we have seen the light of the world in our midst! Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ! Even on our Lenten Journey to new life anew in Him, our hearts rejoice for we have tasted, and we have seen. So, leave everything behind, get up and we follow Him.

Have our light not risen in the darkness through Him? Have our night become like the noonday. Isa 58:10 For Jesus died for our sins and we now we live as free children of God our Father so loved by Him!

Shall we not then, children of light; shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death. To guide their feet into the path of peace? Luke 1:79 How can we not sit with sinners as Jesus did? Are we so afraid to be tainted? When we have the power from on high to minister to them! Where ever we go, we bring the presence of Christ Jesus with us.

Sweet Jesus let Your wellspring of living water flow through me, like a well that never runs dry! Amen


First reading

Isaiah 58:9-14

You will be like a spring whose waters never run dry

The Lord says this:

If you do away with the yoke,

the clenched fist, the wicked word,

if you give your bread to the hungry,

and relief to the oppressed,

your light will rise in the darkness,

and your shadows become like noon.

The Lord will always guide you,

giving you relief in desert places.

He will give strength to your bones

and you shall be like a watered garden,

like a spring of water

whose waters never run dry.

You will rebuild the ancient ruins,

build up on the old foundations.

You will be called ‘Breach-mender’,

‘Restorer of ruined houses.’

If you refrain from trampling the sabbath,

and doing business on the holy day,

if you call the Sabbath ‘Delightful’,

and the day sacred to the Lord ‘Honourable’,

if you honour it by abstaining from travel,

from doing business and from gossip,

then shall you find your happiness in the Lord

and I will lead you triumphant over the heights of the land.

I will feed you on the heritage of Jacob your father.

For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.



Luke 5:27-32

Jesus comes not to call the virtuous, but sinners to repentance

Jesus noticed a tax collector, Levi by name, sitting by the customs house, and said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And leaving everything he got up and followed him.

    In his honour Levi held a great reception in his house, and with them at table was a large gathering of tax collectors and others. The Pharisees and their scribes complained to his disciples and said, ‘Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?’ Jesus said to them in reply, ‘It is not those who are well who need the doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the virtuous, but sinners to repentance.’

, whose company he seemed to enjoy. It is striking to see how willingly they left their lucrative but degrading employment: here Levi; in another version of the story it is Matthew; and at Jericho the story is told of Zacchaeus. Either Jesus lost all claim to be God’s representative or the Pharisees had got their priorities wrong.

    So Jesus replies with two of those splendid, forceful contrasts which are so characteristic of his speech: not healthy but sick, not virtuous but sinners. In other words, it is not the details of the Law which matter, but the purpose of the Law: to bring men and women to God. Jesus positively welcomes sinners, so at the beginning of Lent there is no point in denying that we are sinners. We would fit nicely into the dirty, degraded company of Jesus. But let’s see if we can just hang on to Jesus for a bit. Pope Francis wants a dirty Church, too!

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 24, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Have you dwelled on the act of fasting itself?

Those of whom who can fast, that is those who are medically fit should fast during this Lenten period. You will find that you do not actually need as much food as you thought. Perhaps you had given in to gluttony even in its mildest form. Fasting from food and drink is also a prophetic act of sorts, that is to say we empty ourselves so that the Lord our God can fill us with His grace. Coupled with pray, we invite Him to unite with us more fully and His presence fills us to the brim!

Fasting from food and drink alone is only the foundation on which we build up our spiritual ‘muscles’. We must also fast from anger, loose tongues, unkind words, entertaining impure thoughts, greed, jealousy and anything that is not from our Lord.

For what follows, is that we must strive to perform acts of corporal and spiritual acts of mercy; throughout our Lenten journey. So that all who look upon us will see that our bridegroom, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ walks with us. Amen

Corporal Acts of Mercy

To feed the hungry;

To give drink to the thirsty;

To clothe the naked;

To harbour the harbourless;

To visit the sick;

To ransom the captive;

To bury the dead.

Spiritual Acts of Mercy

To instruct the ignorant;

To counsel the doubtful;

To admonish sinners;

To bear wrongs patiently;

To forgive offences willingly;

To comfort the afflicted;

To pray for the living and the dead.


First reading

Isaiah 58:1-9 ·

The sort of fast that pleases me

Thus says the Lord:

Shout for all you are worth,

    raise your voice like a trumpet.

Proclaim their faults to my people,

    their sins to the House of Jacob.

They seek me day after day,

    they long to know my ways,

like a nation that wants to act with integrity

    and not ignore the law of its God.

They ask me for laws that are just,

    they long for God to draw near:

‘Why should we fast if you never see it,

    why do penance if you never notice?’

Look, you do business on your fast-days,

    you oppress all your workmen;

look, you quarrel and squabble when you fast

    and strike the poor man with your fist.

Fasting like yours today

    will never make your voice heard on high.

Is that the sort of fast that pleases me,

    a truly penitential day for men?

Hanging your head like a reed,

    lying down on sackcloth and ashes?

Is that what you call fasting,

    a day acceptable to the Lord?

Is not this the sort of fast that pleases me

 – it is the Lord who speaks –

to break unjust fetters and

    undo the thongs of the yoke,

to let the oppressed go free,

    and break every yoke,

to share your bread with the hungry,

    and shelter the homeless poor,

to clothe the man you see to be naked

    and not turn from your own kin?

Then will your light shine like the dawn

    and your wound be quickly healed over.

Your integrity will go before you

    and the glory of the Lord behind you.

Cry, and the Lord will answer;

    call, and he will say, ‘I am here.’



Matthew 9:14-15

When the bridegroom is taken from them, then they will fast

John’s disciples came to Jesus and said, ‘Why is it that we and the Pharisees fast, but your disciples do not?’ Jesus replied, ‘Surely the bridegroom’s attendants would never think of mourning as long as the bridegroom is still with them? But the time will come for the bridegroom to be taken away from them, and then they will fast.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 23, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

We are called to live a life to the fullest and we can do so because God our loving Father sent His Son our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ to save us from death and sin!

We cannot be more free than we are living in His presence! And so we were marked with Ashes yesterday, we have made our commitment to turn away from all sin and to be faithful to the Gospel. To love the Lord our God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength. We have decided to renounce ourselves, take up our cross and follow Jesus each and every day of our lives.

I was overjoyed to see the turn out at my Parish, while not a day of obligation yet the church was full and overflowing! Babies, youths, adults both young and old; all gathered together as One as we began our Lenten journey! Glory and praise to our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen

Saint Polycarp Pray for us…


First reading

Deuteronomy 30:15-20 ·

I set before you today life or death, blessing or curse

Moses said to the people: ‘See, today I set before you life and prosperity, death and disaster. If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I enjoin on you today, if you love the Lord your God and follow his ways, if you keep his commandments, his laws, his customs, you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land which you are entering to make your own. But if your heart strays, if you refuse to listen, if you let yourself be drawn into worshipping other gods and serving them, I tell you today, you will most certainly perish; you will not live long in the land you are crossing the Jordan to enter and possess. I call heaven and earth to witness against you today: I set before you life or death, blessing or curse. Choose life, then, so that you and your descendants may live, in the love of the Lord your God, obeying his voice, clinging to him; for in this your life consists, and on this depends your long stay in the land which the Lord swore to your fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob he would give them.’



Luke 9:22-25

Whoever loses his life for my sake will save it

Jesus said to his disciples:

    ‘The Son of Man is destined to suffer grievously, to be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes and to be put to death, and to be raised up on the third day.’

    Then to all he said:

    ‘If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross every day and follow me. For anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake, that man will save it. What gain, then, is it for a man to have won the whole world and to have lost or ruined his very self?’

Ash Wednesday 2023

Posted: February 22, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

I pray and hope that like just me, you have eagerly awaited this wonderful and Blessed day! The start of spring cleaning if you will, of all the ‘spiritual fats’ accumulated not from the Holy Spirit, but either from the human one or the evil one. The deluge of sin that occurred through our lack of prayer, fasting and almsgiving! And so, we begin this wonderful journey, to not only be fully reconciled with God our loving Father; but to grow far deeper in love and faith, then we have ever been before.

We know His enduring love for us and have great confidence that our Lord will help us with our reform, our metanoia. So that come Easter we will be transfigured in Him! With renewed minds, body and Spirit we will illuminate the world by His light in us.

So let us begin this fast by emptying ourselves fully, so as to be filled with His grace. As we renew our commitment to turn away from all sin and be faithful to the Gospel. Amen

Glory and Praise to our Lord Jesus Christ!


Grant, O Lord, that we may begin with holy fasting this campaign of Christian service, so that, as we take up battle against spiritual evils, we may be armed with weapons of self-restraint. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, (one) God, for ever and ever. Amen


First reading

Joel 2:12-18 ·

Let your hearts be broken, not your garments torn

‘Now, now – it is the Lord who speaks –

come back to me with all your heart,

fasting, weeping, mourning.’

Let your hearts be broken, not your garments torn,

turn to the Lord your God again,

for he is all tenderness and compassion,

slow to anger, rich in graciousness,

and ready to relent.

Who knows if he will not turn again, will not relent,

will not leave a blessing as he passes,

oblation and libation

for the Lord your God?

Sound the trumpet in Zion!

Order a fast,

proclaim a solemn assembly,

call the people together,

summon the community,

assemble the elders,

gather the children,

even the infants at the breast.

Let the bridegroom leave his bedroom

and the bride her alcove.

Between vestibule and altar let the priests,

the ministers of the Lord, lament.

Let them say,

‘Spare your people, Lord!

Do not make your heritage a thing of shame,

a byword for the nations.

Why should it be said among the nations,

“Where is their God?”’

Then the Lord, jealous on behalf of his land,

took pity on his people.


Second reading

2 Corinthians 5:20-6:2

Be reconciled to God

We are ambassadors for Christ; it is as though God were appealing through us, and the appeal that we make in Christ’s name is: be reconciled to God. For our sake God made the sinless one into sin, so that in him we might become the goodness of God. As his fellow workers, we beg you once again not to neglect the grace of God that you have received. For he says: At the favourable time, I have listened to you; on the day of salvation I came to your help. Well, now is the favourable time; this is the day of salvation.



Matthew 6:1-6,16-18

Your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you

Jesus said to his disciples: ‘Be careful not to parade your good deeds before men to attract their notice; by doing this you will lose all reward from your Father in heaven. So when you give alms, do not have it trumpeted before you; this is what the hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets to win men’s admiration. I tell you solemnly, they have had their reward. But when you give alms, your left hand must not know what your right is doing; your almsgiving must be secret, and your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you.

    ‘And when you pray, do not imitate the hypocrites: they love to say their prayers standing up in the synagogues and at the street corners for people to see them; I tell you solemnly, they have had their reward. But when you pray, go to your private room and, when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in that secret place, and your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you.

    ‘When you fast do not put on a gloomy look as the hypocrites do: they pull long faces to let men know they are fasting. I tell you solemnly, they have had their reward. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that no one will know you are fasting except your Father who sees all that is done in secret; and your Father who sees all that is done in secret will reward you.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 21, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

When I rose up to leadership which I reluctantly pursued, my heart was only on one thing. How I would work closely with the rest of the leaders to train, disciple and coach the next team of leaders to build our Lord’s Kingdom.

Then a new Parish priest arrived and decided that what we had planned was too complex, complicated and was not in line with his vision. Eventually I was ousted and reprimanded in front of my peers during a meeting. Needless to say I could not wrap my brain round it and even though I put on a brave front, I was deeply wounded.

I lost focus for many months trying hard to snap out of it! I kept asking the Lord why? Then within three months I received the same bible verses twice the same one in today’s first reading from two brothers in Christ who were deeply prayerful. I read the whole of the chapter not just this bit and was not only encouraged but I got back my focus; and that is the Lord and God our Father’s children where ever they may be. I was healed!

Lord Jesus let me gaze upon Your shining face this day and every day of my life. That I may see Your face upon the faces of our loving Father’s children and welcome them as You have welcomed me into Your heart. Amen

Saint Peter Damian, pray for us…


First reading

Ecclesiasticus 2:1-11 ·

The chosen are tested like gold in the fire

My son, if you aspire to serve the Lord,

    prepare yourself for an ordeal.

Be sincere of heart, be steadfast,

    and do not be alarmed when disaster comes.

Cling to him and do not leave him,

    so that you may be honoured at the end of your days.

Whatever happens to you, accept it,

    and in the uncertainties of your humble state, be patient,

since gold is tested in the fire,

    and chosen men in the furnace of humiliation.

Trust him and he will uphold you,

    follow a straight path and hope in him.

You who fear the Lord, wait for his mercy;

    do not turn aside in case you fall.

You who fear the Lord, trust him,

    and you will not be baulked of your reward.

You who fear the Lord hope for good things,

    for everlasting happiness and mercy.

Look at the generations of old and see:

    who ever trusted in the Lord and was put to shame?

Or who ever feared him steadfastly and was left forsaken?

    Or who ever called out to him, and was ignored?

For the Lord is compassionate and merciful,

    he forgives sins, and saves in days of distress.



Mark 9:30-37

Anyone who welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me

Jesus and his disciples made their way through Galilee; and he did not want anyone to know, because he was instructing his disciples; he was telling them, ‘The Son of Man will be delivered into the hands of men; they will put him to death; and three days after he has been put to death he will rise again.’ But they did not understand what he said and were afraid to ask him.

    They came to Capernaum, and when he was in the house he asked them, ‘What were you arguing about on the road?’ They said nothing because they had been arguing which of them was the greatest. So he sat down, called the Twelve to him and said, ‘If anyone wants to be first, he must make himself last of all and servant of all.’ He then took a little child, set him in front of them, put his arms round him, and said to them, ‘Anyone who welcomes one of these little children in my name, welcomes me; and anyone who welcomes me welcomes not me but the one who sent me.’

19 Feb Sunday 2023

Posted: February 20, 2023 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Memory Book

Today after the morning  Eucharistic Celebration at Church of St Michael’s; my wife, daughter and I were having breakfast at ‘Angel’s Corner’

The yummy breakfast of the day was cous cous sautéed in butter. We were seated at a table with four seats. One lady from the breakfast team showed an elderly lady to our table and offered to get her a plate and coffee. While we were eating, I introduced myself and she told me her name was Irene. She lived within walking distance and was thankful for that because her eyesight was failing her and she was not confident to travel farther than what she has to, to reach church.

After breakfast I offered to pray for her and asked if she had any prayer request. She asked for prayers for her eyesight and prayers for her husband who had failing kidneys and was in great pain lying in bed at home. I told her that I would pray for her first then later fur Richard her husband. I asked if I could place my hand on her shoulder as I prayed she agreed.

After I prayed, I asked if there was any improvement? She quickly replied, “Not so fast one ah! And smiled” I asked if she felt anything? She said it got very warm when I prayed for her. I told her that I sensed the Lord had great love fire her and healing has already begun. She should test it out when she got home. I then started praying for Richard. After the she was saying that she was so thankful to have met me. I told her to thank Jesus instead for creating this opportunity.

Praise the Lord!

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 20, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Are we praying for others with wisdom and power from on high? If not, then why not?

For are not children of God our Father so loved by Him, that through Jesus His Son we have been empowered to heal the sick, cast our demons and such? Are we still not able to connect fully to the Lord our God in His presence through our prayer? How then will we be able to set the boy from today’s Gospel free?

What is prayer put into action? Jesus tells us in Jn 5:19 “The Son can do nothing by himself; he can do only what he sees his Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does.”

Lord Jesus let me see Your good works, and let me work them as well in Your most precious name. Amen


First reading

Ecclesiasticus 1:1-10 ·

Before all other things, wisdom was created

All wisdom is from the Lord,

    and it is his own for ever.

The sand of the sea and the raindrops,

    and the days of eternity, who can assess them?

The height of the sky and the breadth of the earth,

    and the depth of the abyss, who can probe them?

Before all other things wisdom was created,

    shrewd understanding is everlasting.

For whom has the root of wisdom ever been uncovered?

    Her resourceful ways, who knows them?

One only is wise, terrible indeed,

    seated on his throne, the Lord.

He himself has created her, looked on her and assessed her,

    and poured her out on all his works

to be with all mankind as his gift,

    and he conveyed her to those who love him.



Mark 9:14-29

Help the little faith I have!

When Jesus, with Peter, James and John came down from the mountain and rejoined the disciples, they saw a large crowd round them and some scribes arguing with them. The moment they saw him the whole crowd were struck with amazement and ran to greet him. ‘What are you arguing about with them?’ he asked. A man answered him from the crowd, ‘Master, I have brought my son to you; there is a spirit of dumbness in him, and when it takes hold of him it throws him to the ground, and he foams at the mouth and grinds his teeth and goes rigid. And I asked your disciples to cast it out and they were unable to.’ ‘You faithless generation’ he said to them in reply. ‘How much longer must I be with you? How much longer must I put up with you? Bring him to me.’ They brought the boy to him, and as soon as the spirit saw Jesus it threw the boy into convulsions, and he fell to the ground and lay writhing there, foaming at the mouth. Jesus asked the father, ‘How long has this been happening to him?’ ‘From childhood,’ he replied ‘and it has often thrown him into the fire and into the water, in order to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have pity on us and help us.’ ‘If you can?’ retorted Jesus. ‘Everything is possible for anyone who has faith.’ Immediately the father of the boy cried out, ‘I do have faith. Help the little faith I have!’ And when Jesus saw how many people were pressing round him, he rebuked the unclean spirit. ‘Deaf and dumb spirit,’ he said ‘I command you: come out of him and never enter him again.’ Then throwing the boy into violent convulsions it came out shouting, and the boy lay there so like a corpse that most of them said, ‘He is dead.’ But Jesus took him by the hand and helped him up, and he was able to stand. When he had gone indoors his disciples asked him privately, ‘Why were we unable to cast it out?’ ‘This is the kind’ he answered ‘that can only be driven out by prayer.’

7th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted: February 18, 2023 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections
Tags: ,

Holy as God: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Leviticus 19:1–217–18
Psalm 103:1–481012–13
1 Corinthians 3:16–23
Matthew 5:38–48

We are called to the holiness of God. That is the extraordinary claim made in both the First Reading and the Gospel this Sunday.

Yet how is it possible that we can be perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect?

Jesus explains that we must be imitators of God as His beloved children (Ephesians 5:1–2).

As God does, we must love without limit—with a love that does not distinguish between friend and foe, overcoming evil with good (see Romans 12:21).

Jesus Himself, in His Passion and death, gave us the perfect example of the love that we are called to.

He offered no resistance to the evil—even though He could have commanded twelve legions of angels to fight alongside Him. He offered His face to be struck and spit upon. He allowed His garments to be stripped from Him. He marched as His enemies compelled Him to the Place of the Skull. On the Cross, He prayed for those who persecuted Him (see Matthew 26:53–546727:2832Luke 23:34).

In all this, He showed Himself to be the perfect Son of God. By His grace, and through our imitation of Him, He promises that we too can become children of our heavenly Father.

God does not deal with us as we deserve, as we sing in this week’s Psalm. He loves us with a Father’s love. He saves us from ruin. He forgives our transgressions.

He loved us even when we had made ourselves His enemies through our sinfulness. While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us (see Romans 5:8).

We have been bought with the price of the blood of God’s only Son (see 1 Corinthians 6:20). We belong to Christ now, as St. Paul says in this week’s Epistle. By our baptism, we have been made temples of His Holy Spirit.

And we have been saved to share in His holiness and perfection. So let us glorify Him by our lives lived in His service, loving as He loves.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 18, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Faith begets faith! That is faith put into action for love of God and for love of neighbour after the heart of God. We who have faith in God our Father’s beloved Son will always seek to listen to Him and do as He wills us to.

Many years ago the Lord put it into my heart to start a neighbourhood community for faith sharing. In faith I reached out to three families, we started one and our faith grew exponentially, including the size of our group. We went from struggling how to find passages in our physical bibles to entering into ministries! Same thing happened when the Lord put it on my heart to take lead of a community in the business district. From our little testimonies to the Lord and our bible sharing, we became bolder in speaking and sharing about the Word of God. Many even did so by sharing the Gospel with office colleagues.

Personally, I had a bad experience of stage fright in my childhood. Nerves got the better of me in a story telling competition at age 9, which drew laughter from the crowd. Ever since then, I was very reluctant to do any form of public speaking! But later on in years and through the prompting of the Holy Spirit as well as the encouragement of my Parish priest, I went on to give talks to parents of children in our church as well in one or two Church events. Never liked the fear that gripped me ever so often, but the Holy Spirit helped me overcome and conquer! And I started witnessing changes on the faces of the parents I was ministering to through the talks, I knew all this could only come from the grace of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Spending weeks on end with different small groups, I have also witnessed ‘transfigurations’ of the lives of both parents and children while facilitating our First Holy Communion programs over the years. And again I saw the ‘transfigurations’ of the adult discussion groups I was facilitating in during the Life in the Spirit Seminar. The most recent on was the ‘transfigurations’ of those in our discussion groups during the Choice Series of Pathways!

I am still seeking daily to listen to my Lord and hope you too are doing likewise. So that we can all go on exercising the gifts of the Holy Spirit, ministering to all He sends our way. Faith begets faith! Let us all be bold in our endeavours for the Lord. Amen


First reading

Hebrews 11:1-7 ·

It is by faith that we understand that the world was created by one word from God

Only faith can guarantee the blessings that we hope for, or prove the existence of the realities that at present remain unseen. It was for faith that our ancestors were commended.

    It is by faith that we understand that the world was created by one word from God, so that no apparent cause can account for the things we can see.

    It was because of his faith that Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain, and for that he was declared to be righteous when God made acknowledgement of his offerings. Though he is dead, he still speaks by faith.

    It was because of his faith that Enoch was taken up and did not have to experience death: he was not to be found because God had taken him. This was because before his assumption it is attested that he had pleased God. Now it is impossible to please God without faith, since anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and rewards those who try to find him.

    It was through his faith that Noah, when he had been warned by God of something that had never been seen before, felt a holy fear and built an ark to save his family. By his faith the world was convicted, and he was able to claim the righteousness which is the reward of faith.



Mark 9:2-13

Jesus was transfigured in their presence

Jesus took with him Peter and James and John and led them up a high mountain where they could be alone by themselves. There in their presence he was transfigured: his clothes became dazzlingly white, whiter than any earthly bleacher could make them. Elijah appeared to them with Moses; and they were talking with Jesus. Then Peter spoke to Jesus: ‘Rabbi,’ he said ‘it is wonderful for us to be here; so let us make three tents, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.’ He did not know what to say; they were so frightened. And a cloud came, covering them in shadow; and there came a voice from the cloud, ‘This is my Son, the Beloved. Listen to him.’ Then suddenly, when they looked round, they saw no one with them any more but only Jesus.

    As they came down from the mountain he warned them to tell no one what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead. They observed the warning faithfully, though among themselves they discussed what ‘rising from the dead’ could mean. And they put this question to him, ‘Why do the scribes say that Elijah has to come first?’ ‘True,’ he said ‘Elijah is to come first and to see that everything is as it should be; yet how is it that the scriptures say about the Son of Man that he is to suffer grievously and be treated with contempt? However, I tell you that Elijah has come and they have treated him as they pleased, just as the scriptures say about him.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 17, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Before we can take up our cross individually to follow Jesus, we must first renounce ourselves. Why is this so?

Simply put, in today’s first reading we learn of a people who would and did not renounce themselves. While it appears they were one people, in the sense that they spoke and understood one another in the same language, they were from being united as One before God for they decided to be independent of Him or rather far from Him. With a Godless people, it is only a matter of time when evil brews and takes hold, scheming themselves into ruin! For they would surely do as they pleased without conscience. If the Lord our God had not stepped in, then it they would have surely scattered themselves into disarray and perhaps even death.

For us to be truly One people under God, we must choose to renounce ourselves, so that the Lord our God can fill us with His grace, His Holy Spirit. By taking up our Cross and following Jesus we identify with His suffering love of us, and we choose to likewise lay down our lives for others if necessary. For we know that if we die in Him, we will surely rise in Him! By our baptism we had already been inserted into His life, death and resurrection. Through Him we become One Body in Him now and forever. Amen


First reading

Genesis 11:1-9 ·

The tower of Babel

Throughout the earth men spoke the same language, with the same vocabulary. Now as they moved eastwards they found a plain in the land of Shinar where they settled. They said to one another, ‘Come, let us make bricks and bake them in the fire.’ (For stone they used bricks, and for mortar they used bitumen). ‘Come,’ they said ‘let us build ourselves a town and a tower with its top reaching heaven. Let us make a name for ourselves, so that we may not be scattered about the whole earth.’

    Now the Lord came down to see the town and the tower that the sons of man had built. ‘So they are all a single people with a single language!’ said the Lord. ‘This is but the start of their undertakings! There will be nothing too hard for them to do. Come, let us go down and confuse their language on the spot so that they can no longer understand one another.’ The Lord scattered them thence over the whole face of the earth, and they stopped building the town. It was named Babel therefore, because there the Lord confused the language of the whole earth. It was from there that the Lord scattered them over the whole face of the earth.



Mark 8:34-9:1

Anyone who loses his life for my sake will save it

Jesus called the people and his disciples to him and said:

    ‘If anyone wants to be a follower of mine, let him renounce himself and take up his cross and follow me. For anyone who wants to save his life will lose it; but anyone who loses his life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. What gain, then, is it for a man to win the whole world and ruin his life? And indeed what can a man offer in exchange for his life? For if anyone in this adulterous and sinful generation is ashamed of me and of my words, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.’ And he said to them, ‘I tell you solemnly, there are some standing here who will not taste death before they see the kingdom of God come with power.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 16, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Who is Jesus to you? Was he someone created as a figment of their imagination then propagated? Was Jesus simply a man in ancient times that existed? Or is he God, second person in the Holy Trinity? Question really and it is not a play of words, but who is Jesus for you?

For unless we fall deeply in love with Him, we will not see with the eyes of our heart; the great an immense love He had for us. That He laid down His life, blood outpoured for us so that we may have life! And to the full. For His blood is true life! The flood gates of living water were opened for us. We will not fully understand why He did what He did at the last supper. “So he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.” Jn13:4-5 “Having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end.” Jn 13b

Jesus You are my Lord, my King, my all! I take up my cross to follow after You. Amen


First reading

Genesis 9:1-13 ·

The sign of the Covenant

God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, ‘Be fruitful, multiply and fill the earth. Be the terror and the dread of all the wild beasts and all the birds of heaven, of everything that crawls on the ground and all the fish of the sea; they are handed over to you. Every living and crawling thing shall provide food for you, no less than the foliage of plants. I give you everything, with this exception: you must not eat flesh with life, that is to say blood, in it. I will demand an account of your life-blood. I will demand an account from every beast and from man. I will demand an account of every man’s life from his fellow men.

‘He who sheds man’s blood

shall have his blood shed by man,

for in the image of God

man was made.

‘As for you, be fruitful, multiply, teem over the earth and be lord of it.’

    God spoke to Noah and his sons, ‘See, I establish my Covenant with you, and with your descendants after you; also with every living creature to be found with you, birds, cattle and every wild beast with you: everything that came out of the ark, everything that lives on the earth. I establish my Covenant with you: no thing of flesh shall be swept away again by the waters of the flood. There shall be no flood to destroy the earth again.’

    God said, ‘Here is the sign of the Covenant I make between myself and you and every living creature with you for all generations: I set my bow in the clouds and it shall be a sign of the Covenant between me and the earth.’



Mark 8:27-33

The way you think is not God’s way, but man’s

Jesus and his disciples left for the villages round Caesarea Philippi. On the way he put this question to his disciples, ‘Who do people say I am?’ And they told him. ‘John the Baptist,’ they said ‘others Elijah; others again, one of the prophets.’ ‘But you,’ he asked ‘who do you say I am?’ Peter spoke up and said to him, ‘You are the Christ.’ And he gave them strict orders not to tell anyone about him.

    And he began to teach them that the Son of Man was destined to suffer grievously, to be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and to be put to death, and after three days to rise again; and he said all this quite openly. Then, taking him aside, Peter started to remonstrate with him. But, turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said to him, ‘Get behind me, Satan! Because the way you think is not God’s way but man’s.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 15, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Noah sent a dove to seek new life, it brought back an olive branch a sign of new life! God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. Jn 3:17 The Prince of Peace has come and has brought new life into the world to whoever believes in Him.

And we who live in the light of His resurrection can bring His light to those who live in darkness. Through Him we can heal and restore what was lost. If our prayers lead to a partial healing, then in faith we can lean in for a full restoration in Jesus’s name.

“Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion” Ps 103 Amen


First reading

Genesis 8:6-13,20-22 ·

The dove returns

At the end of forty days Noah opened the porthole he had made in the ark and he sent out the raven. This went off, and flew back and forth until the waters dried up from the earth. Then he sent out the dove, to see whether the waters were receding from the surface of the earth. The dove, finding nowhere to perch, returned to him in the ark, for there was water over the whole surface of the earth; putting out his hand he took hold of it and brought it back into the ark with him. After waiting seven more days, again he sent out the dove from the ark. In the evening, the dove came back to him and there it was with a new olive-branch in its beak. So Noah realised that the waters were receding from the earth. After waiting seven more days he sent out the dove, and now it returned to him no more.

    It was in the six hundred and first year of Noah’s life, in the first month and on the first of the month, that the water dried up from the earth. Noah lifted back the hatch of the ark and looked out. The surface of the ground was dry!

    Noah built an altar for the Lord, and choosing from all the clean animals and all the clean birds he offered burnt offerings on the altar. The Lord smelt the appeasing fragrance and said to himself, ‘Never again will I curse the earth because of man, because his heart contrives evil from his infancy. Never again will I strike down every living thing as I have done.

‘As long as earth lasts,

sowing and reaping,

cold and heat,

summer and winter,

day and night

shall cease no more.’



Mark 8:22-26

The blind man was cured and could see everything distinctly

Jesus and his disciples came to Bethsaida, and some people brought to him a blind man whom they begged him to touch. He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. Then putting spittle on his eyes and laying his hands on him, he asked, ‘Can you see anything?’ The man, who was beginning to see, replied, ‘I can see people; they look like trees to me, but they are walking about.’ Then he laid his hands on the man’s eyes again and he saw clearly; he was cured, and he could see everything plainly and distinctly. And Jesus sent him home, saying, ‘Do not even go into the village.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 14, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Evil calls upon evil! When there is unforgiveness and unrepentant hearts then chaos ensues both in the lives of those who withholds forgiveness as well as those who are unrepentant for their sins! Search for peace as they will, they will not find it! What follows in the wickedness of heart, scheming, jealousy, revenge even giving in to base desires. Such wickedness can spread like wildfire!

Jesus reminds us that we should be on our guard, to keep our eyes opened to see, ears to hear His will for us. We must strive to stay fully alive in Him with renewed minds! As we dwell in the goodness of God in our lives, we see anew the signs and wonders He has done for us and for our loved ones. Then as One Body in Him and as one Church we shall minister to all through power from on high! Amen


First reading

Genesis 6:5-8,7:1-5,10

Noah’s Ark

The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that the thoughts in his heart fashioned nothing but wickedness all day long. The Lord regretted having made man on the earth, and his heart grieved. ‘I will rid the earth’s face of man, my own creation,’ the Lord said ‘and of animals also, reptiles too, and the birds of heaven; for I regret having made them.’ But Noah had found favour with the Lord.

  The Lord said to Noah, ‘Go aboard the ark, you and all your household, for you alone among this generation do I see as a good man in my judgement. Of all the clean animals you must take seven of each kind, both male and female; of the unclean animals you must take two, a male and its female (and of the birds of heaven also, seven of each kind, both male and female), to propagate their kind over the whole earth. For in seven days’ time I mean to make it rain on the earth for forty days and nights, and I will rid the earth of every living thing that I made.’ Noah did all that the Lord ordered.

  Seven days later the waters of the flood appeared on the earth.

Gospel        Mark 8:14-21

Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod

The disciples had forgotten to take any food and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. Then he gave them this warning, ‘Keep your eyes open; be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod.’ And they said to one another, ‘It is because we have no bread.’ And Jesus knew it, and he said to them, ‘Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you not yet understand? Have you no perception? Are your minds closed? Have you eyes that do not see, ears that do not hear? Or do you not remember? When I broke the five loaves among the five thousand, how many baskets full of scraps did you collect?’ They answered, ‘Twelve.’ ‘And when I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many baskets full of scraps did you collect?’ And they answered, ‘Seven.’ Then he said to them, ‘Are you still without perception?


Readings For the Dedication of the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd – Feast SG


First reading

1 Kings 8:22-23,27-30 ·

‘Listen to the prayer your servant makes in this place’

In the presence of the whole assembly of Israel, Solomon stood before the altar of the Lord and, stretching out his hands towards heaven, said, ‘O Lord, God of Israel, not in heaven above nor on earth beneath is there such a God as you, true to your covenant and your kindness towards your servants when they walk wholeheartedly in your way. Yet will God really live with men on the earth? Why, the heavens and their own heavens cannot contain you. How much less this house that I have built! Listen to the prayer and entreaty of your servant, O Lord my God; listen to the cry and to the prayer your servant makes to you today. Day and night let your eyes watch over this house, over this place of which you have said, “My name shall be there.” Listen to the prayer that your servant will offer in this place.

    ‘Hear the entreaty of your servant and of Israel your people as they pray in this place. From heaven where your dwelling is, hear; and, as you hear, forgive.’



Matthew 16:13-19

You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church

When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi he put this question to his disciples, ‘Who do people say the Son of Man is?’ And they said, ‘Some say he is John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ ‘But you,’ he said ‘who do you say I am?’ Then Simon Peter spoke up, ‘You are the Christ,’ he said ‘the Son of the living God.’ Jesus replied, ‘Simon son of Jonah, you are a happy man! Because it was not flesh and blood that revealed this to you but my Father in heaven. So I now say to you: You are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church. And the gates of the underworld can never hold out against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: whatever you bind on earth shall be considered bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth shall be considered loosed in heaven.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 13, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

What are the fruits of our labour that we offer up to the Lord our God? Is it filled with love, in wanting to please Him with our absolute best? Do we rejoice when others offer their choicest to God? Or are we jealous and resentful that our offerings may be lacking in comparison?

Do we still not know that we are all One Body in Christ? And that God knows all our hearts as well as our limitations? If we offer whatever little we have, He will surely multiply the graces for them on us and all those around us. Just like the boy who offered his five loaves and two fish. Jesus multiplied and fed five thousand! So long as we offer up what we have in love, He will receive our offerings and turn them into great blessings for us all.

For just as Jesus is the sign of God our Father’s love, so do we become signs of Jesus’s love poured our for others by our loving sacrifice. Amen


First reading

Genesis 4:1-15,25

The mark of Cain

The man had intercourse with his wife Eve, and she conceived and gave birth to Cain. ‘I have acquired a man with the help of the Lord’ she said. She gave birth to a second child, Abel, the brother of Cain. Now Abel became a shepherd and kept flocks, while Cain tilled the soil. Time passed and Cain brought some of the produce of the soil as an offering for the Lord, while Abel for his part brought the first-born of his flock and some of their fat as well. The Lord looked with favour on Abel and his offering. But he did not look with favour on Cain and his offering, and Cain was very angry and downcast. The Lord asked Cain, ‘Why are you angry and downcast? If you are well disposed, ought you not to lift up your head? But if you are ill disposed, is not sin at the door like a crouching beast hungering for you, which you must master?’ Cain said to his brother Abel, ‘Let us go out’; and while they were in the open country, Cain set on his brother Abel and killed him.

    The Lord asked Cain, ‘Where is your brother Abel?’ ‘I do not know’ he replied. ‘Am I my brother’s guardian?’ ‘What have you done?’ the Lord asked. ‘Listen to the sound of your brother’s blood, crying out to me from the ground. Now be accursed and driven from the ground that has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood at your hands. When you till the ground it shall no longer yield you any of its produce. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer over the earth.’ Then Cain said to the Lord, ‘My punishment is greater than I can bear. See! Today you drive me from this ground. I must hide from you, and be a fugitive and a wanderer over the earth. Why, whoever comes across me will kill me!’ ‘Very well, then,’ the Lord replied ‘if anyone kills Cain, sevenfold vengeance shall be taken for him.’ So the Lord put a mark on Cain, to prevent whoever might come across him from striking him down.

    Adam had intercourse with his wife, and she gave birth to a son whom she named Seth, ‘because God has granted me other offspring’ she said ‘in place of Abel, since Cain has killed him.’



Mark 8:11-13

No sign shall be given to this generation

The Pharisees came up and started a discussion with Jesus; they demanded of him a sign from heaven, to test him. And with a sigh that came straight from the heart he said, ‘Why does this generation demand a sign? I tell you solemnly, no sign shall be given to this generation.’ And leaving them again and re-embarking, he went away to the opposite shore.

Sixth Sunday In Ordinary Time

Posted: February 11, 2023 by CatholicJules in Sunday Reflections
Tags: ,

Affair of the Heart: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time


Sirach 15:15–20

Psalm 119:1–2, 4–5, 17–18, 33–34

1 Corinthians 2:6–10

Matthew 5:17–37


Jesus tells us in the Gospel this week that He has come not to abolish but to “fulfill” the Law of Moses and the teachings of the prophets.

His Gospel reveals the deeper meaning and purpose of the Ten Commandments and the moral Law of the Old Testament. But His Gospel also transcends the Law. He demands a morality far greater than that accomplished by the most pious of Jews, the scribes and Pharisees.

Outward observance of the Law is not enough. It is not enough that we do not murder, commit adultery, divorce, or lie.

The law of the New Covenant is a law that God writes on the heart (see Jeremiah 31:31–34). The heart is the seat of our motivations, the place from which our words and actions proceed (see Matthew 6:21; 15:18–20).

Jesus this week calls us to train our hearts, to master our passions and emotions. And Jesus demands the full obedience of our hearts (see Romans 6:17). He calls us to love God with all our hearts and to do His will from the heart (see Matthew 22:37; Ephesians 6:6).

God never demands more than what we are capable of doing. That is the message of this week’s First Reading. It is up to us to choose life over death, to choose the waters of eternal life over the fires of ungodliness and sin.

By His life, death, and Resurrection, Jesus has shown us that it is possible to keep His commandments. In Baptism, He has given us His Spirit, that His Law might be fulfilled in us (Romans 8:4).

The wisdom of the Gospel surpasses all the wisdom of this age that is passing away, St. Paul tells us in the Epistle. The revelation of this wisdom fulfills God’s plan from before all ages. Let us trust in this wisdom and live by His kingdom law.

As we do in this week’s Psalm, let us pray that we grow in being better able to live His Gospel and to seek the Father with all our heart.

Today I Asked….

Posted: February 11, 2023 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

11 Feb 2023

Today I asked these questions…
Jesus what did you see in this moment when people came up to You for healing and deliverance?
What walls of protection or anything I have put up that prevents me from feeling or reaching out to those sick and demonized?

He first showed me a time, a few years ago when I was serving as an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion. When on a Sunday, He showed me a glimpse of His heart for each and every one who came up to receive Him. I was overwhelmed with the love He had for them and how it did not matter how they had sinned against Him, He loved them all the same.

Then the picture changed to last month in January when I saw at a Food Centre, a Chinese man who was helping an indian man walk as he was limping in great pain. I had a thought that perhaps I should pray for him but did not do anything thinking it was just my own thought. Then later on I took the escalator up and saw him alone but did not step up in boldness to do so.

The Lord put this on my heart….

That it breaks His heart to see His children suffering, but it also breaks His heart when we His disciples do not step out in boldness and faith to heal His suffering children.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 11, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Never should we doubt the immense love the Lord our God has for us all.

For even in our sins when we hide away far from Him, He calls out to us. When we are justly punished, He does not turn His face from us but shows us His tender love by ensuring that we are warmly clothed. He ensures that we are properly nourished for our long journey.

Touched by His love for us shall we not cry out…..What are human beings that you are mindful of them,  mortals that you care for them? Yet you have made them a little lower than God, and crowned them with glory and honour. You have given them dominion over the works of your hands;    you have put all things under their feet. Ps 8:4-6

How then shall we respond to His love for us?

He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you?

To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.  Mic 6:8

Amen Lord! Amen!


First reading

Genesis 3:9-24 ·

The expulsion from the Garden of Eden

The Lord God called to the man. ‘Where are you?’ he asked.

    ‘I heard the sound of you in the garden;’ he replied ‘I was afraid because I was naked, so I hid.’

    ‘Who told you that you were naked?’ he asked ‘Have you been eating of the tree I forbade you to eat?’

    The man replied, ‘It was the woman you put with me; she gave me the fruit, and I ate it.’

    Then the Lord God asked the woman, ‘What is this you have done?’

    The woman replied, ‘The serpent tempted me and I ate.’

    Then the Lord God said to the serpent, ‘Because you have done this,

‘Be accursed beyond all cattle,

all wild beasts.

You shall crawl on your belly and eat dust

every day of your life.

I will make you enemies of each other:

you and the woman,

your offspring and her offspring.

It will crush your head

and you will strike its heel.’

To the woman he said:

‘I will multiply your pains in childbearing,

you shall give birth to your children in pain.

Your yearning shall be for your husband,

yet he will lord it over you.’

To the man he said, ‘Because you listened to the voice of your wife and ate from the tree of which I had forbidden you to eat,

‘Accursed be the soil because of you.

With suffering shall you get your food from it

every day of your life.

It shall yield you brambles and thistles,

and you shall eat wild plants.

With sweat on your brow

shall you eat your bread,

until you return to the soil,

as you were taken from it.

For dust you are

and to dust you shall return.’

The man named his wife ‘Eve’ because she was the mother of all those who live. The Lord God made clothes out of skins for the man and his wife, and they put them on. Then the Lord God said, ‘See, the man has become like one of us, with his knowledge of good and evil. He must not be allowed to stretch his hand out next and pick from the tree of life also, and eat some and live for ever.’ So the Lord God expelled him from the garden of Eden, to till the soil from which he had been taken. He banished the man, and in front of the garden of Eden he posted the cherubs, and the flame of a flashing sword, to guard the way to the tree of life.



Mark 8:1-10

The feeding of the four thousand

A great crowd had gathered, and they had nothing to eat. So Jesus called his disciples to him and said to them, ‘I feel sorry for all these people; they have been with me for three days now and have nothing to eat. If I send them off home hungry they will collapse on the way; some have come a great distance.’ His disciples replied, ‘Where could anyone get bread to feed these people in a deserted place like this?’ He asked them, ‘How many loaves have you?’ ‘Seven’ they said. Then he instructed the crowd to sit down on the ground, and he took the seven loaves, and after giving thanks he broke them and handed them to his disciples to distribute; and they distributed them among the crowd. They had a few small fish as well, and over these he said a blessing and ordered them to be distributed also. They ate as much as they wanted, and they collected seven basketfuls of the scraps left over. Now there had been about four thousand people. He sent them away and immediately, getting into the boat with his disciples, went to the region of Dalmanutha.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 10, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Guilt and shame for our sins is the work of the evil one to keep us away from the love and mercy of God. So what do we do? We shy away and hide our sins from Him who loves us dearly. We might even say it never happened, justify or rationalise it away!

An old saying “Tell the truth and shame the devil” rings true today as it did in the past. For evil has no hold over a repentant sinner. Our merciful loving Lord will indeed restore us and make us whole. Today’s responsorial psalm reminds us of this…

But now I have acknowledged my sins;

    my guilt I did not hide.

I said: ‘I will confess

    my offence to the Lord.’

And you, Lord, have forgiven

    the guilt of my sin.

And our joyful response is…”Happy the man whose offence is forgiven”

We see how intimately our Lord reaches out to touch and restore us in today’s Gospel. He opens Heaven for us, so that we can once again hear His word and Will for us. We shall then praise Him all the days of our lives! Amen

Saint Scholastica pray for us…


First reading

Genesis 3:1-8 ·

The fall of man

The serpent was the most subtle of all the wild beasts that the Lord God had made. It asked the woman, ‘Did God really say you were not to eat from any of the trees in the garden?’ The woman answered the serpent, ‘We may eat the fruit of the trees in the garden. But of the fruit of the tree in the middle of the garden God said, “You must not eat it, nor touch it, under pain of death.”’ Then the serpent said to the woman, ‘No! You will not die! God knows in fact that on the day you eat it your eyes will be opened and you will be like gods, knowing good and evil.’ The woman saw that the tree was good to eat and pleasing to the eye, and that it was desirable for the knowledge that it could give. So she took some of its fruit and ate it. She gave some also to her husband who was with her, and he ate it. Then the eyes of both of them were opened and they realised that they were naked. So they sewed fig-leaves together to make themselves loin-cloths.

    The man and his wife heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the Lord God among the trees of the garden.



Mark 7:31-37

‘He makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak’

Returning from the district of Tyre, Jesus went by way of Sidon towards the Sea of Galilee, right through the Decapolis region. And they brought him a deaf man who had an impediment in his speech; and they asked him to lay his hand on him. He took him aside in private, away from the crowd, put his fingers into the man’s ears and touched his tongue with spittle. Then looking up to heaven he sighed; and he said to him, ‘Ephphatha’, that is, ‘Be opened.’ And his ears were opened, and the ligament of his tongue was loosened and he spoke clearly. And Jesus ordered them to tell no one about it, but the more he insisted, the more widely they published it. Their admiration was unbounded. ‘He has done all things well,’ they said ‘he makes the deaf hear and the dumb speak.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 9, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Who? Jesus and a women from Phoenicia in Syria. What? Jesus did not want people to know where he was but the woman went to him and begged him to drive the evil spirit out of her daughter. Jesus said Let us feed the children (Jews) first, we cannot take their food and throw it to the dogs (Gentiles). She replied Even the dogs under the table eat the children’s leftovers . Jesus told her to go home & the evil spirit would have left her daughter. Why? Jesus healed her because of the woman’s answer (her faith). Where? Territory near the city of Tyre.

There is no shame in an ordered life, lived according to God’s Will. Shame and guilt came into existence as a result of sin! And sin is upon us when we objectify one another instead of respecting the dignity of our humanity, as God’s chosen Children.

God our Father deigned that man and woman called to the sacrament of Holy Matrimony are to be One and never to be divided. And in their union, they shall procreate and bear offspring. Should the couple expect or demand perfection in one another? Nay! For they are perfected only through Christ Jesus our Lord.

Even those called to single life are called to live lives worthy of the Gospel. They too shall be perfected through our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Let all who come to Jesus know that they shall never be turned away. For the Lord is gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love. PS 103:8 Amen


First reading

Genesis 2:18-25 ·

Man and wife become one body

The Lord God said, ‘It is not good that the man should be alone. I will make him a helpmate.’ So from the soil the Lord God fashioned all the wild beasts and all the birds of heaven. These he brought to the man to see what he would call them; each one was to bear the name the man would give it. The man gave names to all the cattle, all the birds of heaven and all the wild beasts. But no helpmate suitable for man was found for him. So the Lord God made the man fall into a deep sleep. And while he slept, he took one of his ribs and enclosed it in flesh. The Lord God built the rib he had taken from the man into a woman, and brought her to the man. The man exclaimed:

‘This at last is bone from my bones,

and flesh from my flesh!

This is to be called woman,

for this was taken from man.’

This is why a man leaves his father and mother and joins himself to his wife, and they become one body.

    Now both of them were naked, the man and his wife, but they felt no shame in front of each other.



Mark 7:24-30

The astuteness of the Syro-Phoenician woman

Jesus left Gennesaret and set out for the territory of Tyre. There he went into a house and did not want anyone to know he was there, but he could not pass unrecognised. A woman whose little daughter had an unclean spirit heard about him straightaway and came and fell at his feet. Now the woman was a pagan, by birth a Syrophoenician, and she begged him to cast the devil out of her daughter. And he said to her, ‘The children should be fed first, because it is not fair to take the children’s food and throw it to the house-dogs.’ But she spoke up: ‘Ah yes, sir,’ she replied ‘but the house-dogs under the table can eat the children’s scraps.’ And he said to her, ‘For saying this, you may go home happy: the devil has gone out of your daughter.’ So she went off to her home and found the child lying on the bed and the devil gone.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 8, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Jesus is the wellspring of life from which living waters flow. Through Him we have life, life to the full! In our sonship and daughterhood of God our Heavenly Father we have been given this fullness of life in union with our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

Therefore, we must fight against all evil everyday so as not to allow an iota of sin to enter and corrupt us from within. How do we do this? With constant prayer and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus assures us as He lays His right hand upon us, saying, “Fear not, I am the first and the last, and the living one; I died, and behold I am alive for evermore, and I have the keys of Death and Hades. Rev 1:18

Jesus, I love You. Amen

Saint Jerome Emilian, Saint Josephine Bakhita pray for us…


First reading

Genesis 2:4-9,15-17 ·

The Lord God fashioned man out of dust

At the time when the Lord God made earth and heaven there was as yet no wild bush on the earth nor had any wild plant yet sprung up, for the Lord God had not sent rain on the earth, nor was there any man to till the soil. However, a flood was rising from the earth and watering all the surface of the soil. The Lord God fashioned man of dust from the soil. Then he breathed into his nostrils a breath of life, and thus man became a living being.

    The Lord God planted a garden in Eden which is in the east, and there he put the man he had fashioned. The Lord God caused to spring up from the soil every kind of tree, enticing to look at and good to eat, with the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the middle of the garden. The Lord God took the man and settled him in the garden of Eden to cultivate and take care of it. Then the Lord God gave the man this admonition, ‘You may eat indeed of all the trees in the garden. Nevertheless of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you are not to eat, for on the day you eat of it you shall most surely die.’



Mark 7:14-23

It is what comes out of a man that makes him unclean

Jesus called the people to him and said, ‘Listen to me, all of you, and understand. Nothing that goes into a man from outside can make him unclean; it is the things that come out of a man that make him unclean. If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen to this.’

    When he had gone back into the house, away from the crowd, his disciples questioned him about the parable. He said to them, ‘Do you not understand either? Can you not see that whatever goes into a man from outside cannot make him unclean, because it does not go into his heart but through his stomach and passes out into the sewer?’ (Thus he pronounced all foods clean.) And he went on, ‘It is what comes out of a man that makes him unclean. For it is from within, from men’s hearts, that evil intentions emerge: fornication, theft, murder, adultery, avarice, malice, deceit, indecency, envy, slander, pride, folly. All these evil things come from within and make a man unclean.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 7, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

When we say God is love then His very image is one of love. What more perfect image of love is there then God our Father’s only begotten Son, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.

So then if we are created in the image and likeness of God then is this the image we portray to the world? When the world looks upon us do they see Christ Jesus?

Does the world know us by our love? Love that moves us to lay down our life for another. Love that loudly proclaims we are disciples of Jesus, not in words but through our actions!

Let my good works done in love rise like incense O Lord, may it be pleasing to You. For I only seek to glorify You by my life. Amen


First reading

Genesis 1:20-2:4 ·

‘Let us make man in our own image’

God said, ‘Let the waters teem with living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth within the vault of heaven.’ And so it was. God created great sea-serpents and every kind of living creature with which the waters teem, and every kind of winged creature. God saw that it was good. God blessed them, saying, ‘Be fruitful, multiply, and fill the waters of the seas; and let the birds multiply upon the earth.’ Evening came and morning came: the fifth day.

    God said, ‘Let the earth produce every kind of living creature: cattle, reptiles, and every kind of wild beast.’ And so it was. God made every kind of wild beast, every kind of cattle, and every kind of land reptile. God saw that it was good.

    God said, ‘Let us make man in our own image, in the likeness of ourselves, and let them be masters of the fish of the sea, the birds of heaven, the cattle, all the wild beasts and all the reptiles that crawl upon the earth.’

God created man in the image of himself,

in the image of God he created him,

male and female he created them.

God blessed them, saying to them, ‘Be fruitful, multiply, fill the earth and conquer it. Be masters of the fish of the sea, the birds of heaven and all living animals on the earth.’ God said, ‘See, I give you all the seed-bearing plants that are upon the whole earth, and all the trees with seed-bearing fruit; this shall be your food. To all wild beasts, all birds of heaven and all living reptiles on the earth I give all the foliage of plants for food.’ And so it was. God saw all he had made, and indeed it was very good. Evening came and morning came: the sixth day.

    Thus heaven and earth were completed with all their array. On the seventh day God completed the work he had been doing. He rested on the seventh day after all the work he had been doing. God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on that day he had rested after all his work of creating.

    Such were the origins of heaven and earth when they were created.



Mark 7:1-13

You get round the commandment of God to preserve your own tradition

The Pharisees and some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem gathered round Jesus, and they noticed that some of his disciples were eating with unclean hands, that is, without washing them. For the Pharisees, and the Jews in general, follow the tradition of the elders and never eat without washing their arms as far as the elbow; and on returning from the market place they never eat without first sprinkling themselves. There are also many other observances which have been handed down to them concerning the washing of cups and pots and bronze dishes. So these Pharisees and scribes asked him, ‘Why do your disciples not respect the tradition of the elders but eat their food with unclean hands?’ He answered, ‘It was of you hypocrites that Isaiah so rightly prophesied in this passage of scripture:

This people honours me only with lip-service,

while their hearts are far from me.

The worship they offer me is worthless,

the doctrines they teach are only human regulations.

You put aside the commandment of God to cling to human traditions.’ And he said to them, ‘How ingeniously you get round the commandment of God in order to preserve your own tradition! For Moses said: Do your duty to your father and your mother, and, Anyone who curses father or mother must be put to death. But you say, “If a man says to his father or mother: Anything I have that I might have used to help you is Corban (that is, dedicated to God), then he is forbidden from that moment to do anything for his father or mother.” In this way you make God’s word null and void for the sake of your tradition which you have handed down. And you do many other things like this.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 6, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

The Lord our God wills that we live an ordered life according to His Will.  So that we may live life to the full in and with Him. When sin came into the world because of disobedience it was once again plunged into darkness!

God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son so that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. Jesus came to save and restore and once again there was order in the world through Him. The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light, on those living in the land of deep darkness a light has dawned. Jesus is the Light of the World.

Filled with His light, we His disciples are to out into the world to be salt and light! We have been given power from on high to minister to His flock. As St Paul tells us in yesterday second reading, that through a demonstration of the power of the Spirit; Their faith should not depend on human philosophy but on the power of God. Amen

Saints Paul Miki and his Companions pray for us…


First reading

Genesis 1:1-19 ·

God saw that it was good

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was a formless void, there was darkness over the deep, and God’s spirit hovered over the water.

    God said, ‘Let there be light’, and there was light. God saw that light was good, and God divided light from darkness. God called light ‘day’, and darkness he called ‘night.’ Evening came and morning came: the first day.

    God said, ‘Let there be a vault in the waters to divide the waters in two.’ And so it was. God made the vault, and it divided the waters above the vault from the waters under the vault. God called the vault ‘heaven.’ Evening came and morning came: the second day.

    God said, ‘Let the waters under heaven come together into a single mass, and let dry land appear.’ And so it was. God called the dry land ‘earth’ and the mass of waters ‘seas’, and God saw that it was good.

    God said, ‘Let the earth produce vegetation: seed-bearing plants, and fruit trees bearing fruit with their seed inside, on the earth.’ And so it was. The earth produced vegetation: plants bearing seed in their several kinds, and trees bearing fruit with their seed inside in their several kinds. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came: the third day.

    God said, ‘Let there be lights in the vault of heaven to divide day from night, and let them indicate festivals, days and years. Let them be lights in the vault of heaven to shine on the earth.’ And so it was. God made the two great lights: the greater light to govern the day, the smaller light to govern the night, and the stars. God set them in the vault of heaven to shine on the earth, to govern the day and the night and to divide light from darkness. God saw that it was good. Evening came and morning came: the fourth day.



Mark 6:53-56

All those who touched him were cured

Having made the crossing, Jesus and his disciples came to land at Gennesaret and tied up. No sooner had they stepped out of the boat than people recognised him, and started hurrying all through the countryside and brought the sick on stretchers to wherever they heard he was. And wherever he went, to village, or town, or farm, they laid down the sick in the open spaces, begging him to let them touch even the fringe of his cloak. And all those who touched him were cured.

5th Feb Sunday

Posted: February 5, 2023 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Memory Book, Testimonies

Today I decided to attend mass at Church of St Anthony not expecting to pray for anyone. Still I was open to my Lord’s prompting. As I walked in I saw Clement my brother in Christ, whom I was eager to share my recent prophesy praticuum adventure. Before I started sharing I asked how he was doing and was surprised to learn he was not too good. He was having diarrhea and was going to meet a couple who after mass to answer their questions about our Catholic faith. They were keen to join RCIA but had some questions before signing up. Clement thought his diarrhea might be the evil one’s work. I leaned in to pray for his swift recovery.

Later at mass I happened to see Aunty Alice seated a few rows in front of me. She is the mother of a good friend who had migrated to Australia. Aunty now in her late seventies, early eighty is battling cancer all alone ever since her husband passed on last year. In the past she had volunteered for many years at the coffee corner at our Parish serving, coffee, tea and milo for free. (reimbursed by the church) She had also taught line dancing and even performed at events from time to time. She attended daily mass and had a generous heart. I was so happy to see her up and about and attending the Sunday Eucharist. I was sure the Lord wanted me to pray for her. So immediately after mass ended I rushed to where she was seated, sat beside, hugged and offered to pray for her. As I prayed over her, I told her that I sensed the Lord wanted me to tell her that He was pleased with her faithfulness over the years. And that He had asked His mother our Blessed Mother to accompany her to the very end. She was not alone! She teared, thanked and commented ‘what a beautiful prayer’ I kissed her on her head and bid her farewell.

As I was leaving church, I saw Sharon, Clement’s wife. She looked a little worn out. Probably because she was caring for her aged mum who had just been discharged from the hospital for having seizures. I prayed over her that the Lord would rejuvenate her drooping spirit. And for a renewed, reinvigorated body, mind and spirit.

I am just so very thankful for this blessed Sunday, for being able to minister to His beloved ones. Amen

4th Feb 2023 Praticuum- Prophesy

Posted: February 5, 2023 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Memory Book, Testimonies

Wow! The Lord was truly present.

Group 3 first guest/s to come in was an elderly couple who happened to be the parents of a lady in our group and her husband too was also in our group. For the elderly lady I sensed the Lord saying to her that He knows how much she loves Him. And in her desire to have a deeper encounter with Him all she needed to do was to lift up her hands and He will lift her up in a loving embrace. For the uncle I saw the word struggling. Told him that I didn’t know what he was struggling with, only that it was nothing physical more a mental struggle. However as uncle was taciturn, he remained silent. Later when he left, his daughter shared that her sister was going through something and he was struggling with it. Praise the Lord.

The second lady who came in was in her 60s, requested we pray for her health issues and wanted to know what the Lord thought about what she was doing for Him. When it was my turn I shared that the Lord was pleased with her. She had a mother’s heart for people and wanted her minister to others out of that mother’s love and heart. As for her health issue, as she did not share what it was I had the sense from the Lord that it was her legs. I asked her for confirmation and she teared as she shared that she had just recently come home from the hospital and of which her legs were healing up. I leaned it to pray for her healing.

The last lady to come in, I prophesied that the joy of the Lord was upon her. The Lord knows she is a rather joyful soul and she brings joy to others. That being said she hides her own problems behind her smile. The Lord knows it and will be with her throughout.

Group prophesy is a amazing because we each uniquely carry our Father’s heart for the person He sends our way to minister. Collectively we bring about the fullness of God His love He has for them. Amen

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted: February 4, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Light Breaking Forth: Scott Hahn Reflects on the Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time


Isaiah 58:7–10

Psalm 112:4–9

1 Corinthians 2:1–5

Matthew 5:13–16


Jesus came among us as light to scatter the darkness of a fallen world.

As His disciples, we too are called to be “the light of the world,” He tells us in the Gospel this Sunday (see John 1:4–4, 9; 8:12; 9:5).

All three images that Jesus uses to describe the Church are associated with the identity and vocation of Israel.

God forever aligned His kingdom with the kingdom of David and his sons by a “covenant of salt,” salt being a sign of permanence and purity (see 2 Chronicles 13:5, 8; Leviticus 2:13; Ezekiel 43:24).

Jerusalem was to be a city set on a hill, high above all others, drawing all nations toward the glorious light streaming from her Temple (see Isaiah 2:2; 60:1–3).

And Israel was given the mission of being a light to the nations, that God’s salvation would reach to the ends of the earth (see Isaiah 42:6; 49:6).

The liturgy shows us this week that the Church, and every Christian, is called to fulfill Israel’s mission.

By our faith and good works we are to make the light of God’s life break forth in the darkness, as we sing in this week’s Psalm.

This week’s readings remind us that our faith can never be a private affair, something we can hide as if under a basket.

We are to pour ourselves out for the afflicted, as Isaiah tells us in the First Reading. Our light must shine as a ray of God’s mercy for all who are poor, hungry, naked, and enslaved.

There must be a transparent quality to our lives. Our friends and family, our neighbors and fellow citizens, should see reflected in us the light of Christ and through us be attracted to the saving truths of the Gospel.

So let us pray that we, like St. Paul in the Epistle, might proclaim with our whole lives “Christ, and him crucified.”

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 4, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections
Tags: ,

We all want to be known as disciples of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ do we not? He is our Good Shepherd there is nothing we shall want! We declare this when we pray psalm 23 and yet what about the want or rather the will of our Lord for His sheep? Especially His sheep of other flocks?

We all know that we are to carry our cross and follow after our Lord, but do we know that we cannot be His disciples if we are not also shepherds of His flock? While we may not all be leaders, can we not obey our leaders and do what is takes to tend to His flock, in our parish, in our communities?

Are we truly our Lord’s disciples then if….

  • We are not prepared to take up any form of leadership when we are called to?
  • We do not have a heart for the community. That is to pray with, guide and worship the Lord as One?
  • We refuse to attend community prayer meetings of any kind?
  • We do share the Gospel with family, friends, community or even in our ministry?
  • We will not sacrifice time or talent in building our Lord’s Kingdom?

Lord I am ready, let be me a shepherd after Your own heart for Your flock. Amen


First reading

Hebrews 13:15-17,20-21 ·

May God turn us all into whatever is acceptable to himself through Jesus Christ

Through Christ, let us offer God an unending sacrifice of praise, a verbal sacrifice that is offered every time we acknowledge his name. Keep doing good works and sharing your resources, for these are sacrifices that please God.

    Obey your leaders and do as they tell you, because they must give an account of the way they look after your souls; make this a joy for them to do, and not a grief – you yourselves would be the losers. I pray that the God of peace, who brought our Lord Jesus back from the dead to become the great Shepherd of the sheep by the blood that sealed an eternal covenant, may make you ready to do his will in any kind of good action; and turn us all into whatever is acceptable to himself through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever, Amen.



Mark 6:30-34

They were like sheep without a shepherd

The apostles rejoined Jesus and told him all they had done and taught. Then he said to them, ‘You must come away to some lonely place all by yourselves and rest for a while’; for there were so many coming and going that the apostles had no time even to eat. So they went off in a boat to a lonely place where they could be by themselves. But people saw them going, and many could guess where; and from every town they all hurried to the place on foot and reached it before them. So as he stepped ashore he saw a large crowd; and he took pity on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd, and he set himself to teach them at some length.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 3, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Love one another as I have loved you.

How have I loved then? Have I opened my doors to a stranger in great expectation of receiving my Lord into my home? Have I loved someone enough to feel the pain and anxiety of them being imprisoned, badly treated? Have I loved those living in the peripheries?

Or have I simply been inward looking? Thinking only of myself, continuously battling habitual sin, giving in cheaply to temptations? Have I indulged, seeking happiness in material things. Have I thought to myself ‘charity begins at home’ and have no consideration for others outside?

Lord Jesus forgive me for what all that I have done not according to Your Will for me, I especially ask Your forgiveness for all the things I have failed to do. For not loving my neighbour as I should. Help me love them as You love them. Amen

Saint Ansgar (Oscar) and Saint Blaise Pray for us….


First reading

Hebrews 13:1-8 ·

Jesus Christ is the same today as he was yesterday and will be for ever

Continue to love each other like brothers, and remember always to welcome strangers, for by doing this, some people have entertained angels without knowing it. Keep in mind those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them; and those who are being badly treated, since you too are in the one body. Marriage is to be honoured by all, and marriages are to be kept undefiled, because fornicators and adulterers will come under God’s judgement. Put greed out of your lives and be content with whatever you have; God himself has said: I will not fail you or desert you, and so we can say with confidence: With the Lord to help me, I fear nothing: what can man do to me?

    Remember your leaders, who preached the word of God to you, and as you reflect on the outcome of their lives, imitate their faith. Jesus Christ is the same today as he was yesterday and as he will be for ever.



Mark 6:14-29

The beheading of John the Baptist

King Herod had heard about Jesus, since by now his name was well known. Some were saying, ‘John the Baptist has risen from the dead, and that is why miraculous powers are at work in him.’ Others said, ‘He is Elijah’; others again, ‘He is a prophet, like the prophets we used to have.’ But when Herod heard this he said, ‘It is John whose head I cut off; he has risen from the dead.’

    Now it was this same Herod who had sent to have John arrested, and had him chained up in prison because of Herodias, his brother Philip’s wife whom he had married. For John had told Herod, ‘It is against the law for you to have your brother’s wife.’ As for Herodias, she was furious with him and wanted to kill him; but she was not able to, because Herod was afraid of John, knowing him to be a good and holy man, and gave him his protection. When he had heard him speak he was greatly perplexed, and yet he liked to listen to him.

    An opportunity came on Herod’s birthday when he gave a banquet for the nobles of his court, for his army officers and for the leading figures in Galilee. When the daughter of this same Herodias came in and danced, she delighted Herod and his guests; so the king said to the girl, ‘Ask me anything you like and I will give it you.’ And he swore her an oath, ‘I will give you anything you ask, even half my kingdom.’ She went out and said to her mother, ‘What shall I ask for?’ She replied, ‘The head of John the Baptist.’ The girl hurried straight back to the king and made her request, ‘I want you to give me John the Baptist’s head, here and now, on a dish.’ The king was deeply distressed but, thinking of the oaths he had sworn and of his guests, he was reluctant to break his word to her. So the king at once sent one of the bodyguard with orders to bring John’s head. The man went off and beheaded him in prison; then he brought the head on a dish and gave it to the girl, and the girl gave it to her mother. When John’s disciples heard about this, they came and took his body and laid it in a tomb.

Today, Lord in a prophetic act I bow by head and kneel before You.  I present my body, mind and spirit as a living sacrifice. Consecrate me Lord that I may be Holy unto You. Purify me that I may be white as snow. Like a candle that illuminates the darkest room, let my light shine bright for You.

Let me glorify You Lord Jesus by the way I live my life. Let me open the hearts of those You send before me, to prepare them for Your coming. So that they may be filled with the joy of Your presence. The same joy I have because You dwell in me.

I am Your Holy temple Lord, let all be done according to Your will for me. Amen

First reading

Malachi 3:1-4 ·

The Lord you are seeking will suddenly enter his Temple

The Lord God says this: Look, I am going to send my messenger to prepare a way before me. And the Lord you are seeking will suddenly enter his Temple; and the angel of the covenant whom you are longing for, yes, he is coming, says the Lord of Hosts. Who will be able to resist the day of his coming? Who will remain standing when he appears? For he is like the refiner’s fire and the fullers’ alkali. He will take his seat as refiner and purifier; he will purify the sons of Levi and refine them like gold and silver, and then they will make the offering to the Lord as it should be made. The offering of Judah and Jerusalem will then be welcomed by the Lord as in former days, as in the years of old.




Luke 2:22-40

My eyes have seen your salvation

When the day came for them to be purified as laid down by the Law of Moses, the parents of Jesus took him up to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord, – observing what stands written in the Law of the Lord: Every first-born male must be consecrated to the Lord – and also to offer in sacrifice, in accordance with what is said in the Law of the Lord, a pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.

    Now in Jerusalem there was a man named Simeon. He was an upright and devout man; he looked forward to Israel’s comforting and the Holy Spirit rested on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death until he had set eyes on the Christ of the Lord. Prompted by the Spirit he came to the Temple and when the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the Law required, he took him into his arms and blessed God; and he said:

‘Now, Master, you can let your servant go in peace,

just as you promised;

because my eyes have seen the salvation

which you have prepared for all the nations to see,

a light to enlighten the pagans

and the glory of your people Israel.’

As the child’s father and mother stood there wondering at the things that were being said about him, Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, ‘You see this child: he is destined for the fall and for the rising of many in Israel, destined to be a sign that is rejected – and a sword will pierce your own soul too – so that the secret thoughts of many may be laid bare.’

    There was a prophetess also, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was well on in years. Her days of girlhood over, she had been married for seven years before becoming a widow. She was now eighty-four years old and never left the Temple, serving God night and day with fasting and prayer. She came by just at that moment and began to praise God; and she spoke of the child to all who looked forward to the deliverance of Jerusalem.

    When they had done everything the Law of the Lord required, they went back to Galilee, to their own town of Nazareth. Meanwhile the child grew to maturity, and he was filled with wisdom; and God’s favour was with him.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: February 1, 2023 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

When you look at your sister, brother, father, mother or even a community member who do you see? We look at them knowingly, as though we know them through and through. Often times with affection but other times when they don’t behave up to our expectations, then disdain!

Why do we not look at one another as a fellow child of God of our Heavenly Father so loved by Him? Such that we see in one another the potential that He sees, the will to see the good and the will for good for them. Our loving Father who will continue to train them through their own trials and suffering, so that they might rise to new life in Him.

And they do, that is when they are transfigured and strive to minister to others; will we praise and Glorify our Lord by accepting, affirming and edifying them for His greater Glory?

Open my eyes Lord to see the good in everyone, that I may love them just as You do. Amen


First reading

Hebrews 12:4-7,11-15

God is training you as his sons

In the fight against sin, you have not yet had to keep fighting to the point of death.

    Have you forgotten that encouraging text in which you are addressed as sons? My son, when the Lord corrects you, do not treat it lightly; but do not get discouraged when he reprimands you. For the Lord trains the ones that he loves and he punishes all those that he acknowledges as his sons. Suffering is part of your training; God is treating you as his sons. Has there ever been any son whose father did not train him? Of course, any punishment is most painful at the time, and far from pleasant; but later, in those on whom it has been used, it bears fruit in peace and goodness. So hold up your limp arms and steady your trembling knees and smooth out the path you tread; then the injured limb will not be wrenched, it will grow strong again.

    Always be wanting peace with all people, and the holiness without which no one can ever see the Lord. Be careful that no one is deprived of the grace of God and that no root of bitterness should begin to grow and make trouble; this can poison a whole community.



Mark 6:1-6

‘A prophet is only despised in his own country’

Jesus went to his home town and his disciples accompanied him. With the coming of the sabbath he began teaching in the synagogue and most of them were astonished when they heard him. They said, ‘Where did the man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been granted him, and these miracles that are worked through him? This is the carpenter, surely, the son of Mary, the brother of James and Joset and Jude and Simon? His sisters, too, are they not here with us?’ And they would not accept him. And Jesus said to them, ‘A prophet is only despised in his own country, among his own relations and in his own house’; and he could work no miracle there, though he cured a few sick people by laying his hands on them. He was amazed at their lack of faith.