Archive for the ‘Life’s Journeys’ Category

While In Adoration

Posted: October 20, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Sat 20th October 2018

While in Adoration this late morning as I was praying and lifting the prayer intentions of those who have requested prayers; for my own family and communities. I was prompted to pray for the conversion and repentance of those who have blasphemed against the Holy Spirit before they are eternally dammed.

Earlier that morning just before the Eucharistic Celebration began as I was reflecting on the Gospel, this inspiration came to mind; that if someone were to ask you how does one blaspheme against the Holy Spirit. Simply share this….

The Holy Spirit is the combined love of God the Father and God the Son. By rejecting the mercy and love of the Holy trinity, You are rejecting the One living God. That in short is blaspheming against the Holy spirit.

According to John Paul II, the sin of blasphemy against the Holy Spirit “consists…in refusal to accept the salvation which God offers to man through the Holy Spirit, working through the power of the cross. If man rejects the ‘convincing concerning sin’ which comes from the Holy Spirit,” he is in essence rejecting the “redemptive power of Christ’s blood” (46). And this “blasphemy against the Holy Spirit consists precisely in the radical refusal to accept this forgiveness [of sin],” and correspondingly the person claims the right to “persist in evil” (46).

So as I prayed for all those who knowingly or unknowingly have done so, I was then led to see the total opposite…..

“Blessed are those who allow the Holy Spirit to over shadow them as Mary our Blessed Mother did” a voice in my head proclaimed. To allow the love of our Lord Jesus to grow more deeply within us. To dwell within us. To bring His Peace, love and joy within us to all we meet along the way. So that they might be born into new life with Him. Then we all shall be consecrated unto Him by the Holy Spirit. We are His people and He is our God, now and forever. Amen

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 20, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

What is missing in many of our many Church communities today is true communion. Many come for meetings as individuals hoping to be in the company of someone familiar. Perhaps it is the warm feeling of belonging to a church group trying to do good that keeps them coming back. How long will this last?

In order for communities such as these to grow in love and communion there must be the coming together to share in the Word. Praying together not as individuals. Getting to know one another personally, families, friends, joys even sorrows. We must be ready to affirm one another, encourage and support one another on our journey together. To be inclusive and never exclusive. Only then are we in communion with Christ Jesus our Lord and with one another. Exponential growth in faith and love is to be expected. We become alive in the spirit and emboldened to share Jesus’s love with everyone. Amen

First reading

Ephesians 1:15-23
Paul’s prayer for the enlightenment of the faithful

I, having once heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus, and the love that you show towards all the saints, have never failed to remember you in my prayers and to thank God for you. May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, give you a spirit of wisdom and perception of what is revealed, to bring you to full knowledge of him. May he enlighten the eyes of your mind so that you can see what hope his call holds for you, what rich glories he has promised the saints will inherit and how infinitely great is the power that he has exercised for us believers. This you can tell from the strength of his power at work in Christ, when he used it to raise him from the dead and to make him sit at his right hand, in heaven, far above every Sovereignty, Authority, Power, or Domination, or any other name that can be named not only in this age but also in the age to come. He has put all things under his feet and made him, as the ruler of everything, the head of the Church; which is his body, the fullness of him who fills the whole creation.

Gospel

Luke 12:8-12
If you declare yourselves for me, I will declare myself for you

Jesus said to his disciples:
‘I tell you, if anyone openly declares himself for me in the presence of men, the Son of Man will declare himself for him in the presence of the angels. But the man who disowns me in the presence of men will be disowned in the presence of God’s angels.
‘Everyone who says a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but he who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.
‘When they take you before synagogues and magistrates and authorities, do not worry about how to defend yourselves or what to say, because when the time comes, the Holy Spirit will teach you what you must say.’

Lunch Opposite A Brother in Christ

Posted: October 17, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

After the lunchtime Eucharistic Celebration I rushed off to Tampines to have a quick lunch before going for a medical appointment back in Woodlands.

The hawker centre was crowded, so I asked a gentleman seated alone if the opposite seat was taken? He motioned for me to take the seat. I placed my small shoulder bag on the table and went to get my food. I was about to finish when I noticed he was still seated even though he had finished and his tray was cleared.

Then just as I finished he spoke asking me which Church I was from? What a curious question since my crucifix was in my shirt. I answered that my Parish was Church of St Anthony and asked him which Church he was from. Initially I thought he was going to mention some protestant church but instead he shared that he was from OLPS Our Lady of Perpetual Succor. I then asked how he knew I was a fellow Catholic? He replied that he saw me making the sign of the cross and praying before I ate just as he had done.

When I learned he was a Filipino and serving as an Extraordinary Eucharistic minister of Holy Communion, we both dropped a few names and found out that we had some friends in common. JJ Aldaba, Gerry Falsado etc. As I had to rush off for my appointment we became Facebook friends to keep in touch.

Praise the Lord for a wonderful encounter with a brother in Christ.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 15, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Are we living free in the joy and love of our Risen Lord? Or are we still mourning and weeping for our sins? Or have we instead allowed our hearts to harden that we have become oblivious to sin and guilt. Thinking all is OK and peachy unaware that we are slowly dying first spiritually. The day of reckoning is coming whether or not we are ready, like a thief in the night.

Turn back to the Lord always. For He stands ready and waiting to embrace you. We are meant to live out our lives to the full in His love, peace and joy. To love and be loved. To live out our mission of discipleship to bring others the to the knowledge and joy of the Gospel where they will find Jesus our Lord and saviour.

O sign of God our Father’s great love for us, Jesus our Lord be with us now always. Amen

First reading

Galatians 4:22-24,26-27,31-5:1
Christ freed us: do not submit again to slavery

The Law says, if you remember, that Abraham had two sons, one by the slave-girl, and one by his free-born wife. The child of the slave-girl was born in the ordinary way; the child of the free woman was born as the result of a promise. This can be regarded as an allegory: the women stand for the two covenants. The first who comes from Mount Sinai, and whose children are slaves, is Hagar – The Jerusalem above, however, is free and is our mother, since scripture says: Shout for joy, you barren women who bore no children! Break into shouts of joy and gladness, you who were never in labour. For there are more sons of the forsaken one than sons of the wedded wife. So, my brothers, we are the children, not of the slave-girl, but of the free-born wife.
When Christ freed us, he meant us to remain free. Stand firm, therefore, and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.

Gospel

Luke 11:29-32
As Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be a sign

The crowds got even bigger, and Jesus addressed them:
‘This is a wicked generation; it is asking for a sign. The only sign it will be given is the sign of Jonah. For just as Jonah became a sign to the Ninevites, so will the Son of Man be to this generation. On Judgement day the Queen of the South will rise up with the men of this generation and condemn them, because she came from the ends of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and there is something greater than Solomon here. On Judgement day the men of Nineveh will stand up with this generation and condemn it, because when Jonah preached they repented; and there is something greater than Jonah here.’

How Great Thou Art

Posted: October 12, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Last night I had a rare opportunity to have a quiet dinner with my dear 88 year old dad. He was sharing with me his own struggles with the frailty of the human condition. And how I should prepare and start taking better care of myself if I have not already done so.

I told him that I do what I have and are able to, and let the Lord my God do the rest for He is in charge. I then updated him with how I’ve witnessed the Lord touching new lives and renewing others. He then requested to know when and how did my own faith journey begin, in which I became committed to following Christ.

I knew I had shared it with him before but he needed to hear it again and so I proceeded to share with my dad as though it was the first time. One of the many things I shared was the day I was struggling with whether to go for the second session of the Life in the Spirit Seminar. I was uncomfortable with raising of hands in praise and worship amongst other things. However upon seeing a Facebook post from my cousin I decided to go. The post read, “If God leads you to the edge of a mountain, trust in Him and let go. Only one of two things will happen. Either He will catch you or He will teach you how to fly. As I took the bus and was about to reach the Church, I had this overwhelming desire to sing ‘How great thou art’ I only knew the chorus then and so began to sing it and humming the rest. The first song they chose for that session was ‘How great is our God’ followed by the bridge which was ‘How great thou art’!

Again I shared all this with my dad last night, this morning at Holy Eucharist in Church of The Holy Trinity the recessional hymn we sang was ‘How Great Thou Art’!

Indeed how great thou art O Lord my God. Amen

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: October 12, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Take heed that our bodies, mind and spirit must be constantly renewed through our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. By the ascent of our prayers, the indwelling of His precious word and the frequent reception of the sacraments given to us by His love. The Sacrament of reconciliation and Holy Eucharist.

Evil and its curses will have no hold over us. We live as free men and women in God’s precious love. Indeed even if we were to walk through the darkest valley, no evil shall we fear! For the Lord walks with us. Yes our bodies may be frail but we have been given a most powerful advocate to accompany us on our journey. Who fortifies and guides us through the many challenges and obstacles we may face.

Come Holy Spirit come. Come dwell in my heart, now and forever. Amen

First reading

Galatians 3:7-14
The sons of Abraham are those who rely on faith

Don’t you see that it is those who rely on faith who are the sons of Abraham? Scripture foresaw that God was going to use faith to justify the pagans, and proclaimed the Good News long ago when Abraham was told: In you all the pagans will be blessed. Those therefore who rely on faith receive the same blessing as Abraham, the man of faith.
On the other hand, those who rely on the keeping of the Law are under a curse, since scripture says: Cursed be everyone who does not persevere in observing everything prescribed in the book of the Law. The Law will not justify anyone in the sight of God, because we are told: the righteous man finds life through faith. The Law is not even based on faith, since we are told: The man who practises these precepts finds life through practising them. Christ redeemed us from the curse of the Law by being cursed for our sake, since scripture says: Cursed be everyone who is hanged on a tree. This was done so that in Christ Jesus the blessing of Abraham might include the pagans, and so that through faith we might receive the promised Spirit.

Gospel

Luke 11:15-26
The finger of God has overtaken you

When Jesus had cast out a devil, some of the people said, ‘It is through Beelzebul, the prince of devils, that he casts out devils.’ Others asked him, as a test, for a sign from heaven; but, knowing what they were thinking, he said to them, ‘Every kingdom divided against itself is heading for ruin, and a household divided against itself collapses. So too with Satan: if he is divided against himself, how can his kingdom stand? – since you assert that it is through Beelzebul that I cast out devils. Now if it is through Beelzebul that I cast out devils, through whom do your own experts cast them out? Let them be your judges then. But if it is through the finger of God that I cast out devils, then know that the kingdom of God has overtaken you. So long as a strong man fully armed guards his own palace, his goods are undisturbed; but when someone stronger than he is attacks and defeats him, the stronger man takes away all the weapons he relied on and shares out his spoil.
‘He who is not with me is against me; and he who does not gather with me scatters.
‘When an unclean spirit goes out of a man it wanders through waterless country looking for a place to rest, and not finding one it says, “I will go back to the home I came from.” But on arrival, finding it swept and tidied, it then goes off and brings seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and set up house there, so that the man ends up by being worse than he was before.’

On Welcoming…

Posted: October 10, 2018 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

2018-10-10
Peace Be With You
Welcoming community of CPS Changi

Peace be with you somehow does not come easy for me

Julian repeating it so much since I started meeting him at the reflection sessions started making it easy for me to repeat the greeting in return …

Standing at the entrance to our EC room – this weekly tabernacle of our Lord – greeting Peace Be With You to the community felt strangely comforting – the welcome we gave was returned warmly by most, who smiled brightly too – communion of saints

And many you could see, who wanted to dive straight into the tabernacle of the Lord for solace comfort strength – snapped out momentarily of the “stupor”, perchance feeling welcomed.

I would do it again because we are building the community here and over time we would start recognising faces, going beyond pleasantries, greeting each other by name and God willing, have a deeper relationship with each other in this CPS Changi Community and Ephraim SCC.

Jude-Maria (Meng)