Archive for the ‘Life’s Journeys’ Category

If we are truly living our faith can we ever say that we are all alone and that we have to struggle on our own to be steadfast in our faith?

If we are alone it is by choice. If we choose to be exclusive then our mercy and love is exclusive. Are we then in sync with Christ’s teachings?

For starters our One triune ever living God is a community of three persons. Every Sunday at the Eucharist celebration we profess one faith, we are one body in Christ and receive Holy Communion. So when then are we ever alone?

This is still the beginning of the year, be part of a community in Christ, if you do not already belong to one. Invite your family members too. For it is through a community that we are truly Saints in the making.

Love in Christ,

My Blessed 2017 Journey 

Posted: December 25, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Personal Thoughts & Reflections

2017 has been a most memorable year for me. It is a year of great faith for me personally as well as the most trying and challenging in which my faith was tested on many levels. The best way to sum it up is replacing ‘love’ with ‘faith’ written in a poem.

“Faith can soar to the highest pinnacle of ecstasy, it can also crumble to the very depths of excruciating misery. Faith from deep within Christ, is inspiring, exhilarating even intoxicating. However succumbing to worldly thoughts and values, the body mind it will devour leaving a tragic ending”

The year began on a high note, as I was involved in a discipling program and a keystone in our Parish called Development. Was also blessed to be voted as an office bearer for my EMHC ministry to begin in 2018. I had planned and written out a two year program for the latter and was looking forward to see it come to fruition.

The Lord also blessed me with an opportunity to be a participant in the dawn Eucharist at Easter. We covered the full readings of Easter and the highlight for me was the experience of full submersion baptism. Which called to mind our first, once for all time baptism. Then the highpoint of the dawn Eucharist itself receiving our resurrected Lord deep into our being.

After Easter however, due to change of spiritual direction everything changed. I stepped down and left EMHC and later was compelled to leave the development keystone as well which was later dissolved completely. Troubling indeed when I had sacrificed the last seven years of my life to dedicated service even though there were numerous times, I felt that the burden was too heavy to bear.

Feeling lost, the Lord led me to the ‘Labourers in the vineyard retreat’ which not only restored my wounded soul but renewed and invigorated my zeal to serve the Lord. Only thing is I was to wait on Him.

I drew confidence from some loving members of our parish community who invited me to serve along side them in their respective ministries. I was also deeply touched to be called upon to help startup a new parish initiative called ‘Bible Apostolate.’ The Lord’s direction however was to continue to wait on Him as a new initiative on an archdiocese level was soon to take shape. I am still prayerfully waiting as it will begin proper in 2018.

Then in the later part of this year was another great blessing of being called to attend the’ Watchmen retreat’ The Lord woke me up by speaking directly to me through His shepherd and His prophets. He both humbled me and enkindled within me a fire to serve Him more profoundly.

To end the year He brought me back to the basics by leading me once again to the ‘Four steps retreat’ so that I might never lose my way again. It was also wonderful to embrace the family team conducting the retreat.

Thank You Lord Jesus for the familial ties built over the years through the various communitues in and through You. Lord be with me now and always.

Glory and Praise to the Holy Trinity forever and ever. Amen

Love Of God

Posted: December 25, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

An Advent reflection 

Posted: December 24, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

Sharing from a Sister who attended the watchmen retreat”.

Peace be with you all.
I’ve not been very watchful during Advent. Yet our Lord in His loving mercy, doesn’t allow me to run away.
I am prompted to share the following with you all. It is rather long but I’m unable to shorten it though I tried. 👇🏻

If Jesus had really been born on 25 Dec, then today Mother Mary and Joseph would be travelling around in Bethlehem.
 Contemplating the situation, I imagined how tiring and uncomfortable it must have been for Mother Mary, a pregnant lady nearly due for delivery.  I also thought of St Joseph’s anxiety as he went from inn to inn to find a room;  how he would have felt as a young man who simply wanted his wife to have a comfortable bed to deliver her baby.  And Mary our Mother, she must have prayed to our Father to provide a solution.
Why did God our Father allow the Mother of His Son to experience such discomfort and anxiety? If His plan was for Jesus to be born in a manger, then just lead them there, or tell Joseph in a dream. It would be easier and less stressful. After all, when we do His Will, aren’t things supposed to fall into place smoothly?
As I wondered what thoughts Mary might have had at that point of time and how she might have felt, I was reminded of Ecclesiasticus 39: “All the works of the Lord are good, and he will supply every want in due time. You must not say “This is worse than that” for everything will prove its value in time ”
With that scripture,  I was awakened.

It is not for me to question; instead, I must dwell on the awesomeness of our Father who chose simple shepherds as the first witnesses of His Son’s birth and I must wonder at the faith of these shepherds who were blessed to hear the first Gloria sung by “a great throng of heavenly hosts” and who acted without hesitation to do as asked. When the shepherds told Mary what they had heard, she treasured what they said and “pondered them in her heart”.
As I sing the Gloria tonight it will be with greater conviction than ever before because I believe in my heart, that all the heavenly hosts and especially Mary our Mother will be there with us singing and praising our Lord and our God. And I praise Him for awakening me to watch and to grow.
Fellow watchmen, let’s all rejoice as the shepherds did, glorifying and praising God our Father for all we have heard and seen.

Just do it…

Posted: December 19, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys, Meditations

This is a phrase that when is actually put into practice will draw you closer to Him and the community centred on Christ

On Today’s Gospel 

Posted: December 19, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

God of life we are waiting for You!

For it is our Lord Jesus Christ who brings life and liberation, our salvation. Foreshadowing His coming we hear of how the Lord our God brought forth life when there was none. Born into families these heroic lives were brought forth to liberate His people and to turn them back to Him. Such is the love of God our Father for us.

So now sisters and brothers, are we not called to lead such heroic lives?

Here I am Lord, use me! Amen

First reading
Judges 13:2-7,24-25

There was a man of Zorah of the tribe of Dan, called Manoah. His wife was barren, she had borne no children. The angel of the Lord appeared to this woman and said to her, ‘You are barren and have had no child. But from now on take great care. Take no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean. For you will conceive and bear a son. No razor is to touch his head, for the boy shall be God’s nazirite from his mother’s womb. It is he who will begin to rescue Israel from the power of the Philistines.’ Then the woman went and told her husband, ‘A man of God has just come to me; his presence was like the presence of the angel of God, he was so majestic. I did not ask him where he came from, and he did not reveal his name to me. But he said to me, “You will conceive and bear a son. From now on, take no wine or strong drink, and eat nothing unclean. For the boy shall be God’s nazirite from his mother’s womb to his dying day.”’
The woman gave birth to a son and called him Samson. The child grew, and the Lord blessed him; and the spirit of the Lord began to move him.

Luke 1:5-25

In the days of King Herod of Judaea there lived a priest called Zechariah who belonged to the Abijah section of the priesthood, and he had a wife, Elizabeth by name, who was a descendant of Aaron. Both were worthy in the sight of God, and scrupulously observed all the commandments and observances of the Lord. But they were childless: Elizabeth was barren and they were both getting on in years.
Now it was the turn of Zechariah’s section to serve, and he was exercising his priestly office before God when it fell to him by lot, as the ritual custom was, to enter the Lord’s sanctuary and burn incense there. And at the hour of incense the whole congregation was outside, praying.
Then there appeared to him the angel of the Lord, standing on the right of the altar of incense. The sight disturbed Zechariah and he was overcome with fear. But the angel said to him, ‘Zechariah, do not be afraid, your prayer has been heard. Your wife Elizabeth is to bear you a son and you must name him John. He will be your joy and delight and many will rejoice at his birth, for he will be great in the sight of the Lord; he must drink no wine, no strong drink. Even from his mother’s womb he will be filled with the Holy Spirit, and he will bring back many of the sons of Israel to the Lord their God. With the spirit and power of Elijah, he will go before him to turn the hearts of fathers towards their children and the disobedient back to the wisdom that the virtuous have, preparing for the Lord a people fit for him.’
Zechariah said to the angel, ‘How can I be sure of this? I am an old man and my wife is getting on in years.’ The angel replied, ‘I am Gabriel who stand in God’s presence, and I have been sent to speak to you and bring you this good news. Listen! Since you have not believed my words, which will come true at their appointed time, you will be silenced and have no power of speech until this has happened.’ Meanwhile the people were waiting for Zechariah and were surprised that he stayed in the sanctuary so long. When he came out he could not speak to them, and they realised that he had received a vision in the sanctuary. But he could only make signs to them, and remained dumb.
When his time of service came to an end he returned home. Some time later his wife Elizabeth conceived, and for five months she kept to herself. ‘The Lord has done this for me’ she said ‘now that it has pleased him to take away the humiliation I suffered among men.’

My little Angel… 

Posted: December 12, 2017 by CatholicJules in Life's Journeys

12 Dec 2017 – After having breakfast with my six year old daughter, I decided to bring her to the zoo. Left home at about 1025hrs and spent about 5 hours there. Tracked about 12000 steps in total. After having something light at the coffee shop and buying dinner in advance we got home about 4pm. Was feeling exhausted and a little queasy. Hannah complained about having a headache so I gave her some medication.

Was thinking of having an early night when my little angel asked if we could go to church for mass! Tried to convince her that we could go tomorrow and that I was feeling unwell. But she was adamant that we go. I took it that the Lord wanted me to go since I had planned to go in the morning. Besides He knew I needed to see Him in reconciliation.

When we got to church, we stopped at the Grotto to pray a Hail Mary. As I was about to leave, Hannah called me back as she was not done. She prayed for mummy and her brothers safe return from their respective trips. And added I want to kiss and hug mummy because I miss her so much. Mummy was on a mission trip to Sri Lanka returning only Saturday. While her brothers were returning on Sunday from a holiday in Korea.

Managed to do a reconciliation before the devotion to St Anthony began followed by the Eucharistic Celebration. I am truly blessed and pray that Hannah will continue to be faithful throughout her life.

Glory be to the Holy Trinity. Amen