Archive for the ‘Personal Thoughts & Reflections’ Category

On Today’s Gospel SG

Posted: February 14, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

How Blessed are we to have the Cathedral of the Good Shepherd. When indeed our good shepherd reigns. Where the Lord our God dwells, so His flock gathers to honour, love and worship Him.

You have Blessed Your people Lord with a Shepherd after your own heart. Whose guidance and vision to build a vibrant, evangelistic and missionary Church has set the churches of Singapore on fire for love of You.

Bless and anoint Your Church Lord so that together we will lead one another into greater holiness and into our heavenly inheritance. Amen

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.’

Gospel

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, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

The Lord our God did not just Will us into being, He lovingly fashioned us. And knowing we will bring harm upon ourselves for lack of complete knowledge and wisdom, He willed that we rely on Him till perhaps we were ready. How much have changed from the very beginning? Aren’t we still disobedient? Impatient? Stubborn? Wilful?

Are our hearts and minds connected to the Lord our God? Do we constantly seek His wisdom, knowledge and guidance? For if we are not connected to the source of life then we are likely to go awry and lost to the darkness. For indeed all that is good comes from within us when our hearts are connected to all that is good, the Lord our God. It is when we are disconnected that evil lurks to pounce!

Lord Jesus Christ You are the vine and we are the branches. Let us never be apart from You. Amen

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.’

Gospel

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 9, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Often we overlook the fact that as leaders of our church communities are bound to look after the souls of our members. To nurture their growth towards Holiness and to lead them into a deeper relationship with Christ Jesus our Lord. We can only do so if we are ourselves are leading a grace filled sacramental life. Going often for the Sacrament of reconciliation and Holy Eucharist. Spending time with our Lord in prayer and Adoration. Through the Holy spirit we will be guided on how best to lead our flock.

Who better to lead us then our faithful and loving shepherd our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ. Through His example and by His Word we become better shepherds to lead His flock.

Lord Jesus Bless, anoint and guide your Shepherds so that we may serve You and Your flock faithfully. 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.

Gospel

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 2, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

The light of the world had come to illumine our hearts and mind. To free us from all darkness of the soul. Are we then living in His light? Are we then being His light for others?

While we bring our candles the symbol of the light of Christ our Saviour to be Blessed today, do we come before Him with hearts ready to be consecrated to Him? To be beacons of His love, peace and joy.

O Holy Spirit Lord, we present ourselves to the Lord our God. Bless and anoint us that we might shine forth with the light of Christ on our face and in our hearts. To love and to serve. 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.

Gospel

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: January 31, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Make no mistake the door to salvation was opened for all of God’s children. Through the blood of our Lord and saviour Jesus Christ we have been redeemed. We have been reconciled and have the hope of full union with Him. We are one with Him, one BODY in Christ.

Really? Why then are we not living as one body? Where is the sense of belonging to a community? The ownership and stewardship of the community I belong to? That the fraternal love and growth of our community depends on me being present in mind, body and spirit. That I may only be one, but I am the one that makes up the two or three gathered in His name; by His promise He is present to us. Do I know my brothers and sisters in Christ by name? Do I know their family? Can we truly say we are one then?

Holy trinity one God, inspire and grant us the grace to live as one united in Your love. Let us be one as You are one, so that Oneness may shine as a great light for the world to see. Through Christ our Lord. Amen

First reading

Hebrews 10:19-25 †
Let us keep firm in the hope we profess

Through the blood of Jesus we have the right to enter the sanctuary, by a new way which he has opened for us, a living opening through the curtain, that is to say, his body. And we have the supreme high priest over all the house of God. So as we go in, let us be sincere in heart and filled with faith, our minds sprinkled and free from any trace of bad conscience and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us keep firm in the hope we profess, because the one who made the promise is faithful. Let us be concerned for each other, to stir a response in love and good works. Do not stay away from the meetings of the community, as some do, but encourage each other to go; the more so as you see the Day drawing near.

Gospel

Mark 4:21-25
The seed is sprouting and growing as he sleeps

Jesus said to the crowd, ‘Would you bring in a lamp to put it under a tub or under the bed? Surely you will put it on the lamp-stand? For there is nothing hidden but it must be disclosed, nothing kept secret except to be brought to light. If anyone has ears to hear, let him listen to this.’
He also said to them, ‘Take notice of what you are hearing. The amount you measure out is the amount you will be given – and more besides; for the man who has will be given more; from the man who has not, even what he has will be taken away.’

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: January 26, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Yes we are called to be bold proclaimers of our faith in our Lord Jesus Christ who saves. But in order to be such bold proclaimers we must first live our faith. To be nourished by His Word, sound teaching and receive His graces through a sacramental life. Most importantly we need to affirm one another, to encourage one another to grow in Holiness, love and mercy.

Kingdom builders that we are should take care to stay focused on doing the will of God our Father. Let us not be distracted by the ways and wiles of the world. But be docile to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. So as to exercise the power given to us with great love, self control, and we will bring glory to God by our service to Him and our brethren.

Saints Timothy and Titus pray for us…. Amen

First reading

2 Timothy 1:1-8 †
Fan into a flame the gift God gave you

From Paul, appointed by God to be an apostle of Christ Jesus in his design to promise life in Christ Jesus; to Timothy, dear child of mine, wishing you grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Christ Jesus our Lord.
Night and day I thank God, keeping my conscience clear and remembering my duty to him as my ancestors did, and always I remember you in my prayers; I remember your tears and long to see you again to complete my happiness. Then I am reminded of the sincere faith which you have; it came first to live in your grandmother Lois, and your mother Eunice, and I have no doubt that it is the same faith in you as well.
That is why I am reminding you now to fan into a flame the gift that God gave you when I laid my hands on you. God’s gift was not a spirit of timidity, but the Spirit of power, and love, and self-control. So you are never to be ashamed of witnessing to the Lord, or ashamed of me for being his prisoner; but with me, bear the hardships for the sake of the Good News, relying on the power of God who has saved us and called us to be holy.

Gospel

Mark 3:20-21
Jesus’ relatives were convinced he was out of his mind

Jesus went home, and once more such a crowd collected that they could not even have a meal. When his relatives heard of this, they set out to take charge of him, convinced he was out of his mind.

On Today’s Gospel

Posted: January 25, 2019 by CatholicJules in Personal Thoughts & Reflections

Have you had a conversion of heart? Have you experienced the love of God in His presence? Have you submitted your notion of knowing all there is to know, lofty ideas of self righteousness? Of being a dove instead of a tiger in your dealings with others? Of being able to offer love above all else? If not then what are you waiting for? A bright light? A voice?

The light of the world beckons you to Him. Come to Him with contrite hearts and be changed. Come let us be the light for others through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ who poured out His precious blood for us so that we might live! Let us use the many gifts we have been given to gather His flock together. To be the best we ought to be according to His will. Amen

St Paul the Apostle pray for us…

First reading

Acts 22:3-16 †
‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?’

Paul said to the people, ‘I am a Jew and was born at Tarsus in Cilicia. I was brought up here in this city. I studied under Gamaliel and was taught the exact observance of the Law of our ancestors. In fact, I was as full of duty towards God as you are today. I even persecuted this Way to the death, and sent women as well as men to prison in chains as the high priest and the whole council of elders can testify, since they even sent me with letters to their brothers in Damascus. When I set off it was with the intention of bringing prisoners back from there to Jerusalem for punishment.
‘I was on that journey and nearly at Damascus when about midday a bright light from heaven suddenly shone round me. I fell to the ground and heard a voice saying, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” I answered: Who are you, Lord? and he said to me, “I am Jesus the Nazarene, and you are persecuting me.” The people with me saw the light but did not hear his voice as he spoke to me. I said: What am I to do, Lord? The Lord answered, “Stand up and go into Damascus, and there you will be told what you have been appointed to do.” The light had been so dazzling that I was blind and my companions had to take me by the hand; and so I came to Damascus.
‘Someone called Ananias, a devout follower of the Law and highly thought of by all the Jews living there, came to see me; he stood beside me and said, “Brother Saul, receive your sight.” Instantly my sight came back and I was able to see him. Then he said, “The God of our ancestors has chosen you to know his will, to see the Just One and hear his own voice speaking, because you are to be his witness before all mankind, testifying to what you have seen and heard. And now why delay? It is time you were baptised and had your sins washed away while invoking his name.”’

Gospel

Mark 16:15-18
Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News

Jesus showed himself to the Eleven and said to them:
‘Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation. He who believes and is baptised will be saved; he who does not believe will be condemned. These are the signs that will be associated with believers: in my name they will cast out devils; they will have the gift of tongues; they will pick up snakes in their hands, and be unharmed should they drink deadly poison; they will lay their hands on the sick, who will recover.’