One Minute Reflection – 19 January – The Memorial of Blessed Marcelo Spínola y Maestre (1835-1906)
And Jesus called to him the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over unclean spirits… So they went out and preached that men should repent...Mark 6:7,12
REFLECTION – “‘O Priest! You are not yourself because you are of God. You are not of yourself because you are the servant and minister of Christ. You are not you own because you are the spouse of the Church. You are not yourself because you are the mediator between God and man. You are not from yourself because you are nothing. What then are you? Nothing and everything. O Priest! Take care lest what was said to Christ on the cross be said to you: “He saved others, himself he cannot save!”‘ ...St Norbert
PRAYER – O Lord of all, today we pray for our priests. All our priests from the Holy Father to our the newly ordained. Keep them holy and for yourself O Lord. Keep them in the image of Your Son, our High Priest, Jesus Christ. Keep them pure in heart, loving in spirit, filled with charity for all and most of all, with the greatest of love for You. Bless their hearts and their hands, that administer Your Eucharistic Son to your faithful. Grant that the prayers of Blessed Marcelo Spínola, may intercede for all our priests and ourselves. Amen
One Minute Reflection – 18 January – The Memorial of St Margaret of Hungary (1242-1270)
Just as the Father who has life sent me and I have life because of the Father, so the man who feeds on me will have life because of me...John 6:57
REFLECTION – “The Holy Eucharist, is a fire that purifies and consumes all our miseries and imperfections. Do everything in your power to make yourself worthy of the Eucharist and this Divine Fire, will take care of the rest.”…St Hyacinth of Mariscotti T.O.R.(1585-1640)
PRAYER – Living God, You have given me the Eucharist as my food for heavenly life. Help me to partake of it often and so be strengthened on my pilgrim journey on earth. Grant that St Margaret of Hungary, may add us all to her prayers, that by her intercession, we too may learn the true way home. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord, in union with the Holy Spirit, one God forever and ever, amen.
One Minute Reflection – 16 January – The Memorial of St Joseph Vaz (1651-1711) Apostle of Sri Lanka
“Go, therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy Spirit”…Matthew 28:19
REFLECTION – “I encourage each of you to look to Saint Joseph as a sure guide. He teaches us how to go out to the peripheries, to make Jesus Christ everywhere known and loved…. Saint Joseph gives us an example of missionary zeal…. Leaving behind his home, his family, the comfort of his familiar surroundings, he responded to the call to go forth, to speak of Christ wherever he was led. Saint Joseph knew how to offer the truth and the beauty of the Gospel in a multi-religious context, with respect, dedication, perseverance and humility. This is also the way for the followers of Jesus today. We are called to go forth with the same zeal, the same courage, of Saint Joseph…” Pope Francis at the Canonisation of St Joseph Vaz, 14 January 2015
PRAYER – Lord God, may we too glorify You by our lives as St Joseph Vaz did! Grant us, we pray, Your grace, that we may, in union with the Church throughout the world, sing a new song to the You and declare Your glory to all the ends of the earth. May the prayer of St Joseph Vaz, intercede on our behalf, to assist us to imitate his zeal and love. Amen
Sunday Reflection – 14 January – The Shepherd Gathers Us
Like a shepherd he feeds his flock;
in his arms he gathers the lambs,
Carrying them in his bosom,
leading the ewes with care….Isaiah 40:11
Jesus promised that whenever a group of people gather in prayer, He will be there with them. The early church took that promise literally. The first disciples had been used to having Jesus physically among them and then, after His Ascension, they often struggled to know what Jesus would want them to do. However, they had a simple formula for every occasion and difficulty – Jesus’ invitation to gather in His Name. They would gather around the Word and the breaking of the bread and, there, let Jesus make His presence felt and effect through them what they could not otherwise accomplish themselves.
As Christians today, we still need to take that same promise literally. Christian life is not sustained only by private acts of prayer, justice and virtue. It is sustained in a community, by gathering ritually around the Word of God and through the breaking of the bread. However, it is important to understand, that this kind of gathering is not simply a social one capable only of doing what social gatherings can do. To gather around the Word of God and the breaking of the bread is a ritual gathering and ritual brings something that normal social gatherings does not – namely, transformative power beyond what can be understood and explained through the physical, psychological and social dynamics that are present.
Lord, You invite me to be part of Your flock.
Remind me of that when I am tempted to go off on my own.
Fr Ron Rolheiser – Light for the World
Quote/s of the Day – 14 January -Speaking of the Holy Eucharist from the Fathers of the Church
“Calling her children about her, she [the Church]
nourishes them with holy milk, that is, with the Infant Word…
The Word is everything to a child –
both Father and Mother, both Instructor and Nurse.
“EAT MY FLESH,” He says, “AND DRINK MY BLOOD.”
The Lord supplies us with these intimate nutriments.
He delivers over His Flesh and pours out His Blood
and nothing is lacking for the growth of His children.
O incredible mystery!”
(Instructor of Children 1:6:42,1,3)
St Clement of Alexandria (c 150-216) Church Father
“The flesh feeds on THE BODY AND BLOOD OF CHRIST,
so that the SOUL TOO may fatten on God.”
(Resurrection of the Dead 8:3)
“The Sacrament of the Eucharist,
which the Lord commanded to be taken
at meal times and by all, we take even before
daybreak in congregations…
… We take anxious care lest something
of our Cup or Bread should fall upon the ground…”
(The Crown 3:3-4)
Tertullian (c 155-250) Church Father
“You see how the ALTARS are no longer sprinkled
with the blood of oxen but consecrated
BY THE PRECIOUS BLOOD OF CHRIST.”
(Homilies on Joshua 2:1)
“You are accustomed to take part in the divine mysteries,
so you know how, when you have received
THE BODY OF THE LORD,
you reverently exercise every care lest a particle of it fall
and lest anything of the consecrated gift perish….
how is it that you think neglecting the word of God
a lesser crime than neglecting HIS BODY?”
(Homilies on Exodus 13:3)
Origen (c 185-254) Church Father
“If Christ Jesus, our Lord and God,
is Himself the High Priest of God the Father;
and if He offered HIMSELF as a SACRIFICE
to the Father
and if He commanded that this be done in
commemoration of Himself –
then certainly the priest,
who imitates that which Christ did,
TRULY FUNCTIONS IN PLACE OF CHRIST.”
St Cyprian of Carthage (c 200-258) Church Father
One Minute Reflection – 14 January – 2nd Sunday in Ordinary Time Year B
The next day again John was standing with two of his disciples and he looked at Jesus as he walked and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” The two disciples heard him say this, and they followed Jesus…John 1:35-37
REFLECTION – “If, then, you seek to know what path to follow, take Christ because He is the way.” …St Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) Doctor of the Church
PRAYER – Holy Lord God, grant that we may live constantly in Your presence. Grant that we may possess a spirit of joy and gladness because of the firm knowledge that You are always with us and in You and through You and with You, the extraordinary is commonplace! And turn around Lord and call us, for we are behind You. Be with us Lord, always, we pray! Amen
Thought for the Day – 13 January – The Memorial of St Hilary of Poitiers (315-368) Father & Doctor of the Church
It was in reading the Holy Scriptures that St Hilary discovered the greatness of God and the sublimity of the Church and Christian teachings. The Scriptures is not just a revered book to be placed on our shelves in a place of honour it is to be read, to be studied and reflected upon. It leads not only to faith and holiness of life but also to the Kingdom of God itself. So we learn that Christ said His coming would bring not peace but a sword (see Matthew 10:34). The Gospels offer no support for us if we fantasise about a sunlit holiness that knows no problems. Christ did not escape at the last moment, though He did live happily ever after—after a life of controversy, problems, pain and frustration. Hilary, like all saints, simply had more of the same.
All-powerful God, as Saint Hilary defended the divinity of Christ Your Son, give us a deeper understanding of this mystery and help us to profess it in all truth.
St Hilary of Poitiers Pray for us!