OCTOBER Trees declare their own sermon in brief autumn's painted landscape. We note their size and type and variety and beaut...
Saturday, February 20, 2016
Sunday, February 23, 2016 Second Sunday of Lent
Isaiah, chapter 35, verse 3-4
3 Strengthen hands that are feeble, make firm knees that are weak, 4 Say to the fearful of heart: Be strong, do not fear! Here is your God, he comes with vindication; With divine recompense he comes to save you.
Isaiah in this chapter is proclaiming the deliverance of Israel specifically but upon examining the wording in this verse it is referring to the day of our death. On that day our hands will be feeble but our hearts must remain strong. Will you be vindicated and what recompense will be due you. Honestly few will be due recompense but our Lords love is such that he wishes to save us at this final hour with the sacrament which was formerly called the “Last Rites”.
1524 In addition to the Anointing of the Sick, the Church offers those who are about to leave this life the Eucharist as viaticum. Communion in the body and blood of Christ, received at this moment of "passing over" to the Father, has a particular significance and importance. It is the seed of eternal life and the power of resurrection, according to the words of the Lord: "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day." The sacrament of Christ once dead and now risen, the Eucharist is here the sacrament of passing over from death to life, from this world to the Father.
1525 Thus, just as the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and the Eucharist form a unity called "the sacraments of Christian initiation," so too it can be said that Penance, the Anointing of the Sick and the Eucharist as viaticum constitute at the end of Christian life "the sacraments that prepare for our heavenly homeland" or the sacraments that complete the earthly pilgrimage.
Such is the Love of our Lord that we should be delivered. His love is such that by receiving our Lord in the viaticum he delivers us to the Father saying here is blood of my blood and He transfers His recompense; His vindication to us. There is no greater love then this!
Let us pray. Most gracious God, Father of mercies and God of all consolation, Thou wish none to perish that believes and hopes in Thee, according to Thy many mercies look down favourably upon Thy servant (handmaid) N.____ whom true faith and Christian hope commend to Thee. Visit him (her) in Thy saving mercy, and by the passion and death of Thy only-begotten Son, graciously grant to him (her) forgiveness and pardon of all his (her) sins that his (her) soul in the hour of its leaving the earth may find Thee as a Judge appeased, and being washed from all stain in the Blood of Thy same Son may deserve to pass to everlasting life. Through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
Lord, teach me to be generous. Teach me to serve you as you deserve; to give and not to count the cost…to labor and not to ask for reward, except to know that I am doing your will. (Saint Ignatius, Prayer for Generosity)
Lord, let me not fear death with an empty fear, but with a wise and holy fear. An empty fear does not make men any better, but a wise and holy fear urges them to improve their lives. I will prepare for death by trying today to please you more and more in my thoughts, desires, words and actions. If I live this day as You desire, I shall be ready at any moment, and death will be nothing worse than Your loving call. Amen
Grace at Meals
Part and parcel of the breakdown of a family begins when the family no longer shares a communal meal. The strongest families are those who meet daily for the breaking of the bread and have an established time of the day when everyone is expected to eat together whether that meal is a breakfast, lunch or supper. When we “say grace” before (or after) our meals, we transform our family or lone meals into “sacraments” of God’s banquet. A meal shared in this manner is shared with God himself. In this way every meal, then, is a celebration of God’s creation and his providence.
Traditional Grace before meals
“Bless us, O Lord, and these, thy gifts, which we are about to receive from thy bounty. Through Christ, our Lord, Amen
Second Sunday of Lent
Traditionally for this Sunday we hear Paul exhorts us to keep up our progress and we hear the story of the Transfiguration as a heartening foretaste of Christ's ultimate triumph.
Why was Jesus transfigured before His disciples on Mount Tabor?
1. To give them a manifest proof of His divinity. 2. To prevent all doubt on their part when they should see Him on Mount Calvary. 3. To encourage all the faithful to patience under agony and suffering. 4. To show us how our glorified bodies shall rise from the dead (i. Cor. xv. 52).
Why did Moses and Elias appear with Our Lord?
To testify that Jesus was the Savior of the world spoken of by the law and the prophets.
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