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Friday, May 26, 2017 Ascension Friday-Ramadan

One night while Paul was in Corinth, the Lord said to him in a vision, "Do not be afraid.

2 Chronicles, Chapter 20, Verse 29
And the fear of God came upon all the kingdoms of the surrounding lands when they heard how the LORD had fought against the enemies of Israel.

Fear is a natural response to the unknown and to powers beyond comprehension. After experiencing our Lord for forty days after the resurrection and seeing him leave again and without the Holy Spirit’s presence the disciples were heartbroken but He promised them that He would send the Holy Spirit saying it is better for us that He leave us so we may receive power from on high. The first gift of the Holy Spirit is the gift of Holy fear; to respond to God’s love as a son or daughter rather than a servant.

Preparing for the empowerment of the Holy Spirit[1]

On Ascension Day the Lumen Christi is taken from the dining room table to signify that the Lord has ascended. In the days when the Faith was flourishing, the Sunday after the feast of the Ascension was called "The Sunday of the Roses," the name given from the custom of strewing the pavements of the churches with roses, as an homage to Christ who ascended into heaven when the earth was in the season of flowers. Why cannot we in our day have roses in our homes, make an offering of flowers to our church, or take roses from our gardens to one infirm or sick? Here are some prayers and meditations to be said in the family between the Ascension and Pentecost Sunday.
Prayer:
Father:
God ascends amid shouts of joy, Alleluia.
Family:
The Lord, amid trumpet blasts, Alleluia.
Father:
Let us pray. O King of glory, Lord of hosts, this day You ascended triumphantly above all heavens. Leave us not orphans, but send upon us the Promise of the Father, the Spirit of Truth.
Family:
Alleluia.
Father:
Only-begotten Son of God, having conquered death, Thou didst pass from earth to heaven! As Son of Man seated in great glory on Thy throne and praised by the whole angelic host, grant that we who in the jubilant devotion of our faith, celebrate Thine Ascension to the Father, may not be fettered by the chains of sin to earthly loves. And may the aim of our unceasing prayer be directed toward the heavens whither, after Thy Passion, Thou didst ascend in glory.
Family:
Amen.

Meditations before Pentecost

One of the simplest ways we have found for young children to prepare for Pentecost is by meditating on the mysteries of the Chaplet of the Holy Spirit. We reflect on one mystery a day.
Opening Prayer: Sign of the Cross. Act of Contrition.

First Mystery
Jesus is conceived by the Holy Spirit of the Virgin Mary. Meditation: The Holy Spirit shall come upon thee and the power of the Most High shall overshadow thee. Therefore the Holy One to be born shall be called the Son of God (Luke 11:35).
Prayers: One Our Father and Hail Mary; seven Glory be to the Father.


Second Mystery
The Spirit of the Lord rests upon Jesus.
Meditation:
When Jesus was baptized, He immediately came up from the water. And behold, the heavens were opened to Him, and He saw the Spirit of God descending as a Dove and coming upon Him (Matthew 3:16).
Prayers: One Our Father and Hail Mary; seven Glory be to the Father.

Third Mystery
Jesus is led by the Spirit into the desert.
Meditation:
Now Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan, and was led by the Spirit about the desert for forty days, being tempted the while by the devil (Luke 4:11).
Prayers: One Our Father and Hail Mary; seven Glory be to the Father.

Fourth Mystery
The Holy Spirit in the Church.
Meditation:
Suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a violent wind blowing, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak of the wonderful works of God (Acts 2:2, 4, 11).
Prayers: One Our Father and Hail Mary; seven Glory be to the Father.

Fifth Mystery
The Holy Spirit in the souls of the Just.
Meditation:
Or, do you not know that your members are the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you? Do not extinguish the Spirit. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God in whom you were sealed for the day of redemption (1 Cor. 6:19; 1 Thess. 5:19; Eph. 4:30).
Prayers: One Creed, Our Father, Hail Mary; seven Glory be to the Father.


Ramadan[2]

Ramadan is the holiest month in the Islamic calendar, during which, for a period of thirty days, Muslims abstain from eating, and drinking from sunrise to sunset. Muslims do this because it is a pillar of Islam, and obligatory for everyone.  In other words, God decreed this entire month holy for Muslims so that they can increase their remembrance of life after death.  Muslims also abstain from all bad deeds and habits, like smoking, swearing, backbiting, and disrespectfulness. Muslims reflect upon themselves, their religion, and the characteristics of God. Fasting during Ramadan is one of the five pillars of Islam. Fasting and abstaining from bad habits teaches Muslims self-control, humility, and generosity. Ramadan is a time for charity, family, and good deeds.  Muslims fast because they believe it is vital for spiritual health. Unlike the fast of Ashurah, the fasts of Ramadan are declared mandatory by God because like salah (praying towards Mecca), fasting helps Muslims maintain spiritual and physical health. The month of Ramadan begins when the new moon of Ramadan is sighted and ends when the new moon of Sha'ban is sighted. Muslims also believe that devils are chained up during Ramadan.

Ramadan Facts & Quotes

·         Ramadan comes from the word ramadaa, which means 'sunbaked' in Arabic. This is perhaps a reference to the pangs of hunger Muslims feel when fasting.
·         According to Islamic tradition, menstruating women, women who are experiencing bleeding after giving birth, people who are sick (either with short term or long term illnesses), and travelers are exempt from fasting. Pregnant women also have the option of skipping fasts.
·         In Islamic countries, when Ramadan ends and the crescent moon is first seen, people bang drums and give mighty shouts.
·         According to Sunnah belief, the Prophet Muhammad once said, There is no conceit in fasting.
·         who believe, fasting is decreed for you as it was decreed for those before you; perchance you will guard yourselves (Quran, 2:183)

Ramadan Top Events and Things to Do

·         The fast is usually broken in a family setting, where traditional foods are served. Most Muslims begin their meal with a few dates and a glass of milk because the Prophet Muhammad used to do the same.  The high sugar content of the dates sends energy to weary fasting Muslim, while the fiber in the dates and the protein in the milk fills them up and prevents nausea.
·         During Ramadan, Muslims congregate every night in the mosque to pray Taraweeh prayers in congregation. In the United States, in between sets of prayers, the Imam gives a brief sermon and encourages people to give to charity.
·         In Islamic countries, the end of the fast is signaled by a loud call to the sunset prayer. Most people eat a small meal, pray at the mosque, and then join their families for a large, festive dinner.

Fitness Friday

Recognizing that God the Father created man on Friday the 6th day I propose in this blog to have an entry that shares on how to recreate and renew yourself in strength; mind, soul and heart.



Daily Devotions/Prayers

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Novena to the Holy Spirit




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