Thursday, June 21, 2018


SUMMER SOLSTICE- YOGA DAY-ST ALOYSIUS GONZAGA

Luke, Chapter 20, Verse 19
The scribes and chief priests sought to lay their hands on him at that very hour, but they feared the people, for they knew that he had addressed this parable to them.

Politics never changes. Those in power find it very difficult to surrender. The powerful leaders of Israel were offended because Christ told them the truth, “The stone which the builders rejected has become the chief cornerstone.”

The Real Issue was Surrender[1]


The scribes had set a trap by asking whether it was right to pay taxes to Caesar. They sought to label Him as a traitor to the Jews if he said yes and if He said no they could accuse Him before the Romans. Their plan was perfect yet, Jesus was able to see past the fa├žade. Taxes were not the issue: Surrender was the issue. Who or what are the values and assumptions about life do we surrender too? Christ’s question, “Who’s image is on the coin.” He meant that any object stamped with a person’s image belongs to the individual pictured. This coin carried Caesar’s image, so they were to surrender that coin to Caesar. Christ’s point was the Israel’s had been stamped with God’s image. They therefore should surrender themselves to God.

Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship[2]

As Catholics we therefore must give our consciences to God. Catholic’s are called to care and vote responsibly.
"We need to participate for the common good. Sometimes we hear: a good Catholic is not interested in politics. This is not true: good Catholics immerse themselves in politics by offering the best of themselves so that the leader can govern."
- Pope Francis, 9/16/13

The Catholic bishops of the United States offer to the Catholic faithful Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship, their teaching document on the political responsibility of Catholics.

Summer Solstice[3]

The Summer Solstice marks the beginning of the summer season in the Northern Hemisphere.  On this day, the North Pole is tilted towards the Sun at the highest degree of angle. Places in the Northern Hemisphere experience the longest hours of sunlight throughout the year on this day. The history of the Summer Solstice is rooted in both ancient mysticism and nature. This day takes place somewhere around June 20th or 21st each year.


Summer Solstice Facts

·         On the Summer Solstice, the North Pole receives 24 hours of daylight, and the South Pole receives 24 hours of darkness.
·         Solstice comes from the Latin words for "Sun" and "to stop."
·         Many Native American tribes celebrated the Summer Solstice by holding "sun dances".
·         On the summer solstice, the Earth's axis is tilted the most, up to 26°.
Summer Solstice Top Events and Things to Do
·         Host a bonfire to celebrate the arrival of summer.
·         Visit Stonehenge and take the Summer Solstice Tour.
·         Go fishing - it is the longest fishing day of the year.
·         Visit the polar circle and enjoy nearly 24 hours of daylight. Remember at the South Pole it is a day of total darkness.

During his lifetime he feared no one, nor was any man able to intimidate his will.

Saint Aloysius Gonzaga[4]

Today is the feast of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga who demonstrates for us how he was not afraid to lose everything to gain the kingdom. While still young he read the lives of saintly Jesuit missionaries, and he decided to become a Jesuit. His father and some other relatives tried hard to change his mind. It was a fierce battle of wills, but after several years, Aloysius won. With his father's permission, Aloysius gave his large inheritance to his brother and joined the Jesuit order at 17 years of age. The novice director, who was in charge of training Aloysius, told him to cut down on his long hours of prayer and to give up some of his fasting and other penances. Aloysius obeyed willingly. He understood that obedience was better than “doing his own thing.” When Aloysius was 23, a serious epidemic broke out in Rome. Aloysius volunteered at once to help in the hospital. At that time hospitals were not the clean, orderly places with which we are familiar today. It was very easy to catch an illness. That is what happened; Aloysius became very ill. No medicine could help him. Aloysius was not afraid to die. Aloysius shows that young people are not too young to become saints. During his life he had focused on doing what God wanted—serving and loving God and his neighbor.

International Yoga Day[5]

International Yoga Day celebrates yoga, an ancient physical, mental and spiritual practice. Today, yoga, which originated in India, is one of the world's most popular pastime activities. In September of 2014, Indias Prime Minister proposed the establishment of an International Day of Yoga to promote international peace and cooperation. His request was granted by the United Nations General Assembly in December 2014 in an effort to highlight the benefits of yoga to physical well-being and to world peace and development.

In a recent homily, Pope Francis reminded listeners that practices like yoga aren't capable of opening our hearts up to God. "You can take a million catechetical courses, a million courses in spirituality, a million courses in yoga, Zen and all these things. But all of this will never be able to give you. freedom," he explained. While yoga was just one example offered among many, the Holy Father touched on a matter of great debate among faithful Catholics who happen to prefer this kind of exercise.[6]


Can Catholics participate in yoga? The answer is a bit more nuanced than one might think. Catholics should not participate in any of the "spiritual" aspects associated with yoga, but technically can do the actual physical exercises. However, many people who practice yoga caution that it is often difficult, if not impossible, to separate the exercises from the meditations. For example, a common mantra repeated in yoga is "So'ham" that roughly translates to "I am the universal self". This focus on the self is contrary to the focus on God to which we are called. In the words of Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI: "Christian prayer... flees from impersonal techniques or from concentrating on oneself, which can create a kind of rut, imprisoning the person praying in a spiritual privatism which is incapable of a free openness to the transcendental God" The Pope tells us that only the Holy Spirit can "move the heart" and make it "docile to the Lord, docile to the freedom of love". If we are seeking a zen-like peace from yoga meditation, then we are seeking peace from the wrong source.

But is it possible to combine exercise and prayer? Founders of SoulCore, a core workout that combines isometric exercises with praying the rosary, say that it is. Deanne Miller and Colleen Scariano explained that their new exercise movement is born from the desire to nourish both body and soul through exercise. Miller explained, "in our physical movement, when tied to prayer-strengthening from the inside-out-we are FULLY ALIVE." www.soulcoreproject.com


Daily Devotions
·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Please pray for me and this ministry
·         Please Pray for Senator McCain and our country; asking Our Lady of Beauraing to intercede.

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