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Sunday, February 10, 2019

Fifth Sunday After Epiphany

Luke, Chapter 5, verse 9-10:
9 For astonishment at the catch of fish they had made seized him and all those with him, 10 and likewise James and John, the sons of Zebedee, who were partners of Simon. Jesus said to Simon, “Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching men.”

When the boat came to shore these fishermen; forsook everything. They gave up their careers, businesses, families and were committed 100 percent to the mission of Christ and they followed Him. Is there anything or anyone in this world that you would give up everything to follow? These men were not perfect specimens as disciples; yet; our Lord chose them: and through them as imperfect as they were, He created His bride the Holy Roman Catholic church; which is still ran by far from perfect men. If today, you hear his voice saying do not be afraid; follow Him!

Fifth Sunday After Epiphany[1]

The Church, mixed with good and bad (as in the Parable of the Sower), prays that "wavering hearts" may be guided by God.

GOSPEL. Matt. xiii. 24-30

At that time Jesus spoke this parable to the multitude, saying: The kingdom of heaven is likened to a man that sowed good seed in his field: but while men were asleep, his enemy came and oversowed cockle among the wheat, and went his way. And when the blade was sprung up, and had brought forth fruit, then appeared also the cockle. And the servants of the good man of the house coming said to him: Sir, didst thou not sow good seed in thy field? whence then hath it cockles? And he said to them: An enemy hath done this. And the servants said to him: Wilt thou that we go and gather it up? And he said: No; lest perhaps gathering up the cockle, you root up the wheat also together with it. Suffer both to grow until the harvest, and in the time of the harvest, I will say to the reapers: Gather up first the cockle and bind it in bundles to burn; but the wheat gather ye into my barn.

What is to be understood by the kingdom of heaven? The Church of God, or the congregation of the faithful upon earth.

What are we to understand by the good seed and the cockle? By the good seed is meant good Christians, children of God, who bring forth thousandfold fruit of good works; the cockle denotes heretics, infidels, and bad men. We are also to under stand by the good seed the word of God, and by the cockle false doctrines and principles.

Who are they that are asleep?

1. Those secular and ecclesiastical superiors who neglect the Obligations of their office, fail to watch over their flock, and to punish the guilty. In this case it is easy for the devil to corrupt the congregation by false doctrine, by mockery of religion, by bad example, and immoral books.

2. Those Christians who cease to use the means of salvation by absenting themselves from divine service, by omitting to receive the sacraments, to hear the word of God, or to do good works.

Why does not God gather up the wicked, who are the cockle, ard destroy them?

1. On account of His long-suffering and patience towards the sinner, whom He gives the opportunity of doing penance.

2. Out of love for the just and righteous; for should He exterminate the wicked, the just would lose the opportunity of exercising many virtues, such as patience, meekness, mercy, purity, and perseverance to the end, whereby they acquire the merits of eternal life.

Aspiration. O Jesus, who hast sown the good seed of Thy divine word in our hearts, grant that it may bring forth in us, many fold, the fruit of eternal life. Defend us against the enemy, that he may not sow in us false and wicked doctrines to destroy our good works; preserve us from the sleep of sin and sloth, that we may watch against the temptations of the world, the devil, and the flesh, and, having overcome them, may die happily. Amen.

Feast of St. Scholastica[2]

St. Scholastica was the twin sister of St. Benedict, the Patriarch of Western monasticism. She was born in Umbria, Italy, about 480. Under Benedict's direction, Scholastica founded a community of nuns near the great Benedictine monastery Monte Cassino. Inspired by Benedict's teaching, his sister devoted her whole life to seeking and serving God. She died in 547 and tradition holds that at her death her soul ascended to heaven in the form of a dove.

Things to Do

·         Tell your children about the "holy twins": St. Scholastica and the tender love she had for her brother St. Benedict. Ask them how they can help one another to become saints.
·         Make an altar hanging or window transparency in the shape of a dove to honor St. Scholastica.
·         If you are traveling to Italy try to visit St. Benedict's Abbey of Monte Cassino.

National Marriage Week-Woman in Marriage[3]

Woman's nature is admirably adapted to her functions as wife and mother. The responsibilities of the family develop her powers and mature her spiritually, mentally, and physically.

Spiritually, a woman becomes mature through surrender, through finding the particular role in which she can accomplish her total dedication to God. The young woman who has found her vocation in life in marriage and is wholly given to her task of bringing her family to God is a mature person whatever her age. She will have that air of serenity and peace which are the sign of the basic fulfillment of her being. The woman who has never surrendered wholeheartedly to any purpose outside herself remains immature all her life, like a bud which never unfolds itself. In marriage, woman can develop a spirit of selflessness which makes her dedication deeper and richer with the years. Her service to her family both expresses her love of God and increases her power of loving. The woman who has no outlet for her love, no one for whom she can spend herself, is apt to become hard, bitter, selfish, because she has no one but herself to consider. The woman who is constantly concerned with the needs of her family can unfold the qualities of love, tenderness, and unselfish devotion which make her truly great and truly happy.

Mentally, a woman's mind matures under the stimulus of the varied practical activities she performs for those she loves. In the concrete, living experience of the family, she can develop sound judgment and a keen insight into human nature. Lombroso's observation can readily be verified. "The mother of a large family who has had no time to study, having been occupied with her children and her household, has more life, more breadth of ideas, than the old maid of the same age who has done nothing else than to potter about at universities and libraries." The responsibilities of her family life exercise all woman's mental powers. Her intuition and powers of observation are called into play constantly to discover the unexpressed desires of her family, particularly the needs of the helpless child. She has need of her intuition, too, as well as her tact, to help her solve the hundred problems of human relations and practical affairs that arise in the course of her day. Providing for the family helps to develop woman's natural ingenuity and inventiveness. It is to the ingenuity of women intent on meeting the needs of their families that we owe the discovery of many of the most important arts: horticulture, for example; the creative arts of weaving, pottery, basketry; the domestic arts of food preparation and preservation; the uses of medicinal herbs in healing.

Physically, too, marriage and child bearing represent a development and completion for the normal woman, giving her new beauty and vitality. The mother of a large family experiences a physical fulfillment with the birth of each child which gives her fresh vigor and health. Dr. Alexis Carrell observes that women attain their full development as a rule only after the birth of several children. He writes in Man The Unknown: "Women who have no children are not so well balanced and become more nervous than the others. The importance to woman of the generative function has not been sufficiently recognized. Such function is indispensable to her optimum development. It is therefore absurd to turn women against maternity."

The Way[4] Penance

"Read these counsels slowly. Pause to meditate on these thoughts. They are things that I whisper in your ear-confiding them-as a friend, as a brother, as a father. And they are being heard by God. I won't tell you anything new. I will only stir your memory, so that some thought will arise and strike you; and so you will better your life and set out along ways of prayer and of Love. And in the end you will be a more worthy soul."

'God give you health.' — Doesn't this wish for mere physical well-being, with which some beggars demand or acknowledge alms, leave a bad taste in your mouth?

Daily Devotions
·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Universal Man Plan
·         Nivevah 90 day19

[1]Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896.

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