This blog is based on references in the Bible to fear. God wills that we “BE NOT AFRAID”. Many theologians state that the eighth deadly sin is fear. It is fear and its natural animal reaction to fight or flight that is the root cause of our failings to create a Kingdom of God on earth. By “the power of the Holy Spirit” we can be witnesses and “communicators” of a new and redeemed humanity “even to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:7 8). This blog is dedicated to Mary the Mother of God.
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Sunday, March 10, 2019
First Sunday of Lent
ST. JOSEPH--BAGPIPE DAY
Deuteronomy, Chapter 20, Verse 1
When you go out to war against your enemies and you see horses
and chariots and an army greater than your own, you shall not be afraid of them, for the LORD, your God,
who brought you up from the land of Egypt, will be with you.
God imagines the world without war; this is why He
sent His son to bring peace to the world. Yet, we are still at war for our
enemy is not just evil men but the devil and his cohort. Therefore, when our
enemy brings forth horse and chariot and all manner of evils; do not be afraid
for the victory has already been won! Trust in Jesus who will send St. Michael
the Archangel to defend us and cover us with his strong shield and lead us
safely through the midst of our enemy. Our prayer then is having fought the
good fight and having a lifetime of devotion to the Blood of Jesus that when
the last hour of our earthly life draws near and we await the awful moment when
our soul must leave our bodies it
will be St. Michael that will defend us in our most vulnerable moments
protecting us from the satanic hosts when they make their final assault upon
Glorious Saint Michael, Prince of the
heavenly hosts, who stands always ready to give assistance to the people of
God; who fought with the dragon, the old serpent, and cast him out of heaven,
and now valiantly defends the Church of God that the gates of hell may never
prevail against her, I earnestly entreat you to assist me also, in the painful
and dangerous conflict which I sustain against the same formidable foe. Be with
me, O mighty Prince! That I may courageously fight and vanquish that proud
spirit, whom you, by the Divine Power, gloriously overthrew, and whom our
powerful King, Jesus Christ, has, in our nature, completely overcome; so having
triumphed over the enemy of my salvation, I may with you and the holy angels,
praise the clemency of God who, having refused mercy to the rebellious angels
after their fall, has granted repentance and forgiveness to fallen man. Amen.
Sunday is called Invocabit from the first word of the Introit. All the Sundays
of Lent and those from Easter to Pentecost take their names from the Introits
of the Mass. In the Introit of this day we are told: He shall cry to Me, and I
will hear him; I will deliver him and glorify him; I will fill him with length
of days. He that dwelleth in the aid of the Most High shall abide under the
protection of the God of heaven (Ps. xc. 15, 16, 1).
Prayer of the Church
O God, Who dost purify Thy Church by the yearly observance
of Lent, grant to Thy servants that what they endeavor to obtain of Thee by
abstinence they may secure by good works.
EPISTLE, Cor. vi. 1-10.
We do exhort you, that you receive not the grace of God in vain: for He saith:
In an accepted time have I heard thee: and in the day of salvation have I
helped thee. Behold now is the acceptable time: behold now is the day of salvation;
giving no offence to any man, that our ministry be not blamed: but in all
things let us exhibit ourselves as the ministers of God, in much patience, in
tribulation, in necessities, in distresses, in stripes, in prisons, in
seditions, in labors, in watchings, in fastings, in chastity, in knowledge, in
long-suffering, in sweetness, in the Holy Ghost, in charity unfeigned, in the
word of truth, in the power of God, by the armor of justice on the right hand
and on the left, by honor and dishonor, by evil report and good report: as
deceivers, and yet true: as unknown, and yet known: as dying, and behold we
live: as chastised, and not killed: as sorrowful, yet always rejoicing: as
needy, yet enriching many: as having nothing, and possessing all things. By
this epistle the Church admonishes us to profit by Lent as a season of grace,
to spend it in earnestly combating sin and in the diligent performance of good
GOSPEL. Matt. iv.
At that time: Jesus was led by the Spirit into the
desert, to be tempted by the devil. And when He had fasted forty days and forty
nights, afterwards He was hungry. And the tempter coming, said to Him: If Thou
be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. Who answered and said:
It is written, Not in bread alone doth man live, but in every word that
proceedeth from the mouth of God. Then the devil took Him up into the holy
city, and set Him upon a pinnacle of the temple, and said to Him : If Thou be
the Son of God, cast Thy self down; for it is written: that He hath given His
angels charge over Thee, and in their hands shall they bear Thee up, lest
perhaps Thou dash Thy foot against a stone. Jesus said to him: It is written again:
Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. Again, the devil took Him up into a very
high mountain: and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of
them, and said to Him: All these will I give Thee, if falling down Thou wilt
adore me. Then Jesus saith to him: Begone, Satan: for it is written: The Lord
thy God shalt thou adore and Him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil left Him:
and behold angels came and ministered to Him.
Saviour was led by the Holy Ghost into the desert there to prepare by fasting
forty days and nights for His holy ministry. Here the tempter approaches and
seeks to betray Him. After He had overcome the Evil One angels came and ministered
to Him: by which we learn that they who overcome temptations enjoy the
consolation and assistance of the angels. This should encourage us to combat
joyfully to the end.
What is temptation?Temptation is an inducement to
transgress the commandments of God. Temptation comes from our own concupiscence
(James i. 14) for the flesh lusteth against the spirit (Gal. v.17.)
How does the devil tempt us? He moves the natural concupiscence
to such sins as he sees men particularly inclined to, and then deceives and
confuses the man s mind, that he may not see clearly either the temporal loss,
or the dishonor and danger of sin. He can, however, do nothing but what God
permits. St. Augustine therefore com pares him to a chained dog that can hurt
only those who put themselves within his reach.
Does God also tempt us? St. James says (i. 13), Let no
man, when he is tempted, say that he is tempted by God; for God is not a
tempter of evils, and He tempteth no man; But He allows us to be tempted,
sending us manifold trials.
Does God permit us to be tempted beyond our strength? No; for He combats with us and
gives uo always as much strength as is required to conquer temptations, and
even to gain advantage from them (i. Cor. x. 13).
When do we consent to temptation? When we decide of our own free
will to do the evil proposed; as long as we resist, however little, we do not
What are the best means to overcome temptation?
1. Humility and
consideration of the suffering which follows sin, and of the happiness which
awaits those who resist temptation.
3. Invoking the
aid of the Blessed Virgin, our guardian angel, and all the saints.
4. Praying devoutly,
Lead us not into temptation, and calling on the holy name of Jesus.
Read: Today’s Gospel tells the story of
Jesus’s journey into the desert to be
tempted by the devil.
Reflect: Every day, but particularly in
Lent, Christians must face a struggle, like the one that Christ underwent in
the desert of Judea, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil, and then
in Gethsemane, when he rejected the most sever temptation, accepting the Father’s will to the very end.
is a spiritual battle waged against sin and finally, against Satan. It is a
struggle that involves the whole of the person and demands attentive and constant
Benedict XVI, Homily, March 1, 2006)
Pray: Say something from your heart.
Jesus’s response of “One does not live on bread alone” in mind, think of what ways you
can feed your spiritual life this Lent. Decide to do something during this
Lenten season that will nurture your relationship with God. Consider reading
one of the Psalms on Saturdays, challenge yourself to fast from speaking any
negative or critical word on Fridays, or do an act of generosity on Mondays.
Christ is the
model for our fasting
Christ in the
desert, and the kinds of temptations we can expect to encounter.
by bread alone does man live, but by every word that comes forth from the mouth
The devil tries to tempt us with the bread of fleshly desire. "Now
is the acceptable time" to "ration" our self-indulgence, our
worship of physical culture, and to feed our souls with the Divine Word. This
temptation calls for the mortification of self.
The "pinnacle of the temple", recalls the pride of usurping
God's power, of trying to live beyond His reach. We must topple
ourselves from the pinnacle of pride and lift ourselves up by prayer to
the pinnacle of God Himself.
The "kingdoms of the world," are those who covet mere earthly
"glory." To offset this temptation there must be almsgiving or
devoting one's talents to the service of one's neighbor.
Epistle exhorts us not to receive "in vain" this plan of personal
reformation, first by warning, then by encouraging us in the eternal struggle
between Christ and Antichrist.
Excerpted from My Sunday Missal, Confraternity of
the Precious Blood
This novena prayer, although short is sufficient.
It would be better of course to add, if time permits, three Hail Mary’s or say
five times the Our Father, Hail Mary and Glory be to the Father, or to use some
of the many well-loved novena prayers from other sources. Remember that prayers
must be said with the lips in order to gain the indulgences. This novena begins
on March 10 and ends on March 19.
O dear and good St. Joseph who so lovingly cared for your
little family at Nazareth, pray for all workingmen and their families. Help us
all to enjoy a happy Christian family life. Be a father to us all and watch
over us even as you cherished the Blessed Virgin Mary and her Holy Child.
Patron of the Universal Church pray for us.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, I give you my heart and soul.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, assist me in my last agony.
Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, may I breathe forth my soul in peace
7 years for
each invocation. Plenary, under usual conditions, if any one of three is said
daily for a month. S. Pen., Oct. 12, 1936.
The sound of bagpipes filling the air as
day dawns is enough to bring joy to the hearts of many. Others, they may not
feel quite the same. It seems that one either loves the pipes or not at all.
There is not very much middle ground. International Bagpipe Day is the time to
find out where you stand and join those who love them! The Bagpipe Society has been
sponsoring the celebration of International Bagpipe Day since 2012. They have
helped to bring the bagpipe to new players since 1986. It is important to them
that the history and playing of the bagpipes is not lost. Putting this day together
was with the hope of bringing awareness of the over 130 different types of
bagpipe throughout the world. For the first International Bagpipe Day in 2012,
there were reports of events held in some unique places. In South Africa,
pipers gathered and played in an underground canyon. In Greece, they played on
Athenian hill. The Society even heard of events in countries where previously
it was thought that there were not many pipers or any at all! If you aren’t
familiar with this ancient instrument, bagpipe is a term that means a wind
instrument that uses enclosed reeds to produce sound. Air feeds the reeds with
a constant flow of air from a reservoir in the form of a bag. In each area that
it is found, the bagpipe may change in sound and shape. This is an ancient
instrument and is claimed to be represented on a Hittite slab dated to 1000 BC!
How to Celebrate International Bagpipe Day
the bagpipe when this holiday rolls around can take many forms. If you have
ever wanted to try your hand at it, don’t wait! This is the time for you to
find your local provider of the pipes and take a lesson. You could be the next
great Piper! It could happen, you never know, right?
is a multitude of information available about this instrument. A great idea to
celebrate is to learn more about it. A quick internet search will bring up
resources like The Bagpipe Society. You can follow the history of this unique
instrument through the millennia to present day and from country to country!
There is much more information than you could learn in just one day, but it’s a
great time to start.
way to celebrate is to find out if there are any events planned in your local
area. Grab the family or friends and go check it out! You may just find that
you were missing out on all the fun. If you ask, it may even be possible to try
it out and see if you can make a sound with it!
have a long history that spans the ages and spans many regions. It is an
instrument that has weathered the test of time and surely deserves to be honored
on International Bagpipe Day!
include certain actions, such as the Sign of the Cross and other blessings, as
well as objects that have been blessed, such as holy water, oil, salt, candles,
incense, rosaries, crucifixes, scapulars, and religious images.
an exorcism, the Church asks publicly and authoritatively in the name of Jesus
Christ that a person or object be protected against the Devil’s power and
withdrawn from his dominion.
Sign of the Cross is the most terrible weapon against the Devil.
Church displays images of the cross so that we can have it continually in front
of our minds to recall to us just what our souls are worth and what they cost
and blessed objects. Both the blessings that are properly given by clergy (such
as those in the Liturgy) and the blessings spoken by lay people as part of
their daily lives (such as a table grace) are important sacramentals.
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."
definite. Don't let your resolutions be like fireworks that sparkle for a
moment, to leave behind as hard reality a blackened, useless stub that one
throws disgustedly away.
Ash Wednesday Deuteronomy, Chapter 18, Verse 21-22 21 Should you say to yourselves, “How can we recognize that a word is one the LORD has not spoken?”, 22 if a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD but the word does not come true, it is a word the LORD did not speak. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; do not fear him. Even saints at times may have spoken presumptuously. Let us meditate on the words of Padre Pio, “Love and fear must go united together, fear without love becomes cowardice. Love without fear becomes presumption. When there is love without fear, love runs without prudence and without restraint, without taking care where it is going.” This is the great beauty of the Holy Spirit for it tells us when even a very holy person speaks not every word they speak comes from God. We error sometimes in this way, making men into gods; but a heart that is filled with the spirit of God is filled with quiet joy and even if the person were to be impriso
Full Worm Moon According to the almanac we are having a Full Worm Moon-plan to take your family or grandchildren fishing! Hummingbirds are migrating North now; look for them. Monday 2 nd Week in Lent PURIM-MEATBALLDAY-HOLI Proverbs, Chapter 31, Verse 30 Charm is deceptive and beauty fleeting; the woman who fears the LORD is to be praised. Woman is the key to the salvation of the world. It is the miracle of God that the salvation of mankind was deposited in the care of the Virgin Mary and likewise in the physical sense the material world through the modern woman who is faithful to the precepts of the Lord. Such a woman knows the secret to raising children to be happy and successful is to do it in a home overflowing with love. A woman of faith truly knows: God is our refuge and our strength, an ever-present help in distress. Therefore, we fear not, though the earth be shaken, and mountains plunge into the depths of the sea. A woman of Influence
Wednesday after laetare Sunday: end of mid-lent  Jeremiah, Chapter 26, verse 19 Did Hezekiah, king of Judah, and all Judah condemn him to death? Did he not fear the LORD and entreat the favor of the LORD, so that the LORD had a change of heart regarding the evil he had spoken against them? We, however, are about to do great evil against ourselves.” Have you ever been around people who cannot handle the truth! Speaking the truth got Jeremiah in dire straits. Unmoving, the temple officials and elders trashed Jeremiah nonetheless they were too afraid to kill him. Dire Straits  · At the beginning of Jehoiakim's reign, God tells Jeremiah to stand in the court of the temple and speak to all the people and cities of Judah. They're getting another chance to repent. Maybe they'll actually listen this time. · If the people don't finally come to their senses, God's going to do the same thing to Jerusalem that he did to Shiloh up
Judith, Chapter 10, Verse 16 When you stand before him, have no fear in your heart; give him the report you have given us, and he will treat you well.” Judith prepares for war with prayer and by the enhancement of her beauty. She is so strikingly beautiful that in this verse one of the guards of the Assyrian camp advises her to be confident in the presence of Holofernes. Beauty and the Beast  After bathing (during a drought) she uses all the human arts available to her to make herself beautiful and captivating: perfumed ointment, hair, clothing and jewelry. She understands the goodness of her body. She knows physical beauty is good and comes from God. She also knows that the power of her beauty comes from within her, from her holiness, from her faithfulness to God. Since both her exterior and interior beauty come from God, her beauty must be devoted to the service of God. God intends to use her beauty as a weapon to liberate the people. She will wield the weapon t
Romans, Chapter 8, verse 14-15 14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are children of God. 15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear , but you received a spirit of adoption, through which we cry, “Abba, Father!” By the sacrifice of Christ, we are the adopted children of God, who feared none, and by whose sufferings and glory we share; by reason of the Holy Spirits presence within us. We are thus giving us a new life and relationship with God. ( Novena to the Holy Spirit ) To some is giving the gift of tongues. To which many years ago (40 to be exact February 1975) at the birth of my first born daughter I had gone to the Gunpowder Inn, in Bermuda, to celebrate her birth, with a couple of Native American friends. At the time I was in the Navy Seabees and we worked together. When I had got there, all of the sudden, I got an overwhelming feeling that I needed to speak in tongues to P. Graves and I did. I felt stupid an
Plough Monday ORTHODOX CHRISTMAS-DISTAFF DAY Psalm 2, verse 11 Serve the LORD with fear ; exult with trembling , accept correction lest he become angry and you perish along the way when his anger suddenly blazes up. Blessed are all who take refuge in him! To fully understand this verse, we must know who the writer is referring to. In verse 10 the writer states “ Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth. Serve the Lord with fear. Our God is a just God and to “those who have been given much; much is required”; to quote the spider man movie. Kings (and the 1 percent’ers) to be wise must humble themselves. It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of the needle then for a rich man to get into heaven. The "Eye of the Needle" has been claimed to be a gate in Jerusalem, which opened after the main gate was closed at night. A camel could only pass through this smaller gate if it was stooped and had its baggage removed.  I a
Thursday of the Fifth Week of Easter ST MATTHIAS-Novena St. Rita-Chicken Dance Day Jeremiah, Chapter 42, Verse 11-16 11 Do not FEAR the king of Babylon, as you do now. Do not FEAR him—oracle of the LORD—for I am with you to save you, to rescue you from his power. 12 I will take pity on you, so that he will have pity on you and let you return to your land. 13 But if you keep saying, “We will not stay in this land,” thus disobeying the voice of the LORD, your God, 14 and saying, “No, we will go to the land of Egypt, where we will not see war, nor hear the trumpet alarm, nor hunger for bread. There we will live!” 15 then listen to the word of the LORD, remnant of Judah: Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel: If you are set on going to Egypt and settling down there once you arrive, 16 the sword you FEAR shall overtake you in the land of Egypt; the hunger you dread shall pursue you to Egypt and there you shall die. Faith is always a great multiplier in overcom
Leviticus, Chapter 25, Verse 17 Do not deal unfairly with one another, then; but stand in fear of your God. I, the LORD, am your God. Our loving God wants us free and He demands that we out of love treat each other with love and fairness. In the Jewish calendar God specified that we are to rest one out of seven days but it goes further with a rest after seven weeks ending in a year of Jubilee after the 49 th year called a Shemitah. The Shemitah Year is the seventh year of the seven-year agricultural cycle mandated by the Torah for the Land of Israel and still observed in contemporary Judaism. When Moses received the Levitical law, God gave the commandment to rest on the seventh day… the Sabbath. Moses also applied the cycles of "seven" to weeks and years . A cycle of seven weeks points to the 50th day, called Pentecost. And a cycle of seven sets of seven years points to the 50th year, the year of Jubilee. The year of Jubilee is based on letting the land rest
LABOR DAY John 20, Verse 26 Now a week later his disciples were again inside and Thomas was with them. Jesus came, although the doors were locked, and stood in their midst and said, “ Peace be with you.” Are the doors of you heart locked? Are you without faith? Perhaps Christ will stand someday in your midst as he did Thomas. I came to you in weakness and fear and much trembling, and my message and my proclamation were not with persuasive words of wisdom, but with a demonstration of spirit and power, so that your faith might rest not on human wisdom but on the power of God. Doubt  Preachers have called Thomas the "Doubter." Few have touched upon his cynicism. Over and over, Thomas heard the witness of the followers. But, Thomas wanted more than proof positive. ("Inspect and touch," literally meant "to see and thrust.") He stepped beyond skepticism into cynicism. A week later, Jesus again appear with the greeting of
DAY 7 - MOTHER MOST CHASTE, PRAY THAT WE RECEIVE THE GIFT OF COURAGE! GOD'S WORD "Wait for the LORD; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the LORD." (Psalm 27:14) HEROES' WORDS "Fortitude is the disposition of soul which enables us to despise all inconveniences and the loss of things not in our power." -St. Augustine "I know well that the greater and more beautiful the work is, the more terrible will be the storms that rage against it." -St. Faustina "Moreover, Christians are born for combat, whereof the greater the vehemence, the more assured, God willing, the triumph: 'Have confidence; I have overcome the world' (Jn 16:33)." -Pope Leo XIII "Though the path is plain and smooth for men of good will, he who walks it will not travel far, and will do so only with difficulty, if he does not have good feet: that is, courage and a persevering spirit." -St. John of the Cross MEDITATION Fortitude is the mor