Skip to main content

Wednesday, August 21, 2019



Ester, Chapter 4C, Verse 30
O God, whose power is over all, hear the voice of those in despair. Save us from the power of the wicked, and deliver me from my fear.”

Ester has determined here that she must overcome fear and risk death in order to save her people. To enter the Kings Throne room without, being called by him, was a taboo of the Persian court and to violate it carried an immediate sentence of death. Ester determined that to save her people she must appear to the King and risk death for her people.

Queen Ester and Our Lady of Fatima[1]

Queen Esther is in anguish because Haman, the wicked aide has convinced the King to issue an order to kill all the Jews in his Empire. Haman did this because Mordecai, Esther’s cousin who raised her as a daughter, would not bow down and prostrate himself as Haman passed as the King had ordered. The date set for destruction was the 13th of the month of Adar which corresponds to either our month of February. It is also the very day that the Maccabees liberated Israel after a four-year battle with the Seleucid Empire. Sister Lucia to whom Our Lady of Fatima appeared died on this date. Our Lady of Fatima’s first appearance to the three shepherd children was May 13, 1917.  Her last appearance was October 13,1917. On May 13, 1981, Pope John Paul II survived an assassination attempt. He credits Our Lady of Fatima with saving his life.
 
Queen Esther clothed herself in sackcloth and ashes.  She fasted from food and water for three days and asks the Jews to do the same.  After the three days, she approached the King without being summoned.  She did this even though she was aware that the King could have sentenced her to death for doing so. When the Queen enters into the King’s presence, he extends his scepter thus sparing her life. He was so impressed by her courage and beauty that he promised her up to half of his kingdom. Instead, she invites him to two banquets and invites Haman – the man responsible for the order of the genocide of her people. At the second banquet she pleads for her life and the life of her people.  The King is horrified by what Haman has done and orders him to be hung on the same gallows he had prepared for Mordecai.  Persian law did not permit the King to reverse his decree, but he issued another decree that the Jews could defend themselves.  Instead of being destroyed, the Jewish people were saved and defeated their enemies in battle. The Jews celebrate this triumph each year as their Feast of Purim.  It doesn’t always fall on the same day.

Many see Queen Esther as a type of Mary and the Book of Esther as a type of the Apocalypse. A figure type is a person, place, thing or event foreshadowing a New Testament archetype (a perfect model or type). The New Testament archetype is always greater than its Old Testament figure type. For example, Jonah’s time in the belly of the great fish is a type of Jesus in the tomb. Moses is a type of Jesus. The Jewish people were saved through the intercession of Queen Esther, so Mary intercedes for her people today.  The Apocalypse foretells a great persecution of Christians at the end of time, but the Book of Revelation speak about the Ark of the Covenant appearing in the sky and the Woman crushing the head of the dragon. (Revelation 12) When the Blessed Mother appeared at Fatima, she wore the Star of Esther. In the Old Testament of the Hebrew text, her name was Hádássah - meaning myrtle, a white, five-pointed, star-shaped flower. In the Hebrew text, her name was Hádássah - meaning myrtle, a white, five-pointed, star-shaped flower.

Like Esther, Mary came at Fatima to spare her children from destruction. She asked people to repent of sin, pray the rosary, go to confession, and receive the Eucharist worthily. On July 13, 1917, Our Lady said to the child Lucia: “…I shall come to ask for the consecration of Russia to My Immaculate Heart, and the Communion of Reparation on the First Saturdays. If my requests are heeded, Russia will be converted and there will be peace; if not, she will spread her errors throughout the world, causing wars and persecutions of the Church. The good will be martyred, the Holy Father will have much to suffer, and various nations will be annihilated. ... In the end, My Immaculate Heart will triumph. The Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, and she will be converted, and an era of peace will be granted to the world.” Had her requests been heeded the world would have been spared the horrors of World War II in which over 50 million people died and countless other wars and persecutions provoked by Communists throughout the world. In 1920, Russia was also the first country to legalize abortion. In 1913, Communist leader Vladimir Lenin demanded “the unconditional annulment of all laws against abortions or against the distribution of medical literature on contraceptive measures.” Great evils threaten our world. Sin increases. So many hearts are hardened. We need to call on Our Lady in prayer.  Heed her requests at Fatima and Lourdes. Do penance, do the Five First Saturday devotion by going to confession, receiving the Eucharist, praying the rosary and meditating 15 minutes on the mysteries for five first Saturdays of the month in a row.  Queen Esther asked her people to do pray and do penance with her. We must listen to the Blessed Mother today and ask her to intercede with her Son that he might spare us, our nation and our world. 

The Destroying Angel[2]

The particular term "destroying angel" (malakh ha-mashhit) occurs twice in the Bible, in II Samuel 24:16 and its parallel, I Chronicles 21:15. Other allusions to this "destroyer" (mashhit), can be found in Exodus 12:23 and Isaiah 54:16. The story of Sennacherib's siege of Jerusalem may also allude to a destroying angel, although the term used there is simply malakh. In the cultures of the ancient Near East, gods were believed to be responsible for death and destruction. The Bible, however, does not portray such a configuration. Instead, the destructive agents act according to God's instruction: they are His messengers and it is the Lord who initiates death and destruction. 

THE PLAGUES OF EGYPT    The destroying angel seems to be alluded to in the Bible's description of the slaying of the firstborn, where he is called ha-mashhit: for the Lord will pass over the door and not let the Destroyer enter and smite your home (Ex. 12:23). While is stated explicitly that the Lord passed through Egypt to smite the firstborn (Ex. 12:12–13), and the text of the Passover Haggadah expounds this to mean, "I and not an angel," verse 23 attests that the Lord was accompanied by the destroying angel, whose nature is to strike down all whom he encounters, unless – as here – the Lord restrains him. This seems to be the intention of the Mekhilta's comment on verse 22, None of you shall go outside the door of his house until morning: "This indicates that when the destroying angel is given permission to do harm, he does not distinguish between the righteous and the wicked." 3 The Psalmist's account of the plagues of Egypt (Ps. 78:49) indicates that the plagues were inflicted by mishlahat malakhei ra'im – a band of deadly [lit. evil] angels. The talmudic sages used the term mishlahat to describe a band of destructive creatures, specifically a wolf pack. 4 Kraus believes that this "band of evil angels" does not refer to the destroying angel" (mashhit) associated with the last plague (Ex. 12:23), but to the demonic powers that the Lord dispatches with every affliction. 5     It seems, then, that we must distinguish the "destroying angel," ha-mashhit, from the messengers of death who come to punish individuals only. By contrast, the Destroyer is sent by the Lord to kill multitudes through a plague. Unlike the deadly messengers, who bring both natural and premature death, the Destroyer inflicts only a premature, painful death. Still, this mashhit is controlled by God.

WRATH    Another implicit allusion to the destroying angel can be found in for wrath [ketzef] has gone forth from the Lord: the plague has begun (Num. 17:11 [RSV 16:46]). Milgrom sees this wrath or anger as an independent entity, similar to the Destroyer that acts on behalf of the Lord. 10 There are indeed several references to it in the Bible. Thus (Num. 1:53), The Levites, however, shall camp around the Tabernacle of the Pact, that the wrath [ketzef] may not strike the Israelite community. Similarly, the mandate continues, No outsider shall intrude upon you as you discharge the duties connected with the Shrine and the altar, that wrath [ketzef] may not again strike the Israelites (Num. 18:5). 11 According to Rashi, this plague is spread by the Angel of Death, who is also known as "the Anger before the Lord with the authority to kill."

In the Talmud, the Angel of Death (malakh ha-mavet) has assistants, one of whom is actually named Ketzef: "Rav Hisda said: 'They are: Fury, Anger and Wrath [Ketzef], Destroyer and Breaker and Annihilator'". 13 Elsewhere, Ketzef is the name of an angel of destruction (Targum Yerushalmi, Numbers 17:11). He is also specifically noted as acting on behalf of God, not as an independent entity: Wrath [ketzef] has gone forth from the Lord (Num. 17:11).    The Sages regarded the Destroyer as an amoral force that could be overcome only through sacrificial blood, incense, or some other ritual. However, these rituals were directed to God, not to the Destroyer himself. 14 In the ancient Near East, incense was burned for the gods to placate them and still their anger. Egyptian reliefs depict Canaanite priests standing on a high place and offering incense to Pharaoh, who is massacring the inhabitants of a city. 15 In both of the biblical stories about the Destroyer (the Tenth Plague and the threshing floor of Araunah), the plague is halted by a ritual act (placing blood on the doorpost, building an altar, burning incense), but it is God, not His messenger, who responds. 
    
The Angel of Death receives his instructions from God. When permitted to take the souls of human beings, he does not distinguish between the good and the wicked. His function is to take men's souls. Only a chosen few of the nation's ancestors died by the Divine kiss and were not given over to this angel’s control. 21 He was created by God on the first day of Creation, operates under His authority, and performs His behest. Nevertheless, he is granted a degree of autonomy in his actions and choices, 22 certain actions by human beings making him more likely to strike them. 23

CONCLUSION    The destroying angel is explicitly mentioned twice in the Bible (II Sam. 24:16; I Chron. 21:15). In addition, there are several other passages in the Bible and rabbinic literature that refer to destructive supernatural forces. The idea of the destroying angel as an independent force, acting of its own accord, is foreign to the Hebrew Bible, which emphasizes that God is in control of these destructive forces so as to negate polytheistic beliefs. The angel can do nothing on its own initiative and must only act in compliance with the will of God. It is He alone who deals death and gives life.

South Pole Discovery of the Eternal[3]

WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The work of researchers who reported detecting the signal left behind by the rapid expansion of space billions of years ago is rooted in the efforts of a Belgian priest whose mathematical computations in the 1920s laid the groundwork for the Big Bang theory. Msgr. George Lemaitre, a mathematician who studied alongside leading scientists of the first half of the 20th century exploring the origins of the universe, suggested that the cosmos began as a super-dense "primeval atom" that underwent some type of reaction that initiated the expansion of the universe which continues today. The priest's conclusions challenged the conventional hypothesis proposed by luminaries such as Albert Einstein and Fred Hoyle that the universe was in a steady state. Researchers in cosmology over the decades refined Msgr. Lemaitre's idea, leading to what became widely known as the Big Bang theory and later ideas that signs of the Big Bang can be detected. The most recent evidence supporting the Big Bang emerged March 17 when a team of scientists announced they detected polarization in light caused by primordial gravitational waves originating from the Big Bang. The measurements were made with the Background Imaging of Cosmic Extragalactic Polarization experiment, or Biceps2, located at near the South Pole

Daily Devotions
·         Drops of Christ’s Blood
·         Battle for the Soul of America-Day 7


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

HOLY FACE DAY 4



Psalm 15, Verse 1-5 1 LORD, who may abide in your tent?Who may dwell on your holy mountain? 2Whoever walks without blame,doing what is right, speaking truth from the heart; 3 Who does not slander with his tongue, does no harm to a friend, never defames a neighbor; 4 Who disdains the wicked, but honors those who fear the LORD; Who keeps an oath despite the cost, 5lends no money at interest,[1] accepts no bribe against the innocent.
In life we are always moving toward the future. Our destination is life eternal with our creator. In our little sailboat of life, we tend to be either moving toward God by taking advantage of His graces which provide the wind for our sails or we do nothing but drift.
Napoleon Hill noted in his manuscript on a book he never published entitled “Outwitting the devil” stated drifting was one of the tools the devil uses to keep us off tack and not sailing towards God’s mountain. A Protection against drifting lies within easy reach of every human being …

Friday, February 21, 2020

CARNIVAL FRIDAY
Sirach, Chapter 22, Verse 18 Small stones lying on an open height will not remain when the wind blows; So, a timid mind based on foolish plans cannot stand up to fear of any kind.
The wind is often used as a representation of the Holy Spirit in the bible. I wonder if this verse expresses the trinity of love which compels us to protect life and preserve the liberty to pursue the will of the Father in our lives.
Human Life and Dignity[1]
For the Church, there is no distinction between defending human life and promoting the dignity of the human person. Pope Benedict XVI writes in Caritas in Veritate. . . that "The Church forcefully maintains this link between life ethics and social ethics, fully aware that 'a society lacks solid foundations when, on the one hand, it asserts values such as the dignity of the person, justice and peace, but then, on the other hand, radically acts to the contrary by allowing or tolerating a variety of ways in which human life is devalued …

Thursday, February 20, 2020

Thursday after Sexagesima-Carnival holy face (Day 5) FRANCISCO AND JACINTA MARTO

Sirach, Chapter 22, Verse 16 A wooden beam firmly bonded into a building is not loosened by an earthquake; So the mind firmly resolved after careful deliberation will not be afraid at any time.
A prudent mind firmly resolved is undisturbed by violent and conflicting thoughts. Sometimes we all have senseless thoughts and feelings which shake us, but faith is a firm anchor for our thoughts. We indeed do have the power within ourselves to choose not to react to impulsive thoughts.
Sacredness[1]
·Holiness consists in friendship with God. If we would be in any sense the friends of God, we must have at least that desire for holiness without which such friendship would be impossible; growth in the knowledge of God is the deepening of this friendship. ·To know God is to know self and if we know ourselves well, we know we have one or two prominent sins that have dogged our life’s path for years, and against these we str…

Saturday, February 22, 2020

Washington's birthday-Be Humble-Billy Graham



Sirach, Chapter 23, Verse 27 Thus, all who dwell on the earth shall know, all who remain in the world shall understand, that nothing is better than the fear of the Lord, nothing sweeter than obeying the commandments of the Lord.
What happens when those who dwell on the earth no longer know God and what should we do when it becomes abundantly clear to us that our duty to God is threatened by the governments of men?
The Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church[1]addresses the issue of when and how St. Peter's teaching that obedience to God comes before obedience to men as it applies in the modern Christian's life.
Presciently, or perhaps better, prophetically, Pope Benedict XVI foresaw and foresees increasing conflict between American Catholics and a public authority increasingly secularized and increasingly hostile to the moral values of its Catholic citizens. The conflict is caused by the increasing demands of the State to &qu…

Tuesday, February 18, 2020

HOLY FACE DAY 3
Sirach, Chapter 21, Verse 11
Those who keep the Law control their thoughts; perfect fear of the Lord is wisdom.
If you have not had much success with your habitual sins and find yourself always confessing the same sins over and over: perhaps this verse will provide a key to real change: those who control their thoughts keep the law; for where the mind goes unchecked the body will follow. The body is a good servant but a poor master.
One of the most remarkable characteristics[1] of all forms of organic life is the power to adapt itself to the circumstances in which it is placed. It will endeavor under the most altered conditions to live, and, in order to live, it will resort to all kinds of contrivances, sometimes effecting such changes in its outward appearance that none but a trained eye could detect its identity. Yet with all these adaptations, it will preserve its identity. Man possesses this power in perhaps a higher degree than any other form of life. He can find his …

Sunday, February 23, 2020

Sirach, Chapter 25, Verse 6
The crown of the elderly, wide experience; their glory, the fear of the Lord.
We used to say in the military to the younger troops fresh out of high school that joined the military that beyond showing us normal military courtesy they really should listen and follow what we do because “We survived youth.” The fact is experience is the best teacher and experience teaches us that God is real, and the older ones have learned that fear of the Lord is more than a crown of glory it is the key to reaching old age.
One of the most curious phenomenon of our modern society is that by the year 2020 we will have five generations working together: Each with different values and views of life.
The Johnsons report[1] that each generation has been influenced by the major historical events, social trends, and cultural phenomena of its time. These forces shape ideas about everything from expectations and perceptions about what the workplace will provide and how employees should…

Monday, February 17, 2020

HOLY FACE DAY 2-PRESIDENTS DAY-SERVITES
Sirach, Chapter 21, Verse 6 Whoever hates correction walks the sinner’s path, but whoever fears the Lord repents in his heart.
At times God asks us to leave our personal Egypt’s and leads us into the desert to correct our sinful ways so he can make us more by raising us up. What is your “Egypt”? What is your temptation, your land of (empty) promise? What has placed you under bondage?
For some it could be that “dream” job across the country. For others it could be that big house, or luxury car. Chances are, if you find yourself saying something like, “Things would better if I could only…”, then you have an “Egypt” of your own. In most cases your “Egypt” is really just another heap of steaming trouble, bundled in empty hope and wrapped with false promise. God knows that humility, and a sense of self-worth centered in God’s grace and not in “things” and “stuff” is what leads to a heart that is not been made cynical by the disappointments of materialism…

Friday, May 10, 2019

ST. DAMIEN OF MOLOKAI

1 Samuel, Chapter 28, Verse 20 Immediately Saul fell full length on the ground, in great fear because of Samuel’s message. He had no strength left, since he had eaten nothing all that day and night.
Christ is the strength of the weak and the humble and the confidence of those who trust in him. Christ says to us, “My sheep hear my voice, says the Lord; I know them, and they follow me. (Jn. 10:27) Saul was in great fear because the spirit of God had long ago left him, and he no longer heard the voice of God. In desperation now that Samuel had died was to have the witch of Endor act as a medium to conjure up the spirit of Samuel to help save him from the Philistines. Saul broke his own laws by seeking the aid of a sorcerer. The Israelites were a Holy people and Saul could not understand the Ends never justify the means. No, we must be calm and listen to the voice of he that was the epitome of fairness and justice that took upon Himself our sins to the cross and thus be…

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Sexagesima Sunday NOVENA TO THE HOLY FACE

Sirach, Chapter 19, Verse 24 Better are the God-fearing who have little understanding than those of great intelligence who violate the Law.
Seek to love God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength.
Sexagesima-The perils of exile (persecution) and the fruits of asceticism (the Word being sown into our hearts).
Sexagesima literally means "sixtieth," though it only falls 56 days before Easter. During these weeks contemplate the ways you can build up your fear of the Lord remembering that fear of the Lord is really a deep abiding love for God.
The Introit of the Mass is taken from the forty-third psalm: Arise; why sleepest Thou, O Lord? Arise, and cast us not off to the end; why turnest Thou Thy face away, and forgettest our trouble? for our soul is humbled down to the dust; our belly cleaveth to the earth. Arise, O Lord, help us, and redeem us for Thy name’s sake. We have heard, O God, with our ears; our fathers have declared to us.
Prayer…

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

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 imprisoned, they can find true freedom…