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Wednesday of the Fifth Week of Easter   Ezekiel, Chapter 30, Verse 13 Thus says the Lord GOD: I will destroy idols, and put an end to im...

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Wednesday, February 9, 2022

 MARRIAGE WEEK-PIZZA DAY

Sirach, Chapter 33, Verse 1

No evil can harm the one who FEARS the LORD; through trials, again and again he is rescued.

 

What is love? In his text On Loving God, St. Bernard surveys the four types of love that Christians experience as they grow in their relationship with God: loving one's self, selfish love, loving God as God, and loving one's self in God. St. Bernard reminds us that not only did God give us life, but He gave us Himself. For indeed, "God deserves to be loved very much, yea, boundlessly, because He loved us first, He infinite and we nothing, loved us, miserable sinners, with a love so great and so free." St. Bernard reminds us that we are indebted to God for his love and His sacrifice. Not only should we love God because it is what He deserves, but also because loving God does not go without reward. Loving God is to our advantage. The Lord rewards those who love Him with the blessed state of the heavenly Fatherland, where sorrow and sadness cannot enter. St. Bernard's medieval prose is poetic and full of clever imagery. His work is as beautiful as it is knowledgeable.

 

Emmalon Davis, CCEL Staff Writer



 Of the first degree of love: wherein man loves God for self's sake[1]

Love is one of the four natural affections, which it is needless to name since everyone knows them. And because love is natural, it is only right to love the Author of nature first of all. Hence comes the first and great commandment, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God.' But nature is so frail and weak that necessity compels her to love herself first; and this is carnal love, wherewith man loves himself first and selfishly, as it is written, that was not first which is spiritual but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual' (I Cor. 15.46). This is not as the precept ordains but as nature directs: No man ever yet hated his own flesh' (Eph. 5.29). But if, as is likely, this same love should grow excessive and, refusing to be contained within the restraining banks of necessity, should overflow into the fields of voluptuousness, then a command checks the flood, as if by a dike: Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself'. And this is right: for he who shares our nature should share our love, itself the fruit of nature.

 

Wherefore if a man finds it a burden, I will not say only to relieve his brother's needs, but to minister to his brother's pleasures, let him mortify those same affections in himself, lest he become a transgressor. He may cherish himself as tenderly as he chooses, if only he remembers to show the same indulgence to his neighbor. This is the curb of temperance imposed on thee, O man, by the law of life and conscience, lest thou shouldest follow thine own lusts to destruction, or become enslaved by those passions which are the enemies of thy true welfare. Far better divide thine enjoyments with thy neighbor than with these enemies. And if, after the counsel of the son of Sirach, thou goest not after thy desires but refrainest thyself from thine appetites (Ecclus. 18.30); if according to the apostolic precept having food and raiment, thou art therewith content (I Tim. 6.8), then thou wilt find it easy to abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, and to divide with thy neighbors what thou hast refused to thine own desires. That is a temperate and righteous love which practices self-denial in order to minister to a brother's necessity. So our selfish love grows truly social, when it includes our neighbors in its circle.

 

But if thou art reduced to want by such benevolence, what then? What indeed, except to pray with all confidence unto Him who giveth to all men liberally and upbraideth not (James 1.5), who openeth His hand and filleth all things living with plenteousness (Ps. 145.16). For doubtless He that giveth to most men more than they need will not fail thee as to the necessaries of life, even as He hath promised: Seek ye the Kingdom of God, and all those things shall be added unto you' (Luke 12.31). God freely promises all things needful to those who deny themselves for love of their neighbors; and to bear the yoke of modesty and sobriety, rather than to let sin reign in our mortal body (Rom. 6.12), that is indeed to seek the Kingdom of God and to implore His aid against the tyranny of sin. It is surely justice to share our natural gifts with those who share our nature.

 

 But if we are to love our neighbors as we ought, we must have regard to God also: for it is only in God that we can pay that debt of love aright. Now a man cannot love his neighbor in God, except he love God Himself; wherefore we must love God first, in order to love our neighbors in Him. This too, like all good things, is the Lord's doing, that we should love Him, for He hath endowed us with the possibility of love. He who created nature sustains it; nature is so constituted that its Maker is its protector for ever. Without Him nature could not have begun to be; without Him it could not subsist at all. That we might not be ignorant of this, or vainly attribute to ourselves the beneficence of our Creator, God has determined in the depths of His wise counsel that we should be subject to tribulations. So when man's strength fails and God comes to his aid, it is meet and right that man, rescued by God's hand, should glorify Him, as it is written, Call upon Me in the time of trouble; so will I hear thee, and thou shalt praise Me' (Ps. 50.15). In such wise man, animal and carnal by nature, and loving only himself, begins to love God by reason of that very self-love; since he learns that in God he can accomplish all things that are good, and that without God he can do nothing.

 

National Pizza Day[2]


 

National Pizza Day is dedicated to appreciating pizza, a baked flatbread that is topped with tomato sauce and cheese.  Many toppings and sauces can be added to pizzas, including vegetables, meats and seafood.  Pizza was invented in Naples, Italy around the 10th century, and has since grown to become one of the most popular foods in America. In 1905, America’s first pizzeria, Lombardi’s, opened in New York.  Since then, pizza consumption in America has increased greatly and many pizza chains, such as Pizza Hut, Domino’s and Papa John’s have emerged. The origin of National Pizza Day is not well understood although accounts of National Pizza Day began to emerge around the 2000s.

 

National Pizza Day Facts & Quotes

 

·       According to a study done in 2013 by food delivery provider Foodler, 37% of North American consumers order plain cheese pizza, 52% order meat toppings and the three most ordered pizza toppings are: pepperoni, mushrooms and onions.

o   According to gross sales earned by pizza chains, the top five American pizzerias are:
1) Pizza Hut, gross sales of $13.4 Billion
2) Domino’s, gross sales of $8.9 Billion
3) Little Caesars, gross sales of $3.4 Billion
4) Papa John’s, gross sales of $3.3 Billion
5) Papa Murphy's, gross sales of $7.85 Million

·       If I could eat whatever I wanted every day, I would have Domino's pizza with pasta carbonara inside every slice. And at night, I would have Neapolitan ice cream until I felt absolutely toxic. And then I would drift off telling myself, 'It's going to be O.K... It's going to be O.K. you're going to train in the morning'. - Robert Downey, Jr., Actor

 

National Pizza Day Top Events and Things to Do

 

·       Visit your favorite pizzeria.  Most pizzerias will offer discounts and specials to celebrate National Pizza Day.

·       Make your own pizza at home from scratch. Make the dough, perhaps gluten-free or whole wheat, make the sauce using tomatoes and spices, grate the cheese and finally cover it up with all of your favorite toppings.

·       Try a pizza with unique toppings.  Here are some of our favorites:
1) Chicken Tikka Masala Pizza
2) Beer Battered Fried Calamari Pizza
3) Butternut Squash and Sage Pizza
4) Fried Chicken Pizza
5) Brown Butter Lobster and Spinach Pizza with Bacon and Fontina

Every Wednesday is Dedicated to St. Joseph

The Italian culture has always had a close association with St. Joseph perhaps you could make Wednesdays centered around Jesus’s Papa. Plan an Italian dinner of pizza or spaghetti after attending Mass as most parishes have a Wednesday evening Mass. You could even do carry out to help restaurants. If you are adventurous you could do the Universal Man Plan: St. Joseph style. Make the evening a family night perhaps it could be a game night. Whatever you do make the day special.

·       Do the St. Joseph Universal Man Plan.

·       Devotion to the 7 Joys and Sorrows of St. Joseph

 

Daily Devotions/Practices

 

·       Today’s Saint is the patron of tooth aches and guess what? Today is National Toothache Day-Dude!?

·       Today's Fast: Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Purity

·       Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus

·       Total Consecration to St. Joseph Day 12


·       Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·       Drops of Christ’s Blood

·       Universal Man Plan

·       Rosary


                                            


[1] On Loving God, Chap. VIII. St. Bernard of Clairvaux




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