Sunday, January 21, 2024

 

Third Sunday After Epiphany 

Psalm 91, verse 5-6

5 You shall not FEAR the terror of the night nor the arrow that flies by day, 6 nor the pestilence that roams in darkness, nor the plague that ravages at noon. 

In the military, units of archers are men who are expert at hitting a mark or target.

 

Sin is the act of violating God's will. Sin can also be viewed as anything that violates the ideal relationship between an individual and God, or as any diversion from the ideal order for human living. To sin has been defined as "to miss the mark" to have a hardened heart, a loss of love for God, a disposition of the heart to depart from God because of inordinate self-love.

 

We need to live the Shema Israel. Every day, every action of ours should be metaphorically speaking target practice aiming to love God with our whole heart, mind, soul, and strength. We should exemplify this with the proper attitude toward wealth and be completely occupied with good deeds and almsgiving. 

Leaders Organize not Hesitate[1] 

He that hesitates is lost. Yet, to act to quickly is also to be rash. Paul wrote to bring order to a church in chaos. Like our modern world churches can be in chaos when there is no leadership. The Corinthian’s were abusing their gifts and calling attention to themselves rather than to Christ. Paul therefore suggests for them to do everything “decently and in order.” John Maxwell submits that there is a leadership lesson that can bring peace to chaos.

 

  1. Identify and pursue your top priorities.
  2. Seek to practice what will benefit the most people.
  3. Communicate clearly.
  4. See things through the eyes of an outsider.
  5. Order activities simply for the purpose of adding value to others.
  6. Make sure everything is done in an appropriate manner. 

ON KEEPING THE LORD'S DAY HOLY[2]

CHAPTER II

DIES CHRISTI

The Day of the Risen Lord
and of the Gift
of the Holy Spirit

The weekly Easter

19. "We celebrate Sunday because of the venerable Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, and we do so not only at Easter but also at each turning of the week": so wrote Pope Innocent I at the beginning of the fifth century, testifying to an already well established practice which had evolved from the early years after the Lord's Resurrection. Saint Basil speaks of "holy Sunday, honored by the Lord's Resurrection, the first fruits of all the other days"; and Saint Augustine calls Sunday "a sacrament of Easter".

The intimate bond between Sunday and the Resurrection of the Lord is strongly emphasized by all the Churches of East and West. In the tradition of the Eastern Churches in particular, every Sunday is the anastàsimos hemèra, the day of Resurrection, and this is why it stands at the heart of all worship.

In the light of this constant and universal tradition, it is clear that, although the Lord's Day is rooted in the very work of creation and even more in the mystery of the biblical "rest" of God, it is nonetheless to the Resurrection of Christ that we must look in order to understand fully the Lord's Day. This is what the Christian Sunday does, leading the faithful each week to ponder and live the event of Easter, true source of the world's salvation.

Third Sunday after Epiphany[3]

Under the traditional calendar the Church Christ cures the Jewish leper and the Roman centurion's servant, calling both Jew and Gentile to His flock.

THE Church, knowing that she cannot sufficiently love and praise God, at the Introit of the Mass invites all angels to praise Him: Adore God, all you His angels: Sion heard and was glad, and the daughters of Juda rejoiced. The Lord hath reigned, let the earth rejoice, let many islands be glad (Ps. xcvi.).

 

Prayer.

 

Almighty and eternal God mercifully look upon our infirmities, and extend the right hand of Thy majesty to help and defend us. Amen.

EPISTLE. Rom. xii. 16-21.

Brethren: Be not wise in your own conceits: to no man rendering evil for evil: providing good things not only in the sight of God, but also in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as in you, having peace with all men. Not revenging yourselves, my dearly beloved; but give place unto wrath, for it is written: Revenge to Me: I will repay, saith the Lord. But if thy enemy be hungry, give him to eat; if he thirst, give him drink; for doing this thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head. Be not overcome by evil, but overcome evil by good.

 

What is the meaning of the words, “Revenge to Me: I will repay, saith the Lord”?

 

They mean that God alone has the right to revenge. “Are you impatient”, says St. Ambrose, “then you will be conquered: but do you suffer in patience, then you will be conqueror.”

 

What must we do, then, when our honor is attacked?

 

When an injury by others brings serious consequences upon us, it is not only permissible, but even a duty, to defend our honor and good name. In matters of less importance, we should leave our assailants to God, according to the admonition of the Apostle.

 

Is it wrong to wish our neighbor the evil that he wished us?

 

Certainly, for it is contrary to the law of God, Who commands us to love our enemies, to do good to them that hate us, and pray for them that persecute and calumniate us (Matt, v. 44; Luke vi. 35).

 

How are we to “heap coals of fire on the heads of our enemies”?

 

When, according to the will of God, we render good for evil, thereby confounding our enemies and causing them to burn with shame; St. Augustine says: You will heap burning coals of love on his head, for nothing sooner begets love than to meet one with love.

Prayer.

Enable me, O heavenly Father, so to follow these admonitions of St. Paul in regard to the love of my enemies that I may be Thy child, Who makest Thy sun to shine upon the evil and upon the good.


GOSPEL. Matthew viii. 1-18


 

At that time, when Jesus was come down from the mountain, great multitudes followed Him: and behold a leper came and adored Him, saying: Lord, if Thou wilt, thou canst make me clean. And Jesus, stretching forth His hand, touched him, saying: I will. Be thou made clean. And forthwith his leprosy was cleansed. And Jesus saith to him: See thou tell no man: but go show thyself to the priest and offer the gift which Moses commanded for a testimony unto them. And when He had entered into Capharnaum, there came to Him a centurion, beseeching Him, and saying: Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, and is grievously tormented. And Jesus saith to him: I will come and heal him. And the centurion, making answer, said: Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof; but only say the word, and my servant shall be healed. For I also am a man subject to authority, having under me soldiers; and I say to this: Go, and he goeth: and to another: Come, and he cometh: and to my servant: Do this, and he doth it. And Jesus hearing this, marveled: and said to them that followed Him: Amen I say to you, I have not found so great faith in Israel. And I say to you that many shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven: but the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into the exterior darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And Jesus said to the centurion: Go, and as thou hast believed, so be it done to thee. And the servant was healed at the same hour.

 

Why did the leper say to Jesus, “Lord, if Thou wilt, thou canst make me clean”?

 

Because he believed Jesus to be the promised Messiah, Who, as true God, had the power to heal him. When we pray, we must be careful not to prescribe to God what He shall give us, but begin by saying, “If it be pleasing to Thee, and advantageous to me, give me this or that grace.

 

Why did Jesus stretch forth His hand and touch him?

 

So that he might understand that his leprosy was to be healed. Let us also imitate the example of Jesus by assisting each other in sickness, not shirking this work of charity from aversion or excessive delicacy.

 

Why did Jesus say, “I will, be thou made clean”?

 

To reveal His almightiness, and to show that all things were subject to Him.

 

Why did Jesus say, “See thou tell no man”?

 

To show His modesty and humility, and to teach us, when we do good works, not to speak of them, thus losing our reward (Matt. vi. 2, 3).

 

What does the Savior mean by saying, Go show thyself to the priest?

 

1. Christ wished to show His respect for the law of Moses, for lepers were required to show themselves to the priests, who were to decide whether they were clean or not. He also teaches us that priests should receive their proper respect.

 

2. He reminded him who was cleansed to give thanks to God by offering the gift which Moses commanded.

 

What does the solicitude of the centurion teach us?

 

That masters and mistresses should take care of their sick servants and do what they can to restore them to health.

 

Why did Our Savior say, I will come and heal him?

 

To show His profound humility, for although He was God, and the Lord of lords, He did not hesitate to visit a poor servant.

 

Why did the centurion say, Lord, I am not worthy that Thou shouldst enter under my roof?

 

Out of humility, for he acknowledged Jesus to be Almighty God.

 

What is the meaning of the words, “That many shall come from the east and the west, and shall sit down with Abraham”?

 

Christ meant that many unbelievers shall receive the Gospel, and, living according to it, shall thereby gain the kingdom of heaven, while the Jews, who were the chosen people of God, shall, for their unbelief and sins, be cast out into the exterior darkness that is, into the most excruciating pains of hell.

 

Catechism of the Catholic Church

PART THREE: LIFE IN CHRIST

SECTION ONE-MAN'S VOCATION LIFE IN THE SPIRIT

                                                CHAPTER TWO-THE HUMAN COMMUNION

Article 3-SOCIAL JUSTICE

III. Human Solidarity

1939 The principle of solidarity, also articulated in terms of "friendship" or "social charity," is a direct demand of human and Christian brotherhood.

An error, "today abundantly widespread, is disregard for the law of human solidarity and charity, dictated and imposed both by our common origin and by the equality in rational nature of all men, whatever nation they belong to. This law is sealed by the sacrifice of redemption offered by Jesus Christ on the altar of the Cross to his heavenly Father, on behalf of sinful humanity."

1940 Solidarity is manifested in the first place by the distribution of goods and remuneration for work. It also presupposes the effort for a more just social order where tensions are better able to be reduced and conflicts more readily settled by negotiation.

1941 Socio-economic problems can be resolved only with the help of all the forms of solidarity: solidarity of the poor among themselves, between rich and poor, of workers among themselves, between employers and employees in a business, solidarity among nations and peoples. International solidarity is a requirement of the moral order; world peace depends in part upon this.

1942 The virtue of solidarity goes beyond material goods. In spreading the spiritual goods of the faith, the Church has promoted, and often opened new paths for, the development of temporal goods as well. and so throughout the centuries has the Lord's saying been verified: "Seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things shall be yours as well":

For two thousand years this sentiment has lived and endured in the soul of the Church, impelling souls then and now to the heroic charity of monastic farmers, liberators of slaves, healers of the sick, and messengers of faith, civilization, and science to all generations and all peoples for the sake of creating the social conditions capable of offering to everyone possible a life worthy of man and of a Christian.

Life First[4] 9 Days for Life 

9 Days for Life is a "digital pilgrimage" of prayer and action focused on cherishing the gift of every person's life. A multi-faceted novena highlighting a different intention each day provides reflections, bonus information, and suggested actions. Join to receive the novena through the 9 Days for Life app, daily emails, or daily texts. See below for information on how else you can get involved! #9DaysforLife #OurPrayersMatter

 

Day Six

Intercession: May all victims and survivors of human trafficking find freedom, refuge, and healing. 

Prayers: Our Father, 3 Hail Mary’s, Glory Be 

Reflection: Those who are vulnerable are most at risk for being lured into situations where they are trafficked. Migrants and refugees often face increased risk factors like changes to language and culture, lack of support systems, and the burden of poverty. Young people on the margins, especially runaway and homeless youth, are targeted for sex trafficking and may subsequently be forced to have abortions. Easily tempted by the false promises of traffickers, victims often find themselves enslaved with no means of escape. Christ came “to bring good news to the afflicted, to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives” (Is 61:1, cf. Luke 4:18). May all who are trapped in situations of slavery be released from their chains of captivity and find freedom, refuge, safety, and healing in Christ and His Church. 

Acts of Reparation (Choose one.)

 

·         Give up sleeping on your pillow tonight. Allow this small sacrifice to remind you of the sufferings endured by those in our world who are enslaved.
 

·         St. Josephine Bakhita, who was born in Sudan and sold into slavery, has become known as the patron saint of human trafficking victims. Pray for victims and survivors of human trafficking, asking the intercession of St. Josephine Bakhita.
 

·         Offer some other sacrifice, prayer, or act of penance that you feel called to do for today’s intention.

THE RACCOLTA[5]

2-SEVEN GLORIA PATRI'S, ETC., SAID BY THREE PERSONS CONJOINTLY.

The power of a three-strand rope

 

The twisting of the three strands creates a rope that is much stronger than a single strand of the same diameter. Another advantage of a three-strand rope is its ability to absorb shock.

·         Pope Pius VI., in order to sanction the devout exercise begun in France with the approbation and under the auspices of Monsignor Beaumont, Archbishop of Paris, of happy memory, granted, by a decree of the S. Congr. of Indulgences, dated May 15, 1784 -

·         An indulgence of 100 days, daily, and an indulgence of seven years and seven quarantines every Sunday, to all the faithful who, with contrite hearts, shall recite three several times a day (that is, morning, noon, and evening) seven Gloria Patri’s and one Ave Maria, in honor of the Mystery of the Most Holy Trinity, of the Incarnation of the Divine Word, and His most holy Mother Mary;

·         A plenary indulgence to those who shall recite every day, three times a day as above, seven Gloria Patri’s and one Ave Maria to be gained twice a month, that is, on any two Sundays in the month, when, after Confession and Communion, they shall visit some church, and pray according to the intention of the Sovereign Pontiff.

·         It is, however, requisite, in order to gain these Indulgences, that there should be a pious union of three persons, who civilly agree amongst themselves to recite, either together or by themselves, the said seven Gloria Patri’s and one Ave Maria; and that, should any one of the three die, or in some other way fail to say these prayers, then the other two should find a substitute, so that the pious union of three persons may be always maintained.

Daily Devotions

·         Today in honor of the Holy Trinity do the Divine Office giving your day to God. To honor God REST: no shopping after 6 pm Saturday till Monday. Don’t forget the internet.

·         Unite in the work of the Porters of St. Joseph by joining them in fasting: Today's Fast: Increase in Religious and consecrated life.

·         Religion in the Home for Preschool: January

·         Carnival Time begins in Catholic Countries.

·         Offering to the sacred heart of Jesus

·         Make reparations to the Holy Face

·         Drops of Christ’s Blood

·         Rosary





[1] John Maxwell, The Maxwell Leadership Bible.

[3]Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896.

[4]http://www.usccb.org/about/pro-life-activities/january-roe-events/nine-days-of-prayer-penance-and-pilgrimage.cfm

[5]http://liturgialatina.org/raccolta/trinity.htm#:~:text=A%20plenary%20indulgence%20for%20ever%2C%20once%20in%20a,according%20to%20the%20intention%20of%20the%20Sovereign%20Pontiff.

 

Chinese New Year[10] coming February 10








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