Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Catholic Caucus: Sunday Mass Readings, 11-18-12, Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time
USCCB.org/RNAB ^ | 11-18-12 | Revised New American Bible

Posted on 11/17/2012 9:27:15 PM PST by Salvation

November 18, 2012

 

Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

 

Reading 1 Dn 12:1-3

In those days, I Daniel,
heard this word of the Lord:
"At that time there shall arise
Michael, the great prince,
guardian of your people;
it shall be a time unsurpassed in distress
since nations began until that time.
At that time your people shall escape,
everyone who is found written in the book.

"Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake;
some shall live forever,
others shall be an everlasting horror and disgrace.

"But the wise shall shine brightly
like the splendor of the firmament,
and those who lead the many to justice
shall be like the stars forever."

Responsorial Psalm Ps 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11

R. (1) You are my inheritance, O Lord!
O LORD, my allotted portion and my cup,
you it is who hold fast my lot.
I set the LORD ever before me;
with him at my right hand I shall not be disturbed.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
Therefore my heart is glad and my soul rejoices,
my body, too, abides in confidence;
because you will not abandon my soul to the netherworld,
nor will you suffer your faithful one to undergo corruption.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!
You will show me the path to life,
fullness of joys in your presence,
the delights at your right hand forever.
R. You are my inheritance, O Lord!

Reading 2 Heb 10:11-14, 18

Brothers and sisters:
Every priest stands daily at his ministry,
offering frequently those same sacrifices
that can never take away sins.
But this one offered one sacrifice for sins,
and took his seat forever at the right hand of God;
now he waits until his enemies are made his footstool.
For by one offering
he has made perfect forever those who are being consecrated.

Where there is forgiveness of these,
there is no longer offering for sin.

GOSPEL Mk 13:24-32

Jesus said to his disciples:
"In those days after that tribulation
the sun will be darkened,
and the moon will not give its light,
and the stars will be falling from the sky,
and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

"And then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in the clouds'
with great power and glory,
and then he will send out the angels
and gather his elect from the four winds,
from the end of the earth to the end of the sky.

"Learn a lesson from the fig tree.
When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves,
you know that summer is near.
In the same way, when you see these things happening,
know that he is near, at the gates.
Amen, I say to you,
this generation will not pass away
until all these things have taken place.
Heaven and earth will pass away,
but my words will not pass away.

"But of that day or hour, no one knows,
neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."


TOPICS: Catholic; General Discusssion; Prayer; Worship
KEYWORDS: catholic; ordinarytime; prayer
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-52 next last
For your reading, reflection, faith-sharing, comments, questions, discussion.


1 posted on 11/17/2012 9:27:24 PM PST by Salvation
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

Comment #2 Removed by Moderator

To: nickcarraway; NYer; ELS; Pyro7480; livius; ArrogantBustard; Catholicguy; RobbyS; marshmallow; ...
Alleluia Ping!
 
If you aren’t on this ping list NOW and would like to be, 
please Freepmail me.

3 posted on 11/17/2012 9:35:24 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: All

From: Daniel 12:1-3

The Resurrection of the Dead


[1] “At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your peo-
ple. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was
a nation till that time; but at that time your people shall be delivered, every one
whose name shall be found written in the book. [2] And many of those who sleep
in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame
and everlasting contempt. [3] And those who are wise shall shine like the bright-
ness of the firmament; and those who turn many to righteousness, like the stars
for ever and ever.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

12:1-4. The prophecy ends by announcing the deliverance of the people of God
through the mediation Michael, the angel protector of Israel. The names written in
the book symbolize those who are truly the people of God — those whom God re-
gards as his people because they have stayed faithful to him. There is no mention
now of the everlasting kingdom on earth that we heard of in 2:44 and 7:14, but
one presumes that there will be one, for those who were dead will rise, either to
have a share in that kingdom or else to suffer the punishment they deserve. The
new situation in which the good and the wicked find themselves will never change
again: it will he forever. Those who will shine brightest are those who knew and
taught the Law — those who “turn many to righteousness” (v. 3), not the martyrs.
The book of Daniel goes further than the prophets Isaiah and Ezekiel went. They
spoke symbolically of a resurgence of the people in terms of a resurrection (cf.
Is 26:19; Ezek 37); in Daniel as in 2 Maccabees 7:14, 29 the resurrection is real,
not symbolic: “God reveals the resurrection of the dead to his people progress-
sively. Hope in the bodily resurrection of the dead established itself as a conse-
quence intrinsic to faith in God as creator of the whole man, soul and body. The
creator of heaven and earth is also the one who faithfully maintains his covenant
with Abraham and his posterity. It was in this double perspective that faith in the
resurrection came to be expressed” (”Catechism of the Catholic Church”, 992).

Moreover, Daniel proclaims the resurrection not only of martyrs (as happens in 2
Maccabees) but of all, for that is what the word “many” (v. 2) means. The Church,
too, in the light of Jesus’ teaching, believes that “all the dead will rise, ‘those who
have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the
resurrection of judgment’ (Jn 5:29; cf. Dan 12:2)” (ibid., 998).

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


4 posted on 11/17/2012 9:36:58 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Hebrews 10:11-14, 18

Christ’s Offering of Himself Has Infinite Value (Continuation)


[11] And every priest stands daily at his service, offering repeatedly the same sa-
crifices, which can never take away sins. [12] But when Christ had offered for all
time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God, [13] then to
wait until his enemies should be made a stool for his feet. [14] For by a single of-
fering he has perfected for all time those who are sanctified.

[18] Where there is forgiveness of these, there is no longer any offering for sin.

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

11-14. Teaching given elsewhere in the letter (8:5; 9:9-10, 12-13, 25; 10:14) is
now reiterated in order to show the universal efficacy of Christ’s sacrifice. Howe-
ver, here it is expounded by comparing the posture of the Old Testament priests
with that of Christ. They did in fact have to STAND in the presence of Yahweh,
offering victims repeatedly. Standing was the correct posture for servants and
employees. The reference is to Old Testament priests who repeatedly, every
day, went through the same motions and offered the same sacrifices. By con-
trast, Christ, as is stated in Psalm 110:1, after his Ascension is seated at the
right hand of God the Father (see notes on Mt 16:19 and Heb 1:3). In addition to
conveying the idea of repose and rest, being seated would be equivalent to recei-
ving royal investiture or to exercising authority (cf. Heb 7:26; 8:1); also, a king’s
chief minister or heir used to sit on the right of the king, as in a place of special
honor (cf. Mt 26:24; Mk 14: 62; Lk 26:69); and it might be pointed out that David
pitched his tent to the right of the tabernacle: cf. 2 Sam 7:18). What has hap-
pened is that by virtue of the efficacy of his single sacrifice, Christ has taken pos-
session of heaven for ever more and has merited royal dignity; all that remains to
happen, and it shall happen, is for all his enemies to submit to him (cf. 1 Cor 15:
25-28). So fruitful is his sacrifice that those who take part in it, “those who have
been sanctified”, are thereby perfected: they obtain forgiveness of sins, purity of
conscience, access to and union with God. In other words, the source of holi-
ness in men is the sacrifice of Calvary.

15-18. The last proof of the superiority of Christ’s sacrifice for the forgiveness of
sins is based on this passage of Jeremiah 31:33-34, already quoted in 8: 10-12.
The letter is insisting on the spiritual character of the New Covenant—ratified with
the blood of Christ—which is impressed on the hearts and minds of men. And it
is also emphasizing the effects of this Covenant—forgiveness of sins by God.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


5 posted on 11/17/2012 9:37:53 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: All

From: Mark 13:24-32

Signs of the End of the Word and the Coming of the Son of Man


(Jesus said to His disciples,) [24] “But in those days, after that tribulation, the
sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, [25] and the stars will
be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. [26] And
they will see the Son of Man coming in clouds with great power and glory. [27]
And then He will send out the angels, and gather His elect from the four winds,
from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.

The Time of the Destruction of Jerusalem


[28] “From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender
and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. [29] So also, when you
see these things taking place you know that He is near, at the very gates. [30]
Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away before all these things take
place. [31] Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.”

[32] “But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in Heaven,
nor the Son, but only the Father.”

*********************************************************************************************
Commentary:

24-25. It would seem that at the end of time even irrational creatures will shrink
before the Supreme Judge, Jesus Christ, coming in the majesty of His glory,
thus fulfilling the prophecies of the Old Testament (cf., e.g., Isaiah 13:10; 34:4;
Ezekiel 32:7). Some Fathers, such as St. Jerome (”Comm. in Matthew, in loc.”)
and St. John Chrysostom (”Hom. on St. Matthew”, 77) understand “the powers
in the heavens” to mean the angels, who will be in awe at these events. This in-
terpretation is supported by the liturgical use of describing the angels, taken to-
gether, as “virtutes caelorum” (cf. “Roman Missal”, Preface of Martyrs). But
many other commentators think the phrase, like the preceding words in the text,
could mean “cosmic forces” or “stars of the firmament”.

26-27. Christ here describes His Second Coming, at the end of time, as an-
nounced by the prophet Daniel (7:13). He discloses the deeper meaning of the
words of the ancient prophet: the “one like a Son of Man”, whom Daniel saw
and to whom “was given dominion and glory and kingdom, that all peoples, na-
tions and languages should serve Him,” is Jesus Christ Himself, who will gather
the saints around Him.

28-30. As already pointed out in the note on Mark 13:4, Jesus’ disciples, follo-
wing the ideas current among Jews at the time, could not conceive the destruc-
tion of Jerusalem as separate from the end of the world; and, also, there is a
connection between the two events, in that the former is a prefigurement of the
latter. Our Lord answers His disciples in Mark 13:20 by saying that the destruc-
tion of Jerusalem will happen in the lifetime of their generation (as in fact oc-
curred in the year 70, at the hands of the Roman legions). For further explana-
tion of the ruin of Jerusalem as a figure of the end of the world, cf. note on Mat-
thew 24:32-35.

31. With this sentence our Lord adds a special solemnity to what He is saying:
all this will definitely come to pass.

God has only to speak and His words come true, only He who is Lord of the Uni-
verse has all existence in His power, and Jesus has received from the Father all
power over heaven and earth (cf. Matthew 11:27 and 28:18).

32. Referring to this verse, St. Augustine explains (”On the Psalms”, 36:1): “Our
Lord Jesus Christ was sent to be our Master, yet He declared that even the Son
of Man was ignorant of that day, because it was not part of His office as Master
to acquaint us with it.”

Regarding the knowledge Christ had during His life on earth, see the note on
Luke 2:52.

*********************************************************************************************
Source: “The Navarre Bible: Text and Commentaries”. Biblical text from the
Revised Standard Version and New Vulgate. Commentaries by members of
the Faculty of Theology, University of Navarre, Spain.

Published by Four Courts Press, Kill Lane, Blackrock, Co. Dublin, Ireland, and
by Scepter Publishers in the United States.


6 posted on 11/17/2012 9:39:04 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: All
Scripture readings taken from the Jerusalem Bible, published and copyright © 1966, 1967 and 1968 by Darton, Longman & Todd

Readings at Mass


First reading Daniel 12:1-3 ©
‘At that time Michael will stand up, the great prince who mounts guard over your people. There is going to be a time of great distress, unparalleled since nations first came into existence. When that time comes, your own people will be spared, all those whose names are found written in the Book. Of those who lie sleeping in the dust of the earth many will awake, some to everlasting life, some to shame and everlasting disgrace. The learned will shine as brightly as the vault of heaven, and those who have instructed many in virtue, as bright as stars for all eternity.’

Psalm Psalm 15:5,8-11 ©
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.
O Lord, it is you who are my portion and cup;
  it is you yourself who are my prize.
I keep the Lord ever in my sight:
  since he is at my right hand, I shall stand firm.
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.
And so my heart rejoices, my soul is glad;
  even my body shall rest in safety.
For you will not leave my soul among the dead,
  nor let your beloved know decay.
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.
You will show me the path of life,
  the fullness of joy in your presence,
  at your right hand happiness for ever.
Preserve me, God, I take refuge in you.

Second reading Hebrews 10:11-14,18 ©
All the priests stand at their duties every day, offering over and over again the same sacrifices which are quite incapable of taking sins away. He, on the other hand, has offered one single sacrifice for sins, and then taken his place forever, at the right hand of God, where he is now waiting until his enemies are made into a footstool for him. By virtue of that one single offering, he has achieved the eternal perfection of all whom he is sanctifying. When all sins have been forgiven, there can be no more sin offerings.

Gospel Acclamation Mt24:42 44
Alleluia, alleluia!
Stay awake and stand ready,
because you do not know the hour
when the Son of Man is coming.
Alleluia!
Or Lk21:36
Alleluia, alleluia!
Stay awake, praying at all times
for the strength to stand with confidence
before the Son of Man.
Alleluia!

Gospel Mark 13:24-32 ©
Jesus said, ‘In those days, after the time of distress, the sun will be darkened, the moon will lose its brightness, the stars will come falling from heaven and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory; then too he will send the angels to gather his chosen from the four winds, from the ends of the world to the ends of heaven.
  ‘Take the fig tree as a parable: as soon as its twigs grow supple and its leaves come out, you know that summer is near. So with you when you see these things happening: know that he is near, at the very gates. I tell you solemnly, before this generation has passed away all these things will have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
  ‘But as for that day or hour, nobody knows it, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son; no one but the Father.’

7 posted on 11/17/2012 9:51:08 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: All

8 posted on 11/17/2012 9:52:14 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: All
Papal Encyclical on Faith Announced

On the Desire for God
On the Ecclesial Nature of Faith
On the Nature of Faith
Catechism's benefits explained for Year of Faith (Catholic Caucus)
A Life of Faith: Papal Theologian Speaks on the Grace of Faith
ASIA/LAOS - "Year of Faith" amid the persecutions of Christians forced to become "animists"
From no faith to a mountain-top of meaning: Father John Nepil (Catholic Caucus)
Living the Year of Faith: How Pope Benedict Wants You to Begin [Catholic Caucus]
Share Your Faith in This Year of Faith: Two keys to help you do it.
On A New Series of Audiences for The Year of Faith

Pope will deliver year-long teaching series on restoring faith
Pope Benedict XVI Grants Plenary Indulgence to Faithful [Catholic Caucus]
Pope, at Marian shrine, entrusts Year of Faith, synod to Mary (Catholic Caucus)
Catholic Church Calls for Public Prayers in Offices on Fridays
Highlights in the Plan for Year of Faith: Traditional Events Will Take on Special Perspective
Catholic Church calls for public prayers in offices on Fridays
Vatican Unveils Logo for Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Miami Prelate Recalls Pope's Visit to Cuba, Looks to Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
The World-Changing Year of Faith [Catholic Caucus]
Vatican to Issue Recommendations for Celebrating Year of Faith

9 posted on 11/17/2012 9:53:30 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: All

 

  PRAYERS AFTER
HOLY MASS AND COMMUNION

 


Leonine Prayers
    Following are the Prayers after Low Mass which were prescribed by Pope Leo XIII who composed the Prayer to Saint Michael the Archangel, and were reinforced by Pope Pius XI and Pope Pius XII to pray for the conversion of Russia. Below the normal Leonine Prayers is the longer version of the Prayer to St. Michael, composed by His Excellency Pope Leo XIII to defend against The Great Apostasy.
Latin

Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum, benedicta tu in mulieribus et benedictus fructis ventris tui, Jesus. Sancta Maria, Mater Dei, ora pro nobis peccatoribus, nunc et in hora mortis nostrae. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

    Salve Regina, Mater misericordiae, vita, dulcedo, et spes nostra, salve. Ad te clamamus, exsules filii Evae. Ad te suspiramus gementes et fientes in hac lacrymarum valle. Eia ergo, Advocata nostra, illos tuos misericordes oculos ad nos converte. Et Jesum, benedictum fructum ventris tui, nobis, post hoc exilium, ostende. O clemens, o pia, o dulcis Virgo Maria. Ora pro nobis, sancta Dei Genitrix. Ut digni efficiamur promissionibus Christi.

    Oremus. Deus, refugium nostrum et virtus, populum ad te clamantem propitius respice; et intercedente gloriosa, et immaculata Virgine Dei Genitrice Maria, cum beato Joseph, ejus Sponso, ac beatis Apostolis tuis Petro et Paulo, et omnibus Sanctis, quas pro conversione peccatorum, pro libertate et exaltatione sanctae Matris Ecclesiae, preces effundimus, misericors et benignus exaudi. Per eundum Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.

Sancte Michael Archangele, defende nos in proelio; contra nequitiam et insidias diaboli esto praesidium. Imperet illi Deus, supplices deprecamur: tuque, Princeps militiae Caelestis, satanam aliosque spiritus malignos, qui ad perditionem animarum pervagantur in mundo, divina virtute in infernum detrude. Amen.

Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.
Cor Jesu sacratissimum. Miserere nobis.

Vernacular

   Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou amongst women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.
(Said 3 times)

   Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness, and our hope. To thee to we cry, poor banished children of Eve. To thee do we send up our sighs, mouring and weeping in this valley of tears. Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy toward us, and after this exile, show unto us the blessed Fruit of thy womb, Jesus. O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary.

Pray for us, O holy Mother of God. That we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

   Let us pray.
O God, our refuge and our strength, look down with mercy upon the people who cry to Thee; and by the intercession of the glorious and immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of God, of Saint Joseph her spouse, of the blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and of all the saints, in Thy mercy and goodness hear our prayers for the conversion of sinners, and for the liberty and exaltation of the Holy Mother the Church. Through the same Christ Our Lord. Amen.

   Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle; be our protection against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray: and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of souls. Amen.

Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.
Most Sacred Heart of Jesus, Have mercy on us.


Complete Prayer to Saint Michael
    The following is the longer version of the vital prayer composed by Pope Leo XIII in 1888 after his startling vision as to the future of the Church. This prayer was dedicated for the Feast of St. Michael 1448 years from the date of the election of the first Leo - Pope Saint Leo the Great. Everyone is familiar with the first prayer below which was mandated by His Holiness as part of the Leonine Prayers after Low Mass. Below are both the short and longer versions of this poignant prayer which should never be forgotten.

    Saint Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle, be our defense against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him we humbly pray, and do thou, O heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell satan and all the evil spirits who prowl about the world for the ruin of souls. Amen.

O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.

    V: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
    R: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
    V: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
    R: As we have hoped in Thee.
    V: O Lord hear my prayer.
    R: And let my cry come unto Thee.

    V: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore Thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls. Amen.


Prayer Before the Crucifix

   Look down upon me, O good and gentle Jesus, while before Thy face I humbly kneel, and with burning soul pray and beseech Thee to fix deep in my heart lively sentiments of faith, hope and charity, true contrition for my sins, and a firm purpose of amendment; the while I contemplate with great love and tender pity Thy five most precious wounds, pondering over them within me, calling to mind the words which David Thy prophet said of Thee, my good Jesus: "They have pierced My hands and My feet; they have numbered all My bones."

Indulgence of ten years; a plenary indulgence if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, Raccolta 201)

Anima Christi - Soul of Christ

Soul of Christ, sanctify me.
Body of Christ, save me.
Blood of Christ, inebriate me.
Water from the side of Christ, wash me.
Passion of Christ, strengthen me.
O Good Jesus, hear me.
Within Thy wounds, hide me.
Suffer me not to be separated from Thee.
From the malignant enemy, defend me.
In the hour of my death, call me.
And bid me come to Thee, that with
Thy saints I may praise Thee for ever and ever. Amen.

Indulgence of 300 days; if recited after devout reception of Holy Communion, seven years Raccolta 131)

Prayer for Vocations

   O Lord Jesus Christ, Who didst take to Thyself a body and soul like ours, to teach us the glory of self-sacrifice and service, mercifully deign to instill in other hearts the desire to dedicate their lives to Thee. Give us PRIESTS to stand before Thine Altar and to preach the words of Thy Gospel; BROTHERS to assist the priests and to reproduce in themselves Thy humility; SISTERS to teach the young and nurse the sick and to minister Thy charity to all; LAY PEOPLE to imitate Thee in their homes and families. Amen

10 posted on 11/17/2012 9:54:30 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 9 | View Replies]

To: All
Prayers for The Religion Forum (Ecumenical)
11 posted on 11/17/2012 9:55:30 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: All
Continue to Pray for Pope Benedict [Ecumenical]
12 posted on 11/17/2012 9:56:46 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 11 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Jesus, High Priest
 

We thank you, God our Father, for those who have responded to your call to priestly ministry.

Accept this prayer we offer on their behalf: Fill your priests with the sure knowledge of your love.

Open their hearts to the power and consolation of the Holy Spirit.

Lead them to new depths of union with your Son.

Increase in them profound faith in the Sacraments they celebrate as they nourish, strengthen and heal us.

Lord Jesus Christ, grant that these, your priests, may inspire us to strive for holiness by the power of their example, as men of prayer who ponder your word and follow your will.

O Mary, Mother of Christ and our mother, guard with your maternal care these chosen ones, so dear to the Heart of your Son.

Intercede for our priests, that offering the Sacrifice of your Son, they may be conformed more each day to the image of your Son, our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Saint John Vianney, universal patron of priests, pray for us and our priests

This icon shows Jesus Christ, our eternal high priest.

The gold pelican over His heart represents self-sacrifice.

The border contains an altar and grapevines, representing the Mass, and icons of Melchizedek and St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney.

Melchizedek: king of righteousness (left icon) was priest and king of Jerusalem.  He blessed Abraham and has been considered an ideal priest-king.

St. Jean-Baptiste Vianney is the patron saint of parish priests.


13 posted on 11/17/2012 9:57:35 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 12 | View Replies]

To: All
Pray a Rosary each day for our nation.

Pray the Rosary

1.  Sign of the Cross:  In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  Amen.

2.  The Apostles Creed:  I BELIEVE in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, His only Son, our Lord. He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. On the third day He rose again. He ascended into heaven and sits at the right hand of God, the Father Almighty. From there He shall come to judge the living and the dead. I believe in the Holy Spirit, the holy catholic Church, the communion of saints, the forgiveness of sins, the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.

3.  The Lord's Prayer:  OUR Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. Amen.

4. (3) Hail Mary:  HAIL Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou amongst women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now, and in the hour of our death. Amen. (Three times)

5. Glory Be:  GLORY be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end. Amen.

Fatima Prayer: Oh, my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell, lead all souls to heaven, especially those in most need of your mercy.

Announce each mystery, then say 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys, 1 Glory Be and 1 Fatima prayer.  Repeat the process with each mystery.

End with the Hail Holy Queen:

Hail, Holy Queen, Mother of Mercy, our life, our sweetness and our hope! To thee do we cry, poor banished children of Eve! To thee do we send up our sighs, mourning and weeping in this vale of tears! Turn then, most gracious advocate, thine eyes of mercy towards us; and after this, our exile, show unto us the blessed fruit of thy womb, Jesus!

O clement, O loving, O sweet Virgin Mary! Pray for us, O holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ.

Final step -- The Sign of the Cross

 

The Mysteries of the Rosary

By tradition, Catholics meditate on these Mysteries during prayers of the Rosary.
The biblical references follow each of the Mysteries below.


The Glorious Mysteries
(Wednesdays and Sundays)
1.The Resurrection (Matthew 28:1-8, Mark 16:1-18, Luke 24:1-12, John 20:1-29) [Spiritual fruit - Faith]
2. The Ascension (Mark 16:19-20, Luke 24:50-53, Acts 1:6-11) [Spiritual fruit - Christian Hope]
3. The Descent of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-13) [Spiritual fruit - Gifts of the Holy Spirit]
4. The Assumption [Spiritual fruit - To Jesus through Mary]
5. The Coronation [Spiritual fruit - Grace of Final Perseverance]


14 posted on 11/17/2012 9:58:27 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 13 | View Replies]

To: All



~ PRAYER ~

St. Michael, the Archangel, defend us in battle
 Be our protection against the wickedness
and snares of the devil;
May God rebuke him, we  humbly pray,
 and do thou, O Prince of the heavenly host,
 by the power of God,
 Cast into hell Satan and all the evil spirits
who prowl through the world seeking the ruin of souls.
 Amen
+

15 posted on 11/17/2012 10:00:39 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: All

A Prayer for our Free Nation Under God
God Save Our Country web site (prayer warriors)
Prayer Chain Request for the United States of America
Pray for Nancy Pelosi
Prayer and fasting will help defeat health care reform (Freeper Prayer Thread)
Prayer Campaign Started to Convert Pro-Abortion Catholic Politicians to Pro-Life
[Catholic Caucus] One Million Rosaries
Non-stop Rosary vigil to defeat ObamaCare

From an Obama bumper sticker on a car:

"Pray for Obama.  Psalm 109:8"

   

PLEASE JOIN US -

Evening Prayer
Someone has said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless.
Did you know that during WWII there was an advisor to Churchill who organized a group of people who dropped what they were doing every day at a prescribed hour for one minute to collectively pray for the safety of England, its people and peace?  


There is now a group of people organizing the same thing here in America. If you would like to participate: Every evening at 9:00 PM Eastern Time (8:00 PM Central) (7:00 PM Mountain) (6:00 PM Pacific), stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens, and for a return to a Godly nation. If you know anyone else who would like to participate, please pass this along. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.    Please forward this to your praying friends.


16 posted on 11/17/2012 10:01:36 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: All
 
St. Teresa of Avila Interceding for the Souls in Purgatory, from the workshop of Peter Paul Reubens, 1577–1640


II Maccabees 12:43-46: "And making a gathering, he [Judas] sent twelve thousand drachms of silver to Jerusalem for sacrifice to be offered for the sins of the dead, thinking well and religiously concerning the resurrection, (For if he had not hoped that they that were slain should rise again, it would have seemed superfluous and vain to pray for the dead,) And because he considered that they who had fallen asleep with godliness, had great grace laid up for them. It is therefore a holy and wholesome thought to pray for the dead, that they may be loosed from sins."

November Devotion: The Holy Souls in Purgatory

Since the 16th century Catholic piety has assigned entire months to special devotions. As a reminder of our duty to pray for the suffering faithful in Purgatory, the Church has dedicated the month of November to the Holy Souls. The Holy Souls are those who have died in the state of grace but who are not yet free from all punishment due to their unforgiven venial sins and all other sins already forgiven for which satisfaction is still to be made. They are certain of entering Heaven, but first they must suffer in Purgatory. The Holy Souls cannot help themselves because for them the night has come, when no man can work (John 9:4). It is our great privilege of brotherhood that we can shorten their time of separation from God by our prayers, good works, and, especially, the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

To Help the Holy Souls in Purgatory:

1. Have the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass offered up for them.

2. Pray the Rosary and or the Chaplet of Divine Marcy for them, or both.

3. Pray the Stations of the Cross.

4. Offer up little sacrifices and fasting.

5. Spread devotion to them, so that others may pray for them.

6. Attend Eucharistic Adoration and pray for them.

7. Gain all the indulgences you can, and apply them to the Holy Souls

8. Visit to a Cemetery

Say here the prayer for the day, click on torch for specific day:

SUNDAY

MONDAY

TUESDAY

WEDNESDAY

THURSDAY

FRIDAY

SATURDAY


Litany for the Holy Souls in Purgatory

V. The just shall be in everlasting remembrance; 
R. He shall not fear the evil hearing.
 
V. Absolve, O Lord, the souls of the faithful departed from every bond of sin, 
R. And by the help of Thy grace may they be enabled to escape the avenging judgment, 
and to enjoy the happiness of eternal life.  
V. Because in Thy mercy are deposited the souls that departed in an inferior degree of grace, 
R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Because their present suffering is greatest in the knowledge of the pain that their separation from Thee is causing Thee,
R. Lord, have mercy. 
V. Because of their present inability to add to Thy accidental glory, 
R. Lord, have mercy.
V. Not for our consolation, O Lord; not for their release from purgative pain, O God; 
but for Thy joy and the greater accidental honour of Thy throne, O Christ the King,
R. Lord, have mercy.
 
 
V. For the souls of our departed friends, relations and benefactors, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those of our family who have fallen asleep in Thy bosom, O Jesus, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who have gone to prepare our place,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. (For those who were our brothers [or sisters] in Religion,)
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For priests who were our spiritual directors,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For men or women who were our teachers in school,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who were our employers (or employees),
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who were our associates in daily toil,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For any soul whom we ever offended,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For our enemies now departed,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those souls who have none to pray for them,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those forgotten by their friends and kin,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those now suffering the most,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those who have acquired the most merit,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For the souls next to be released from Purgatory,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
 V. For those who, while on earth, were most devoted to God the Holy Ghost, to Jesus in the Most Blessed Sacrament, 
to the holy Mother of God,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all deceased popes and prelates,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all deceased priests, seminarians and religious, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all our brethren in the Faith everywhere, 
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For all our separated brethren who deeply loved Thee, and would have come into Thy household had they known the truth,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those souls who need, or in life asked, our prayers,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
V. For those, closer to Thee than we are, whose prayers we need,
R. grant light and peace, O Lord.  
 
 
V. That those may be happy with Thee forever, who on earth were true exemplars of the Catholic Faith, 
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.
V. That those may be admitted to Thine unveiled Presence, who as far as we know never committed mortal sin,     
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be housed in glory, who lived always in recollection and prayer,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be given the celestial joy of beholding Thee, who lived lives of mortification and self-denial and penance,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be flooded with Thy love, who denied themselves even Thy favours of indulgence and who made the heroic act for the souls who had gone before them,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
V. That those may be drawn up to the Beatific Vision, who never put obstacles in the way of sanctifying grace and who ever drew closer in mystical union with Thee,
R. grant them eternal rest, O Lord.  
 
 
V. Eternal rest give unto them, O Lord, 
R. And let perpetual light shine upon them. 
 
Let Us Pray 
Be mindful, O Lord, of Thy servants and handmaids, N. and N., who are gone before us with the sign of faith and repose in the sleep of grace.  To these, O Lord, 
and to all who rest in Christ, grant, we beseech Thee, a place of refreshment, light and peace, through the same Christ Our Lord.
 
Amen


All Saints or All Souls? Differences should be black and white
All Souls' Day [Catholic Caucus]
Why I Am Catholic: For Purgatory, Thank Heavens (Ecumenical)
Q and A: Why Pray for the Dead? [Ecumenical]
“….and Death is Gain” – A Meditation on the Christian View of Death [Catholic Caucus]
99 & 1/2 Won’t Do – A Meditation on Purgatory
The Month of November: Thoughts on the "Last Things"
To Trace All Souls Day (Protestants vs Catholics)

November 2 -- All Souls Day
On November: All Souls and the "Permanent Things"
"From the Pastor" ALL SAINTS & ALL SOULS
Praying for the Dead [All Souls Day] (Catholic/Orthodox Caucus)
To Trace All Souls Day [Ecumenical]
All Souls Day [Catholic/Orthodox Caucus]
The Roots of All Souls Day
The Commemoration of all the Faithful Departed (All Souls)
During Month of Souls, Recall Mystic, St. Gertrude the Great
All Saints and All Souls


17 posted on 11/17/2012 10:02:18 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: All

November 2012

Pope's intentions

General Intention: Ministers of the Gospel. That bishops, priests, and all ministers of the Gospel may bear the courageous witness of fidelity to the crucified and risen Lord.

Missionary Intention: Pilgrim Church. That the pilgrim Church on earth may shine as a light to the nations.


18 posted on 11/17/2012 10:31:32 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: All
Arlington Catholic Herald

GOSPEL COMMENTARY MK 13:24-32
Time and timelessness
Fr. Paul Scalia

A good teacher lets his students know the time of their tests. He may on occasion surprise them with a pop quiz, but he will make certain they know the date and time of the final exam. Our Lord, however, does just the opposite. Regarding His second coming and the last judgment (a final exam if ever there was one), He says “of that day or hour, no one knows” (Mk 13:32). Now, this seems like the kind of thing He should want us to know, so that we can prepare. So why does He not reveal the day or the hour?

He remains silent on this issue because our fallen human nature needs this strong medicine. Original sin has produced in us the tendency to procrastinate — that is, to prefer the immediate pleasure of some diversion to the labor that produces a future good. We would rather play video games than do homework, check our Facebook page than pray, watch football than rake the leaves.

And we should not think that we would treat Our Lord's return any differently. If we knew the precise day and hour of His coming, would we spend the time between now and then preparing for it? Would we strive to increase in grace and good works in anticipation of His arrival? No, probably not. If we knew the time of His coming, we would most likely leave our repentance and prayer for the day before ... at the earliest.

St. Augustine, who knew a thing or two about delay, warns us: “God has promised forgiveness to your repentance, but He has not promised tomorrow to your procrastination.” Jesus keeps the day and hour hidden from us so that we will always be on the watch and (one hopes) always prepared — indeed, always preparing. He has not promised us tomorrow precisely so that we will prepare now, not at the eleventh hour. It is strong medicine against our procrastination. He keeps us ignorant of His coming so that we always will be preparing for it.

Our ignorance of His return also brings us a great good. It frees us from slavery to the world's schedule. Few things control our lives more than the schedule, calendar and time-clock. We need to free ourselves from these. Certainly, we must keep a good calendar, be punctual and all the rest. Problem is, we get overwhelmed by the tyranny of time, allowing the world instead of Our Lord to determine our schedule. Without a fixed point of reference or purpose, we easily collapse under time's relentless march.

The possibility of Jesus coming at any moment relativizes temporal matters and reveals Him as Lord of all time. Time only has meaning in relation to Him and should be arranged with Him in view. As the church prays at the Easter Vigil, "All time belongs to Him and all the ages." Our vigilance for His arrival puts the world's schedule in perspective. All time gives way to His return. For that reason, we should schedule into our daily routine set moments of prayer — the morning offering, the Angelus, the rosary, the Liturgy of the Hours, etc. These pauses in our day allow Our Lord to break into our time and they remind us that the world's schedule does not rule us. They are ways of putting time in its proper place — in service of Him.

“Of that day or hour, no one knows.” The sober awareness of Our Lord's sudden and unexpected return curbs our procrastination and frees us to live for eternity. We continue to schedule appointments, keep the calendar and observe our routine. All the while, however, we remain free from time's tyranny, ready to cancel all else and prepared for that most important appointment — the moment of His return.

Fr. Scalia is pastor of St. John the Beloved Parish in McLean.


19 posted on 11/17/2012 10:47:22 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: All
The Work of God

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away. Catholic Gospels - Homilies - Matthew, Luke, Mark, John - Inspirations of the Holy Spirit

Year B

 -  33th Sunday in ordinary time

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away.

Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away. Catholic Gospels - Matthew, Luke, Mark, John - Inspirations of the Holy Spirit Mark 13:24-32

24 But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light.
25 And the stars of heaven shall be falling down, and the powers that are in heaven, shall be moved.
26 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds, with great power and glory.
27 And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.
28 Now of the fig tree learn you parable. When the branch thereof is now tender, and the leaves are come forth, you know that summer is very near.
29 So you also when you shall see these things come to pass, know ye that it is very nigh, even at the doors.
30 Amen I say to you, that this generation shall not pass, until all these things be done.
31 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away.
32 But of that day or hour no man knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father.

Inspiration of the Holy Spirit - From the Sacred Heart of Jesus

33th Sunday in ordinary time - Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away. Matter is temporal, but the spirit is eternal. God has created the world for a purpose. Just as the farmer waits for the day of harvest, the day will come when I will come to collect the fruit of my vineyard.

The materialistic man thinks that everything will end with death; this is why he tries to enjoy life to the full while ignoring the divine laws and endangering the life of his soul. The man who acknowledges life after death knows that there will be an unknown spiritual world that does not depend of his control but of the divine will.

Every human being has to be born, then he grows and eventually dies according to the will of God. No one has come back from the dead. This is everyone’s fate.

I came back from the dead because I triumphed over it; I have promised the gift of the resurrection to those who follow me. Sin is the reason for which everyone has to die, for this Adam and Eve received the sentence to return to dust from where they had been created.

I have come to open the doors of the Heavenly Paradise, in which all the elected will begin their new life after the resurrection and will live in the glory of eternity.

He who meditates about his own death, feels fear of the chastisement of God for his sins, and begins to prepare himself for eternal life. My word is the seed that begins to grow and gives fruit in his soul, it warns him of danger and takes him though the way of life.

There are many who are interested in knowing when the final day of the world will be. Through the centuries there have been false prophecies; and many have been deceived. I tell you sincerely, the end must come to each one on the day of his own death. This is the reason for which you must be prepared, because no one knows the day nor the hour, only my Heavenly Father, whose authority is absolute. Regarding the end of times, there will also come that moment, but this must not be the preoccupation for the soul that looks for God.

Heaven and earth will pass. Everything that is material will disappear, but my words are the words that gave origin to creation, the words of salvation, the words of eternal life that will never lose their value. He who has ears, listen.

Author: Joseph of Jesus and Mary


20 posted on 11/17/2012 10:51:26 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: All
Archdiocese of Washington

As we approach the end of the liturgical year, and winter approaches, we ponder the passing quality of this world and its fading glories. Jesus’ words in the Gospel today must surely have shocked, even horrified his Apostles. Let’s look at his stunning words and seek to apply them in our own life.

1. The Place of this Gospel– This passage completes the liturgical year with Jesus standing just outside of Jerusalem. In the last two months we have followed Jesus on his final journey to Jerusalem, as he left a Galilee, heading south along the Jordan River, passing through Jericho, and now making this assent from Jericho to Jerusalem of some 1900 feet in altitude.

We find him, in today’s gospel, at the top of the Mount of Olives, with his Apostles. From this vantage point on Mont Olivet, Jesus and his Apostles look across the Kidron Valley to the magnificent Temple, and indeed all of Jerusalem spread out before them. The Apostles had marveled at the glorious beauty of the Temple, it’s large perfectly carved white ashlar stones, guilt in gold,  it gleamed like the sun in all of its glory. Indeed, it was one of the wonders of the ancient world: so beautiful, so majestic.

But Jesus challenges their admiration and shocks them with the admonition that all the glory they see is soon to be destroyed, and that not one stone will be left on another, it will all be thrown down (Mk 13:2). Shocked, the apostles ask him when, and what would be the signs that would precede this awful event.

The Lord warns, with great detail, in what has become known as the “Mount Olivet discourse,” of the coming destruction of the Temple, indeed of all Jerusalem. The Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke all contain similar and vivid descriptions of what Jesus said, on the Mount of Olives, overlooking Jerusalem in her heyday, her days of glory.

He warned of wars, and rumors of wars. He speaks of a time in the near future, when nation will rise against nation, and a terrible conflict will ensue. In effect, he warns his disciples and their followers, to have nothing to do with the coming war. He tells them that, when they see Jerusalem being surrounded by an army, to know that her destruction is at hand. If they are on their rooftop, they are not to go back into their house and gathered their possessions. They are to get out, while the getting is good. If they are out in the field, they must not reenter the city of Jerusalem, they must flee to the hills. Jerusalem is doomed for its lack of faith, and are zealots are picking the war with the Romans that they are destined to lose. (Luke 21; Matt 24;  Mark 13)

And this leads us to today’s gospel from the Mount Olivet discourse, which picks up in the middle. Jesus warns of days of tribulation, where the sun will be darkened, the moon not give its light, and the stars will fall from the sky!

In reading a text like this, we must not fall prey to a hyper-literalistic interpretation. Jesus is using prophetic language, a prophetic way of speaking, that is meaningful, but not understood in a scientifically literalistic way. Stars, cannot actually fall from the sky.

If I were to say to you, in modern English, “The world has been turned upside down!” You would not expect to be able to go out into space, look back to earth, and find Australia at the top and North America at the bottom of your view. If I were to say to you, “It is raining cats and dogs!” you would not expect to be able to go out and find animal carcasses on the front lawn. I’m speaking figuratively, but you know what I mean.

And so it is with Jesus use of prophetic imagery. To speak of the heavenly luminaries as being either darkened or cast down, is a prophetic way of saying that all the fixed points, the ways in which we tell time, know the seasons, navigate and find perspective are lost to us! The world, as the Jewish people knew it, centered around the Temple, and rooted  in their liturgical calendar, is all about to be swept away. To the ancient Jewish people, the Temple was like their “Big Ben.”  it was both the clock of the liturgical cycle, and the great visual center of all of Israel.

And the Lord is here teaching them what they have seen as the central hub of all they do, is about to be taken away. For the Temple, and all of its rituals, its liturgical cycle and its endless slaughter of animals in sacrifice for sin, is about to be replaced. These ancient rituals, merely pointed to Jesus, and all he would do. Jesus is now the Temple, and He is also the Lamb Sacrifice. All the Temple pointed to is fulfilled in Jesus. Thus the Temple is at an end. Jesus is ushering in a New Covenant.

In the Mount Olivet discourse, Jesus prophesies the end of the Temple, that will take place in a biblical 40 years. And sure enough, exactly 40 years later, in A.D. 70, the Roman Army, having surrounded Jerusalem for a period of 3 1/2 months, now breaches the walls, pours into the city, destroys the Temple, and all Jerusalem with it. In this epic battle, according to Josephus, 1.2 million Jewish people lost their lives. Of Jerusalem and the Temple, as Jesus prophesied, not one stone was left on another. So complete was the destruction of Jerusalem, that according to Josephus, when the Romans finished their work, it was not clear that the city had ever existed on the site in Jerusalem.

Thus, here is the place of this gospel, an historical place of epic significance in the ancient world. An era of 1000 years came to an end. The world, as the Jewish people knew it, was ending. The Temple has never been rebuilt, it has been replaced by a Judaism without sacrifice, a rabbinic, a synagogue system. In 2000 years, despite several attempts to rebuild, the Jewish Temple has never been rebuilt. Everything Jesus predicted, came to pass. This is the historical place, and context of this gospel

But what does all this mean for us, some 2000 years later? Let us consider three basic themes to follow.

2. The Perspective of Passing– The Lord says, toward the conclusion of this gospel, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. Note the definitiveness of this statement: this world is passing away. That is to say, all the things that impress us at the current moment, the biggie-wow stuff of this world, the impressiveness of the powerful, the influence of the popular, the glory of all the glitterati, all this shall pass away.

Indeed, even now, it is passing away. It’s destruction is at hand. Scripture says,

The world in its present form is passing away. (1 Cor 7:31)
We have here, no lasting city. (Heb 13:14)
Put not your trust in princes, in mortal men in whom there is no hope. Take their breath, they returned to clay, and their plans that day come to nothing! (Psalm 146:3)

Yes, all the glory, even what seems beautiful and fair is passing away. Don’t be so impressed with this world’s offerings. All of it, for matter how powerful, how influential, how sturdy it may seem, is slated for destruction, is already passing away.

Some years ago I was looking through a museum, and there was a picture of a family, from about the 1880s. At the bottom of the photo, was this inscription, “My family, as it appeared for a brief time last summer.” A poignant caption. I thought of all the people in that photo, and concluded, and every one of them was now dead. I also knew, that the house at which the photo was taken, on the front porch, had long since been destroyed, replaced by an expanding city district of buildings. All is passing, nothing remains here for long.

Painful though this is, this is an important, and healing perspective. It brings with it, a kind of strange serenity. The truth, that all things are passing, like every truth, sets us free. Internalizing within our self the truth that, As for man, his days, or the flower of the field are like the grass. The wind blows, and he is gone, and his place never sees him anymore (Psalm 130:15-16), painful as it is, it brings a kind of strange serenity. Wherein this truth we are reminded not to set down too many roots here. And neither are we resentful, when this world, passes away.

3. The Permanence Proclaimed– The Lord tells us that his words will not pass away. Thus, although the world passes away, the truth, and the Word of God, remains forever.

Too many people, root their lives in passing, ephemeral things. The challenge for us, is to root our lives in the Word of God, which remains forever! Worldly glories, worldly power, access wealth, all these things, fade and disappear. But God’s wisdom and his plan remain forever.

Consider for a moment, the Church. The Lord has said that the forces of Hell would strive to prevail, overpower, and destroy the Church. But the Lord promised that such attempts would never be successful! (Matt 16:18). The Church is indefectible, by God’s Word, by his promise. No weapons, no war waged against the Church will prevail.

And in all this, the Lord has been proved true. The Church has seen empires such as the Roman Empire, the Carolingian Empire, Napoleon, the British Empire, the Soviet Socialist Republic, and many others besides, rise to power, and then fade and disappear.

How many heresies, how many philosophies have come and gone in the age of the Church? How many despots and scoffers have risen to laugh at the Church, announced that she was passé, that her day was over, and that they would bury her. And the Church is buried every one of her undertakers, has outlived everyone of her critics, and despite every prediction of her demise has persevered until this very day. She, by God’s grace, has a permanence that outlasts everyone of her critics, every one of her enemies. She has read the funeral rites over every single scoffer and prophet of her doom. And she will continue to do so.

In recounting all this we do not simply gloat that an institution known as the Church has survived. Rather, the Church is the Bride of Christ, and also his Body. The Church cannot be destroyed, not because of human ingenuity, but on account of the power and grace of God. She will endure, though at times suffer, be ridiculed, or marginalized. But she will outlive every enemy. She will emerge from every persecution. She will never be removed. FOr the Church is the Body of Christ, the living Word of God. And though the world does pass away, the Word of the Lord remains forever!

4. The Priority Prescribed –if this is the case, that this world as we know it, is passing away, and the Lord, his Kingdom, his Church, by his Word remain forever, then what should be our priority?

The Lord says, in effect we know very well what our priority should be, but we willfully ignore it:

Learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves, you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see these things happening, know that he is near, at the gates.

Yes, we know very well that the Day is coming, but too easily we dream on and do not follow the prescribed priority of what is certain to happen. Wealth, fame and glory, all of these are uncertain, and clearly passing. But Death, judgment, heaven and hell are certain and/or remain forever. But as it is we too easy fiddle on with things that are uncertain and passing and neglect was is certain and eternal. Such foolishness.

It is clear, it is foolish to invest in or to book passage on a sinking ship. It is foolish to make this world and its demands our fundamental priority. And it is wise to set our sights for, and lay hold of the Kingdom which lasts forever.

It is a sad truth that so many spend all their time rearranging the deck chairs on the “Titanic” of this world. It is tragic how much time, effort, and passion we spend on things that are passing through our fingers like sand.  So much of our effort is expended on career, the building of financial fortune, enlarging our homes etc. And so little time spent on enlarging our spiritual life.

Parents spend more time worrying about where their children will attend college, then where they will spend the eternity. If the child is failing math, they go to great lengths to hire tutors to get the math scores up. But never mind that the child barely knows the four Gospels, the difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament, or even who Adam and Eve where. Never mind all that, we need to make sure they understand polynomials!

A parent’s greatest duty is to prepare their child for eternity. But far more time and effort is spent securing a hold on  passing things like career. To be sure, proper schooling, and career are important. But eternal life is far more important. A son or daughter may graduate from Harvard Law school, come out, be a famous lawyer, and still go to hell!

What are our priorities? Frankly, most of our priorities are not about what matters to God. Too often, our priorities are rooted in passing things, which even if attained, slip through our fingers like sand. We obsess over passing things like our physical health, but neglect enduring things like our spiritual health. We should care for our bodies, but even more should we care for our souls. If we would spend as much efferot looking for a place and time to pray as for a restaurant  and time to eat, we would spiritual heavyweights, rather than physically overweight.

Today the Lord stands before the Temple building, impressive, a symbol of power, of worldly glories. But impressed though the Apostles are, the Lord is not impressed with passing things. He counsels us to get our priorities straight, and the focus on things which last, things related to his Word which never passes away, and to things like our ultimate destiny, where we shall spend eternity.

We find time for everything else, why not prayer, Scripture, fellowship in the Church and Sacraments?

What are your priorities? Are mine? Be honest now, be honest.

This world is passing away. Far more essential for us than power, prestige, money, things, worldly philosophies and the latest trends, we must set our hearts on the Word of the Lord which never passes away.

The world will go on and laugh at how God’s word is out of date, old-fashioned, or even hateful, bigoted, intolerant, and surely not up to modern predilections. But in the end, time will prove where wisdom is. Long after the current critics of the Church, those who laugh in scorn at the teachings of the Lord in the Scriptures and the Church, have passed on,  the Church will still be here preaching Christ, and him crucified.

None of this is meant to sound triumphalist. It is simply rooted in a Word of truth that the Lord spoke on a hillside overlooking an age soon to pass away, and glorious buildings soon to be reduced to rubble. He said simply this, Heaven and earth will pass away but my words will not pass away.

In the end, Jesus wins. I know, because I checked the end the of the story. Look it up: (Rev 20-23), Jesus wins. Get on the winning team and stop trying to amass a treasure here that you can’t keep anyway.


21 posted on 11/17/2012 11:02:29 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Sunday Gospel Reflections

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
Reading I:
Daniel 12:1-3 II: Hebrews 10:11-14,18
Gospel
Mark 13:24-32

24 "But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light,
25 and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.
26 And then they will see the Son of man coming in clouds with great power and glory.
27 And then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.
28 "From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near.
29 So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates.
30 Truly, I say to you, this generation will not pass away before all these things take place.
31 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.
32 "But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father.


Interesting Details
  • Chapter 13 contains the farewell teachings of Jesus in the Gospel of Mark, which are appropriate for a Sunday near the end of the liturgical year.
  • The structure of the passage makes the message clear. There are two main parts. In each part, a main message is surrounded by similar ideas.
  • In part one, the main idea in v. 26, "the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory" is proclaimed by the whole universe (represented by the sun, moon, stars, and heavens in v. 24-25, and four winds, ends the earth and sky in v. 27). Jesus uses these figures to signify the whole universe, not to make specific predictions about single events.
  • In part two, the main idea--be watchful because no one knows the day--is surrounded by two parables. The first parable is that of the fig tree in v.28. The second parable is after this passage, from v. 33 to verse 37, the end of the chapter.
  • The last teaching in Mark is different from but congruent with the farewell discourses in the other three Gospels (John 14-17: be united in love; Mt 28:16-20, Lk 24:36-49 and Act 1:6-11: spread the Good News). The way to prepare for the glorious return of Jesus is to spread the Gospel which leads to unity in love.

One Main Point

Jesus will come again in full glory, proclaimed by the whole universe. No one knows when that will happen, so be watchful.


Reflections
  1. Am I watchful and hopeful for the glorious coming of Jesus? How do I do that?
  2. What would be the opposite of being watchful and hopeful? Am I doing that, too?
  3. Does my preparation for Jesus' final coming include spreading the Gospel and lead to unity in love?

22 posted on 11/17/2012 11:08:26 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: All
Sunday, November 18, 2012
Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time
First Reading:
Psalm:
Second Reading:
Gospel:
Daniel 12:1-3
Psalm 16:5, 8-11
Hebrews 10:11-14, 18
Mark 13:24-32

Do you ask how to resist anger? As soon as you feel the slightest resentment, gather together your powers, not hastily or impetuously, but gently and seriously. For as in some law courts, the criers make more noise in their efforts to preserve quiet than those they seek to still, so, if we are impestuous in our attempts to restrain our anger, we cause greater discomposure in our hearts than before; and once thrown off its balance, the heart is no longer its own master.

-- St. Francis de Sales


23 posted on 11/17/2012 11:10:59 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: All



The Angelus 

The Angel of the Lord declared to Mary: 
And she conceived of the Holy Spirit. 

Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed art thou among women and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen. 

Behold the handmaid of the Lord: Be it done unto me according to Thy word. 

Hail Mary . . . 

And the Word was made Flesh: And dwelt among us. 

Hail Mary . . . 


Pray for us, O Holy Mother of God, that we may be made worthy of the promises of Christ. 

Let us pray: 

Pour forth, we beseech Thee, O Lord, Thy grace into our hearts; that we, to whom the incarnation of Christ, Thy Son, was made known by the message of an angel, may by His Passion and Cross be brought to the glory of His Resurrection, through the same Christ Our Lord.

Amen. 


24 posted on 11/17/2012 11:12:37 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 23 | View Replies]

To: All
Dedication of the Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles

Dedication of the Basilica
of Saints Peter and Paul, Apostles

Optional Memorial
November 18th

The dedication of these basilicsa were celebrated annually as early as the twelfth century. Both were completed in the fourth century. St. Peter's Basilica was built over the tomb of St. Peter was rebuilt in the seventeenth century. St. Paul's Basilica, on the Ostian Way, was likewise built over St. Paul's tomb and was rebuilt in the nineteenth century.

Source: Daily Roman Missal, Edited by Rev. James Socías, Midwest Theological Forum, Chicago, Illinois ©2003

Collect:
Defend your Church, O Lord,
by the protection of the holy Apostles,
that, as she received from them
the beginnings of her knowledge of things divine,
so through them she may receive,
even to the end of the world,
an increase in heavenly grace.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

First Reading: Acts of the apostles: 28:11-16, 30-31
After three months we set sail in a ship which had wintered in the island, a ship of Alexandria, with the Twin Brothers as figurehead. Putting in at Syracuse, we stayed there for three days. And from there we made a circuit and arrived at Rhegium; and after one day a south wind sprang up, and on the second day we came to Puteoli. There we found brethren, and were invited to stay with them for seven days. And so we came to Rome. And the brethren there, when they heard of us, came as far as the Forum of Appius and Three Taverns to meet us. On seeing them Paul thanked God and took courage. And when we came into Rome, Paul was allowed to stay by himself, with the soldier that guarded him.

Gospel: Matthew 14:22-33
Then He made the disciples get into the boat and go before Him to the other side, while He dismissed the crowds. And after He had dismissed the crowds, He went up on the mountain by Himself to pray. When evening came, He was there alone, but the boat by this time was many furlongs distant from the land, beaten by the waves; for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night He came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw Him walking on the sea, they were terrified, saying, "It is a ghost!" And they cried out for fear. But immediately He spoke to them, saying, "Take heart, it is I; have no fear." And Peter answered Him, "Lord, if it is you, bid me come to you on the water." He said, "Come." So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus; but when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, "Lord, save me." Jesus immediately reached out His hand and caught Him, saying to him, "O man of little faith, why did you doubt?" And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshipped Him, saying, "Truly you are the Son of God."


25 posted on 11/18/2012 9:51:20 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 24 | View Replies]

To: All
The Rite of [a Catholic Church] Dedication Now
DEDICATION of the BASILICAS of Saint Peter and Saint Paul/SAINT ODON or EUDES of CLUNY Abbot (†942)
Dedication of the Basilicas of St Peter and St Paul
26 posted on 11/18/2012 9:52:20 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 25 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne, Virgin

Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne, Virgin
Optional Memorial
November 18th
[In the Diocese of the United States]

Vatican Website

1769-1852 She founded a boarding school for daughters of pioneers near St. Louis and opened the first free school west of the Missouri. At seventy-one she began a school for Native Americans. In her life she showed great courage in frontier conditions and a single-mindedness in pursuing her dream of serving Native Americans.

Source: Daily Roman Missal, Edited by Rev. James Socías, Midwest Theological Forum, Chicago, Illinois ©2003

  

Collect:
Almighty God, who filled the hearts of Saint Rose Philippine Duchesne
with charity and missionary zeal,
and gave her the desire
to make you known among all peoples,
grant us to follow her way
and fill us with that same love and zeal
to extend your Kingdom to the ends of the earth.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever. +Amen.

Readings are taken from the Common of virgins


27 posted on 11/18/2012 9:54:06 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 26 | View Replies]

To: All
The Woman Who Never Gave Up: The Life of St. Rose Philippine Duchesne [Catholic Caucus]
St. Rose-Philippine Duchesne (1769-1852)-religious, Society of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
28 posted on 11/18/2012 9:59:27 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 27 | View Replies]

To: All



Information: Dedication of the Basilicas of Sts. Peter & Paul
Feast Day: November 18

29 posted on 11/18/2012 11:54:23 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 28 | View Replies]

To: All


Information:
St. Rose Philippine
Feast Day: November 18
Born: 29 August 1769 at Grenoble, France
Died: 18 November 1852 at Saint Charles, Missouri, USA
Canonized: July 3, 1988 by Pope John Paul II



30 posted on 11/18/2012 11:55:24 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: All
Interactive Saints for Kids

St. Rose Philippine Duchesne

St. Rose Philippine Duchesne
Feast Day: November 18
Born: 1769 :: Died: 1852

Rose was born at Grenoble in France. Her family was very wealthy and had strong political connections. From the time she was eight years old, she had a wish to spread the good news about Jesus in the Americas after hearing a Jesuit missionary talk about his work there.

She was educated at home until she was twelve and was then sent for her religious education to the convent of the Visitation in Grenoble. As a youngster, there was nothing especially holy about Rose. In fact, she often did her best to get her own way. She ordered everyone else to do what she wanted.

In school, her favorite subject was history. She later became very interested in stories about Native Americans. At the age of seventeen, Rose entered the convent. She was not allowed to take her vows when the time came, because of the French Revolution.

All the sisters were forced to leave the country closing down the convent, and Rose had to return to her family for ten years. Still she did not give up her desire to belong to Jesus. When the revolution was over, she joined the newly formed Religious of the Sacred Heart of Jesus.

Mother Rose Philippine Duchesne's great desire was to be a missionary. However, she was fifty before she was sent to the United States. It was still a mission land at this time. In Mississippi, she and a small group of sisters started a free school for the children of poor families in a log cabin.

The work was hard, because of the different languages and ways of the people and Rose's English was terrible. Despite the many difficulties, Mother Duchesne never lost her youthful enthusiasm. As she grew older, she became less commanding and gentler.

Mother Duchesne was a real heroine who went through terrible journeys. She nearly died from yellow fever. She overcame all kinds of obstacles to open convents in the New World.

Then, when she was seventy-one, she resigned her position as superior. She went off to open a school among her beloved native people. The Native Americans called her the "Woman-Who-Prays-Always." She died in 1852 at the age of eighty-three.


31 posted on 11/18/2012 11:59:25 AM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 30 | View Replies]

To: Salvation
Mark
  English: Douay-Rheims Latin: Vulgata Clementina Greek NT: Byzantine/Majority Text (2000)
  Mark 13
24 But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light. Sed in illis diebus, post tribulationem illam, sol contenebrabitur, et luna non dabit splendorem suum : αλλ εν εκειναις ταις ημεραις μετα την θλιψιν εκεινην ο ηλιος σκοτισθησεται και η σεληνη ου δωσει το φεγγος αυτης
25 And the stars of heaven shall be falling down, and the powers that are in heaven, shall be moved. et stellæ cæli erunt decidentes, et virtutes, quæ in cælis sunt, movebuntur. και οι αστερες του ουρανου εσονται εκπιπτοντες και αι δυναμεις αι εν τοις ουρανοις σαλευθησονται
26 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds, with great power and glory. Et tunc videbunt Filium hominis venientem in nubibus cum virtute multa et gloria. και τοτε οψονται τον υιον του ανθρωπου ερχομενον εν νεφελαις μετα δυναμεως πολλης και δοξης
27 And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven. Et tunc mittet angelos suos, et congregabit electos suos a quatuor ventis, a summo terræ usque ad summum cæli. και τοτε αποστελει τους αγγελους αυτου και επισυναξει τους εκλεκτους αυτου εκ των τεσσαρων ανεμων απ ακρου γης εως ακρου ουρανου
28 Now of the fig tree learn ye a parable. When the branch thereof is now tender, and the leaves are come forth, you know that summer is very near. A ficu autem discite parabolam. Cum jam ramus ejus tener fuerit, et nata fuerint folia, cognoscitis quia in proximo sit æstas : απο δε της συκης μαθετε την παραβολην οταν αυτης ηδη ο κλαδος απαλος γενηται και εκφυη τα φυλλα γινωσκετε οτι εγγυς το θερος εστιν
29 So you also when you shall see these things come to pass, know ye that it is very nigh, even at the doors. sic et vos cum videritis hæc fieri, scitote quod in proximo sit, in ostiis. ουτως και υμεις οταν ταυτα ιδητε γινομενα γινωσκετε οτι εγγυς εστιν επι θυραις
30 Amen I say to you, that this generation shall not pass, until all these things be done. Amen dico vobis, quoniam non transibit generatio hæc, donec omnia ista fiant. αμην λεγω υμιν οτι ου μη παρελθη η γενεα αυτη μεχρις ου παντα ταυτα γενηται
31 Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my word shall not pass away. Cælum et terra transibunt, verba autem mea non transibunt. ο ουρανος και η γη παρελευσεται οι δε λογοι μου ου μη παρελθωσιν
32 But of that day or hour no man knoweth, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father. De die autem illo vel hora nemo scit, neque angeli in cælo, neque Filius, nisi Pater. περι δε της ημερας εκεινης η ωρας ουδεις οιδεν ουδε οι αγγελοι οι εν ουρανω ουδε ο υιος ει μη ο πατηρ

32 posted on 11/18/2012 12:47:12 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: annalex
24. But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,
25. And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken.
26. And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.
27. And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.

BEDE; Some however refer this to the time of the Jewish captivity, where many, declaring themselves to be Christs, drew after them crowds of deluded persons; but during the siege of the city there was no Christian to whom the Divine exhortation, not to follow false teachers, could apply. Wherefore it is better to understand it of heretics, who, coming to oppose the Church, pretended to be Christs; the first of whom was Simon Magus, but that last one, greater than the rest, is Antichrist.

It goes on: But take you heed: behold, I have foretold you all things.

AUG. For He did not only foretell to His disciples the good things which He would give to His saints and faithful ones, but also the woes in which this world was to abound, that we might look for our reward at the end of the world with more confidence, from feeling the woes in like manner announced as about to precede the end of the world.

THEOPHYL. But after the coming of Antichrist, the frame of the world shall be altered and changed, for the stars shall be obscured on account of the abundance of the brightness of Christ. Wherefore it goes on: But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light;

and the stars of heaven shall fall.

BEDE; For the stars in the day of judgment shall appear obscure, not by any lessening of their own light, but because of the brightness of the true light, that is, of the most high Judge coming upon them; although there is nothing to prevent its being taken to mean, that the sun and moon with all the other heavenly bodies then for a time are really to lose their light, just as we are told was the case with the sun at the time of our Lord's Passion. But after the day of judgment, when there shall be a new sky and a new earth, then shall happen what Isaiah says: Moreover, the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun, and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold. There follows, And the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

THEOPHYL. That is, the Angelic virtues shall be astonished, seeing that such great things are done, and that their fellow-servants are judged.

BEDE; What wonder is it that men should be troubled at this judgment, the sight of which makes the very Angelic powers to tremble? What will the stories of the house do when the pillars shake? What does the shrub of the wilderness undergo, when hen the cedar of paradise is moved?

PSEUDO-JEROME; Or else, the sun shall be darkened, at the coldness of their hearts, as in the winter time. And the moon shall not give her light with serenity, in this time of quarrel, and the stars of heaven shall fail in their light, when the seed of Abraham shall all but disappear, for to it they are likened. And the powers of heaven shall be stilled up to the wrath of vengeance, when they shall be sent by the Son of Man at His coming, of whose Advent it is said, And, then shall they see the Son of Man coming in the clouds with great power and glory, He, that is, who first came down like rain into the fleece of Gideon in all lowliness.

AUG. For since it was said by the Angels to the Apostles, He shall so come in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven, rightly do we believe that He will come not only in the same body, but on a cloud, since He is to come as He went away, and a cloud received Him as He was going.

THEOPHYL But they shall see the Lord as the Son of Man, that is, in the body, for that which is seen is body.

AUG. For the vision of the Son of Man is shown even to the bad, but the vision of the form of God to the pure in heart alone, for they shall see God. And because the wicked cannot see the Son of God, as He is in the form of God, equal to the Father, and at the same time both just and wicked are to see Him as Judge of the quick and dead, before Whom they shall be judged, it was necessary that the Son of Man should receive power to judge.

Concerning the execution of which power, there is immediately added And then shall he send his angels.

THEOPHYL. Observe that Christ sends the Angels as well as the Father; where then are they who say that He is not equal to the Father? For the Angels go forth to gather together the faithful, who are chosen, that they may be carried into the air to meet Jesus Christ. Wherefore it goes on: And gather together his elect from the four winds.

PSEUDO-JEROME; As corn winnowed from the threshing-floor of the whole earth.

BEDE; By the four winds, He means the four parts of the world, the east the west, the north, and the south. And lest any one should think that the elect are to be gathered together only from the four edges of the world, and not from the midland regions as well as the borders, He has fitly added, From the uttermost part of earth, to the uttermost part of heaven, that is from the extremities of the earth to its utmost bounds, where the circle of the heavens appears to those who look from afar to rest upon the boundaries of the earth. No one therefore shall be elect in that day who remains behind and does not meet the Lord in the air, when He comes to judgment. The reprobate also shall come to judgment, that when it is finished they may be scattered abroad and perish from before the face of God.

28. Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near:
29. So you in like manner, when you shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.
30. Verily I say to you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.
31. Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away.

BEDE; Under the example of a tree the Lord gave a pattern of the end, saying, Now learn a parable of the fig tree, when her branch is yet tender, and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. So you in like manner, when you shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors.

THEOPHYL. As if He had said, As when the fig tree puts forth its leaves, summer follows at once, so also after the woes of Antichrist, at once, without an interval, shall be the coming of Christ, who will be to the just as summer after winter, but to sinners, winter after summer.

AUG. All that is said by the three Evangelists concerning the Advent of our Lord, if diligently compared together and examined, will perchance be found to belong to His daily coming in His body, that is, the Church, except those places where that last coming is so promised, as if it were approaching; for instance in the last part of the discourse according to Matthew, the coming itself is clearly expressed, where it is said, When the Son of Man shall come in his glory.

For what does he refer to in the words, when you shall see these things come to pass, but those things which He has mentioned above, amongst which it is said, And then you shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds. The end therefore shall not be then, but then it shall be near at hand. Or are we to say, that not all those things which are mentioned above are to be taken in, but only some of them, that is, leaving out these words, Then shall you see the Son of man coming; for that shall be the end itself, and not its approach only. But Matthew has declared that it is to be received without exception, saying, When you shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. That which is said above must therefore be taken thus; And he shall send his angels, and gather together the elect from the four winds; that is, He shall collect His elect from the four winds of heaven, which He does in the whole of the last hour, coming in His members as in clouds.

BEDE; This fruit-bearing of the fig tree may also be understood to mean the state of the synagogue, which was condemned to everlasting barrenness, because when the Lord came, it had no fruits of righteousness in those who were then unfaithful. But the Apostle has said, that when the fullness of the Gentiles is come in, all Israel shall be saved. What means this, but that the tree, which has been long barren, shall then yield the fruit, which it had withheld? When this shall happen, doubt not that a summer of true peace is at hand.

PSEUDO-JEROME; Or else, the leaves which come forth are words now spoken, the summer at hand is the day of Judgment, in which every tree shall show what it had within it, deadness for burning, or greenness to be planted with the tree of life. There follows Verily I say to you, This generation shall not pass, till these things; be done.

BEDE; By generation He either means the whole race of mankind, or specially the Jews.

THEOPHYL. Or else, This generation shall not pass away, that is, the generation of Christians, until all things be fulfilled, which were spoken concerning Jerusalem and the coming of Antichrist; for He does not mean the generation of the Apostles, for the greater part of the Apostles did not live up to the destruction of Jerusalem.

But He says this of the generation of Christians, wishing to console His disciples, lest they should believe that the faith should fail at that time; for the immovable elements shall first fail, before the words of Christ fail; wherefore it is added, Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away.

BEDE; The heaven which shall pass away is not the ethereal or starry heaven, but the heaven where is the air. For wherever the water of the judgment could reach, there also, according to the words of the blessed Peter, the fire of judgment shall reach. But the heaven and the earth shall pass away in that form which they now have, but in their essence they shall last without end.

32. But of that day and that hour knows no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

THEOPHYL. The Lord wishing to prevent His disciples from asking about that day and hour, says, But of that day and that hour knows no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. For if He had said, I know, but I will not reveal it to you, He would have saddened them not a little; but He acted more wisely, and prevents their asking such a question, lest they should importune Him, by saying, neither the Angels nor I.

HILARY; This ignorance of the day and hour is urged against the Only-Begotten God, as if, God born of God had not the same perfection of nature as God. But first, let common sense decide whether it is credible that He, who is the cause that all things are, and are to be, should be ignorant of any out of all these things. For how can it be beyond the knowledge of that nature, by which and in which that which is to be done is contained? And can He be ignorant of that day, which is the day of His own Advent? Human substances foreknow as far as they can what they intend to do, and the knowledge of what is to be done, follows upon the will to act. How then can the Lord of glory, from ignorance of the day of His coming, be believed to be of that imperfect nature, which has on it a necessity of coming, and has not attained to the knowledge of its own advent?

But again, how much more room for blasphemy will there be, if a feeling of envy is ascribed to God the Father, in that He has withheld the knowledge of His beatitude from Him to whom He gave a foreknowledge of His death. But if there are in Him all the treasures of knowledge, He is not ignorant of this day; rather we ought to remember that the treasures of wisdom in Him are hidden; His ignorance therefore must be connected with the hiding of the treasures of wisdom, which are in Him. For in all cases, in which God declares Himself ignorant, He is not under the power of ignorance, but either it is not a fit time for speaking, or it is an economy of not acting.

But if God is said then to have known that Abraham loved Him, when He did not hide that His knowledge from Abraham, it follows, that the Father is said to know the day, because He did not hide it from the Son. If therefore the Son knew not the day, it is a Sacrament of His being silent, as on the contrary the Father alone is said to know, because He is not silent. But God forbid that any new and bodily changes should be ascribed to the Father or the Son. Lastly, lest He should be said to be ignorant from weakness, He has immediately added, Take you heed, watch and pray, for you know not when the time is.

PSEUDO-JEROME; For we must needs watch with our souls before the death of the body.

Catena Aurea Mark 13
33 posted on 11/18/2012 12:48:29 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 32 | View Replies]

To: annalex


The Bark of the Church
Russian icon

34 posted on 11/18/2012 12:49:10 PM PST by annalex (fear them not)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Catholic
Almanac:

Sunday, November 18

Liturgical Color: Green


Today is the optional memorial of the Dedication of the Basilicas of Peter and Paul in Rome. The Basilica of St. Paul was built over Paul's gravesite in 324 A.D. It has been restored and expanded several times but retains the original floor plan.


35 posted on 11/18/2012 1:50:57 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: All
Catholic Culture

Daily Readings for: November 18, 2012
(Readings on USCCB website)

Collect: Grant us, we pray, O Lord our God, the constant gladness of being devoted to you, for it is full and lasting happiness to serve with constancy the author of all that is good. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever.

Ordinary Time: November 18th

Thirty-Third Sunday of Ordinary Time

Old Calendar: Twenty-Fifth Sunday after Pentecost

Jesus said to his disciples: "In those days after that tribulation the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see 'the Son of Man coming in the clouds' with great power and glory, and then he will send out the angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky (Mk 13:24-27)."

Click here for commentary on the readings in the Extraordinary Form of the Roman Rite.


Sunday Readings
The first reading is taken from the Book of Daniel 12:1-3. Today's reading puts before our eyes the fact that this world will have an end marked by great upheavals and disasters. However, these will be followed immediately by a new and everlasting existence.

The second reading is from the Letter of St. Paul the Hebrews 10:11-4; 18. St. Paul continues to compare the priesthood of Christ with the Jewish priesthood.

The Gospel is from the Gospel of Mark 13:24-32. There are some obscurities in this extract from St. Mark. Firstly, because Christ was discussing and answering questions on two distinct topics : the destruction of the temple and the end of the world. Secondly, because we may not have the ipsissima verba of Christ here, as many exegetes suggest. The message we must learn from today's gospel comes across without any ambiguity or doubt : we must always be ready to face our judgement for we know not the day nor the hour when we will be called from this life. When or how this world will end is of no great importance to us; what is important is that we shall leave this world very soon and our eternity will depend on the state of our consciences at the moment of our departure.

This is the steadying thought the Church, in her wisdom, wishes to put before our minds today. We all know that we must die someday. We are strangers and pilgrims on this earth; we have not here a lasting city, as St. Augustine says. No sane person among us will try to deny this and yet, many of us are so immersed in the things of this world that we forget or try to forget that we must leave this world soon. This is very natural : life is a precious gift and as our earthly life is the only one of which we have experience our every inclination is to hold on to it at all costs. Even when our intelligence tells us that it can, in spite of all our endeavors, end very soon we try to convince our¬selves that that "very soon" is really in the distant future.

We have God's word for it and the example of Christ's resurrection to a life of glory. Let us appreciate the truth that our death on earth is not the end of life but rather the beginning of the true life that will never end. As the liturgy says in the Mass for the Dead : "Life is changed (by death) not taken away." Our death is the doorway through which we pass into the unending life. The years on earth are a gift of God to enable us to earn the infinitely greater gift which in his loving mercy he has prepared for us from all eternity.

God in his mercy is calling on each one of us to be ready when our call comes. We can do nothing about the when or the where of that call, but we can do much about the state of our relationship with God when death comes; in fact, aided by God's grace we can ensure that all will be well with us. We cannot avoid a sudden death, but we can avoid an unprepared death by striving always to live in peace with God. This does not mean that we must be always on our knees praying to God and that we must take no interest in the things and the joys of this world. Far from it. God wants us to use the things of this world, but to use them so that they will not hinder us on our journey.

A very practical way to see how we stand in relation to God and to the things of this world, is for each one of us to ask himself today : "How would I fare if I were called to render an account of stewardship tonight?" This is the practical question that God, through today's readings, is asking us to put to ourselves. If, to our dismay, we find there are several things which have to be put right before facing our judge we will start right away to put them right. We may get another chance, another warning, and we may not. If we value our eternal happiness we will take this warning; we will put our books in order; we will make peace with God and our neighbors—and with God's grace we will do all in our power to persevere in this good resolution.

Excerpted from The Sunday Readings by Fr. Kevin O'Sullivan, O.F.M.


36 posted on 11/18/2012 4:49:16 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 35 | View Replies]

To: All
The Word Among Us

Meditation: Mark 13:24-32

33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Of that day or hour, no one knows.” (Mark 13:32)

Let’s take a short quiz. The first question is a general one: what goals do you have for your life? The second is a bit more specific: what are your goals for the next five years? And the third is even more specific: what are your goals for the next year? Take a few minutes to write down your answers.

Now one final question: imag­ine that you knew Jesus was coming back tomorrow. How would your responses to the previous three ques­tions differ? When a friar asked St. Francis what he would do in this sit­uation, Francis, who was gardening at the time, said: “I would keep hoe­ing my garden.”

What about you? Would you keep going about your business? Most of us would make some last-minute changes. The lines at the confes­sional booth would probably reach out the church door and down the street for a few miles. Local parishes would run out of hosts because of the many people coming in for their last Mass. The phone lines would prob­ably be jammed with people calling family and friends trying to make eleventh-hour reparations. What about that last call to the poor? With no need to keep food stocked up, we can hope that people would be will­ing to give more to those who are hungry—sort of a last meal for the poor.

But this is all fanciful specula­tion. Jesus told us that no one knows when the end will come—even he doesn’t know! So our best strategy is to live each day as if it were our last. We should try our best always to be at peace with the Lord and with the people around us. We should also make sure we are taking care of the needy in our midst. Then, whenever Jesus returns, we’ll pass the quiz with no problem at all.

“Lord, help me to keep my eyes open for your presence and my heart fixed on you. Lord, I want to be ready to greet you when you come again in glory!”

Daniel 12:1-3; Psalm 16:5, 8-11; Hebrews 10:11-14, 18

 

Questions for Reflection or Group Discussion

1. As the Church approaches the end of the liturgical year we are asked to focus on the very difficult subjects of death and judgment and sin. This week is a good time to pause and reflect on the reality of sin’s inroads within us. What particular steps can you take this week to let God’s light shine on any areas of darkness in your mind and heart and to reveal more deeply the sad reality of sin?

2. In the first reading. we are reminded that at the resurrection of the dead, “some shall live forever, others shall be an everlasting horror and disgrace” (Daniel 12:2). What is your reaction to the words the author of Daniel uses to describe Hell? In what way is it or isn’t it in line with your own image? In the light of God’s holiness and judgment on sin, and the graphic description of Hell used in the reading, what new steps can you take to grow in your relationship with the Lord and to grow in holiness?

3. In the Responsorial Psalm, we are told of the confidence we should have in God who blesses his “faithful one.” How does the Psalmist describe those blessings? How would you describe the ways the Lord has blessed your life?

4. In the Letter to the Hebrews, we are again reminded that we don’t face judgment in fear and trepidation, but in confidence, knowing that Christ has already paid the price for our sins: “one sacrifice for sins.” What impact does this truth have on how you live out your life? What are some areas of your life where the Lord may be asking you to be more trusting and confident in his love and in the work of the Cross?

5. The Gospel reading exhorts us to be watchful regarding “signs” of Jesus’ second coming. What are some of the differences between Jesus first coming and his second coming? What do you think are some of the signs of his second coming? In what ways does reflecting on Jesus’ second coming give us joy and hope? How can you as a Catholic better prepare for his second coming?

6. The meditation asks us to consider how we would respond, and what would we do, if we “knew Jesus was coming back tomorrow.” How would you respond? Why?

7. Take some time now to pray and ask for the grace to be ready for his return, no matter when Jesus Second Coming occurs. Use the prayer at the end of the meditation as the starting point.


37 posted on 11/18/2012 4:56:47 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 36 | View Replies]

To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

THE END OF THE WORLD

(A biblical refection on THE 33rd SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – 18 NOVEMBER, 2012) 

Gospel Reading: Mark 13:24-32 

First Reading: Dan 12:1-3; Psalms: Ps 16:5,8-11; Second Reading: Heb 10:11-14,18 

The Scripture Text

“But in those days, after that tribulation, the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of man coming in clouds with great power and glory. And then He will send out the angels, and gather His elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.

“From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that He is near, at the very gates. Truly, I say to you, before all these things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.

“But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Take heed, watch and pray; for you do not know when the time with come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his servants in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. Watch therefore – for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or in the morning – lest he come suddenly and find you asleep. And what I say to you I say to all: Watch.” (Mk 13:24-32 RSV) 

Every now and then people speculate and try to predict the end of the world. And, we could find doomsday prophets keep coming and going – but the end of the world has not come.

As we are about to end the Church calendar, the Gospel message this Sunday douses cold waster on all predictions and prognostications. Listen to the words of Jesus Christ: “But of that day or that hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father”  (Mk 13:32).

Instead of frittering away precious time speculating on the end of the world, Jesus Christ exhorts us to live as Christians in the present. What matters in NOW!

A Catholic priest was once playing badminton with a friend. During the break, their talk shifted to a more serious vein with his partner asking, “Father, suppose the end of the world suddenly came and we were out there playing, what would you do? Get down on your knees and pray? The priest paused for a moment and said, “I’d go right on playing.”

What the priest is trying to say is that one should not worry about the end of the world. Worry rather whether or not you are holding on to your faith or living as a Christian should despite the harsh adversities.

According to the Scriptures, on Judgment Day we shall be judged on the question: What have you done for people in need? (please read Mt 25:31-46). How about us? Have we enough good works to deliver us from the fires of hell?

As we end the Church’s calendar this month, it might be wise and proper to pause and do some soul-searching. Am I preoccupied only with my personal needs, caprices and pleasures? Do I have time for God, my family, and for some outreach project? Am I contributing to building Christian communities of justice, love and peace or am I the cause of pain and suffering to others?

Everything we do now has eternal consequences. Judgment will be nothing else but God’s confirmation of the choices, decisions or actions we have made in life. What we sow now, we reap later.

Short Prayer: Lord Jesus, when we truly respond to Your love by loving one another, then already now, in this world, we receive Your blessing. Thank you, Lord Jesus. Amen.


38 posted on 11/18/2012 5:03:39 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: All
A Christian Pilgrim

APOCALYPSE

(A biblical refection on THE 33rd SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME – 18 November, 012) 

First Reading: Dan 12:1-3; Psalms: Ps 16:5,8,9-11; Second Reading: Heb 10:11-14,18; Gospel Reading: Mk 13:24-32 

Vision of the future. The leader of a certain Indian tribe was dying. For many generations his people had been encamped at the base of a large mountain. The chief summoned his three sons and said: “I am dying; before my death I must choose one of you to succeed me as the head of our tribe. I have the same task for each of you. I want you to climb our holy mountain and bring me back something beautiful. The one whose gift is the most outstanding will be the one who will succeed me.”

The following morning the sons set out on their search, each taking a different path to the top of the holy mountain. After several days the three sons returned. The first brought his father a flower which grew near the summit of the mountain; it was extremely rare and beautiful. The second son brought his father a valuable stone round and colourful, which had been polished by rain and sandy winds. When the third son approached his father, everyone saw that his hand were empty.

The empty-handed son said to his father: “I have brought back nothing to show you, father. As I stood on the top of the holy mountain, I saw that on the other side was a beautiful land filled with green pastures. In the middle of there is a crystal lake. And I have a vision of where our tribe could go for a better life. I was so overwhelmed with what I saw and by what I could see that I could not bring anything back.” And the father replied: “You shall be our tribe’s new leader, for you have brought back the most precious thing of all – the gift of a vision for a better future.”

Apocalypse. In the pages of the Bible there are many stories of great figures who, as they see their death approaching, gather their children or followers to give a final testament. Before Jacob died, he called his twelve sons to give an appropriate blessing to each one. The dying Moses encouraged his people to be strong and stand firm, then appointed his successor to lead the twelve tribes. Before King David ended his days, he addressed the officials of Israel and passed authority to his son Salomon. In the same way Jesus, before he died, gathered his disciples and delivered his final teaching on the future age, instructing them how to live in the midst of political and cosmic upheavals. Part of Jesus’ final testament is wheat we hear in today’s Gospel.

It’s helpful to remember that Saint Mark is writing at a time when there is widespread oppression and persecution of the Christian community in Rome. No doubt Jesus’ followers are wondering if the end is near, uncertain in their suffering how things are going to turn out. Nobody knows the details of the las pages of history, but there is a form of writing that imagines the end time: it is called apocalyptic. To give his readers hope, Mark gives them Jesus’ vision of the future.

The vision of the future doesn’t look very appealing at first reading. The bad news is delivered first of all. Jesus imagines a time of terror and trouble and persecution. People will be betrayed and handed over to the authorities. There will be wars and earthquakes and famines. Jesus says, “These things must happen.” Then there will be cosmic upheavals: “the sun will be darkened, the moon will lose its brightness, the stars will come falling from heaven”. After this catalogue of disaster there is the good news. Jesus looks beyond the time of distress to the final time, when the Son of Man will gather the scattered people of God to Himself. Jesus sees beyond suffering and persecution to a future of peace with God.

Attending to the present. After the cosmic fireworks, Jesus imagines a peace beyond suffering. This vision of peace is important for Mark’s persecuted community: they need more than a fireworks’ display to see them through their own historical apocalypse. If their hope is not to be exhausted by force of circumstances, they need help to imagine a far side to pain and suffering. Mark gives their hope help in sharing Jesus’ vision. For that is the purpose of all apocalyptic writing: to fund the hope of those who suffer in the present.

In the meantime, we have to depend on the promise of Jesus: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away.” No one, not even the Son, knows when all this will take place. The only sure thing we can hold to is the word of Jesus.

We live in an age of uncertainty; the future never looks wholly secure. In a nuclear age the word of Jesus holds out a vision that takes us beyond our worst beginnings. There is a place beyond the duty to strive for peace, but it does free us from the blasphemy of believing that a nuclear holocaust will be the last word in the human story. There is only one final word: Jesus. That word has to be enough for us.

Note: Taken from Fr. Denis McBride CSsR, SEASONS OF THE WORD – Reflections on the Sunday Readings, Chawton, Alton, Hants.: Redemptorist Publications, 1993


39 posted on 11/18/2012 5:06:04 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: All
 
Marriage = One Man and One Woman
Til' Death Do Us Part

Daily Marriage Tip for November 18, 2012:

“But of that day or hour, no one knows…” (Mk 13:32) Death is not something most people like to think about, but it is inevitable and indeed we don’t know “the day or hour.” Don’t avoid talking about your deaths – even if you’re young. Do you know each other’s final wishes?


40 posted on 11/18/2012 5:11:42 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: All
Sunday Scripture Study

Thirty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time - Cycle B

November 18, 2012

Click here for USCCB readings

Opening Prayer  

First Reading: Daniel 12:1-3

Psalm: 16:5,8-11

Second Reading: Hebrews 10:11-14, 18

Gospel Reading: Mark 13:24-32

  • This is the last reading from the Gospel of Mark as this liturgical year approaches a close. After next Sunday’s Solemnity of Christ the King begins Advent, the season of the liturgical year that is a time of waiting for Our Lord’s coming at Christmas—and at the end of time.
  • In this Sunday’s Gospel reading, it is now Tuesday of Holy Week. Jesus has just predicted the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple (Mark 13:1-2), a prediction that would come to pass some 40 years later—a generation—in the year 70 AD at the hands of the Romans.  For the Jews of Jesus’ time, this was an extremely distressing prophecy. The destruction of the Temple would be, in effect, the end of their religious and social world, as they knew it. His disciples ask him privately when this will happen and what the sign of this will be (Mark 13:3).
  • He answers their two questions in what is called the “Olivet Discourse” because this discussion takes place on the Mount of Olives outside Jerusalem (verse 3). This Sunday’s Gospel is his answer to their second question. Even as his words about the Temple signaled an end to a world, in a secondary but real way it is a prediction about the end of our world, either at our own deaths or at his Second Coming, whichever comes first.

 

QUESTIONS:

  • The 1st Reading from Daniel implies that the Kingdom of God is assured to the faithful and wise, but that it comes through discernment and tribulation. How is this borne out in the teachings of Jesus as found in the Gospel Readings?
  • Do you live your life as if you were “consecrated”, i.e., being made holy (see 2nd Reading, verse 14)? Why or why not? In what ways is God calling you to practice greater holiness?
  • How are we to understand Jesus’ warnings about cosmic disturbances (verses 24-25)? Compare with Isaiah 13:10-13, Ezekiel 32:7, Amos 8:9, Joel 2:28-32, and Acts 2:14-21. What do all the events related to these verses have in common?
  • To who does the title “son of Man” in verse 26 refer to (see Daniel 7:13)?
  • How does the “fig tree” lesson (verses 28-29) answer the disciple’s question from verse 4? (see also Mark 11:12-14, 20-21)
  • What promises does Jesus give in verses 30-31? How would this comfort (or discomfort) the disciples? What impact do these promises have on you?
  • How can we prepare our hearts and minds in daily conversion for that time when Jesus “will come again to judge the living and the dead” (Nicene Creed)?

Catechism of the Catholic Church: §§ 673, 474

 

Let us not put off from one moment to another what we should do because the next moment is not yet ours.  –St. Padre Pio


41 posted on 11/18/2012 5:23:25 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 40 | View Replies]

To: All
The Signs of the Times
Pastor’s Column
33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time
November 18, 2012
 
“Learn a lesson from the fig tree. 
When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves, you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see these things happening,
know that he is near, at the very gates.”
                                                          (from Mark 13:24-32)
 
          Most of us know that things in our lives can change very quickly. Certain moments are “hinges” – periods of life where things change radically, and they often happen without much warning. Yet we can be prepared if we are able to read the signs of the times. Jesus warns us in this Sunday’s gospel that the end of the world will catch many people by surprise, and one might add that the end of our own present age may pass just as quickly. There will be signs for us from God! But will we recognize them?
 
          Jesus uses the example of a fig tree. When I lived in San Diego, California, the neighbor next door had a big fig tree planted next to my porch. One night I was sitting on the patio, when I had the distinct feeling that I was being watched! I quickly turned out the porch light, went inside, got a flashlight, and shined it into the fig tree. Imagine my shock to find about 10 pairs of eyes staring back at me! A family of raccoons had found an easy meal, and my neighbor had no figs to eat that year. I might add that in the following year he learned how to protect his figs!
 
          It is ironic that these wild animals could read the signs of the times (the time that the figs were ripe) before the owner of the tree realized his figs were ready to eat. Might God be using signs like these in your everyday life to speak to you about coming events? Has the Lord given you a sign like this that you might have missed?
 
          Here is one we have all experienced (at least through the news). The East Coast has just been through a terrible hurricane – disaster, and as I write, many people are still without power in New York-New Jersey, weeks later. The Lord has made it clear in scripture that we cannot directly connect these kinds of disasters with particular sins (see Luke 13:1-4), but what can we learn? Jesus would tell us to be prepared! Life can change in an instant, and we have to be ready. What would you do if the electricity went out for three weeks? More to the point, if this were the last day of your life, would you be ready to meet the Lord? Hinge moments, in both world history and in our own lives, can come at any time.
                                                                                      Father Gary

42 posted on 11/18/2012 5:41:36 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: All
St. Paul Center Blog

Hope in Tribulation: Scott Hahn Reflects on the 33rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Posted by Dr. Scott Hahn on 11.16.12 |


thorns 4

In this, the second-to-the-last week of the Church year, Jesus has finally made it to Jerusalem.

Near to His passion and death, He gives us a teaching of hope—telling us how it will be when He returns again in glory.

Today’s Gospel is taken from the end of a long discourse in which He describes tribulations the likes of which haven’t been seen “since the beginning of God’s creation” (see Mark 13:9). He describes what amounts to a dissolution of God’s creation, a “devolution” of the world to its original state of formlessness and void.

First, human community—nations and kingdoms—will break down (see Mark 13:7-8). Then the earth will stop yielding food and begin to shake apart (13:8). Next, the family will be torn apart from within and the last faithful individuals will be persecuted (13:9-13). Finally, the Temple will be desecrated, the earth emptied of God’s presence (13:14).

Readings:
Daniel 12:1-3
Psalm 16:5,8-11
Hebrews 10:11-14,18
Mark 13:24-32

In today’s reading, God is described putting out the lights that He established in the sky in the very beginning—the sun, the moon and the stars (see also Isaiah 13:10; 34:4). Into this “uncreated” darkness, the Son of Man, in Whom all things were made, will come.

Jesus has already told us that the Son of Man must be humiliated and killed (see Mark 8:31). Here He describes His ultimate victory, using royal-divine images drawn from the Old Testament—clouds, glory, and angels (see Daniel 7:13). He shows Himself to be the fulfillment of all God’s promises to save “the elect,” the faithful remnant (see Isaiah 43:6; Jeremiah 32:37).

As today’s First Reading tells us, this salvation will include the bodily resurrection of those who sleep in the dust.

We are to watch for this day, when His enemies are finally made His footstool, as today’s Epistle envisions. We can wait in confidence knowing, as we pray in today’s Psalm, that we will one day delight at His right hand forever.


43 posted on 11/18/2012 6:15:22 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 42 | View Replies]

To: All
Indulgences -- the Church at prayer and penance


  "Lord, hear our Prayer"
 
Among the reforms of the Church during and after the Second Vatican Council 50 years ago, was that of an often misunderstood spiritual principle called “Indulgences.” 
-snip

The Council of Trent, held sporadically from 1545 – 1563, initiated severe reforms for the Church in response to this challenge.  Among those reforms was a review of the practice of indulgences.  No longer was money attached to their imposition or benefit for the faithful. To sell blessed articles or to attach any monetary obligation to such things was forbidden.  The sin of simony was named if one did such things or attempted to buy ecclesiastical office or sacraments.  

So, we do not charge for sacraments or blessings and offer no privileged spiritual benefit to the rich over the poor. If a parishioner offers a gift to the priest in exchange for his services say at a wedding then he can accept that gift.  But it is never asked for or expected or required.  In addition, one normally offers a fee when a Mass intention is requested.   The Mass “stipend” may be taken by the priest or not since it is given to him as part of his salary. Either way the Mass is still offered.

In regards to Vatican II and indulgences, Pope Paul VI offered further reforms that create a clearer understanding.

Essentially, the Church is telling us that the graces and merits of the Blessed Mother and the Saints are available to all.  There is a kind of spiritual treasury that lies open to everyone. We can and should pray for those who have died – our prayers, our sacrifices for them do make a difference (Communion of saints).  In the early centuries of Christianity, when people commonly did public penance and stood outside the Church asking passersby to pray for them, if the penitent did some special pious exercise or act of charity him/herself, their time for public penance was shortened.  They were “indulged” with less time for penance.

That principle is behind our belief in the efficacy of our prayers and of those who have gone before us. Many saints did more than they needed to do for their own salvation so the Church looks upon those good works and charitable intentions as part of the spiritual treasure of the Church.

We now can gain either a partial or plenary indulgence.  The partial indulgence offers a portion of forgiveness for the temporal punishment of sin and a plenary takes away all of that punishment. Even though a sin is forgiven, there may still need to be damage control or further penance done as a result of that sin.  (A parent forgives their child but they still have to carry out some punishment: temporal punishment due to sin.)  

In this Year of Faith, our Holy Father Benedict XVI has offered the opportunity to gain a Plenary Indulgence.  How can one do so?

In general the gaining of an indulgence requires certain conditions:

One must be in the state of grace before God, at least at the time the indulgenced work is completed. Therefore the Sacrament of Reconciliation is necessary for anyone who seeks the indulgence no matter what their spiritual state.

-        Have the interior disposition of complete detachment from all sin.

-        Have gone to confession

-        Receive the Holy Eucharist

-        Pray for the intentions of the Pope

-        Have a heart for charity and act accordingly

No money is attached to these requirements and neither is it expected. This purely spiritual practice is in line with the Scriptures and a belief in the overwhelming mercy of God who desires that we live a life that is holy. 

I for one see this as a reassuring benefit that is neither magic nor superstition.  It is an opportunity to take advantage of God’s love.  To receive from our Father in heaven the goodness he wishes to share with us for our benefit. 

So, let yourself be “indulged” by this God who loves you enough to forgive our waywardness and call us back to himself. 
 
Fr. Tim

44 posted on 11/18/2012 6:48:44 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 43 | View Replies]

To: All
Insight Scoop

The Son of Man and the Little Apocalypse

A Scriptural Reflection on the Readings for Sunday, November 18, 2012 | Carl E. Olson 

Readings:
• Dn 12:1-3
• Ps 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11
• Heb 10:11-14, 18
• Mk 13:24-32

At the start of this month, On the Solemnity of All Saints, the first reading was from The Apocalypse, the Book of Revelation. It described the saints from the perspective of heaven, showing them to be marked and sealed by God, set apart as holy. Next Sunday, on the Solemnity of Christ the King, the epistle reading is from the opening chapter of the same book. It describes Jesus Christ as the ruler of kings of the earth who “is coming amid the clouds” to judge all men at the end of time. 

Today’s reading from the Gospel of Mark is closely related. It is from the Olivet Discourse, sometimes called a “little apocalypse” (see Mt 24-25 and Lk 21) because it contains difficult teachings by Jesus about the destruction of the Jerusalem temple in A.D. 70 and the final day of judgment. Like The Apocalypse of John the Revelator, the little apocalypse is filled with strong imagery and a complex web of allusions drawn from the Old Testament, especially from the prophets.

The challenge of making sense of today’s Gospel reading (and many related passages) is highlighted in Jesus, The Tribulation, and the End of the Exile (Baker Academic, 2005), written by Dr. Brant Pitre, a Scripture scholar who teaches at Our Lady of Holy Cross College in New Orleans. Pitre’s impressive study draws together a host of interwoven themes rooted in the Old Testament and referred by Jesus in his discourse, including the exile, the tribulation, the elect, the temple, and the messiah. I’ve chosen three insights provided by Pitre that will, hopefully, help readers better understand today’s Gospel reading. 

The first is that the images of darkened sun and moon, falling stars, and the shaken powers of heaven were frequently used by Isaiah, Jeremiah, Joel, Amos, and other prophets. They referred to one or several of the following: a day of divine judgment, the destruction of a foreign city (Babylon, for example), the destruction of Jerusalem (Isa 24:10-23; Jer 4:11-31), the restoration of Israel from exile, and the coming of the Messiah (Isa 13:10-14:2). Put simply, Jesus was not employing heavily coded language, but the heavenly language of the prophets. “A close study of the similar images of heavenly tumult,” writes Pitre, “shows that Jesus’ forecast stands directly in line with the oracles of the ancient Israelite prophets and early Jewish eschatological writings.”

Secondly, Jesus used this language to describe his approach Passion and death, through which he, the promised Messiah, would deliver his people from tribulation and inaugurate the restoration of Israel. The prophecies of Daniel are essential, for they speak of “the son of man coming in the clouds” (Dan 7:13), a figure Jesus clearly identifies with himself (Mk 13:26; 8:38). The Son of Man will “gather his elect” and lead a new exodus out of sin and death and form the new Israel, the Church, through the new covenant of his blood.

Finally, the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple are central events, both historically and theologically, in this epic plan of salvation. Recall that Jesus, in considering the spiritual state of Jerusalem, said, “Behold, your house is forsaken and desolate” (Mt 23:38). This desolation, Pitre argues, refers to the cessation of sacrifice, which is the “abomination of desolation” referred to by Daniel (Dan 9:27; 11:31; 12:11). The sacrifices of the temple, having ended in sacrilege, were fulfilled and replaced by the perfect sacrifice of the Lamb of God, which takes away the sins of the world. 

“Just as the first Exodus had been preceded and set in motion by a paschal sacrifice during a time of great trials and plagues,” Pitre explains, “so too Jesus saw his death as setting in motion the great paschal and eschatological trial that would bring about the restoration of Israel.” Today’s reading from Hebrews indicates this trial and restoration is still ongoing, as Jesus “waits until his enemies are made his footstool.” Meanwhile, we worship and serve a risen Lord and look to the return of the Son of Man.

(This "Opening the Word" column originally appeared in the November 15, 2009, edition of Our Sunday Visitor newspaper.)


45 posted on 11/18/2012 6:51:54 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 44 | View Replies]

To: All
Vultus Christi

Thoughts of peace, and not of affliction

 on November 18, 2012 12:48 PM |
 
1jabach1.jpg

The painting by Albrecht Dürer depicts the afflicted Job and his wife.

Affliction

The verb to afflict derives from the Latin affligere, meaning to cast down, to damage, harass, torment, crush, shatter, or oppress. Affliction is an unavoidable part of human existence in this valley of tears where we go mourning and weeping. Meditating on the texts and chants of today's Holy Mass, I discovered that running through them all is the motif of affliction, something to which every man can relate.

World, Flesh, Devil

Affliction generally proceeds from one of three causes, or from a combination of them. These causes are the world, the flesh, and the devil. The world is the universe and all it contains, including other people. The flesh is one's self, marked by original sin and by a history of actual sins. The devil is the Evil One against whom we pray in the Pater Noster: the prince of this world, and his allies.

Sometimes, as in the case of great saints such as Saint Anthony of Egypt, Saint John Mary Vianney, Saint Pio of Pietrelcina,. Mother Yvonne-Aimée, or Marthe Robin, the devil causes affliction directly. This diabolical affliction may be spiritual, psychological, or spiritual. It may be even taken the form of perceptible physical aggressions.

Conflict

More often than not, however, the devil makes use of secondary causes. Being astute, he knows how to make use of the shattered bits in ourselves and in others to orchestrate afflictions of all sorts. Rarely does one experience affliction without some kind of underlying conflict, and the devil is the master producer of conflict. The devil often profits from what he finds in the world and in our fallen nature to bring affliction down upon our heads. His aim is not merely to cause affliction; it is to push souls, by afflicting them in various ways, into doubt, despondency, and despair.

Discernment

Of one thing we can be certain. God does not afflict us. Our God is a God, not of affliction, but of comfort and consolation. Thus writes Saint Paul in 2 Corinthians 1:3-5.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort. Who comforteth us in all our tribulation; that we also may be able to comfort them who are in all distress, by the exhortation wherewith we also are exhorted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us: so also by Christ doth our comfort abound.

God comforts, He does not afflict. When God permits us to be afflicted it is to draw a greater good out of the affliction by allowing the one afflicted to participate, in some way, in the redeeming Passion of Jesus Christ. God, in Himself, is perfect peace and peace is the signature of all His operations and works. Following Saint Ignatius' rules for the discernment of spirits, one can unmask the afflictions of the Evil One, and place one's confidence in God who waits to give us peace.

When we suffer affliction, God stands ready to turn it into blessings for ourselves and for others. If necessary, He will even send us a consoling Angel from heaven, as He did for His Only-Begotten Son in the Garden of Gethsemani (Luke 22:43). The Holy Angels are ministers of divine consolation, close to the broken-hearted, the weary, and the downcast.

Introit

In today's Introit, God tells us that His thoughts concerning us are for our peace. The Lord is not the cruel conniver who seeks to afflict us, and so cause us to despair. He is the Giver of Peace, and the One who leads us out of the captivity of sin into the home He has prepared for us.

The Lord saith: I think thoughts of peace, and not of affliction: you shall call upon Me, and I will hear you; and I will bring back your captivity from all places. V. Lord, Thou hast blessed Thy land: Thou hast turned away the captivity of Jacob. (Psalm 84. 2) V. Glory be to the Father, to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost. As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be, world without end, amen. -- The Lord saith: I think thoughts of peace , and not of affliction: you shall call upon Me, and I will hear you; and I will bring back your captivity from all places. (Jeremias 29: 11,12,14)

Epistle

In the Epistle, Saint Paul commends the Christians of Thessalonica for having held fast to the Word, even in the midst of afflictions.

And you became followers of us and of the Lord, receiving the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost: so that you were made a pattern to all that believe in Macedonia and in Achaia. (2 Thessalonians 1:6-7)
Gradual
Thou hast delivered us, O Lord, from them that afflict us: and hast put them to shame that hate us. V.: In God we will glory all the day: and in Thy Name we will give praise for ever. (Psalm 43. 8-9)

In this magnificent chant in the 7th mode, God is revealed as the One who delivers us from those who afflict us. The experience of His saving grace causes us to glory in Him and to praise Him. Affliction lasts but for a time; the mercy of the Lord endures forever.

Alleluia

The Alleluia Verse and the Offertory Antiphon make use of the same text. It is the prayer of one afflicted, a prayer that rises out of the depths of darkness and temptation.

Alleluia, alleluia. V. From the depths I have cried to Thee, O Lord: Lord, hear my prayer. (Psalm 129: 1-2) Alleluia.

Holy Gospel

In the Gospel, Our Lord presents two parables: that of the grain of mustard, and that of the leaven mixed into three measures of meal. Both parables speak directly to the present state of our monastery. We are very small and of little importance. Like the grain of mustard, and the grain of wheat in John 12:24, we are called to disappear into the earth and to die. Like the leaven hid in three measures of meal, we are called to be hidden. Our effect in the Church -- and in the priesthood -- will be proportionate to our hiddenness.

Eucharistic Hiddenness

In the Most Holy Sacrament of the Altar, Jesus Christ is hidden: hidden, not only in the tabernacle, but hidden also beneath the humble appearances of the species of bread. The Sacred Host is the icon of the hiddenness to which we, as Benedictine adorers, are called. This hiddenness is an essential quality and condition of our vocation. Personally, I wonder if we -- if I -- am hidden enough. It is a questioned that must be asked in the light of Our Lord's Eucharistic Face; only there can it be answered.

Hidden Afflictions

The hidden life is not free from afflictions. Hidden afflictions, in fact, may be the most painful to bear. How many secret afflictions will be revealed in glory where they will shine with reflected brightness of the sacred wounds of Jesus?

Offertory Antiphon

From the depths I have cried out to Thee, O Lord; Lord, hear my prayer: from the depths I have cried out to Thee, O Lord. (Psalm 129:1-2)

Finally, there is today's Offertory Antiphon taken, as was the Alleluia Verse, from Psalm 129, the De Profundis. Composed in the second mode, this Offertory Antiphon is one of the most poignant of the whole Gregorian repertoire. It is the prayer of a soul brought low by affliction. Out of the depths rises the cry of a prayer that is real. It pierces the heavens and reaches the very heart of God. God is not indifferent to such prayers. He is, rather, touched by them, and moved to pity. Thus did he say to Moses:

I have seen the affliction of my people in Egypt, and I have heard their cry because of the rigour of them that are over the works: And knowing their sorrow, I am come down to deliver them out of the hands of the Egyptians, and to bring them out of that land into a good and spacious land, into a land that floweth with milk and honey. (Exodus 3:7-8)

God in the Midst of the Afflicted

The divine response to human affliction is to come down, to become close to the one afflicted. And this the mystery of the Most Holy Eucharist. It prolongs the great descent of the Incarnation in space and in history until the end of time. The Most Holy Sacrament is the mystery of a God come down to abide among the afflicted. Wheresoever the Most Holy Eucharist is present, afflictions become bearable, and the heaviest burdens are made lighter.


46 posted on 11/18/2012 7:02:09 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 45 | View Replies]

To: All
Regnum Christi

Towards Heaven
| SPIRITUAL LIFE | SPIRITUALITY
Thirty-Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Mark 13:24-32

Jesus said to his disciples: "In those days after that tribulation the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from the sky, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see ´the Son of Man coming in the clouds´ with great power and glory, and then he will send out the angels and gather his elect from the four winds, from the end of the earth to the end of the sky. Learn a lesson from the fig tree. When its branch becomes tender and sprouts leaves, you know that summer is near. In the same way, when you see these things happening, know that he is near, at the gates. Amen, I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away. But of that day or hour, no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

Introductory Prayer: Lord, I turn to you today with faith, knowing that you are the Lord of life and history. Aware of my weaknesses and failures, I set my hopes in you, for you always fulfill your promises. As I contemplate your love that becomes fidelity, I, too, desire to repay you with my fidelity. I am here before you to listen and, in listening, discover your will for me today.

Petition: Lord, may my intelligence be enlightened with the theological virtue of hope.

1. Promise Keeper: Christ promised and delivered. His words brought about a change of spirit: the way we understand the world around us, the way we desire, and the way we choose. All that he did had results, positive results. Many times throughout his preaching he promised us heaven, and through his death he made everlasting life possible for us, even though the price was his own life. When we promise someone something, do we keep that promise, no matter what the personal cost?

2. Solid Ground: Fear stalks us daily. The world in which we live can undermine our trust in God. It is easy to become attached to things of this world, even though they give us only a fleeting pleasure or a temporary security before they pass away, disappear, or vanish. Since our heart is made for God, for the infinite, when we become attached to something not of God, the result is fear. This is a fear of the future and a fear of the unknown. But with God, we know the ending, and we know what awaits us. Listen to those words: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.” All that we see and enjoy around us will pass away, but not Christ’s promises, namely the promises of eternal life -- of paradise. Be not afraid to hope in God.

3. Learn a Lesson from the Fig Tree: The grace of God ripens us. The moment we are baptized, we are made ready to see God. But there is a lesson, and it might be a bit scary. When Jesus spoke about the fig tree in today’s Gospel, he may have thought of another fig tree -- the one that bore no fruit, withered, dried up and died. Christ shocked them that time. We don’t know when Christ will pass by the fig tree of our life, looking to pick the fruit of our virtues. However, we can be assured of this: The time will come. Our baptism has made our lifetime a time of harvest. You have all eternity to rest in the house of the Father. The lesson: Bear fruit now; live virtue now. Christ came to give life and give it abundantly (see John 10:10).

Conversation with Christ: Lord, Jesus, may I live a life of virtue knowing that my life moves forward towards eternity. Help me to overcome my fears by placing all of them in your hands, knowing that you hold the solution. Help me to live my baptism faithfully and place all of my hope in your promises.

Resolution:I will live this day with special intensity, offering all for the conversion of souls.


47 posted on 11/18/2012 7:12:35 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 46 | View Replies]

To: All

This Sunday’s Gospel: The Return of the Lord

Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D.

by Marcellino D'Ambrosio, Ph.D. on November 16, 2012 ·

Whenever I lead a trip to the Holy Land, the question inevitably comes, “Will we visit Armageddon?’  This refers, of course, to the battlefield surrounding the ancient city of Megiddo where some think the final confrontation will take place before the end of the world (Rev 16:16).  Catholics and Protestants alike have a fascination with the Scriptural accounts of the cataclysmic events associated with the end.

The church, following the Scriptures, indeed teaches that Jesus will return in glory and this world as we know it will indeed come to a screeching halt, but not before a fierce, cosmic battle in which the Enemy makes his final bid for world domination (CCC 675-677).

But the last battle will not be the only battle.

The truth is that though nature’s four seasons continue to cycle serenely throughout the ages, and men and women, as in the days of Noah, continue to marry and be given in marriage, there is at the heart of history a continual battle going on.  In fact, the battle began before human history, when Michael and his forces swept the legions of Lucifer out of heaven.  There is a reason that we never get tired of love stories–love is of the essence of human life.  There is also a reason that we never get tired of war stories–war has been our constant companion and will be so till the last trumpet.

Many are puzzled when trying to interpret passages like this Sunday’s gospel, not to mention the entire book of Revelation.  Are Jesus and the inspired writers referring to the end of the world, or rather to the events happening in their own day, such as the destruction of Jerusalem and the persecution of the Church by the pagan Romans?

The answer is not an either/or but rather both/and.  The Antichrist is a future figure who will come at the end.  But he has also worn various masks over the course of time such as the Emperor Nero, Adolph Hitler, and Josef Stalin.  Under the surface of history, the battle is raging.  At certain moments, the fight takes center-stage in the evening news and battlelines become very clear–as in World War II or today’s abortion holocaust.

There are two big mistakes we could make here.  One would be to smugly deny this view of things as just so much apocalyptic hysteria.  The other would be to preoccupy ourselves with speculation over the future battle while neglecting to engage in the battle at hand.  Innocent pre-born babies are being slaughtered on a daily basis; thousands of Christians are imprisoned and tortured worldwide because of their faith, millions are exploited economically, and a secularist propaganda machine mounts a relentless attack on marriage and chastity.  Are we combatants in this struggle or do we sit by the sidelines reading the headlines?

Apocalyptic speculation is a waste of valuable time and energy.  Jesus clearly says “as to the exact day or hour, no one knows it” (Mark 13:32).  It is futile to try to figure it out.  But denying the reality of the current conflict or leaving the combat to others is also a waste of precious time.

We pray for the glorious return of the Lord, for him to come and right all wrongs and bring deliverance and eternal reward.  But our second reading says that “now he waits until his enemies are placed beneath his feet.” (Heb 10:13).  Often a sneaky enemy will not show his true colors and unleash his full might until his back is up against the wall. The final victory will be something that only the Lord himself will accomplish.  But it would seem that he will only come for the coup de grace when we, the members of his body, by the power of his grace, have helped to paint the enemy into a corner through our evangelization, intercession, works of mercy, and social activism.


48 posted on 11/18/2012 7:31:29 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 47 | View Replies]

To: All

The Centrality of the Liturgy

 

by Food For Thought on November 18, 2012 ·

Reading 1 Dn 12:1-3

Responsorial Psalm Ps 16:5, 8, 9-10, 11

Reading 2 Heb 10:11-14, 18

Gospel Mk 13:24-32

For most of us, the Mass is what we see or would like to see, what we experience or would like to experience. Some suggest that our Mass should return to the time-honored Latin, which nobody understands. Others want more Chinese and Tagalog Masses. Some want a quiet, songless Mass; others want to sing every part of the Mass that can be put into notes. The problem is, everyone thinks that his is the only proper way to celebrate the liturgy. For all their importance, there can be blind spots; they can keep us from seeing more deeply into the mystery we all cherish. In the liturgy, we celebrate the timeless work of redemption; we proclaim God’s wonderful works in the history of salvation. We don’t just read about them, we don’t just remember them – we re-present them; make them effectively present in us and in our lives.

In all this a major element is God’s word. Year after year, the readings recapture the movement of our salvation. Last Advent we re-presented the world’s waiting for its Savior. We welcome the Lord as he came to us at Christmas, surprisingly in the form of an infant. We grew to manhood with him, walked in his footsteps through Galilee and Judea. We recaptured his dying-rising through Lent and Easter. His Ascension lifted all of us with him to the Father; his Spirit descended not only on the disciples, but also on each believer. And since Pentecost we have heard and lived the mission of the Church, its ups and downs, its pride and passion, its agony and its ecstasy, its ceaseless struggle to grow into the fullness of its Lord, its living in hope for the final coming of the Savior.

And now, we reach the end of the Liturgical year. Next week the peak, we will crown Christ the King. There, the liturgy celebrates what will be the high point of creation, when humankind and all it possesses will be subjected to Christ, when he delivers the kingdom to God the Father after destroying every rule and every authority and power. Today we celebrate the beginning of that end; today we live in anticipation the end of the world, as we know it. If Advent was prologue to the Christian mystery, we now get a sneak preview into its finality.

Let us affirm Christ’s final coming with the intensity of the early Christians, who expected him to return within their lifetime. After the Consecration, let us proclaim with uncommon conviction what we confess to be that mystery of our faith: “Christ has died! Christ is risen! Christ will come again!”

But if Christ’s coming “with great power and glory” is merely a matter of Christian hope, if it may well be a millennium or more away, if I can do nothing to hasten or delay it, isn’t it quite irrelevant to my day to day existence? If you are convinced that “Christ will come again,” that the final moment is the moment to which all of history, including your own, is marching, that this is the climax of Christian yearning, then you will live in its light. You will become now what you want to be then.

How do you assure that? The significant single word here is the command of Jesus at the end of this chapter of Mark: “Watch! Be on the alert! Keep your eyes open for the constant coming of Christ into your life. He comes to us all the time – each time you come together, each time his word is proclaimed to you; each time his body rests in your hand or on your tongue. Christ comes to you in each person, man, woman, or child, whose eyes meet yours, especially those who hunger for food or love.

My brothers and sisters, it is indeed good to fix your eyes on Christ’s final coming “with great power and glory.” Here, after all, is our Christian hope, But it would be tragic if the far horizon blind us to Christ’s daily coming in rags and tatters, as a lonely, frightened, joyless, sick person, lost in a strange world that does not seem to care. Hence, after all, is our Christian love.


49 posted on 11/18/2012 7:34:08 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 48 | View Replies]

To: All
One Bread, One Body

One Bread, One Body


 

<< Sunday, November 18, 2012 >> 33rd Sunday Ordinary Time
 
Daniel 12:1-3
Hebrews 10:11-14, 18

View Readings
Psalm 16:5, 8-11
Mark 13:24-32

 

STRESS MANAGEMENT?

 
"It shall be a time unsurpassed in distress since nations began until that time." —Daniel 12:1
 

Today it is popular to talk about "stress management" and being "stressed out." The times in which we live are very stressful. However, the end of the world will be much more stressful. "Those times will be more distressful than any between God's work of creation and now, and for all time to come" (Mk 13:19). The end-time will be more stressful than the atom bombings and concentration camps of World War II, than plagues, earthquakes, and other disasters. "Indeed, had the Lord not shortened the period, not a person would be saved. But for the sake of those He has chosen, He has shortened the days" (Mk 13:20). At the very end, even the strongest Christians will be pushed to their limits.

Why does the Lord tells us about the ultimate stress of the future? He is not trying to increase our stress in the present, but to prepare us for the future and make the present more peaceful. Jesus said: "I tell you all this that in Me you may find peace. You will suffer in the world. But take courage! I have overcome the world" (Jn 16:33). Jesus promised: "My peace is My gift to you; I do not give it to you as the world gives peace. Do not be distressed or fearful" (Jn 14:27). We deal with stress not by getting out of stressful circumstances, but by getting into Jesus. We don't manage stress; we let Jesus our Lord manage us.

 
Prayer: Father, may I come to Jesus, take His yoke on me, and be refreshed (Mt 11:28-29).
Promise: "Jesus offered one sacrifice for sins and took His seat forever at the right hand of God." —Heb 10:12
Praise: Praise You, risen Jesus, Emmanuel, "God with us!" You became flesh and dwelt among us. Praise You for letting us see Your glory (Jn 1:14).

50 posted on 11/18/2012 7:40:25 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 49 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-52 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Religion
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson