RESOURCE1: May 27, 2018, THE SOLEMNITY OF THE MOST HOLY TRINITY,  FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE2: MAY 28, 2018, Monday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE3: May 29, 2018, Tuesday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE4: May 30, 2018, Wednesday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, FaithCatholic Online;   Ordo.
RESOURCE5: May 31, 2018, Thursday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE6: JUNE  1, 2018, Friday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE7: JUNE  2 ,2018, Saturday of the Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.
RESOURCE8: JUNE  3, 2018, CORPUS CHRISTI SUNDAY, FaithCatholic Online; Paulist Ordo.

RESOURCE9: REFLECTION — MAY27 – 31, 2018, Eighth Week in Ordinary Time, Daily Prayer 2018, pages 286-287.
RESOURCE10: DAILY REFLECTIONS, Daily Prayer 2018, pages  176-183.
RESOURCE15: HOW THE CHURCH HAS CHANGED THE WORLD, Magnificat, April 2018, pages 150-154.



Lectionary 165: 1) Deuteronomy 4:32-34, 39-40; 2) Ps 33:4-6, 9, 18-20, 22; 3) Romans 8:14-17; 4)Matthew 28:16-20.


FOCUS:          Jesus calls us all to relationship with the Triune God, and with one another. Christ proclaims the three-fold unity of God and commands that we make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.  The Lord God is one, there is no other (1). We have been chosen as his own (Ps), and, through the Spirit, are able to call God Abba (2). Through baptism all nations are called to share in the life of the Son (3) and acknowledge the triune God.


In today’s first reading, Moses instructs the people to know, and fix in their hearts, that the Lord is God. They are to keep his statutes and commandments. In Romans, Paul reminds us that through the Spirit we are God’s adopted children and joint heirs with Christ. In the Gospel, Jesus delivers the Great Commission, sending his disciples throughout the world to baptize in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

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 Lectionary 347: 1) 1 Peter 1:3-9; 2) Ps 111:1-2, 5-6, 9, 10c; 3) Mark 10:17-27.


FOCUS:          The cost of discipleship is high. Our relationship with God must come first. We are challenged by our readings today to make our witness to Christ our first priority. This is not easy, as the rich man discovered in today’s Gospel. But if we wish to be his disciples, we must try each day to put the things of God above things of this earth.  A baptismal hymn proclaims a new covenant (Ps), our regeneration in Christ (1). To share in the kingdom means attachment to Jesus, not to riches (2).


In the reading from the First Letter of Peter, we are reminded that we may have to go through trials, but we have received salvation from Jesus Christ. In the Gospel, Jesus speaks about what is necessary to enter the kingdom of God and inherit eternal life, and reminds his disciples that all things are possible for God.

  • (USA) For Memorial Day, the Mass for the Preservation of Peace and Justice, #30A or B, may be fitting in cases of pastoral advantage.

PN On this Memorial Day (USA), the Order for Visiting a Cemetery, as found in BB, nos. 1734-1754, may be used. See also HB, 174.

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Lectionary 348: 1) 1 Peter 1:10-16; 2) Ps 98:1-4; 3) Mark 10:28-31.


FOCUS:          We are called to holiness. Because we believe the Good News of Christ’s saving action, our hope is in God’s promise of eternal life. We act on this hope by letting go of what impedes our faith in Jesus, and by giving priority to eternal values as we follow God’s plan for us. Peter speaks of paschal, baptismal life in obedience to Christ (1, Ps). Jesus tells Peter of the blessings which the disciples will receive (2).


In the first reading, Peter exhorts the community to accept God’s call to holiness and to set their hopes solely on the grace of Jesus Christ. In the Gospel, Jesus indicates that following him and sharing the Good News has its challenges, but it is ultimately life-giving and leads to eternal life.


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Lectionary 349: 1) 1 Peter 1:18-25; 2) Ps 147:12-15,19-20; 3) Mark 10:32-45.


FOCUS:          We are called to serve one another with the love of Jesus in our hearts.

Abuse and misuse of power can occur with anyone with any degree of authority, which is why we all have to be vigilant and aware of our responsibilities to those we serve. We would do well to follow the example of Jesus, who came to serve rather than to be served. Let us praise the Lord (Ps) who has delivered us from sin by the blood of Christ (1). Discipleship entails suffering and service (2).


In the First Letter of Peter, we are reminded that Christ is our salvation as well as our example to follow. In today’s Gospel, Jesus tells the Apostles, for the third time, about his impending passion, death and resurrection. He teaches them that true authority is about serving others, not self.

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Lectionary 572: 1) Zephaniah 3:14-18a or Romans 12:9-16; 2) (Ps) Is 12:2-3, 4bcd, 5-6;

3) Luke 1:39-56.


FOCUS:          Mary, God’s humble servant, models for us faith and trust in God’s plan. Mary’s “yes” to God was based on her deep love for and faith in the Father. She submitted to God’s will despite any uncertainties she may have had. By her example, she teaches us to also accept the call of the Lord and live out the Gospel in our daily interactions with others. With hospitality and affection (lb), Elizabeth greets her cousin Mary (2), the bearer of the Mighty Savior (la, Ps).


In Romans, Paul calls the community of believers to be fervent in spirit, to love and care for the needs of others, and to practice humility. Mary’s visit to Elizabeth is relayed in Luke’s Gospel. Mary praises God and expresses her humble joy at being chosen to be God’s vessel, as his promise is fulfilled.

  • Tomorrow, concerning First Friday, see Directives, no. 9.
  • In the USA, the Solemnity of Corpus Christi is perpetually transferred to the Sunday following Holy Trinity Sunday.

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Lectionary 351: 1) 1 Peter 4:7-13;  2) Ps 96:10-13; 3) Mark 11:11-26. Scripture for saint’s feast:                     see 574: 1 Cor 1:18-25 Mt 5:13-19


FOCUS:          Be stewards of God’s varied graces, and be ready to give witness to your faith. We do not know the hour when Christ will return in glory. But we live in hope, and in the faith and knowledge of God’s mercy and presence in our lives. As believers, we are called to trust and to be ready to share that mercy and presence with others. The end of all things is near (1), when the Lord will come to judge the earth (Ps). Until the day of his coming, he fervent in prayer and have faith in God (2).


In the first reading, Saint Peter reminds the early Church that until Christ returns in under Marcus a really us; authored apology and dialogue with triple glory they must be his presence in the world. In the Gospel, Jesus demonstrates his authority through the cursing of the fig tree and cleansing of the Temple, and reminds us that whatever we ask for in prayer will be ours.

Justin, † 165 under Marcus Aurelius; authored Apology and Dialogue with Trypho; layman and apologist who gives one of the earliest descriptions of the Mass; patron of philosophers and apologists.

It is time sure and be a couple minutes if you can get dressed in a couple minutes go right at you can leave the door open for my heels

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Optional Memorial: Saints Marcellinus and Peter, Martyrs; Saturday in honor of BVM

Lectionary 352: 1) Jude 17, 20b-25; 2) Ps 63:2-6; 3) Mark 11:27-33.


FOCUS:          Build yourselves up in your most holy faith. Jude warns against falling under the spell of false prophets and encourages us to stay strong in faith. We, too, must be watchful for those things which can separate us from God. Keep yourselves in the love of God (1), ever longing to see his power and glory (Ps). Jesus, sent by the Father, has all authority, in heaven and on earth (2).


Today’s epistle from Jude is an exhortation on staying strong in faith and the love of God. In the Gospel, Jesus answers his opponents’ challenge to his authority by saying, neither shall I tell you by what authority I do these things.

Marcellinus, presbyter, and Peter, exorcist, t c. 303; beheaded under Diocletian; both mentioned in the Roman Canon.

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Lectionary 168: 1) Exodus 24:3-8; 2) ; 3) Hebrews 9:11-15; 4) Mark 14:12-16, 22-26.


FOCUS:          We cannot afford to take the gift of Eucharist for granted. There are many reasons people give for no longer going to church. There is one great reason to attend. It is here as a community of believers we receive the most precious and sacred of all gifts from our God this side of heaven. It is here we receive the most sacred gift of Jesus in the Eucharist. Moses ratifies the covenant by offering a thanksgiving sacrifice (Ps) and by sprinkling blood over the people (1). The new covenant, the law’s oblation (Seq), is ratified in the blood of Christ, the unblemished offering (2) poured out (3) for us.


In our reading from Exodus, Moses and the people commit to the Lord and his covenant. In Hebrews, the author uses the image of a mediator in describing Jesus’ role in the new covenant we have with the Father. The Gospel recalls the first Eucharistic meal.

  • The annual procession on the feast of Corpus Christi, or on an appropriate day near this feast, is desirable, in accordance with the law, when today’s circumstances permit and when it can truly be a sign of common faith and adoration. See Holy Communion and Worship of the Eucharist Outside of Mass, 102 (21 June 1973).


  • Ordinary Time resumes Monday following Pentecost, or 21 May, with the 7th week. The psalter resumes its course with Pss III. Ordinary Time continues until Evening Prayer I of the First Sunday of Advent, 1 December 2018.
  • Volume III of the Liturgy of the Hours is used until 4 August through Midafternoon Prayer (None), inclusive.
  • At Night Prayer, any of the final anthems in honor of the Mother of God may be used, including the Regina coeli, used during the Easter season. Traditionally, the Salve Regina is sung during this period until the beginning of Advent. The saying of the Angelus is resumed.
  • In the ferial (weekday) Lectionary, the first reading is taken from cycle II.
  • The Roman Missal provides six formulae of Solemn Blessings (nos. 9-14) which may be used at the discretion of the priest at the end of the celebration of Sunday Mass in Ordinary Time.

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Faith Catholic (Online), May 2018;                  Give Us This Day, Liturgical Press, May 2018;
Magnificat, May 2018;                        Paulist Ordo

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May 27-31           Eighth Week in Ordinary Time

‘Within the Word           Sometimes Clueless, Always Called

Peter and Paul may get the lion’s share of attention, but James and John have plenty to teach us about discipleship. They are introduced, quite simply, as James and his brother John, the sons of Zebedee. Fishermen, like the other apostolic brothers Peter and Andrew, they plied their trade along with their father on the Sea of Galilee until an encounter with Jesus changed everything. Abandoning their father and their liveli­hood, they made the radical choice to follow Jesus throughout his public ministry.

Called to be among the twelve apostles and sent out by Jesus to proclaim the Kingdom of God, James and John were witnesses to Jesus’ preaching and to his miracles. But James and John were part of a select group even among the apostles. Jesus chose James and John, along with Peter, to witness sev­eral very special moments—the raising of Jairus’s daughter, the Transfiguration, and the agony at Gethsemane.

Yet, despite their close relationship with Jesus, the brothers sometimes seemed clueless about the nature of Jesus’ mission. James and John may have earned the nickname “Boanerges,” or “sons of thunder;’ when they asked Jesus for permission to call down fire on a Samaritan village that would not wel­come Jesus (Luke 9:54). In another incident, James and John (or their mother in Matthew’s telling of the story) approached Jesus to ask to sit at his right and his left when he began his reign. (The seats at the side of a king were reserved for his most powerful advisers.) Jesus immediately shattered their illusions of worldly glory, informing them that following him led not to power, influence, and wealth, but to humble service, suffering, and death.

Despite these missteps, James and John remained follow­ers of Jesus. After Jesus’ death and resurrection, James and John were with the remaining apostles for Jesus’ post resurrection appearances. They witnessed Jesus’ Ascension and waited in the Upper Room for the descent of the Holy Spirit. Filled with the Spirit’s power, they went out to share the good news of Jesus Christ. James became the first apostle to be martyred for the faith, beheaded on the orders of King Herod (Acts 12:2). Tradition recounts that John was the last apostle to die and the only apostle not martyred, though he suffered harsh persecution and exile. Thus, these brothers bookended the apostolic era of the Church’s history.

These “bookends” offer rich examples that can shape our lives as missionary disciples. As Jesus called James and John at the Sea of Galilee, he calls us today. God always acts first, calling us and awaiting our response. Our personal encounter with Jesus leads us into relationship with the Church (led by the successors of the apostles) and into discipleship, conforming our lives to Christ’s will and witnessing to what he has done in and for us. Even when we fail or misunderstand what God wants from us, Jesus is waiting to receive our repentance with mercy and to send us out once again, renewed by the Spirit to share the good news bywords and acts of loving service. James’s apostolic ministry was cut short while John’s was long. No mat­ter how much time God grants us, we must follow James and John, living each moment as faithful disciples on mission.

MARY ELIZABETH SPERRY          Mary Elizabeth Sperry holds a master’s degree in liturgical studies from the Catholic University of America. She has worked for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops since 1994 and is the author of numerous articles and books, including Scripture in the Parish: A Guide for Catholic Ministry.

Give Us This Day® Daily Prayer for Today’s Catholic, Liturgical Press, pages 286-287.

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Reflection – Sunday, May 27, 2018        Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity 

Matthew gives us the clearest reference to the Holy Trinity when Christ sends out the Eleven to make disciples of all nations, “baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.” This is the only ritual evi­dence we have regarding Baptism. That the manner to baptize is given in this Scripture carries a twofold meaning; first that the Trinitarian blessing is essential to Christian Baptism and that the other ritual details are up to each Apostle to determine as he sees fit. This would account for the great diversity among the early Christian communities, especially in regard to the Eucharist.    Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 176.





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Reflection – Monday, May 28, 2018          Weekday  

After introducing himself in this letter and sending greetings to the pilgrims of the Dispersion (namely, Jews outside of Palestine) in Pontus, Galatia, Cap­padocia, Asia, and Bithynia, St. Peter begins with a Jewish blessing where he asks nothing of God, but simply blesses God who has shown great mercy and love in giving new life and hope in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. His use and adaptation of a typical Jewish prayer called a berakah reflects that he is well aware of his audience—Jewish Christians. This prayer will set the tone for his hearers and encourage them to greater faithfulness. Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 177.




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  Reflection – Tuesday, May 29, 2018         Weekday

After beginning his letter with a bless­ing (yesterday’s reading), Peter exhorts his listeners to accept and embrace the sufferings and tribulations that will come to followers of Jesus. He calls them to a new way of living; their con­duct is to be holy. Christ has called them to himself, and they are to emulate his way of living. They live no longer in darkness but in the light of Christ and are to live as he lived. Through him, they see the way to live as God com­manded the Israelites through Moses,

“Be holy, for I, the LORD your God am holy” (Leviticus 19:2).   Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 178.

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Reflection – Wednesday, May 30, 2018 Weekday  

In the Solemn Intercessions on Good Friday, we pray for the Jewish people “to whom the Lord our God spoke first.” Peter emphasizes this point in his letter to the first Jewish Christians. He dem­onstrates to them that their faith in Jesus Christ was prepared for them from the beginning of the world and fulfilled in Christ. Therefore they are to live accordingly, loving one another with pure hearts. As a result of the Resurrec­tion, they have been born anew and must conform their lives to the living and abiding Word of God, which, unlike the grass and flowers that wither, remains forever.     Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 179.



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        Reflection – Thursday, May 31, 2018 Feast of the Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Luke places a canticle on Mary’s lips as she visits her cousin Elizabeth. Mere prose would miss the mark for such a momentous occasion. Mary expresses in song her great joy in God. She was not able to respond to the angel Gabriel with the same amount of exuberance. Possibly, it was Elizabeth’s beautiful greeting that elicited such a poetic response. It is little wonder that the Church has adopted this canticle to be prayed every evening during vespers. We join ourselves to Mary in proclaim­ing the greatness of the Lord. Like Mary our spirits rejoice in God our Savior.   Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 180.



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            Reflection – Friday, June 1, 2018 Memorial of St. Justin, Martyr

Jesus is portrayed in the Gospel as act­ing quite out of character, using his divine power in selfish anger to curse a tree because it did not act contrary to nature by providing him fruit out of season to satisfy his hunger. Jesus was not out to condemn a non-bearing tree; he was pronouncing judgment against the religious barrenness of the nation. The tree is not in trouble, the nation is. The tree has not rejected its Messiah, the nation has. The tree is being used as a symbol, not the object itself, of the judgment. If it had been the season for figs, then the tree would have itself borne certain responsibility, and its judgment would have applied as much to itself as to the nation, watering down the force of the symbolism. But Jesus is not interested in judging fig trees.     Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 181.

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   Reflection – Saturday, June 2, 2018          Weekday

 In the reading today we hear the word “authority” multiple times. Jesus speaks with authority. But he is also speaking to authority. Here is where the rub comes in. When asked to place where his authority originates, he answers in an enigmatic way. Since John the Bap­tist’s authority as a prophet clearly came from a heavenly origin, we can assume that Jesus’ does also. But Jesus responds by saying that he will not tell them. His interrogators will have to discover on their own that his authority is from God.    Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 182.

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   Reflection – Sunday, June 3, 2018        (Corpus Christi)

Solemnity of the Most Holy Body and Blood of Christ

 In this Marcan year, we hear a slightly different approach to the Last Supper. Mark, who wrote for a Jewish audience, clearly establishes the Passover as the context for this meal that Jesus shared with his disciples. There is one little detail that should interest us in this Jew­ish context. It says that Jesus took the bread and said the blessing. What bless­ing? If he were a Christian, we might think that he blessed the bread. But as a Jewish believer, his blessing was addressed to God. It says that he gave thanks over the cup. We might think that the content of his blessing was a thanksgiving and that is precisely what Eucharist means.            Daily Prayer 2018, LTP, page 183.

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Third Sunday of Easter April 15, 2018

The Missouri Bishops and churches being Gun-free zones… On Monday of this past week in Tony Messenger’s column in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch he wrote about the letter the Bishops of Missouri wrote to our state legislature about a common sense approach to the issue of gun violence in our nation and in particular, the State of Missouri.

The letter is very pointed and almost a rebuke to our state’s lawmakers in Jefferson City. It is a call to action on common sense gun regulation. The letter was spurred in part by House Bill 1936, sponsored by Representative Jered Taylor of Nixa, Missouri.

That bill, if passed, would eliminate the need for Missourians who are carrying a concealed weapon to obtain permission from their pastor before bringing a concealed weapon to church. Again, if it passes, churches wishing to remain gun-free would have to post signage in their sacred spaces prohibiting guns. And as the bishops wrote in their letter, “this is highly offensive to us and would violate our First Amendment rights to religious liberty.” As Tony Messenger said in his column the message from the Catholic bishops of Missouri is this: “You can stand for guns in churches. Or you can stand for religious liberty. But you can’t stand for both.”

The bill passed the House committee in March with a party-line vote. Republicans voted yes. Democrats voted no. As the bill heads to the House floor, and other bills are considered, Archbishop Carlson and the other Catholic Bishops of Missouri are hoping to stop the gun-expansion bills by asking Republicans to remember their commitment to life and to religious liberty.

I very much admire our Archbishop and the Catholic bishops of Missouri for this stand on the issue of gun legislation in Missouri. I would like to put the complete letter here in this column for you to read:

Statement of the Missouri Catholic Conference Regarding Gun Violence …

We, the Catholic bishops of Missouri, wish to address the senseless gun violence that is occurring in our schools, on our streets, and in our inner cities. The disturbing frequency of these events is making us numb to the profound impact on those directly affected and it calls for serious reflection on why people are carrying out senseless acts of violence. It is also appropriate to consider the use of guns in society.

Our nation needs to have an honest discussion about the toll violent images and experiences are having upon us, especially our youth. We must work toward peace in our communities through restorative justice policies and practices, and through ongoing discussions about the presence of so much violence in our entertainment and neighborhoods.

We acknowledge that there is right to self-defense. Many Catholics and people of good will are gun owners and law-abiding citizens who would never consider the use of lethal force unless it was necessary to preserve human life.

As we issue this statement, bills are currently being debated in the Missouri General Assembly that would further loosen gun regulations. One such bill, for example, would eliminate the need for Missourians who are carrying a concealed weapon to obtain permission from their pastor before bringing a concealed weapon to church.

If this bill were to pass, churches wishing to remain gun-free would have to post signage in their sacred spaces prohibiting guns. This is highly offensive to us and would violate our First Amendment rights to religious liberty. As the leaders of the Catholic Church in Missouri, we vigorously object to this change in Missouri law!

Law-abiding gun owners know that guns must be used in a safe and responsible manner. This is taught in every gun safety course, and these courses are a means of promoting the common good. Our reflection on the proper place of guns in our society leads us to seriously consider reasonable and sensible gun regulations in order to protect human life from the kind of gun violence we are currently experiencing in our country.

We do not think, for example, that there is any reasonable justification for civilians to purchase and own so-called “bump stocks” that transform already potent semi-automatic weapons into weapons of war. We support universal background checks for gun purchases, and reasonable limitations on civilian access to high-capacity ammunition magazines, like the ten-round limit imposed for hunters in Missouri (Missouri Wildlife Code 3 CSR 10-7, 431). We see no purpose or justification for civilians to carry large capacity magazines that permit the kind of sustained firepower that can result in multiple casualties. We further support improving access to and increased resources for mental healthcare and earlier interventions.

We ask our fellow Catholics and people of good will to work toward this end by discussing these matters in their local communities and by contacting their local, state, and federal representatives to address these issues through policy and legislative measures that uphold the safety and well-being of all persons in our communities.

The Catholic Bishops of Missouri :

The Most Reverend Robert J. Carlson, the Archbishop of Saint Louis
The Most Reverend James V. Johnston, Jr., the Bishop of Kansas City-St. Joseph
The Most Reverend W. Shawn McKnight, the Bishop of Jefferson City
The Most Reverend Edward M. Rice, the Bishop of Springfield-Cape Girardeau

If you are so inclined this would be a great time to write or call our local State representatives and senators regarding this particular bill, House Bill 1936.

Our state representative is: Deb Lavender: Missouri House of Representatives, 201 W. Capitol Ave, Room 105 —J, Jefferson City, Missouri 65101; 573-751-4069

Andrew Koenig: Missouri Senator; 201 W. Capitol Ave. Room 220, Jefferson City, Mo. 65101; 573-751-5568.

Take care and I’ll see you in church!              Monsignor Jack 135

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   Prayer is always joined to fasting. Fasting triggers in this season a remembrance to pray for those being brought to the font, to full communion or to reconciliation. Only after we have shared the absence can we come with full hearts to the paschal banquet.Nine things that Pope Francis called upon Vatican Employees to do:They apply to us all.  “Take care of your spiritual life, your relationship with God, because this is the backbone of everything we do and everything we are.”

  • “Take care of your family life, giving your children and loved ones not just money, but most of all your time, attention, and love.”
  • “Take care of your relationships with others, transforming your faith into life and your words into good works, especially on behalf of the needy.”
  • “Be careful how you speak, purify your tongue of offensive words, vulgarity, and worldly decadence.”
  • “Heal wounds of the heart with the oil of forgiveness, forgiving those who have hurt us and medicating the wounds we have caused others.”
  • “Look after your work, doing it with enthusiasm, humility, competence, passion and with a spirit that knows how to thank the Lord.”
  • “Be careful of envy, lust, hatred, and negative feelings that devour our interior peace and transform us into destroyed and destructive people.
  • “Watch out for anger that can lead to vengeance; for laziness that leads to existential euthanasia; for pointing the finger at others, which leads to pride; and for complaining continually, which leads to desperation.”
  • “Take care of brothers and sisters who are weaker… the elderly, the sick, the hungry, the homeless and strangers, because we will be judged on this.”
  • It is a good list: It’s clearly rooted in Catholic teaching, but presented in a way that other Christian denominations can embrace as well. I am reasonably sure that all of us can find on this list at least one or two resolutions that speak to areas in which we really need to grow during this Lent.Have a good week and I’ll see you in church!                                             Monsignor Jack 1-3-5  (Lent 2018)

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We pray you, 0 God of might, wisdom, and justice, through whom authority is rightly administered, laws are enacted, and judgment decreed, assist with your Holy Spirit of counsel and fortitude the President of these United States, that his administration may be conducted in righteousness, and be eminently useful to your people, over whom he presides; by encouraging due respect for virtue and religion; by a faithful execution of the laws in justice and mercy; and by restraining vice and immorality.Let the light of your divine wisdom direct the deliberations of Congress, and shine forth in all the proceedings and laws framed for our rule and government, so that they may tend to the preservation of peace, the promotion of national happiness, the increase of industry, sobriety, and useful knowledge; and may perpetuate to us the blessing of equal liberty. We pray for the governor of this state, for the members of the assembly, for all judges, magistrates, and other officers who are appointed to guard our political welfare,that they may be enabled, by your powerful protection, to discharge the duties of their respective stations with honesty and ability. We recommend likewise, to your unbounded mercy, all our fellow citizens throughout the United States, that we may be blessed in the knowledge and sanctified in the observance of your most holy law; that we may be preserved in union, and in that peace which the world cannot give; and after enjoying the blessings of this life, be admitted to those which are eternal.Grant this, we beseech you, 0 Lord of mercy, through Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior. Amen.                                                                                                 ARCHBISHOP JOHN CARROLL Archbishop Carroll (†1815) was a priest for the Society of Jesus, and the first bishop of the United States.Magnificat, July 2016, pages 62-63.

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Pierre-Marie Dumont, Who still reads the great French prophets of the 201h century? Who still reads Peguy, Claudel, Bernanos, Saint-Exupery? Each, from his viewpoint, railed against the coming of the same abomi­nation: “their” civilization was dying. While this civilization ought to have been perfected, so that the Kingdom of God on earth could truly grow, all that had constituted its genius was soon to vanish. Materialism, hedonism, self-preoccupation (today it would be called “personal development”) was about to submerge beauty, goodness, and truth, along with the true Faith and the ancient virtues. The sign of the coming of the end of this world was that terrifying metropolises were already reducing rural, pastoral civili­zation to objects fit to fill their museums. Since then, this prophecy has been fulfilled. The fertile ground that nurtured our civilization has gone. Villages have been deserted. Human relationships have been virtualized. Faith and devotion are fading. The moral com­pass that, far from constraining free men, once guided them, has been distorted. The poor, humble and proud, with that magnificent nobility celebrated by Thornton Wilder, have disappeared from the social landscape.. . . .the Word of God would no longer immediately touch hearts and minds. He who, directly or indirectly, has never worked the good earth by the sweat of his brow, never experienced seed times and harvests, never tended sheep or saved a stray lamb, finds himself de facto distanced from the Gospel and its parables. Let us not be saddened: we find ourselves spurred on to deepen our understanding of the Word of God, to improve our prayerful reading of it—and let us not forget that our Lord Jesus Christ remains present to the world even until his return in glory. But why not take advantage of our vacations in the countryside to rediscover, with a touch of nostalgia, a drop of the sap that nourished the fervor of our fathers in faith?    Magnificat, July 2016, page 432. PurpleConeFlower_7(24)2009_IMG_0985 

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