a cheerful countenance

February 28, 2017 6:00 am

“In a generous spirit pay homage to the LORD, be not sparing of freewill gifts. With each contribution show a cheerful countenance, and pay your tithes in a spirit of joy.” (SIR 35: 10-11)

Our gift of self should be free, creative and joyful–so we teach this in our Program 1. “With each contribution show a cheerful countenance, and pay your tithes in a spirit of joy.” Joy makes our gifts mature and generous. Our “cheerful countenance” makes a difference.

“Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth; you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Enter the Kingdom of God

February 27, 2017 6:00 am

“Children, how hard it is to enter the Kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the Kingdom of God.” (MK 10: 24-25)

God sees prosperity, wealth and power, from different perspective: our lives here, on Earth are temporary. Only eternal life can satisfy our deepes desire. Only God is an answer to all our longing. God loves us and invites us Heaven, where love rules and the only way to “enter the Kingdom of God” is love, not wealth.

“Jesus Christ became poor although he was rich, so that by his poverty you might become rich.” (Gospel Acclamation)

I will never forget you

February 26, 2017 6:00 am

“Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.” (IS 49: 15)

God is telling us over and over the same truth: we are His beloved children, and He “will never forget us.” NEVER! If we feel abandoned or rejected by others, we can always come to Him. His word “is living and effective.”

“The word of God is living and effective; discerning reflections and thoughts of the heart

The Kingdom of God belongs to such as these

February 25, 2017 6:00 am

“Let the children come to me; do not prevent them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Amen, I say to you, whoever does not accept the Kingdom of God like a child will not enter it.” (MK 10: 14-15)

To God we are always His beloved children. And He is always happy when we come to Him. We must learn to cultivate the child in us. The best way to learn how to do this is to protect the relationship of our children with God–“let the children come to me; do not prevent them.”

“Blessed are you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth; you have revealed to little ones the mysteries of the Kingdom.” (Gospel Acclamation)

A kind mouth multiplies friends

February 24, 2017 6:00 am

“A kind mouth multiplies friends and appeases enemies, and gracious lips prompt friendly greetings. Let your acquaintances be many, but one in a thousand your confidant.” (SIR 6: 5-6)

It occurs everywhere: at homes, in offices, at stores or at the movies–“a kind mouth multiplies friends.” The most important places to practice this are our homes and our relationships. When we are gentle and respectful and when we are focused on “a kind mouth,” we can improve our relationships and move them to a better level, especially when we consider that Our Lord IS a word.

“Your word, O Lord, is truth; consecrate us in the truth.” (Gospel Acclamation)

… will surely not lose his reward

February 23, 2017 5:00 am

“Anyone who gives you a cup of water to drink because you belong to Christ, amen, I say to you, will surely not lose his reward.” (MK 9: 41)

Even the smallest courtesies shown to those who teach in Jesus’ name do not go unrewarded. To Our Lord everything, even the smallest thing done because of gentleness or respect or just hospitality, has a meaning. And He Himself will take care of the reward.

“Receive the word of God, not as the word of men, but as it truly is, the word of God.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Upon this rock I will build my Church

February 22, 2017 11:47 pm

“And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the Kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” (MT 16: 18-19)

Our Lord’s Church is based on people, on relationships, not on structures or buildings. St. Peter wasn’t perfect, and Our Lord didn’t ask Him to be perfect; He asked Him only—Do you love me more? God’s love chose Simon to be Peter: “you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church.”

“You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church; the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Prepare yourself for trials

February 21, 2017 6:00 am

“My son, when you come to serve the LORD, stand in justice and fear, prepare yourself for trials. Be sincere of heart and steadfast, incline your ear and receive the word of understanding, undisturbed in time of adversity. Wait on God, with patience, cling to him, forsake him not; thus will you be wise in all your ways.” (SIR 1: 2-4)

Trials are normal element of our lives when we “come to serve the Lord.” But He will come with “the word of understanding” and with patience and wisdom. He protects those who serve Him.

“May I never boast except in the Cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me and I to the world.” (Gospel Acclamation)

I do believe, help my unbelief!

February 20, 2017 6:00 am

“Jesus said to him, “‘If you can!’ Everything is possible to one who has faith.” Then the boy’s father cried out, “I do believe, help my unbelief!”” (MK 9: 23-24)

How many of us will answer the same: “I do believe, help my unbelief!”? We know that Our Lord’s power is more than sufficient for the task, but it must be sought with faith and prayer. We can always ask Our Lord for help.

“Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death and brought life to light through the Gospel.” (Gospel Acclamation)

but I say to you

February 19, 2017 6:00 am

“But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your heavenly Father, for he makes his sun rise on the bad and the good, and causes rain to fall on the just and the unjust.” (MT 5: 44-45)

Jesus extends the love commandment to the enemy and the persecutor. His disciples, as children of God, must imitate the example of their Father, Who grants his gifts of sun and rain to both the good and the bad. He repeats the same phrase several times: “but I say to you,” to help us change our perspective, to see the world like He sees it.

“Whoever keeps the word of Christ, the love of God is truly perfected in him.” (Gospel Acclamation)