Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?

August 11, 2020 4:00 am

“The disciples approached Jesus and said, ‘Who is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven?’ He called a child over, placed it in their midst, and said, ‘Amen, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will not enter the Kingdom of heaven. Whoever becomes humble like this child is the greatest in the Kingdom of heaven. And whoever receives one child such as this in my name receives me.’” (MT 18: 1-5)

It is good to think about greatness; it is good to want to be really great, even the greatest. What Our Lord wants for us, is to think the right way: not how to dominate on others, how to impress others, but how to be connected with others, how to be in one of the most intimate relationships—like a child, who loves not because can do something, but loves because it is it nature.

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am meek and humble of heart.” (Gospel acclamation)

But if it dies, it produces much fruit

August 10, 2020 4:00 am

“Amen, amen, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains just a grain of wheat; but if it dies, it produces much fruit.” (JN 12: 24)

Naturally, we are afraid of dying—this is an end of everything. But from Our Lord’s perspective, dying is not about dying forever, it is only about dying of our ego, dying of our self-concern and selfish choices. God, Who is Love, and Who created us in His own image and likeness and wants us to love, and knows perfectly, that our egoism blocks us from being in love; if our egoism dies, will produce much fruit.

“Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life, says the Lord.” (Gospel Acclamation)

He was there alone

August 9, 2020 4:00 am

“After he had fed the people, Jesus made the disciples get into a boat and precede him to the other side, while he dismissed the crowds. After doing so, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When it was evening he was there alone.” (MT 14: 23)

For so many of us it is so difficult to be alone; always music in the background, always headphones, TV almost non-stop on. Remedy for bad days: shopping or alcohol—I deserve it. New objects, new people, new places—everything is better than being alone. But the only way to meet our true self, to meet Our Lord Who knows us perfectly (and loves unconditionally) is to be alone. In the beginning, it could be scary and hard, but with every moment and with every day we will more and more easy. And we will soon happy with every moment of solitude.

“I wait for the Lord; my soul waits for his word.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Nothing will be impossible for you

August 8, 2020 4:00 am

“Amen, I say to you, if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” (MT 17: 20)

It is not about presence, it is about vision—go big or go home. It is like St. Therese from Lisieux, used to say, that she has a body of a sparrow, but with the heart of an eagle. Because it is not about us, but about God’s presence in our hearts, about His strength and power. Our “size” doesn’t limit Him.

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

save his life—loses his life

August 7, 2020 4:00 am

“For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.” (MT 16: 25)

And the only difference between losing and saving is why we want to do it. If it is self-oriented and reactive—directs us to ourselves and is selfish; when is “for my sake,” when is altruistic and proactive— “will find life.”

“Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness; for theirs is the Kingdom of heaven.” (Gospel Acclamation)

Listen to Him

August 6, 2020 4:00 am

“While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, ‘This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.’” (MT 17:5)

God the Father didn’t speak much in the Bible. But whenever He spoke in the New Testament it was always about His Son, His Son’s mission and how important is to listen to His Son. It looks, that this is really important to reflect daily on Our Lord’s words, to have daily contact with Jesus, and to know what He says today.

“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” (Gospel Acclamation)

O woman  

August 5, 2020 4:00 am

“He said in reply, “It is not right to take the food of the children and throw it to the dogs.” She said, “Please, Lord, for even the dogs eat the scraps that fall from the table of their masters.” Then Jesus said to her in reply, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be done for you as you wish.” And her daughter was healed from that hour.” (MT 15: 24-28)
She put her daughter’s health as more important that her possible rejection. She was humiliated, but because she was not demanding and asked as a person who lives as a gift of self, she was heard and her daughter was healed. “O woman, great is  your faith.” 
“A great prophet has arisen in our midst and God has visited his people.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

blind guides of the blind  

August 4, 2020 4:00 am

“Let them alone; they are blind guides of the blind. If a  blind man leads a blind man, both will fall into a pit.” (MT 15: 14)
This is why we learn all the time; this is why we want to live in a community with other couples to learn from them and to have regular meetings and moments of sharing and learning from each other. The more we know, the more we want to learn to guide and to help our brothers and sisters who are also married. We are not better, but we are equals and we want to help (“Among the fruits which ripen forth from a generous effort of fidelity to the divine law, one of the most precious is that married couples themselves not infrequently feel the desire to communicate their experience to others. Thus there comes to be included in the vast pattern of the vocation of the laity a new and most noteworthy form of the apostolate of like to like; it is married couples themselves who become apostles and guides to other married couples. This is assuredly, among so many forms of apostolate, one of those which seems most opportune today.” HV, 26)
“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

People brought to him all those who were sick and begged him  

August 3, 2020 4:00 am

“People brought to him all those who were sick and begged him that they might touch only the tassel on his cloak, and as many as touched it were healed.” (MT 14: 35-36)
We are important; our relationship with Our Lord is important—we know Him, we know our friends and neighbors, we can bring “to him all those who are sick,” and we ask, “beg Him” to help. Today we are in better condition and we ask for help, on another day our friends will beg for us. The more we are in love with Our Lord, the more we can help. 
“Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.” (Gospel Acclamation) 

Give them some food yourselves

August 2, 2020 4:00 am

“Jesus said to them, ‘There is no need for them to go away; give them some food yourselves.’ But they said to him, ‘Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.’ Then he said, ‘Bring them here to me.’” (MT 14: 16-18)

This is what we called in our Programs: extreme ownership; start solving problems with yourself, do not look for others. “Five loaves and two fish” is not enough, but only from our limited perspective. It was enough for Our Lord. If your friend needs some help, do not look for “professionals” who can help, start with yourself.

“One does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes forth from the mouth of God.” (Gospel Acclamation)