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The grace of the Holy Spirit seeks

September 13
"The assembly should prepare itself to encounter its Lord and to become 'a people well disposed.' The preparation of hearts is the joint work of the Holy Spirit and the assembly, especially of its ministers. The grace of the Holy Spirit seeks to awaken faith, conversion of heart, and adherence to the Father's will. These dispositions are the precondition both for the reception of other graces conferred in the celebration itself and the fruits of new life which the celebration is intended to produce afterward."
-Catechism of the Catholic Church, paragraph 1098
Today’s Reflection:
What is the role of the Holy Spirit in preparing us to encounter the Lord through the Sacred Liturgy?
  

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Lenten Journey Through the Sorrows of Mary: Her union with her Son and His sacrifice

March 8
To Mary: At the Thirteenth Station
You are the priest tonight:
The paten of your lap holds sacrifice.
You are the priest tonight,
Offering Peace and its price.
Star candles burn palely bright;
John is your faithful acolyte.
You are the priest tonight.
-Raymond Roseliep
M. Thérèse. I Sing of a Maiden: The Mary Book of Verse.
New York: Macmillan, 1947.
For Reflection:
How is this scene almost para- liturgical? Read Paragraphs, 783 and 1546 in the Catechism of the Catholic Church in light of the poem. Do you think the description of Mary as priest is an apt one? What deeper insights does this give you into the mystery of Mary, her union with her Son and His sacrifice, and the suffering they shared in common?
  

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You also be patient

 

January 19
"Be patient, therefore, brethren, until the coming of the Lord. Behold, the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, being patient over it until it receives the early and the late rain. You also be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is at hand."
-James 5:7-8
Today's Reflection:
To evangelize effectively, we must be patient. When we look around us to our family and friends, do we impose our Faith on them? Or do we, instead, propose it through our testimony and the example of our life? How beautiful it is to patiently sow the seeds of truth in the hearts of others, water the seeds with prayer and friendship, and wait for the seeds to take root. This process can take time, but we must be willing to invest the time, confident that the Lord's work will be accomplished in the end.
  

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Human Life is Sacred

 

January 18
"Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law."
-Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2271
Today's Reflection:
Human life is sacred. How do we allow this Church teaching to move us forward with faith and confidence in the public square to proclaim this truth?
  

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Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life

January 12
"Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit...and the door that gives access to the other sacraments."
-Catechism of the Catholic Church 1213
Today's Reflection:
In what specific ways can you lie the grace of your Baptism?
  

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Hand on the Gospel

January 11
"In the long run, is there any other way of handing on the Gospel than by transmitting to another person one's personal experience of faith?"
-Evangelii Nuntiandi 46
Today's Reflection:
Personal testimony remains the most effective means of evangelization. Through it we inform, instruct, and insure others with the truths of Sacred Scripture and the teachings of the Catholic Church.
What does your personal testimony say? Are you ready to share it this week?
  

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Sin makes men accomplices

January 10
"Sin makes men accomplices of one another and causes concupiscence, violence, and injustice to reign among them."
-Catechism of the Catholic Church 1869
Today's Reflection:
Each person who sins cooperates in bringing suffering to the world. To what extent do you give in to temptation and sin?
  

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Sin makes men accomplices

January 10

"Sin makes men accomplices of one another and causes concupiscence, violence, and injustice to reign among them."

-Catechism of the Catholic Church 1869

 

Today's Reflection:

Each person who sins cooperates in bringing suffering to the world. To what extent do you give in to temptation and sin?

 

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Clean Heart

August 9

“Create a clean heart in me, O God.”

Imagine for a moment that your heart is like a chalkboard filled with writing. It’s covered in words and smudges. What do the words say? Now, erase those words; spray a cleaner on it and wipe away the smudge. And all of a sudden, it’s spotless. Oh, how I wish I could purify my heart that easily! But, I can’t. I cannot erase painful memories and the fears of letting others see the real me; I can’t wipe clean the scars that have toughened over the years; and I can’t break the chains that sometimes suffocate the life out of me.

But, God can. He can renew my heart in an instant (although we don’t normally see purification happen that fast in our human idea of time.). God has to work on us— He strips away layers like an onion, and every layer beneath has its own work to be done.

I remember recently when my spiritual director told me that God had to do some work on me, and that it’s going to hurt. But He always uses the most gentle means possible. And it’s true. The last few months are a testament to His gentleness and charity. He has really purified my heart in ways I couldn’t imagine, although He has asked some things of me that really hurt. Surrendering can be really painful. But, I know it’s necessary. I know that heart He holds so dearly in His hands has needed some work; and I know when He’s done with this big phase of operation, it’ll be ready to experience all life and love have to offer it. And I can’t wait for that day.

Is it time for you to let God do some pruning? Tell Him you’re scared, but know that He won’t do anything unnecessary, and He will give you what you need to endure it.

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Everlasting Love

August 8

“With age-old love I have loved you.”

I don’t know about you, but I love romance. Poems, letters, sweet messages— I’m a romantic at heart. I love love; I always have, and I can guess I always will. When everyone else complains about Valentine’s Day, I swoon over it...hearts everywhere! Indeed, Song of Songs is by far my favorite book.

When I read my readings for the day, this line went straight through my heart like an arrow. The love I desire so strongly in life is all mine, and it’s all yours; He has loved each of us from the beginning of time. He loved us into existence, and His love never ceases to exist. And it won’t. Ever.

Our love story is my favorite. He has unconditionally chased my heart for as long as I have been a thought in His plan; and giving Him my heart was the best decision of my life. And in doing so, I was free to live fully, knowing He would keep it safe and only give it away when the right person asked.

So go ahead- give Him your heart. Let Him mend the scratches, heal the wounds, and protect it. Watch your heart in His perfect hands turn into something so beautiful. And know that He, the owner of it, will keep an eye on it til the end of time. He will never stop chasing you. So stop running. And fall into His wide open arms.

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