Monthly Archives: May 2013

US Catholics to join Pope Francis in Eucharistic Adoration :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

US Catholics to join Pope Francis in Eucharistic Adoration :: Catholic News Agency (CNA).

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US Catholics to join Pope Francis in Eucharistic Adoration :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

US Catholics to join Pope Francis in Eucharistic Adoration :: Catholic News Agency (CNA)

 

 

2 Thessalonians 3

Request for Prayer

3 As for other matters, brothers and sisters, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you. 2 And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil people, for not everyone has faith. 3 But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. 4 We have confidence in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we command. 5 May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.

Warning Against Idleness

6 In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers and sisters, to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching[a]you received from us. 7 For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example. We were not idle when we were with you, 8 nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we worked night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you. 9 We did this, not because we do not have the right to such help, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you to imitate. 10 For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”
11 We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. 12 Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat. 13 And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.
14 Take special note of anyone who does not obey our instruction in this letter. Do not associate with them, in order that they may feel ashamed. 15 Yet do not regard them as an enemy, but warn them as you would a fellow believer.

 
Reflection.  This happened to be my daily reading today, and I think it is an important one.  Recently, due to worldly affairs, I have seen and felt myself getting very lax in my spiritual health. I did not attend Mass last week due to sickness, and have been getting caught up in every-day life, which is very easy to do.  Paul in his letter, warns of this very thing, and I think it is very important to share.  Never cease to take time out of your day for the Lord.  Avoid the temptations and idleness of life.   Never cease to take time to pray, read, reflect, and give thanks.  Never cease to ask for forgiveness, and never cease to strive to forgive those that may have done ill against you.   I find that when I do not do these things, it is very easy to slip into idleness, very easy to get caught up in worldly affairs.  But here is the most important thing I have learned.  As I started this blog, as I started reading scripture every day, as I started praying every day, as I started reflecting every day, I actually felt His presence.   I actually felt the Holy Spirit guide me through my day.  In the past week, I have been struggling, struggling for that feeling-  I have actually felt the vacancy within me.  I prayed this morning for guidance, for strength, and came across this passage, which just happened to be the passage on my bible application on my phone.  And hear we are!  God truly works in amazing ways and we must never forget this.  
 
Paul in this passage, I would like to believe wasn’t actually talking of the physical sense of the word for food or eating.  He was talking about our spiritual food, or everlasting redemption in God’s word, and the nourishment that we receive from it.  He was warning us of the idleness of worldly desire, temptation, and evil.  He was warning us, of those that will try to lead us in the wrong direction.  We must never forget that in order to grow in spirit, we must grow in faith!  We must understand that the Lord never gives up on us, never leaves us, it is us that strays from Him.  He is the one that can protect us from evil, and give us the blessing of His Holy Spirit-  all we have to do is ask.   There is wonderful, inspirational guidance in this passage, truly guided by the Holy Spirit, and we must take heed to understand, comprehend what he was saying and learn from it.  I know I have, and I am the better for it.  I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  God Bless~ CJA

Reflection. A Warning against Idleness



2 Thessalonians 3
Request for Prayer
As for other matters, brothers and sisters, pray for us that the message of the Lord may spread rapidly and be honored, just as it was with you. And pray that we may be delivered from wicked and evil people, for not everyone has faith. But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. We have confidence in the Lord that you are doing and will continue to do the things we command. May the Lord direct your hearts into God’s love and Christ’s perseverance.
Warning Against Idleness
In the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command you, brothers and sisters, to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching[a]you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example. We were not idle when we were with you, nor did we eat anyone’s food without paying for it. On the contrary, we worked night and day, laboring and toiling so that we would not be a burden to any of you. We did this, not because we do not have the right to such help, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you to imitate. 10 For even when we were with you, we gave you this rule: “The one who is unwilling to work shall not eat.”11 We hear that some among you are idle and disruptive. They are not busy; they are busybodies. 12 Such people we command and urge in the Lord Jesus Christ to settle down and earn the food they eat. 13 And as for you, brothers and sisters, never tire of doing what is good.
14 Take special note of anyone who does not obey our instruction in this letter. Do not associate with them, in order that they may feel ashamed. 15 Yet do not regard them as an enemy, but warn them as you would a fellow believer.

Reflection.  This happened to be my daily reading today, and I think it is an important one.  Recently, due to worldly affairs, I have seen and felt myself getting very lax in my spiritual health. I did not attend Mass last week due to sickness, and have been getting caught up in every-day life, which is very easy to do.  Paul in his letter, warns of this very thing, and I think it is very important to share.  Never cease to take time out of your day for the Lord.  Avoid the temptations and idleness of life.   Never cease to take time to pray, read, reflect, and give thanks.  Never cease to ask for forgiveness, and never cease to strive to forgive those that may have done ill against you.   I find that when I do not do these things, it is very easy to slip into idleness, very easy to get caught up in worldly affairs.  But here is the most important thing I have learned.  As I started this blog, as I started reading scripture every day, as I started praying every day, as I started reflecting every day, I actually felt His presence.   I actually felt the Holy Spirit guide me through my day.  In the past week, I have been struggling, struggling for that feeling-  I have actually felt the vacancy within me.  I prayed this morning for guidance, for strength, and came across this passage, which just happened to be the passage on my bible application on my phone.  And hear we are!  God truly works in amazing ways and we must never forget this.  

Paul in this passage, I would like to believe wasn’t actually talking of the physical sense of the word for food or eating.  He was talking about our spiritual food, or everlasting redemption in God’s word, and the nourishment that we receive from it.  He was warning us of the idleness of worldly desire, temptation, and evil.  He was warning us, of those that will try to lead us in the wrong direction.  We must never forget that in order to grow in spirit, we must grow in faith!  We must understand that the Lord never gives up on us, never leaves us, it is us that strays from Him.  He is the one that can protect us from evil, and give us the blessing of His Holy Spirit-  all we have to do is ask.   There is wonderful, inspirational guidance in this passage, truly guided by the Holy Spirit, and we must take heed to understand, comprehend what he was saying and learn from it.  I know I have, and I am the better for it.  I hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!  God Bless~ CJA

Pope Francis Homily for Corpus Christi

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Dear brothers and sisters,
In the Gospel we have just heard, there is an expression of Jesus that always strikes me: “Give you them to eat. (Lk 9:13)” Starting from this sentence, I let myself be guided by three words: discipleship, fellowship and sharing.
1. First of all: who are those to whom we are to give to eat? The answer is found at the beginning of the Gospel: it is the crowd, the multitude. Jesus is in the midst of the people: He welcomes them, talks to them, He cures them, He shows them the mercy of God. In their midst, he chooses the twelve Apostles to be with Him, and like Him, to immerse themselves in the concrete situations of the world. People follow Him, listen to Him, because Jesus speaks and acts in a new way, with the authority of someone who is authentic and consistent, who speaks and acts with truth, who gives the hope that comes from God, who is revelation of the face of a God who is love – and the people with joy, bless God.
This evening we are the crowd of [which] the Gospel [tells]: let us also strive to follow Jesus to listen to him, to enter into communion with Him in the Eucharist, to accompany Him and in order that He accompany us. Let us ask ourselves: how do I follow Jesus? Jesus speaks in silence in the Mystery of the Eucharist and every time reminds us that to follow Him means to come out of ourselves and make of our own lives, not a possession, but a gift to Him and to others.
2. Let us take a step forward: whence is born the invitation that Jesus makes to his disciples to feed the multitude themselves? It is born from two elements: first, the crowd, having followed Jesus, now finds itself in the open, away from inhabited areas, as evening falls, and then, because of the concern of the disciples, who asked Jesus to dismiss the crowd, that they might seek food and lodging in the nearby towns (cf. Lk 9:12). Faced with the neediness of the crowd, the solution of the disciples is that every man should take care of himself: “Dismiss the crowd!” [the disciples say]. How many times do we Christians have this temptation! We do not care for the needs of others, dismissing them with a pitiful, “God help you.” Jesus’ solution, on the other hand, goes in another direction, a direction that surprises the disciples: [He says], “You give them something to eat.” 
But how is it that we are to feed a multitude? “We have only five loaves and two fish, unless we go and buy food for all these people.” But Jesus is not discouraged. He asks the disciples to seat people in communities of fifty people, He raises his eyes to heaven, recites the blessing, breaks the loaves, and gives them to the disciples for distribution. 

It is a moment of profound communion: the crowd, whose thirst has been quenched by the word of the Lord, is now nourished by His bread of life – and they all ate their fill, the Evangelist tells us.
This evening, we too are gathered around the Lord’s table, the table of the Eucharistic Sacrifice, in which He gives us once again His body, makes present the one sacrifice of the Cross. It is in listening to his Word, in nourishing ourselves with his Body and his Blood, that He makes us go from being a multitude to being a community, from [being strangers] to being [in] communion. The Eucharist is the sacrament of communion, which brings us out from individualism to live together our journey in His footsteps, our faith in Him. We ought, therefore, to ask ourselves before the Lord: How do I live the Eucharist? Do I live it anonymously or as a moment of true communion with the Lord, [and] also with many brothers and sisters who share this same table? How are our Eucharistic celebrations?
3. A final element: whence is born the multiplication of the loaves? The answer lies in the invitation of Jesus to his disciples: “You yourselves give [to them]…,” “give,” share. What do the disciples share? What little they have: five loaves and two fishes. But it is precisely those loaves and fishes that in God’s hands feed the whole crowd. 
And it is the disciples, bewildered by the inability of their means, by the poverty of what they have at their disposal, who invite the people to sit down, and – trusting the Word of Jesus – distribute the loaves and fishes that feed the crowd. This tells us that in the Church, but also in society, a keyword that we need not fear is “solidarity,” that is, knowing how to place what we have at God’s disposal: our humble abilities, because [it is] only in the sharing, in the giving of them, that our lives will be fecund, will bear fruit. Solidarity: a word upon which the spirit of the world looks unkindly!
Tonight, once again, the Lord distributes for us the bread which is His body, He makes a gift of Himself. We, too, are experiencing the “solidarity of God” with man, a solidarity that never runs out, a solidarity that never ceases to amaze us: God draws near to us; in the sacrifice of the Cross He lowers Himself, entering into the darkness of death in order to give us His life, which overcomes evil, selfishness, death. 
Jesus this evening gives Himself to us in the Eucharist, shares our same journey – indeed, He becomes food, real food that sustains our life even at times when the going is rough, when obstacles slow down our steps. The Lord in the Eucharist makes us follow His path, that of service, of sharing, of giving – and what little we have, what little we are, if shared, becomes wealth, because the power of God, which is that of love, descends into our poverty to transform it.
Let us ask ourselves this evening, adoring the Christ truly present in the Eucharist: do I let myself be transformed by Him? Do I let the Lord who gives Himself to me, guide me to come out more and more from my little fence to get out and be not afraid to give, to share, to love Him and others?
Discipleship, communion and sharing. Let us pray that participation in the Eucharist move us always to follow the Lord every day, to be instruments of communion, to share with Him and with our neighbor who we are. Then our lives will be truly fruitful. Amen.

Daily Reflections of St. Padre Pio: On Virtue



On Virtues:

“Give me and preserve in me an ardent faith.”
“I desire no greater pleasure than my faith, my hope, and my love.”

“I have never regretted being gentle.”
“Gentleness doesn’t mean permissiveness.”
“Even when reprimanding, one must be courteous and gentle.”
“We must always have kindness with the neighbor and humility with God.”
“I cannot tolerate criticizing and speaking ill of our neighbor.”
“I would prefer to be stabbed rather than offend anyone.”
“Strong and generous hearts do not complain.”

“As the pearls are held together by the thread, thus the virtues by charity”
“The pearls fall when the thread breaks, thus the virtues are lost if charity diminishes.”
“The pivot of perfection is charity; He who lives in charity lives in God, because God is charity, as the Apostle says.”
“Excuse everyone with Christian charity.”
“Seek solitude but do not lack charity with your neighbor.”
“Charity is the yardstick with which the Lord will judge us all.”
“Go out of your way when you get a chance to act charitably.”
“To lack charity is to wound the pupil of God’s eye.”
“To lack charity is like sinning against nature.”
“Charity is the daughter of Providence.”
“Charity knows how to mix sweet with bitter, and convert transitory suffering in eternal reward.”
“Charity is the cornerstone of perfection.”
Charity is the queen of virtues.”

“Humility is truth. Everything good in me is of God.”
“False humility brings discouragement.”
“When Jesus sees you prostrated in humility, he will extend his hand and draw you to him.”
“Humility is the recognition of one’s abjection.”
“God speaks to those who truly have a humble heart.”
‘When you fall, humble yourself but without degrading yourself.”
“Abjection means to be humble and powerless.”
“Mary, the more she was filled with heavenly gifts, the more she humbled.”
“The tall ears of grain are vain and empty; the ones bent to the ground are humble and laden with grain.”
“Be humble, tranquil, sweet, and confident in times of darkness.”
 “Consider yourself what you really are: a nothing.”
“Never be pleased with yourself.”

Humility and charity go hand in hand.  The one glorifies, the other sanctifies.
“There are two fundamental virtues of holiness: humility and charity.”

Prudence has the eyes and love the legs: with them you can run to God.”

Tranquility is the daughter of the love for God.”

“Let’s keep well etched in our mind what the Divine Teacher says: “In our patience we will possess our soul.”
“Wait, your turn will come.”

“Guard jealously the purity of your heart and your body.”
About Padre Pio:
Padre Lorenzo: “With regard to chastity, I believe him to be angelic.”
Padre Romolo: “As far as chastity is concerned, his tact is extraordinary: as to this, nobody doubts he is an angel.”
Padre Ludovico di San Giovanni Rotondo: Relating to women “he shows politeness, reserve, and at time has even been austere.”
Padre Cherubino: “He treats the women with affability and sweetness, but is always most reserved.”

Saint of the Day for 30th May: St. Gregory VII

St. Gregory VII

The 10th century and the first half of the 11th were dark days for the Church, partly because the papacy was the pawn of various Roman families. In 1049, things began to change when Pope Leo IX, a reformer, was elected. He brought a young monk named Hildebrand to Rome as his counselor and special representative on important missions. He was to become Gregory VII.Three evils plagued the Church then: simony (the buying and selling of sacred offices and things), the unlawful marriage of the clergy and lay investiture (kings and nobles controlling the appointment of Church officials). To all of these Hildebrand directed his reformer’s attention, first as counselor to the popes and later (1073-1085) as pope himself.
Gregory’s papal letters stress the role of bishop of Rome as the vicar of Christ and the visible center of unity in the Church. He is well known for his long dispute with Holy Roman Emperor Henry IV over who should control the selection of bishops and abbots.
Gregory fiercely resisted any attack on the liberty of the Church. For this he suffered and finally died in exile. He said, “I have loved justice and hated iniquity; therefore I die in exile.” Thirty years later the Church finally won its struggle against lay investiture.

Comment:

The Gregorian Reform, a milestone in the history of Christ’s Church, was named after this man who tried to extricate the papacy and the whole Church from undue control by civil rulers. Against an unhealthy Church nationalism in some areas, Gregory reasserted the unity of the whole Church based on Christ and expressed in the bishop of Rome, the successor of St. Peter.
Quote:

Gregory’s words still ring true today when civil or national religion is making subtle demands: “In every country, even the poorest of women is permitted to take a lawful husband according to the law of the land and by her own choice; but, through the desires and evil practices of the wicked, Holy Church, the bride of God and mother of us all, is not permitted lawfully to cling to her spouse on earth in accordance with divine law and her own will” (A Call to the Faithful).

Pope Francis General Audience- A Transcript

Dear brothers and sisters,
Last Wednesday I stressed the deep connection between the Holy Spirit and the Church. Today I would like to start some reflections on the mystery of the Church, a mystery that we all live and of which we are part. I would like to do this, using some well-known phrases taken from the documents of the Second Vatican Council.
Today the first: the Church as Family of God
In recent months, more than once I have made reference to the parable of the prodigal son, or rather of the merciful father (cf. Lk 15:11-32). The youngest son leaves the house of his father, squanders everything, and decides to return because he realizes he made a mistake, though he no longer considers himself worthy of sonship. He thinks he might be welcomed back as a servant. Instead, the father runs to meet him, embraces him, gives him back his dignity as a son, and celebrates. This parable, like others in the Gospel, shows well the design of God for humanity.
What is this God’s plan? It is to make us all the one family of his children, in which each of you feels close to Him and feels loved by Him – feels, as in the Gospel parable, the warmth of being the family of God. In this great design, the Church finds its source. [The Church is] is not an organization founded by an agreement among [a group of] persons, but – as we were reminded many times by Pope Benedict XVI – is the work of God: it was born out of the plan of love, which realises itself progressively in history. The Church is born from the desire of God to call all people into communion with Him, to His friendship, and indeed, as His children, to partake of His own divine life. The very word “Church”, from the Greek ekklesia, means “convocation”.
God calls us, urges us to escape from individualism, [from] the tendency to withdraw into ourselves, and calls us – convokes us – to be a part of His family. This convocation has its origin in creation itself. God created us in order that we might live in a relationship of deep friendship with Him, and even when sin had broken this relationship with God, with others and with creation, God did not abandon us.
The whole history of salvation is the story of God seeking man, offer[ing] humanity His love, embracing mankind. He called Abraham to be the father of a multitude, chose the people of Israel to forge an alliance that embraces all nations, and sent, in the fullness of time, His Son, that His plan of love and salvation be realised in a new and everlasting covenant with humanity. When we read the Gospels, we see that Jesus gathers around him a small community that receives His word, follows Him, shares His journey, becomes His family – and with this community, He prepares and builds His Church.
Whence, then, is the Church born? It is born from the supreme act of love on the Cross, from the pierced side of Jesus from which flow blood and water, a symbol of the sacraments of Baptism and the Eucharist. In the family of God, the Church, the lifeblood is the love of God that is realised in loving Him and others, loving all without distinction, without measure. The Church is a family that loves and is loved.
When does the Church manifest itself? We celebrated [the Church’s manifestation] two Sundays ago: the Church manifests itself when the gift of the Holy Spirit fills the hearts of the Apostles and pushes them to go out and start the journey to proclaim the Gospel, to spread the love of God.
Even today, some say, “Christ yes, the Church no,” like those who say, “I believe in God, but in priests, no.” They say, “Christ: yes. Church: no.” Nevertheless, it is the Church that brings us Christ and that brings us to God. The Church is the great family of God’s children. Of course it also has the human aspects: in those who compose it, pastors and faithful, there are flaws, imperfections, sins – the Pope has his, as well: he has lots of them; but the beautiful thing is that, when we become aware that we are sinners, we find the mercy of God. God always forgives: do not forget this. God always forgives, and He receives us in His love of forgiveness and mercy. Some people say – this is beautiful – that sin is an offence against God, but it is also an opportunity: the humiliation of realising [that one is a sinner] and that there is something [exceedingly] beautiful: the mercy of God. Let us think about this.
Let us ask ourselves today: how much do I love the Church? Do I pray for her? Do I feel myself a part of the family of the Church? What do I do to make the Church a community in which everyone feels welcomed and understood, [in which] everyone feels the mercy and love of God who renews life? Faith is a gift and an act that affects us personally, but God calls us to live our faith together, as a family: as the Church.
We ask the Lord, in a special way in this Year of the faith, that our communities, the whole Church be ever more true families that live and carry the warmth of God.
The Holy Father also had greetings for English-speaking pilgrims, which he delivered through an interpreter:
Dear Brothers and Sisters: In today’s Audience I would like to speak of the Church as God’s family. Like the merciful father in the parable of the prodigal son, God wants all of us to live in his love and to share in his life. The Church is an essential part of this divine plan; we were made to know and love God and, despite our sins, he continues to call us to return to him. In the fullness of time, he sent his Son into our world to inaugurate the new and eternal covenant with humanity through his sacrifice on the cross. The Church was born of this supreme act of reconciling love, in the water and blood which flowed from Christ’s pierced side. At Pentecost, the Holy Spirit sent the Apostles to proclaim the Gospel of God’s love to the ends of the earth. Christ can never be separated from his Church, which he has made the great family of God’s children. Today, let [us] pledge ourselves to renewing our love for the Church and to letting her be God’s true family, where everyone feels welcomed, understood and loved.

Solemnity of Corpus Christi

Today the Church celebrates the Solemnity of Corpus Christi.  This shows the connection between tomorrow and Holy Thursday..  In most countries the feast is now transferred to Sunday.
Here are meditations by St. John Vianney on the Eucharist called called Thanksgiving and Motives for Visiting the Blessed Sacrament, that I thought you might enjoy…..

Recall the word Eucharist means Thanksgiving.
Meditation 19:  Thanksgiving…

When we come from Holy Communion if someone asked us: What are you bringing into your house? You would be able to say: I am bringing heaven. it is really true, but we have not sufficient faith. We do not understand our dignity. When we leave the altar rails we are as happy as the Magi would have been if they had been able to carry off the Infant Jesus. After each of your Communions, listen to Our Lord present in your heart, converse with him, invite the Blessed Virgin to thank Him for you, and keep recollected all clay. The most elementary politeness and our own interest make thanksgiving a duty for us.

1. We must listen to what God says.
When you have received Holy Communion, rise up reverently, return to your place and kneel down; do not at once take your book or your beads. I do not like to see people begin to read as soon as they have come from the altar. Oh no, of what use are the words of men when it is the good God who speaks? We must be like someone who is curious and who listens at doors. We must listen to what the good God says at the door of our heart.

2. We should converse with Jesus.
Converse for a little while with Jesus Christ whom you are fortunate to possess in your heart, Body and Soul as He was formerly during His life on earth. Ask Him for all the graces you desire for yourself and others; the good God will not be able to refuse you anything if you offer Him His Son, and the merits of His Passion and death.

3. We should make acts of thanksgiving.
Make your acts of thanksgiving after Holy Communion. Then invite the Blessed Virgin, all the angels and all the saints to thank God with you. Sometimes when St. Teresa had the great happiness of receiving Communion, the angles came down in a crowd from heaven, and seemed to make it their delight to unite her to praise the Saviour that she possessed in her heart. Many times she was seen borne by angels to the altar. They carried her on a high seat.
Do not leave immediately after Mass, but stay a little while to ask the good God to strengthen you in your good resolutions.

4. We should keep recollected.
When you go out of the church, do not stop to talk, keep recollected, thinking of your happiness in possessing Jesus Christ in your heart. You must go home and watch over your thoughts, words and actions, that you may preserve intact the grace of, the good God. You take a glass of spirit and cork it well. You preserve the spirit as long as you wish. In the same way, if you keep recollected after Communion, you feel for a long time this burning fire which will inspire you with a delightful leaning towards good and a strong repugnance for evil.

5. We should carry the effect of Holy Communion into our whole day.
If you have a little time between your duties spend it in good reading or a visit to the Blessed Sacrament to thank the good God for the favour that He did you in the morning. Occupy yourself as little as possible with worldly affairs on the day of your Communion.
Meditation 20: The Motives for visiting the Blessed Sacrament

St. Paul tells us that at Athens he found written on an altar: “To the unknown God.” Alas, I might say the opposite to you! I am about to preach to you a God that you do not adore, and whom you know to be your God. How many Christians have time on their hands and who never deign to come alone to visit their Saviour. Oh! what a shame on us! If some novelty turns up, one leaves everything and runs to it. As for our God, we fly from Him. We find the time we spend in His presence hard. Oh! what a difference between the first Christians and us! They spent entire days and nights in the churches to sing the praises of the Lord, and to weep over their sins, but today it is not the same. Jesus is forsaken, abandoned in the sacrament of His love. Let us think about some of the motives we have for visiting Him.

1. Jesus Christ in the tabernacle is our friend:
If we really love the good God, we will find it a joy and happiness to spend some time near Him, to adore Him, and keep company with so good a friend.
He is there in the tabernacle. What is He doing, this good Jesus, in the sacrament of His love? He is loving us.
If you pass a church then, go in to salute Him. Would you pass the door of a friend without saying good-day? And Our Lord is a friend who has been so good to us. It would be a very ungrateful person who would not visit Him. Come to adore Him because He is your divine friend, your Creator, and your sovereign Master? You owe Him the homage of your whole being. Bow down before Him and praise Him. Come to keep Him company in the solitude in which the Christians leave Him. Come, my soul, redouble your fervour. You are alone to adore your God. His eyes regard you alone. Come to His feet to thank Him, and then recall the benefits of redemption; the adoption of sons ; the right to eternal life; so many pardons; so many Communions received, each of which brought you an increase of the supernatural life.
Come to show your love to Him. He will say to you: “My child, give Me your heart.” Oh! open it then, dilate it, and give Him love for love!

2. Jesus Christ in the tabernacle is an ill-treated friend.
To what outrages has He not exposed Himself in order to remain in our midst?
Masses and Communions, tepid or sacrilegious, profanations, neglect of Sunday observance, long periods alone in the churches. Irreverent attitudes and indifference for His Sacred Presence, and for the gift of Himself which He has made to us. There is no kind of outrage to which He is not subjected, and His Heart is wounded at the sight of so many offences. Oh! how pleased He is when we give up some of our occupations, or some frivolities to spend a quarter of an hour with Him to console Him!
When He sees pure souls come eagerly to see Him He smiles on them. They come with that simplicity which is agreeable to Him to ask His pardon for the insults of so many ungrateful people. Let us come then, to sympathise with Him in His sorrows! Those who will have wept on His account on earth will rejoice in heaven.

3. Jesus Christ in the tabernacle is a rich and generous friend.
He is hidden there, waiting for us to come to visit Him and to make our requests. He wishes to see us near Him, to tell us that He loves us, and wishes to load us with good things.
When you go into a church and take holy water, when you make the sign of the cross, look at the tabernacle. Our Lord will at the same time bless you and say to you: “Come to me all you that labour and are heavy laden and I will refresh you.”
Are you sad? Come then cast yourself at His feet, and you will feel comforted.
Are you despised by the world? Come here and you will find a friend who will never fail you.
Are you tempted?
 Oh! it is here you will find powerful arms to conquer your enemies.
Do you fear the terrible judgment, at the thought of which the greatest saints have trembled? Profit by the same when your God is the God of mercy, and when it is so easy to obtain grace.
Are you oppressed by poverty? Come here and you will find a God who is infinitely rich and who will say to you that all good things are yours not in this world but in the next. It is there that I prepare infinite riches. Despise these perishable goods, and you will have those that perish not.
Sinners, ask Him with tears and contrition to pardon your sins, and you will surely obtain it.
Be reconciled to Him. Beg the precious gift of perseverance. Oh! tell Him that you wish never more to offend Him, that you would rather die than offend Him again.

4. Jesus Christ in the tabernacle is our Mediator.
He is there, in the sacrament of His love, sighing, and interceding with His Father for sinners, and He asks that we pray for their salvation.

He is so good that there goes out from His Heart a flood of love and mercy to wash away the sins of the world.

Pope at Mass: Following Christ is not a career, it is the way of the Cross

2013-05-28 Vatican Radio

(Vatican Radio) We should not reduce the proclamation of Jesus to being a mere cultural ‘gloss’ or ‘veneer’, it must go ‘straight to the heart’ and change us. Moreover, following Jesus ‘does not mean more power’, it is not a ‘career’ because His way is that of the Cross. This was the focus of Pope Francis’ homily at morning Mass Tuesday in the chapel of the Casa Santa Marta residence. Emer McCarthy reports:
What is our reward in following you? Pope Francis began with the question Peter puts to Jesus. A question, he said, which in the end concerns the life of every Christian. Jesus says that those who follow Him will have “many good things” but “with persecution.” The path of the Lord, he continued, “is a road of humility, a road that ends in the Cross.” That is why, he added, “there will always be difficulties,” “persecution.” There will always be, “because He travelled this road before” us. The Pope warned that “when a Christian has no difficulties in life – when everything is fine, everything is beautiful – something is wrong.” It leads us to think that he or she is “a great friend of the spirit of the world, of worldliness.” The Pope noted this “is a temptation particular to Christians”:
“Following Jesus, yes, but up to a certain point: following Jesus because of culture: I am a Christian, I have this culture … But without the necessity of true discipleship of Jesus, the necessity to travel this His road. If you follow Jesus as a cultural proposal, then you are using this road to get higher up, to have more power. And the history of the Church is full of this, starting with some emperors and then many rulers and many people, no? And even some – I will not say a lot, but some – priests, bishops, no? Some say that there are many … but they are those who think that following Jesus is a career. ”

The Pope recalled that at one time, “in the literature of two centuries ago,” it would sometimes be stated that someone “from the time he was a child wanted a career in the church.” Here the Pope reiterated that “many Christians, tempted by the spirit of the world, think that following Jesus is good because it can become a career, they can get ahead.” But this “is not the spirit”. Instead it is Peter’s attitude when he speaks to Jesus about careers and Jesus answers: “Yes, I will give everything with persecution.” “You cannot remove the Cross from the path of Jesus, it is always there.” Yet, Pope Francis warned, this does not mean that Christians must hurt themselves. The Christian “follows Jesus out of love and when you follow Jesus out of love, the devil’s envy does many things.” The “spirit of the world will not tolerate this, does not tolerate this witness”:
“Think of Mother Teresa: what does the spirit of the world say of Mother Teresa? ‘Ah, Blessed Teresa is a beautiful woman, she did a lot of good things for others …’. The spirit of the world never says that the Blessed Teresa spent, every day, many hours, in adoration … Never! It reduces Christian activity to doing social good. As if Christian life was a gloss, a veneer of Christianity. The proclamation of Jesus is not a veneer: the proclamation of Jesus goes straight to the bones, heart, goes deep within and change us. And the spirit of the world does not tolerate it, will not tolerate it, and therefore, there is persecution. “
Pope Francis said those who leave their home, their family to follow Jesus, receive a hundred times as much “already now in this age.” A hundred times together with persecution. And this should not be forgotten:

“Following Jesus is just that: going with Him out of love, behind Him: on the same journey, the same path. And the spirit of the world will not tolerate this and what will make us suffer, but suffering as Jesus did. Let us ask for this grace: to follow Jesus in the way that He has revealed to us and that He has taught us. This is beautiful, because he never leaves us alone. Never! He is always with us. So be it”.
Mass was concelebrated by Archbishop Rino Fisichella and Msgr. José Octavio Ruiz Arenas, president and secretary of the Pontifical Council for the New Evangelization. It was attended by a group of priests from the Council and staff from the Vatican Power Station and Technical Laboratory of the Governorate of Vatican carpentry, accompanied by Engineer Pier Carlo Cuscianna, Director of Technical Services of the Governorate.