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Archive for the ‘Inspirational Thoughts’ Category

Walk by Faith 

Walk by Faith

By: Jeremy Camp

Would I believe you when you would say
Your hand will guide my every way
Will I receive the words You say
Every moment of every day

 

Well I will walk by faith
Even when I cannot see it
Well because this broken road
Prepares Your will for me

 

Help me to win my endless fears
You’ve been so faithful for all my years
With the one breath You make me
Your grace covers all I do

 

Well I will walk by faith
Even when I cannot see it
Well because this broken road
Prepares Your will for me

 

Well I’m broken, but I still see Your face
Well You’ve

Pray

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In solidarity with Pope Francis’ announcement of the first-ever World Day of the Poor in November, Caritas Manila launched on Tuesday the “75 Days of Charity”.
Caritas Manila Executive Director Rev. Fr. Anton C.T. Pascual urged the public to show their love for the poor not only in words but through deeds by being part of the 75 Days of Charity.
“I hope that individuals, companies, homeowners and condominium associations, schools, parishes, and other socio-civic and religious organizations show their love for the poor, not just in words, but also in deeds. Let us all help the poor help themselves through the 75 Days of Charity,” he said.
Pascual suggested different ways on how the public can help the poor such as by filling cans of charities.
The “75 Days of Charity” will run from September 5, 2017, the International Day of Charity, up to the World Day of the Poor, on November 19, 2017.
He said under this program, giving and helping the poor is made easier through the deployment of drop cans (alkansyas) to offices and /or to public places like in the canteen, cashier or lobby where people can drop bills or coins to share with those in need.
Pascual said one can also support the Segunda Mana donations-in-kind program wherein pre-loved items such as apparel, footwear, bags, accessories, furniture, and appliances that take up spaces at home will be sold at Segunda Mana charity outlets.
According to the priest, proceeds of Segunda Mana help sustain the Caritas Manila flagship Youth Servant Leadership and Education Program (YSLEP), which focuses on education for the underprivileged youth, supporting 5,000 scholars nationwide.
Another way of helping, Pascual said, is by helping poor but deserving youth get a college or vocational-technical education by donating P25,000 per year to Caritas Manila’s YSLEP.
Pope Francis, in his message for the first World Day of the Poor said, throughout the world Christian communities can become an ever greater sign of Christ’s charity for the least and those most in need.
Caritas Manila is the social services and services ministry of the Archdiocese of Manila.

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“My peace I give to you”

Tuesday (May 16):

Gospel: John 14:27-31

Jesus said to his disciples: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. You heard me tell you, ‘I am going away and I will come back to you.’ If you loved me, you would rejoice that I am going to the Father; for the Father is greater than I. And now I have told you this before it happens, so that when it happens you may believe. I will no longer speak much with you, for the ruler of the world is coming. He has no power over me, but the world must know that I love the Father and that I do just as the Father has commanded me.”

 

Reflection:

Jesus offers peace to his disciples and to us. He says: “My peace I give to you”. The peace of Christ is more than the absence of trouble. It includes everything that comprises fullness of life. Worldly peace is avoidance of trouble and a refusal to face unpleasant things. Jesus offers the peace which conquers our fears and anxieties. Nothing can take us away from the peace and joy in the presence of the Lord. No sorrow or grief, no danger, no suffering can make it less.How can we attain the peace which the Lord Jesus offers us? Through the gift and work of the Holy Spirit, whom the Lord promised to send, the Spirit who dwells within us. Through the Holy Spirit’s indwelling, we are able to overcome anxieties, worries, anger, fear, and selfishness so that we can receive his gift of peace. The Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness and strengthens us with his gifts and virtues so that we will be able to live good moral lives as disciples of Christ.Prayer:

“Lord Jesus, may your peace be always with us. May no trial or affliction rob us of the peace which surpasses all understanding.”

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“I am the way, and the truth, and the life”

Sunday: (May 14):

Gospel: John 14:1-12

1 “Let not your hearts be troubled; believe in God, believe also in me. 2 In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? 3 And when I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. 4 And you know the way where I am going.” 5 Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going; how can we know the way?” 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but by me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also; henceforth you know him and have seen him.”

8 Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we shall be satisfied.” 9 Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how can you say, `Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority; but the Father who dwells in me does his works. 11 Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father in me; or else believe me for the sake of the works themselves. 12 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I go to the Father.

 

Reflection:
Jesus is the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. When the Lord says: “I am the Way” (John 14:6), He gives us more than a road map and guide book. He personally is the way to the Father’s kingdom, and we cannot miss it if we follow him. He accompanies us on our daily journey and watches over us as the good shepherd who leads and sustains us each and every step of the way.

The Lord is the Truth (John 14:6). Many can say, “I have taught you the truth.” Only Jesus can say: “I am the Truth.” He posseses in himself the fulness of truth. Jesus is one with the Father and He speaks the truth which proceeds from the Father. The truth which Jesus proclaims has power to set us free from ignorance, deception, and sin. The words which Jesus speaks are true because there is no lie or falsehood in him. Moral truth requires more than mere words or ideas because the person who speaks them must be true – true in thought, speech, deed, example, and action. Jesus embodies the truth in his person.

Jesus is the Life (John 14:6). He not only shows us the path of life (Psalm 16:11); the Lord is the fullness of life himself which only God can give – abundant life that lasts forever through His death and resurrection.

In Jesus we see the perfect love of God – a God who cares and loves us intensely and unconditionally because of his deep compassion for us.
Prayer:
“Lord Jesus, fill us with the joy of your compassion and love so that we will be able to live fully in the here and now.”

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Spiritual Lesson From Pain

How little we know what God has in store
As daily he blesses our lives more and more.
I’ve lived many years and I’ve learned many things,
But today I have grown new spiritual wings. . .
For pain has a way of broadening our view
And bringing us closer in sympathy, too,
To those who are living in constant pain
And trying somehow to bravely sustain
The faith and endurance to keep on trying
When they almost welcome the peace of dying. . .
Without this experience I would have lived and died
Without fathoming the pain of Christ crucified,
For none of us knows what pain is all about
Until our spiritual wings start to sprout.
So thank you, God, for the gift you sent
To teach me that pain’s Heaven-sent.

by Helen Steiner Rice

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Faith is a Mighty Fortress

We look ahead through each changing year
With mixed emotions of hope and fear —
Hope for the peace we long have sought,
Fear that our hopes will come to naught.
Unwilling to trust in the Father’s will,
We count on our logic and shallow skill,
And in our arrogance and pride,
We are no longer satisfied
To place our confidence and love
With childlike faith in God above.
And tiny hands and tousled heads
That kneel in prayer by little beds
Are closer to the dear Lord’s heart
And of his kingdom more a part
Than we who search and never find
The answers to our questioning minds  —
For faith in things we cannot see
Requires a child’s simplicity.
Oh, Heavenly Father, grant again
A simple, childlike faith to men,
Forgetting color, race, and creed
And seeing only the heart’s deep need.
For faith alone can save man’s soul
And lead him to a higher goal,
For there’s but one unfailing course  —
We win by faith and not by force.

by Helen Steiner Rice

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Easter Sunday (April 16): “John saw the empty tomb and believed”

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Scripture: John 20:1-9  [alternate readings for Easter: Matthew 28:1-10, Luke 24:13-35]

1 Now on the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark, and saw that the stone had been taken away from the tomb. 2 So she ran, and went to Simon Peter and the other disciple, the one whom Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid him.” 3 Peter then came out with the other disciple, and they went toward the tomb. 4 They both ran, but the other disciple outran Peter and reached the tomb first; 5 and stooping to look in, he saw the linen cloths lying there, but he did not go in. 6 Then Simon Peter came, following him, and went into the tomb; he saw the linen cloths lying, 7 and the napkin, which had been on his head, not lying with the linen cloths but rolled up in a place by itself. 8 Then the other disciple, who reached the tomb first, also went in, and he saw and believed; 9 for as yet they did not know the scripture, that he must rise from the dead.

Meditation: What was it like for the disciple who had stood at the cross of Jesus and then laid him in a tomb on Good Friday, to come back three days later and discover that the sealed tomb was now empty? John, along with Peter, was the first apostle to reach the tomb of Jesus on Easter Sunday morning. Like Mary Magdalene and the other disciples, John was not ready to see an empty tomb and to hear the angel’s message, Why do you seek the living among the dead (Luke 24:5)?  What did John see in the tomb that led him to believe in the resurrection of Jesus? It was certainly not a dead body. The dead body of Jesus would have disproven the resurrection and made his death a tragic conclusion to a glorious career as a great teacher and miracle worker. When John saw the empty tomb he must have recalled Jesus’ prophecy that he would rise again after three days. Through the gift of faith John realized that no tomb on earth could contain the Lord and giver of life. John saw and believed (John 20:8).

John had to first deal with the empty tomb before he could meet the risen Lord later that evening along with the other apostles who had locked themselves in the upper room out of fear of the Jewish authorities (John 20:19-23). John testified as an eye-witness to the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ: What we have seen, heard, and touched we proclaim as the eternal word of life which existed from the beginning (1 John 1:1-4). John bears witness to what has existed from all eternity. This “word of life” is Jesus the word incarnate, but also Jesus as the word announced by the prophets and Jesus the word now preached throughout the Christian church for all ages to come.

One thing is certain, if Jesus had not risen from the dead and appeared to his disciples, we would never have heard of him. Nothing else could have changed sad and despairing men and women into people radiant with joy and courage. The reality of the resurrection is the central fact of the Christian faith. Through the gift of the Holy Spirit, the Lord gives us “eyes of faith” to know him and the power of his resurrection. The greatest joy we can have is to encounter the living Christ and to know him personally as our Lord and Savior. Do you accept the good news of Jesus’ death and resurrection with skeptical doubt and disbelief or with trusting faith and joyful wonderment?

“Lord Jesus Christ, you have triumphed over the grave and you have won for us new life and resurrection power. Give me the eyes of faith to see you in your glory. Help me to draw near to you and to grow in the knowledge of your great love for us and your great victory over sin and death.”

Psalm 118:1-2, 16-17,22-23

1 O give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his steadfast love endures for  ever!
2 Let Israel say, “His steadfast love endures for ever.”
16 the right hand of the LORD is exalted, the right hand of the LORD does valiantly!”
17 I shall not die, but I shall live, and recount the deeds of the LORD.
22 The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner.
23 This is the LORD’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.

A Daily Quote for the Easter season: The Womb of the Earth Gives Birth, by Hesychius of Jerusalem, died around 450 A.D.

“Hidden first in a womb of flesh, he sanctified human birth by his own birth. Hidden afterward in the womb of the earth, he gave life to the dead by his resurrection. Suffering, pain and sighs have now fled away. For who has known the mind of God, or who has been his counselor if not the Word made flesh who was nailed to the cross, who rose from the dead and who was taken up into heaven? This day brings a message of joy: it is the day of the Lord’s resurrection when, with himself, he raised up the race of Adam. Born for the sake of human beings, he rose from the dead with them. On this day paradise is opened by the risen one, Adam is restored to life and Eve is consoled. On this day the divine call is heard, the kingdom is prepared, we are saved and Christ is adored. On this day, when he had trampled death under foot, made the tyrant a prisoner and despoiled the underworld, Christ ascended into heaven as a king in victory, as a ruler in glory, as an invincible charioteer. He said to the Father, ‘Here am I, O God, with the children you have given me.’ And he heard the Father’s reply, ‘Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies your footstool’ (Psalm 110:1).” To him be glory, now and for ever, through endless ages. Amen. [excerpt from EASTER HOMILY 5–6]

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