#40 LOOK WHAT I FOUND

What Christians have always believed…

Diary of a Cleric

Dear Doctimus Prime,
You can’t guess what i stumbled on this morning! It is a writing that dates back to the second century. Yes second century. It was written by a Christian convert  who goes by the name JUSTIN. Before becoming a Christian, he was a philosopher. His encounter with Christianity brought him to the conviction that Christianity is the only true philosophy and God is to be worshipped.

Here is a letter he addressed to the Emperor Titus Aelius Antoninus Augustus Pius (86 – 161).

image

“No one may share the Eucharist with us unless he believes that what we teach is true, unless he is washed in the regenerating waters of baptism for the remission of his sins, and unless he lives in accordance with the principles given us by Christ.
  We do not consume the eucharistic bread and wine as if it were ordinary food and drink, for…

View original post 449 more words

THE LIVING BREAD

Thursday 23rd April – Thursday of the 3rd week of Eastertide

Reflection: John 6:44-51

THE LIVING BREAD

Have you ever thought of what your Christian faith would be like if you were not Catholic? You may say: “there is really no big deal…I have many friends who are sincere Christians but are not Catholic and they are happy with their lives.” Sure, there are many Christians who love the Lord but do not have the privilege to be Catholic. They do not have the privilege of receiving Christ, the living bread which you and I have.

You can only understand and appreciate your Catholic faith when you sincerely believe Jesus’ words in today’s reading: “I am the living bread which has come down from heaven. Anyone who eats this bread will live forever” (John 6:51). Do you truly believe Jesus’ words? Your attitude to Mass and the Holy Eucharist will prove if you do.

Beloved, what is preventing you from receiving the Holy Eucharist? Is it lust, fornication, abortion, cultism, lies, examination malpractices and other immoral acts? You do not have to wallow in mortal sin and exempt yourself from the table of the Lord. God calls you today to turn away from all that leads to death. He has provided you with the Sacrament of Reconciliation to grant you forgiveness and help you participate in His life giving Body and Blood.

Today, thank God for the gift of your Catholic faith, make a decision to be reconciled with God in confession and approach His table of love so as to be united with Him and strengthened for your spiritual journey.

PRAYER: Sanctify my soul oh Lord, make me always worthy before you. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 1395 –  By the same charity that it enkindles in us, the Eucharist preserves us from future mortal sins…The Eucharist is not ordered for the forgiveness of mortal sins – that is proper to the sacrament of Reconciliation.

HIDE A TREASURE: “I am the bread of life” John 6:48 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Acts 8: 26-40; Psalm 66: 8-9, 16-17, 20; John 6:44-51

CHRIST – OUR SOURCE OF JOY

Wednesday 22nd April – Wednesday of the 3rd week of Eastertide

Reflection: Psalm 66:1-7

CHRIST – OUR SOURCE OF JOY

Happiness and joy are two words that are often used interchangeably. However, there is a difference between them. While happiness depends on our circumstances, joy goes beyond them. For instance, getting a good grade at school, having your favourite meal for supper and having your needs met may be sources of happiness. Joy on the other hand springs from your heart and is there even when life is rough and circumstances are unpleasant.

Joy is a gift; a fruit of the Holy Spirit (Gal 5:22) and one of the blessings of the resurrected Lord. He is indeed our source of joy. Christ triumph over death on the cross and the assurance that we are God’s children through Baptism in His name is our source of joy and transcends whatever difficulties we may experience in our daily lives. Hence we have every reason to praise Him with today’s psalm.

Today, ask the Lord to fill you with His joy and make a choice to dwell in that joy. A Christian without joy has something missing. Let your joy lead to you to praise God in every circumstance of life and radiate this joy to others. You are a child of God; a heir to His kingdom Why not join your voice with those of the angels as they sing psalms to the praise of His holy name.

PRAYER: Lord, please fill my heart with joy and let this joy lead me to praise you always. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 311 – What are the fruits of the Holy Spirit?
The fruits of the Holy Spirit are charity, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, generosity, gentleness, faithfulness, modesty, self-control, and chastity.

HIDE A TREASURE: “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.” Philippians 4:4 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Acts 8: 1-8; Psalm 66: 1-7; John 6: 35-40

BREAD OF LIFE


Monday 20th April – Monday of the 3rd week of Eastertide

Reflection: John 6:22-29

BREAD OF LIFE

Today’s world is filled with billions of people who profess to be Christians. Look around you, almost everyone in your class, office or neighbourhood is a Christian. Many of us Christians, including Catholics who have been baptized and received Communion for years still do not have the passion to live the life of holiness to which we are called. Though we receive Him in the Eucharist, we are ignorant of the immense power He bestows on us.

Christ has given us his very self as food for our souls. He wants his entire being, spirit, soul and body to dwell in us so that we may hunger and thirst no more for perishable things but for things that have eternal value. This was why he told the people in today’s reading: “Do not work for food that goes bad; instead, work for food that lasts for eternal life” (John 6:27). Dear friend, Christ’ offering of self will be of no benefit to us if we do not seek to know and approach him as He reveals himself to us in various ways.

Jesus’ multiplication of the loaves to satisfy the hunger of the crowd was a sign to prefigure the giving of Himself as the bread of life and set the stage for the long and revolutionary discourse on the Eucharist; the meal which transcends death and opens the gates of heaven to those who eat it (John 6: 54). Thus as we receive Christ in the Eucharist, let us ask God for a deeper insight into the mystery of the Eucharist so that we will be empowered to live as Christ did. It would renew the grace of Baptism and strengthen our personal relationship with God.

Thank God for this precious gift of himself and seek to be open to him so that the Mass can make much more meaning to you.

PRAYER: Lord, thank you for your desire to live in me, please help me to hunger for the food that endures to eternal life. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 221 – How does Holy Communion change me?

Every Holy Communion unites me more deeply with Christ, makes me a living member of the Body of Christ, renews the graces that I received in Baptism and Confirmation, and fortifies me for the battle against sin. 

HIDE A TREASURE: “What God wants you to do is to believe in the one he sent”. John 6:29 GNB

Today’s Readings: Acts 6:8-15; Psalm 119: 23-30; John 6: 22-29

IT IS I, DO NOT BE AFRAID

Saturday 18th April – Saturday of the 2nd week of Eastertide

Reflection: John 6:16-21

IT IS I, DO NOT BE AFRAID

In Mark’s account of today’s gospel reading (Mark 6:45-50), it was our Blessed Lord Himself that told the apostles to sail across the sea to the other side. Why did He ask them to sail when He knew there would be a storm, you may wonder. He was well aware that the sea will be turbulent, yet He told them to go. He could have prevented the storm but did not. When the going became tough, there was Jesus walking right beside them. For while they sailed He was watching them and when they needed Him, he was right there for them. The solitary crew was not as solitary as it thought after all.

Our God is more ready to help us than we seek to be helped. We have been created to sail through the sea of life with its storms and our Creator who knows what lies ahead of us still urges each of us to go on.  He does not promise us an easy path but He assures us of a safe landing if we hold on to Him. For though our trials as His children may be many, He has promised to deliver us from them all.

To successfully sail on the sea of life we need to rest all our faith in God who tells us, “Courage, I have overcome the world”. For if He who has overcome the world is with us, we can be sure of our triumph too. The difficulties we experience are exactly what He uses to build our trust and commitment to Him. Never focus on the winds, your difficulties, challenges and weaknesses, rather trust in the power of the Master and keep your eyes on Him as He tells you today, “It is I, Do not be afraid.”

PRAYER: In all my difficulties and troubles, help me come to you Lord with humble trust saying: Jesus Help me and never leave me. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 2743 – It is always possible to pray: The time of the Christian is that of the risen Christ who is with us always, no matter what tempests may arise. Our time is in the hands of God.

HIDE A TREASURE: “You will have troubles in the world; but, courage! I have overcome the world” John 16:33 CCB

Today’s Readings: Acts 6:1-7, Psalm 32:1-5, 18-19, John 6:16-21

IF THIS ENDEAVOR IS OF THE LORD

Friday 17th April – Friday of the 2nd week of Eastertide

Reflection: Acts 5:34-42

IF THIS ENDEAVOR IS OF THE LORD

Gamaliel was a renowned teacher of the law and St Paul’s teacher in Jerusalem before his conversion. This wise Jewish teacher and elder knew that God’s ways are not always man’s ways and that no one can stop God’s business irrespective of how powerful or influential they may be. Thus, he advised the Council “leave the apostles alone, if their project is of human origin, it will destroy itself. If, on the other hand, it is from God, you will not be able to destroy it and you may indeed find yourselves fighting against God.” The existence of the Church till today is clear evidence that the work of the Apostles was really God’s business.

Dear friends in Christ, whenever there is threat to the existence of our groups such as liturgical functionaries or societies in the Church, either due to lack of members or lack of commitment from members, we are called to persevere. Like the Apostles who stood up for their belief in the face of great opposition from the Pharisees, we too are called to stand firm when such challenging times come. Our assurance is, “if this endeavor is of the Lord, He will sustain it”. Each of us was created by and for God; hence, we all are His business. No matter the trials, failures or difficulties that may come our way, our faith tells us that if we are truly God’s business which can never fail, then we will surely overcome.

In the gospel reading, Jesus asked Philip, “Where can we buy enough food for them to eat?” Before asking Christ already knew what He was going to do (John 6: 5-6). He knew how to take care of his people yet, He wanted them to be partakers in His business, so He still asked for what they had. Our participation in our Church societies is not that God can’t take care of His business without us, rather it is a privilege given to us to be partakers in His business. If we realize that our opportunity to serve is a privilege, we should be grateful for being counted worthy.

PRAYER: Lord, please increase my faith in you and help to realize always that whatever is of you can never go to ruin. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: YOUCAT 521  What does it mean to say, “Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven”?
When we pray for the universal accomplishment of God’s will, we pray that on earth and in our own heart it may become as it already is in heaven…Praying means making room bit by bit for God’s will on this earth.

HIDE A TREASURE: “If, on the other hand, it is from God, you will not be able to destroy it and you may indeed find yourselves fighting against God.” Acts 5:39 CCB

Today’s Readings: Acts 5:34-42, Psalm 27:1, 4, 13-14, John 6:1-15

LOVE IS SACRIFICIAL


Wednesday 15th April – Wednesday of the 2nd week of Eastertide

Reflection: John 3: 16-21

LOVE IS SACRIFICIAL

There is truth in the saying: “we can give without loving, but we cannot love without giving.” How much of ourselves we are willing to part with is one of the cardinal tests of the depth of our love.

Today’s gospel reading shows the depth of God the Father’s love for us His creatures: “…God loved the world so much that He gave His only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him may not be lost but may have eternal life.”
Dear friend, we all claim to love God and our neighbor but how truly sacrificial is our love? Do we simply profess to love God because we need Him to answer our prayers? How much of our treasure can we freely give to His service? Genuine love is not self seeking.

As we go about our activities this day, let us keep in mind that there will be times when love will place demands on us. Occasions will arise when we need to jettison our own interest in other to meet the needs of others. At those times, let us not fail the test of love; let us exercise the needed sacrifice. This is an important proof of our discipleship.

PRAYER: Dear Lord, please grant me the grace to pay the needed sacrifice that my love for You and my neighbour demands from me. Amen.

KNOW YOUR FAITH: CCC 2447 – The works of mercy are charitable actions by which we come to the aid of our neighbor in his spiritual and bodily necessities. Instructing, advising, consoling, comforting, are spiritual works of mercy, as are forgiving and bearing wrongs patiently…giving alms to the poor is one of the chief witnesses to fraternal charity: it is also a work of justice pleasing to God.

HIDE A TREASURE: “By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren” 1 John 3: 16-17 RSV-CE

Today’s Readings: Acts 5: 17-26; Psalm 34: 2-9; John 3: 16-21