Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Daily Scripture Readings

Click here for today's Scripture readings.

I found this beautiful quotation this morning, by St. Madeleine Sophie Barat.

"Let the world fall apart if the Lord wishes. We must keep ourselves in peace and trust in His kindness."


Saint Madeline Sophie Barat (1779-1865) was the foundress of the Religious of the Sacred Heart. She founded more than 105 convents and schools to educate young women. She was canonized in 1925.
(Click here for her biography.)

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Daily Scripture Reading

Sorry folks. Got knocked off the schedule with the holiday and all.

Here are today's Scripture readings.

And returning this week- Doctor of the Day.

Peace to you today.

Summer Spiritual Reading

As summer gets going, I wanted to pass on some titles of books if you're interested in doing some spiritual reading this summer as you travel and hang out.  Here are some of my favorites; if you have a particular interest in something, let me know and I can pass on some recommendations.

-Deep Conversion/Deep Prayer, by Father Thomas Dubay
-Father Joe, by Tony Hendra
-Interior Prayer, by an Anonymous Carthusian Monk
-He Leadeth Me, by Father Walter Ciszak, SJ
-The Lamb’s Supper, by Dr. Scott Hahn
-The Return of the Prodigal Son, by Father Henri Nouwen
-Silence, a novel by Shusaku Endo
-The Power and the Glory, a novel by Graham Greene
-East of Eden, a novel by John Steinbeck
-Death Comes to the Archbishop, a novel by Willa Cather
-Opening to God, by Father Thomas Green

Peace to you,

Friday, May 25, 2012

Watch this video!

Daily Scripture Readings and 3 Saints

Click here for the daily Scripture readings.

Today we celebrant 3 great Saints: St. Bede the Venerable; St. Pope Gregory VII; St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi.

Coupled with the great readings from Mass today in which we see the beginning of the end of both St. Peter and St. Paul, we are reminded of both the great cost and great reward of being Disciples of Jesus.  And that the starting point is a deep relationship of Trust that is born in Prayer.

So, here are some biographies of our 3 Saints.
1. St. Bede the Venerable (from Wikipedia)
2. St. Pope Gregory VII (ditto)
3. St. Mary Magdalen de Pazzi (ditto)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Prayer in Public? Depends who you ask.

I found these two stories on the web. Worth reading and reflecting on.

Prayer in Public...

Not so fast says ACLU...

What are your thoughts, feelings?

Daily Scripture and Doctor of the Day

Click here for the daily Scripture readings.

And our Doctor of the Day is St. John Chrysostom.

St. John Chrysostom was born around 347 and died in 407. His last name means ‘The Golden-Mouthed’ and is called such because he was a great preacher. He is also called the Doctor of the Eucharist because much of his theological study concerns the great depth of the gift of the Eucharist. We celebrate his feast day on Sept 13.

Chrysostom was bishop of Constantinople and was known for his eloquent preaching (St. John is the patron saint of preachers). Before becoming bishop he lived as a hermit in the desert for four years growing into a depth of relationship with God. He is most famous for a collection of 22 homilies called Homilies on the Statues that were preached with such pastoral care that it inspired many to repentance and conversion. He also wrote many works on Sacred Scripture. He was a fervent defender of the Faith against the Arian heresy of the time. Furthermore, it wasn’t enough for Chrysostom just to use his intellectual gifts to teach. He also was known for his great pastoral care. He was remarkably dedicated to shepherding the flock that the Lord put in his care. He strove to make the connected between an intimate relationship with the Lord naturally led to Christian charity and a concern for the needs of others. He wrote in one homily, “This is the principle of our social life…[that we are] not to be solely concerned with ourselves”(Homily 9 on Genesis).  In another place he writes, “To support one another in the things of the Spirit (that is works of charity and service) is the true sign of goodwill between brothers, of loving kinship and sincere affection.”

Let us ask St. John Chrysostom to pray for us today. May we true and faithful preachers of the message of Jesus by our words and actions and prayer. Let’s pray for our priests, that they may be good preachers of the Gospel and never back down from boldly proclaiming the Good News of Jesus. Amen.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Daily Scripture and Doctor of the Day

Click here for the Daily Scripture Readings.

And our Doctor of the Day is St. Jerome.

St. Jerome was born around 342 and died sometime around 420. His greatest contribution is that he translated the Hebrew and Greek Bible into Latin, which was then translated into English.  He is known as Father of Biblical Science because he provided an expansive commentary on the Bible; and we celebrate his feast day on Sept 30.

Jerome as born into a Christian family and was blessed with a great education. He lived as a hermit in the desert for the time perfectly his knowledge of Greek, Hebrew and Latin; and also growing deeper in his relationship with God through his praying with the Scriptures. In 382 he moved to Rome and became a counselor and secretary to Pope Damasus. It was this Pope that asked Jerome to produce a Latin translation of the Bible- which he did. We call his translation The Vulgate- the first Latin translation of the Bible.   But Jerome wasn’t just a scholar of the Bible, he was also a fervent pray-er and he loved to pray with the Word of God. What great depth of relationship he discovered as he entered into the Word! No doubt he learned things about himself and God and Jesus and his own relationship to Him that we was unable to ascertain from another place or method. Jerome was the first to realize that Scripture, the Word of God, is a message from God the Father to each individual person- it is a message to each heart!  St. Jerome said, “Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ.”  He has a point: how much do we really know about what is contained in the Word of God. People ask me all the time: How do I get to know Jesus better?  My amswer: God to the Gospels! All the answers are right there. That's where the relationship with Jesus starts. 

From St. Lawrence of Brindisi: “The Word of God is a light to the mind and a fire to the will. It enables us to know God and to love Him.”

Let’s ask St. Jerome to pray for us today. May he inspire in us a true love for the Word of God, Sacred Scripture, and commit ourselves to reading the daily readings and ask the Lord to teach, inspire and convert our hearts, drawing us into a deeper relationship with Him and with the people we love. Amen.

Have a good day.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Daily Scripture Reading

Click here for a link to the daily Scripture readings.

Forthcoming: resuming this week our Doctor-of-the-Day journey.  Also, accompanying the daily readings, a brief 'minute meditation' to stimulate some prayer.

As always, peace to you today,

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Daily Scripture and This Week at MQP

Here's a link to today's Scripture readings.

Here's some happenings at MQP this week and weekend:
-Our 8th graders wrap up their academic career at MQP. Thursday is the Rose Mass and Mystery Trip and the 8th graduation is on Saturday afternoon at a 2pm Mass followed by presentation of diplomas.
-Dion Quinn and the Men's Club is roasting a pig and selling the meat to benefit the MQP St. Vincent de Paul Society. See the bulletin insert for more information on how to place an order.
-On Sunday, we will celebrate the Solemnity of the Ascension of Jesus. This marks the penultimate end of the Easter Season and I'll be preaching about what the Ascension, as a historical event, means to us today.

I'm currently in Chicago taking care of some school business for this program I'm in.  I saw the sunrise this morning over the campus of the University of St. Mary of the Lake. It was absolutely breathtaking and my prayer at Mass today will be the health and intentions of my family at MQP.

Peace and prayers to you today,

Monday, May 14, 2012

Today's Scripture Readings

Greetings from Mundelein Seminary outside of Chicago. I'm here for the week doing some school work for this program I'm in. You all are in my prayers this week.

Here's a link to today's Scripture readings.

And, here's a link to a biography of St. Matthias, whose Feast we celebrate today. St. Matthias became the 12th Apostle after Judas Iscariot betrayed Jesus. Here's his biography from the Catholic Encyclopedia.

Have a good day.

Peace to you,

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Books about Saints

This posting is in follow-up to a discussion I had with the Women's League earlier today about Saints and learning more about Saints.

These are the books I mentioned by our Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI.  You can find these on Amazon or at a Catholic bookstore.  They are published by Ignatius Press and a few are also published by Our Sunday Visitor.

1. Church Fathers, Volume I - From Clement of Rome to Augustine
2. Church Fathers, Volume II - From St. Leo the Great to Peter Lombard
3. Jesus, the Apostles and the Early Church
4. Holiness is Always in Season
5. Holy Men and Women of the Middle Ages and Beyond
6. Saint Paul
7. Holy Women
8. Great Teachers
9. Doctors of the Church

Blessings on your reading and prayer!

Today's Scripture Readings

Click here for today's Scripture Readings.

I'm also taking a break from the Doctor-a-Day postings. I'm heading to Chicago on Sunday for a week of school business so I'll be a little pressed for time. I'll continue to post links to the daily Scripture Readings but will have to take a knee on the other stuff. We'll meet our next Doctor of the Church, St. Jerome, on May 21st.

Have a good weekend.

Peace to you,

Friday, May 11, 2012

Today's Readings and Doctor of the Church: St. Ambrose of Milan

Click here for today's Scripture readings.

And our Doctor of the Day is St. Ambrose of Milan.

St. Ambrose of Milan was born in 340 and died in 397. He was bishop of Milan and a teacher to St. Augustine- another Doctor of the Church. St. Ambrose wrote about a lot of things and is sometimes called the ‘Patron of the Veneration of Mary’. We celebrate his liturgical feast day on December 7.  Ambrose was born into a noble family and was both a civil and religious leader. He wasn’t actually chosen by the Pope to be bishop of Milan, instead, he was so well-loved by the people there, that they acclaimed him bishop. The Pope then approved the acclamation. Perhaps Ambrose’s greatest contribution to our Catholic tradition is the introduction of lectio divina. I’ve talked about lectio before: it’s a prayerful way to read and meditate on Sacred Scripture. It had been something that only monks did. But Ambrose brought it to the western Church and to common practice. Ambrose taught of the great depth and meaning and value of Sacred Scripture- something that we can still embrace today. Ambrose also wrote a good deal about the Virgin Mother of God, Mary. His famous work is called De Virginitate. Ambrose had a motto: “To us Christ is all!”  As a bishop he was dedicated to protecting his flock from heresies and other dangers; he was recorded as saying, “The Church of the Lord is built upon the rock of the apostles among so many dangers in the world: it, therefore, remains unmoved.”

We ask St. Ambrose to pray us today. May we be unmoved by the dangers that surround us: our doubts, fears, anxieties and all the rest. We are confident and unafraid: To us, too, Christ is all! Amen.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Today's Readings and Doctor of the Church: St. Basil the Great

Click here for today's Scripture readings.

And our Church Doctor today is St. Basil the Great.

St. Basil the Great was born around 329 and died in 379. He was a friend and colleague to St. Gregory Nazianzen. Basil is known as ‘The Father of Eastern Monasticism’, which means he was on the fore-front of bringing the monastic life to the Catholic Church centered around Constantinople.  We celebrate his feast day on  January 2. (St. Basil the Great is the brother of St. Gregory of Nyssa.)

Like many of his contemporaries, Basil was a staunch opponent to the Arian heresy and a vocal supporter of the Nicene Creed. Basil’s vehicle to fight the heresy, as well as being one of his great contributions to the history of the church, is his work with the way the church prays. Basil taught that the church prays what it believes. In others words: if you want to know what we teach and believe as Catholics, look to way in which we offer our liturgical prayer like Holy Mass and the Sacraments.  Basil used the liturgy and liturgical prayer to better articulate what it was we believe as Catholics. He wrote one of the Eucharistic prayers (called an anaphora) we use at Mass and also made the Book of Psalms a vital part of our private and public worship.  St. Basil also had a deep love for Sacred Scripture.  He wrote, “The Word calls us to repentance, crying out: ‘Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened and I will refresh you.’ There is, then, a way to salvation if we are willing to follow it.”  Of Basil, Pope Benedict XVI writes, “[Basil] became an ‘apostle and minister of Christ, steward of God’s mysteries, herald of the Kingdom, a model and rule of piety, an eye of the Body of the Church, a Pastor of Christ’s sheep, a loving doctor, father, and nurse, a cooperator of God, a farmer of God, a builder of God’s temple’” (from Basil’s work, Moralia, as cited in Benedict’s Church Fathers, Vol. 1).

We ask St. Basil to pray for us today; we ask him to inspire in us a desire to serve as he served- with dedication and zeal to bring about the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. Amen.