My Daily Visitor

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Sep 18,2012 - 1 Corinthians 12:12-14

"Strive eagerly for the greatest spiritual gifts." (1 Cor 12:31) When I read this verse it stood out to me like a big neon sign. Paul, when speaking to the people of Corinth, suggests that each of us has a unique gift but we must cultivate to find it.

When speaking about the body of Christ and His church, he addressed the early Christian followers that "some people God has designated in the church to be, first apostles; second, prophets; third, teachers; then mighty deeds; then gifts of healing, assistance, administration and a variety of tongues" (1 Cor 12:28). So much as to say that we all have a special quality that God has given us, a unique talent, if you will, to serve God and the Church of Christ. 

There is no incorrect way to serve, just as there is no less an important part of the body. The hands are equally important as the feet; the eyes are equally important as the nose; etc. There are many ways to contribute to your church and community. However, like anything else, you must participate fully to realize it's reward.

"Lord, thank you for revealing to me my unique gift. I will participate fully in your church to share in the fellowship of Christ" - Amen

Meditation: 1 Corinthians 12:12-14, 27-31 (

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Friday, September 14, 2012

Sep 14, 2012 - John 3:13-17

Today's gospel teaches us that Jesus is the name above all others. God "greatly exalted him" (Phi 2-9) so that "every knee should bend" (Phi 2-10) at his name. It was the sacrifice on the cross that Jesus gave willingly to save us from sin that seperated him from all others.

In the first reading from Numbers for today, Moses and God were blamed by the people of the Exodus that they were starving and questioned why God freed them from bondage. They complained "Why have you brought us up from Egypt to die in the wilderness, where there is no food or water? We are disgusted with this wretched food!" (Num 21:5). So God sent seraph serpents to bite his people, many Isralites died. When the people repented, God instructed Moses to make a seraph and mount it to a pole so that when the people saw it, even those who had been bitten would recover and live.

This pole with an angelic figure and is compartive to Jesus being hung on the cross. Those that look to that figure will be saved, just as those people of Israel during the Exodus who were saved by looking at the seraph pole. Mounted high for all to see. The figurative symbol of Jesus hanging from a tree is one catholics look to. It's not enough for us to see a cross as protestants do. It's important to see the actual figure, suffering for us all and dying for each of us. A symbol similar to the one Moses created and mounted to the pole for the Isralites to see.

"Lord, when I see you on the cross, I am reminded that your suffering has paid my way to eternal life. Grant me your saving grace that I may one day be united with you in heaven." - Amen

Meditation: John 3:13-17 (

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Monday, September 10, 2012

Sep 10, 2012 - 1 Corinthians 5:1-8

Today's reading is one of my favorites because it underscores the importance of going to confession. Confession is very important in your relationship with God, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. God, in his infinite wisdom gave us his only Son to deliver us from sin, just as God used Moses to deliver his people from bondage out of Egypt. Sin IS bondage. They are shackles that bind us and do not let go. Our faith, through the Holy Spirit, has given us the Sacrement of Confession or in today's terms, Sacrament of Reconciliation to free us from those shackles. In turn, after we are cleansed and washed clean, we partake in the celebration of Christ and unite with him through the Sacrement of Communion.
Freeing yourself from these shackles of sin is a daily struggle. Being human we are born with original sin that makes it impossible to be perfect. We can strive for that perfection, however, by going to Mass each Sunday, going to confession on a regular basis, going to Communion at Mass, and doing charitable work for those less fortunate. As a Lector, Eucharistic Minister, Knight of Columbus, ESL Aide and a Welcome Committe Member at our Church, I speak from experience that there is no greater gift you can give to God than to devote your available time to charitable works.
I recommend involving yourself in your community so that you too can experience God's love through the eyes and voices of those that thank you for your service. You will feel a sense of love and compassion that cannot be felt elsewhere and you will not be dissappointed.
"Lord, continue to use me as an instrument for your love. Through the Holy Spirit, grant me the wisdom to seek those out who need my help" - Amen.

Meditation: 1 Corinthians 5:1-8 (

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Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Sep 4, 2012 - 1 Cor 2:10b-16

Today's first reading is a bit complex to understand but basically it states that there are two forms of consciousness. One who is spiritual and one who is not. The one who is not spiritual cannot judge the one that is. What does God mean by this?
To take it further, it is the Holy Spirit that teaches us divine wisdom and not wisdom taught by man. Since the Holy Spirit is equally divine with God and Jesus Christ, it is His wisdom that we should seek. The thoughts of God can only be comprehended by the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit is God. God being three devine persons enlightens us with the truth taught by the Holy Spirit.
The person who chooses not to receive these truths from the Holy Spirit cannot discern or judge those who receive the Holy Spirit. Jesus had told his Apostles that "when the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide
you into all truth" (Jn 16:13). Pope Leo the XIII said "The Holy Spirit, who is the spirit of truth, because he proceeds from the Father, eternal Truth, and the Son, substantial truth, receives from each of them, along
with his essence, all truth, which he then communicates to the Church, helping never  to err"
In a perfect world, we should all be perfect but we are not. But God has given us the ability to choose. The abilty to discern what is good and what God has directed us to do. But it only comes to us through the Holy Spirit. That is why it is important to attend Church each Sunday to listen to the truth that God and the Holy Spirit has set before us through the daily readings and Gospel. It is communicated by the Holy Spirit and through the Church to each and every catholic who attends mass all over the world. I myself, try to prepare for Mass each Sunday and read the day's readings so that when I sit in church and listen to God's words, the truth has already begun to sink in. It is that truth that sets us free to yearn for Christ.
"Lord, heavenly father, your wisdom is taught to me by the Holy Spirit, who enlightens me to yearn for Christ. Allow me time for your truth to sink in so that I may continue walk in your path". - Amen

Meditation: Luke 4:31-37 (

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Saturday, September 1, 2012

Sep 1, 2012 - Matthew 25:14-30

After reading today's Gospel, I found it worth researching on the internet. I researched it for two reasons. One, I wanted to compare my understanding of it to see if I was pretty close to popular opinion. Two, I wanted to be able to use that understanding to better my relationship with God.

Here is my understanding of Matthew 25:14-30:

Jesus taught the parable of the talents to prepare His church. Jesus knew that he was going to be crucified and therefore wanted to prepare us for what lies ahead. He also wanted to instruct us on how to live while we wait for his return. On a personal level, he wants us to use what we have been given in this life to do good. That is to say, whatever talents we have been given, large or small we are to seek to increase it's value as it relates to God's teaching. A poor person with little to no talents should seek to increase their position in life and give back to the community as much so as the person who has everything. Talents in this sense does not mean economic wealth but personal wealth, i.e., health, wisdom, knowledge, stewardship, etc.

Today's Catholic church is the foundation of this teaching. As we wait His joyful return, the Catholic church continues in this stewardship. She continues to invest it's "talents" as she awaits the return of its founder and Master, Jesus Christ. Even with all it's flaws, the Catholic church continues today to invest it's talents to spread the Gospel of Christ and to serve others. There is no perfect religious organization. Each has it's flaws because they were created by and for human beings. As Catholics and stewards of Christ, we should use our talents to continue to grow our church so that when she stands in judgment on His return, Christ will give us greater responsibilty to continue our life in heaven.

"Lord, thank you for entrusting me to serve you. I will continue to use my talents to increase it's wealth so that in my time of judgement, you will look favorably on me." - Amen

Meditation: Matthew 25:14-30 (

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Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Aug 29, 2012 - Mark 6:17-29

In today's reading, Mark tells the story of the beheading of John the Baptist. John, who was recognized by many as the greatest prophet at the time, some even believing he was the Christ, was imprisoned by Herod. Herod found John interesting and liked to hear him speak. But it was Herodias, the ex-wife of Phillip, Herod's brother, that detested John because John spoke out in public of her marrying Herod, her brother-in-law. John stated "It is not lawful for you to have your brother's wife" (Mk 6:18), speaking to Herod.

I stopped to think that times have not really changed since those early Christian years. There was still malice, hatred, deceit, idolotry, etc., that drove people to murder, executions and betrayal. In the year 2012, those behaviors still exist in today's times. I believe what seperates us from those times is that today, we are rooted in Christ. In those days, I compare it to the outlaw days of our western culture. There was not much law and order except by those who wielded the staff. And they ruled with iron fists and without conscience where beheading was not thought of twice.

Today, because we ARE rooted in Christ, those who choose to do bad know the consquences of their actions. Christ did an awesome job of laying out the law for us and the consequences that we face if we choose not to follow him. A million beheadings will not equal what we face in damnation if we turn away from God. Often times I think how my decisions affect my final judgement. Did I do everything I could to follow Christ? Did I love and serve the Lord to the best of my ability? How do people see me as it relates to Christ? Do I take the time to speak to at least one person everyday about Christ?

It's a complex way of living but Christ, in all his wisdom, made it very easy for us. "You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' There is no other commandment greater than these." (Mk 12:31).

"Lord, even in times of distress, give me the wisdom to love my enemies and neighbors as myself. Grant me peace where there is dispair. Open my heart to receive the Holy Spirit at all times." - Amen

Meditation: Mark 6:17-29 (

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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Aug 25, 2012 - Jos 24:1-2a, 15-17, 18b

Today is the first Sunday in Ordinary Time. It is also the day I was chosen to read the first reading at today's 11:15am Mass. It was the reading from the book of Joshua. Joshua, in this reading, challenged the Isralites to make a choice between false gods or the true God that led them from slavery in the land of Egypt.

As I read the verses, I imagined a large group of leaders of the community gathered around to hear Joshua talk. Joshua, who was Moses' apprentice, was a well respected leader in his community. He led the Isaelites in conquering the land of Canaan after Moses died. Joshua was putting his cards on the table. He MADE his choice and was frustrated over the fact that his people were turning away from the true God that saved them from bondage. No beating around the bush, it was either a take or leave it situation.

After Mass, I went to the reception hall to mingle with the congregation and I was approached by Sister Rita. Sister Rita is so tiny that I didn't even notice her approaching me when she tapped me on the shoulder. She said "I enjoy hearing you, you are a very good lector....would you consider volunteering for our ESL program?" I was humbled that this little tiny nun came across the room to speak to me and ask me that question. Clearly she was moved by God to come and seek me out. At this moment, I reflected on my reading and thought to myself, "she is asking me to make a choice to follow God and be a leader in your community by volunteering". She was very sweet and I did not have the heart to turn her down.

God comes to you in many ways. Sometimes you don't recognize it. Other times, he grabs your attention immediately so that your left in amazement that he chose you. In either case, it feels wonderful to know that your efforts to follow God and spread his Gospel bears fruit. A fruit that feeds one person or a multitude.

"Dear God, you came to me today and asked me to volunteer. I accepted gladly because you are always there for me when I need you. Thank you for choosing me. Through Jesus Christ our Lord...Amen"

Meditation: John 6:60-69 (

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