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TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 15:18-21)

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 15:18-21)

Jesus said to his disciples:
“If the world hates you,
remember that it hated me before you.
If you belonged to the world,
the world would love you as its own;
but because you do not belong to the world,
therefore the world hates you.
Remember the words I said to you:
A servant is not greater than his master.
If they persecuted me,
they will persecute you too;
if they kept my word,
they will keep yours as well.
But it will be on my account that they will do all this,
because they do not know the one who sent me.”

V. The Gospel of the Lord.
R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

 

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TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 15:1-8)

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 15:1-8)

Jesus said to his disciples:

“I am the true vine,
and my Father is the vinedresser.
Every branch in me that bears no fruit
he cuts away,
and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes
to make it bear even more.
You are pruned already,
by means of the word that I have spoken to you.
Make your home in me, as I make mine in you.

As a branch cannot bear fruit all by itself,
but must remain part of the vine,
neither can you unless you remain in me.
I am the vine,
you are the branches.
Whoever remains in me, with me in him,
bears fruit in plenty;
for cut off from me you can do nothing.
Anyone who does not remain in me
is like a branch that has been thrown away
– he withers;
these branches are collected and thrown on the fire,
and they are burnt.
If you remain in me
and my words remain in you,
you may ask what you will
and you shall get it.
It is to the glory of my Father that you should bear much fruit,
and then you will be my disciples.”

V. The Gospel of the Lord.
R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

 

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TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 14:1-6)

TODAY’S GOSPEL READING (JOHN 14:1-6)

Jesus said to his disciples:

“Do not let your hearts be troubled.
Trust in God still, and trust in me.
There are many rooms in my Father’s house;
if there were not, I should have told you.
I am going now to prepare a place for you,
and after I have gone and prepared you a place,
I shall return to take you with me;
so that where I am
you may be too.
You know the way to the place where I am going.”

Thomas said, “Lord, we do not know where you are going, so how can we know the way?” Jesus said:

“I am the Way, the Truth and the Life.
No one can come to the Father except through me.”

V. The Gospel of the Lord.
R. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ.

 

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A PREPARATION FOR HOLY COMMUNION

A PREPARATION FOR HOLY COMMUNION

Dearest Jesus, all thy creatures are more worthy of thy grace

Than the vile and wretched sinner who now kneels before thy Face.

Yet one claim I have upon thee, which thou never wilt deny:

In the bounds of thy creation, no one needs thee more than I!

 

Other souls have been more faithful, and have served thee better far,

Many spotless hearts more fitting for thy gracious Presence are,

Many lips devout a greeting far more fervent can supply,

But, dear Master, well thou knowest: no one needs thee more than I.

 

Many loving hands have carried richer offerings to thy Shrine,

Many generous hearts have loved thee with a purer love than mine;

These thy chosen ones approach thee, as the doves to covert fly,

I am utterly unworthy, but none need thee more than I!

 

Sins unnumbered, unatoned for, have made havoc in my soul,

And against me stands, as witness, the Recording Angel’s roll;

All untilled has been my vineyard, and its soil is hard and dry,

O my God, my only refuge, no one needs thee more than I!

 

For without thee I am helpless, fast in sin’s strong fetters caught.

Blinded by my evil passions, swayed by impulses untaught:

I could do no good unaided, it were worse than vain to try;

Come thyself to me, sweet Jesus! no one needs thee more than I!

 

Thou didst leave thy Father’s bosom, to reclaim and save the lost,

Thou didst take upon thee freely our redemption’s awful cost,

Thou thyself hast called me to thee, thou wilt hearken to my cry,

In the bounds of thy creation, no one needs thee more than I!

– St Anthony’s Treasury, Laverty&Sons, Leeds, 1916

 

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ST JOSEPH THE WORKER, ALT. FIRST READING (COLOSSIANS 3:14-15.17.23-24)

ST JOSEPH THE WORKER, ALT. FIRST READING (COLOSSIANS 3:14-15.17.23-24)

WHATEVER YOUR WORK IS, PUT YOUR HEART INTO IT AS IF IT WERE FOR THE LORD AND NOT FOR MEN

Over all these clothes, to keep them together and complete them, put on love. And may the peace of Christ reign in your hearts, because it is for this that you were called together as parts of one body.

Always be thankful. Never say or do anything except in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. Whatever your work is, put your heart into it as if it were for the Lord and not for men, knowing that the Lord will repay you by making you his heirs. It is Christ the Lord that you are serving.

V. The word of the Lord.

R. Thanks be to God.

 

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ST PHILIP, APOSTLE

ST PHILIP, APOSTLE

SS. PHILIP AND JAMES, APOSTLES – FEAST: MAY 3

Philip was born at Bethsaida, and was one of the twelve apostles who were first called by Christ the Lord. It was from Philip that Nathanael learned that the Messia had come who was promised in the law, and by him he was led to the Lord. How familiarly Christ treated Philip is well shown by the fact that certain Gentiles went to Philip, when they wanted to see the Saviour; and when the Lord wished to feed the very great multitude in the desert, he spoke to Philip in this manner: “Where shall we buy bread that these may eat?”

PHILIP, AFTER HE RECEIVED THE HOLY SPIRIT… 

Philip, after he received the Holy Spirit, when Scythia fell to him in which to preach the Gospel, converted almost its entire population to the Christian faith. Finally, when he reached Hieropolis in Phrygia, he was crucified for the name of Christ, and stoned to death. The Christians buried his body in that place; it was afterwards taken to Rome, and, together with the body of the Apostle St James, was placed in the Basilica of the Twelve Apostles.

– From: An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

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O LOVING JESUS, CONCEALED UNDER THE FORM OF BREAD

O LOVING JESUS, CONCEALED UNDER THE FORM OF BREAD

ACT OF LOVE BEFORE HOLY COMMUNION 

O loving Jesus, concealed under the form of bread, thou art my hope, and thou art also my love; for how great, how unconquerable must have been thy love to induce thee, the Son of the Most High, the object of the adoration of Heaven, to descend from thy throne of eternal glory to this miserable earth to dwell among us and become our very own?

It did not satisfy thy love to remain as man among us for a few passing years: thou wouldst always remain with us. Thou wast not satisfied to shed thy Blood once for us in terrible suffering on the cross; thou wouldst have the sublime sacrifice daily offered for us. O love of my Saviour, unfathomable abyss, what must be the perversion and hardness of heart that cannot love thee in return! I love thee, my Jesus; at least I desire to love thee as fervently as thou meritest to be loved.

Inflame my cold heart with thy love and let thy holy fire never be extinguished; let this love be stronger in me than death; nothing henceforth shall separate me from thy love, O Jesus; neither life nor death, neither the world nor the flesh, neither affliction nor distress. In this love will I persevere to my last hour, and be thine, O Jesus, forever.

– St Anthony’s Treasury, Laverty & Sons Ltd., Leeds, 1916

 

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JESUS LOVES US

JESUS LOVES US

Yes, the Sacred Heart of Jesus loves us. It loves us infinitely more than do all the angels and saints together, more than even we can love ourselves; it loves us to excess.

And indeed, what an excess of love, to love us from all eternity so that He has never been an instant without loving us, and has always loved us at the same time, and with the same love with which He has loved His Father in eternity.

Again, what an excess to love us to such an extent as to become man for us, to live for our sakes so laborious a life, and lastly to die for us on the arms of the cross; so that He has loved us more than His honour, more than His repose, more than His life!

Finally, what excess to remain for love of us in the most Holy Sacrament of the Altar, day and night; so that thirty-three years entirely devoted to our salvation did not suffice for the Heart of Jesus; He must remain with us in the tabernacle for nineteen centuries. What do I say? He takes the form of bread and wine, in order to be our food, and to contract the closest possible union with each one of us.

How many things are explained by these words: God can do all. “But”, says a holy man, “if you ask me how it can come to pass that God should love such a miserable creature as man, and love him to such a degree, I confess that I have no answer to give, and that it is a truth beyond my comprehension.”

– Laverty&Sons (eds), 1905

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2020 in Words of Wisdom

 

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ON THE ROAD TO EMMAUS

ON THE ROAD TO EMMAUS

A HOMILY BY ST GREGORY THE GREAT

(Luke 24:13-35)

You have heard, dearly beloved brethren, how the Lord appeared to two of the disciples as they were upon a journey. Although they did not as yet believe in him, at least they talked of him. He did not show himself to them in his true likeness, for then they would have recognised him. Therefore, that which the Lord was working outwardly with respect to their bodily eyes, was precisely what was taking place inwardly with regard to the eyes of their hearts. For inwardly they loved, and yet they doubted. Outwardly, the Lord was present with the., but did not show them who he was. Thus because they were speaking of him, he manifested his presence to them; but because they doubted, he hid the countenance they would have recognised.

HE TOOK UP WHAT THEY WERE SAYING 

Indeed, he took up what they were saying, rebuked the dullness of their understanding, and laid open those mysterious passages of the Sacred Scriptures that had been written concerning him. Nevertheless, because he was not yet present in their hearts by faith, he pretended he would go further. For indeed, the Latin word  fingere, to pretend, has also the meaning of componere, to fashion; hence, those who fashion clay are called figuli, potters. Therefore, he who is Truth itself, did nothing by duplicity but he showed himself to them in body, such as he appeared to them in mind. But they were to be tried, to see whether, though they did not yet love him as God, they would at least show a friendly feeling for him as a stranger.

“AND THEY CONSTRAINED HIM”

But since these men with whom the Truth was walking were not without charity, they invited him to their lodging as though he were indeed a stranger. But why should we say “invited,” since it was there written: “And they constrained him?” Without doubt, we are to learn from this example that strangers are not merely to be invited to share our hospitality, but even to be pressed to do so. And so they set the table for him, and offered him bread and meats: and then, in the breaking of bread, they recognised as God him whom they did not know when he explained the Sacred Scriptures. Therefore, in hearing the commandments of God, they were not enlightened, but in doing them they obtained light; for it is written: “Not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.” Whoever, then, desires to understand the lessons he has heard, let him hasten to put in practice what he has already been able to hear. Behold, the Lord was not recognised while he was speaking, but was recognised when food was served to him.

– St Gregory the Great, Homily 23 on the Gospels; An Approved English Translation of the Breviarium Romanum, Burns & Oates, London, 1964

 

 

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GOOD FRIDAY, GOSPEL READING (JOHN 18:1-19:42)

GOOD FRIDAY, GOSPEL READING (JOHN 18:1-19:42)

THE PASSION OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST ACCORDING TO JOHN 

When Jesus had finished speaking, he went with his disciples to the other side of the Kidron Valley. There was a garden there. Jesus entered with his disciples.

Now Judas, who betrayed him, knew the place, since Jesus had often met there with his disciples. So Judas took soldiers and some servants from the chief priests and Pharisees, and they went to the garden with lanterns, torches and weapons.

Jesus knew all that was going to happen to him; he stepped forward and asked, “Who are you looking for?” They answered, “Jesus the Nazarene.” Jesus said, “I am he.” Judas, who betrayed him, stood there with them.

When Jesus said, “I am he,” they moved back and fell to the ground. He then asked a second time, “Who are you looking for?” and they answered, “Jesus the Nazarene.” Jesus replied, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, let these others go.” So what Jesus had said came true: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”

Simon Peter had a sword; he drew it and struck Malchus, the High Priest’s servant, cutting off his right ear. But Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup which the Father has given me?”

The guards and the soldiers, with their commander, seized Jesus and bound him; and they took him first to Annas. Annas was the father-in-law of Caiaphas who was the High Priest that year; and it was Caiaphas who had told the Jews, “It is better that one man should die for the people.”

Simon Peter with another disciple followed Jesus. Because this disciple was known to the High Priest, they let him enter the courtyard of the High Priest along with Jesus, but Peter had to stay outside at the door. The other disciple, who was known to the High Priest, went out and spoke to the maidservant at the gate and brought Peter in. Then this maidservant on duty at the door said to Peter, “So you also are one of his disciples?” But he answered, “I am not.”

Now the servants and the guards had made a charcoal fire and were standing and warming themselves, because it was cold. Peter was also with them warming himself.

The High Priest questioned Jesus about his disciples and his teaching. Jesus answered him, “I have spoken openly to the world; I have always taught in places where the Jews meet together, either at the assemblies in synagogues or in the Temple. I did not teach secretly. Why then do you question me? Ask those who heard me, they know what I said.”

At this reply one of the guards standing there gave Jesus a blow on the face, saying, “Is that the way to answer the High Priest?” Jesus said to him, “If I have spoken wrongly, point it out; but if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?”

Then Annas sent him, bound, to Caiaphas, the High Priest.

Now Simon Peter stood there warming himself. They said to him, “Surely you also are one of his disciples.” He denied it, and answered, “I am not.” One of the High Priest’s servants, a kinsman of the one whose ear Peter had cut off, asked, “Did I not see you with him in the garden?” Again, Peter denied it, and at once the cock crowed.

Then they led Jesus from the house of Caiaphas to the headquarters of the Roman governor. It was now morning. The Jews didn’t go inside, lest they be made unclean by entering the house of a pagan, and therefore not allowed to eat the Passover meal. So Pilate came out and asked, “What charge do you bring against this man?”

They answered, “If he were not a criminal, we would not be handing him over to you.” Pilate said, “Take him yourselves and judge him according to your own law.” But they replied, “We ourselves are not allowed to put anyone to death.”

It was clear from this what kind of death Jesus was to die, according to what Jesus himself had foretold.

Pilate then entered the court again, called Jesus and asked him, “Are you the King of the Jews?” Jesus replied, “Does this word come from you, or did you hear it from others?”

Pilate answered, “Am I a Jew? Your own nation and the chief priests have handed you over to me. What have you done?” Jesus answered, “My kingship does not come from this world. If I were a king, like those of this world, my guards would have fought to save me from being handed over to the Jews. But my kingship is not of this world.”

Pilate asked him, “So you are a king?” And Jesus answered, “Just as you say, I am a king. For this I was born and for this I have come into the world, to bear witness to the truth. Everyone who is on the side of truth hears my voice.” Pilate said, “What is truth?”

Pilate then went out to the Jews again and said, “I find no crime in this man. Now, according to custom, I must release a prisoner to you at the Passover. With your agreement I will release to you the King of the Jews.” But they insisted and cried out, “Not this man, but Barabbas!” Now Barabbas was a robber.

Then Pilate had Jesus taken away and scourged. The soldiers also twisted thorns into a crown and put it on his head. They threw a cloak of royal purple around his shoulders; and they began coming up to him and saluting him, “Hail, king of the Jews!” and they struck him on the face.

Pilate went outside yet another time and said to the Jews, “Look, I am bringing him out, and I want you to know that I find no crime in him.” Jesus then came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple cloak, and Pilate pointed to him, saying, “Here is the man!”

On seeing him the chief priests and the guards cried out, “Crucify him! Crucify him!” Pilate replied, “Take him yourselves and have him crucified, for I find no case against him.” The Jews then said, “We have a Law, and according to the Law this man must die because he made himself Son of God.”

When Pilate heard this he was more afraid. And coming back into the court he asked Jesus, “Where are you from?” But Jesus gave him no answer. Then Pilate said to him, “You will not speak to me? Do you not know that I have power to release you, just as I have power to crucify you?” Jesus replied, “You would have no power unless it had been given you from above; therefore the one who handed me over to you is more guilty.”

From that moment Pilate tried to release him, but the Jews cried out, “If you release this man, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who makes himself a king is defying Caesar.”

When Pilate heard this, he had Jesus brought outside to the place called the Stone Floor – in Hebrew Gabbatha – and sat down in the judgment seat. It was the day of preparation for the Passover, about noon. Pilate said to the Jews, “Here is your king.” But they cried out, “Away! Take him away! Crucify him!” Pilate replied, “Shall I crucify your king?” And the chief priests answered, “We have no king but Caesar!”
Then Pilate handed Jesus over to them to be crucified.

They took charge of him. Bearing his own cross, Jesus went out of the city to what is called the Place of the Skull, in Hebrew Golgotha. There he was crucified, and with him two others, one on either side, and Jesus in the middle.

Pilate had a notice written and fastened to the cross, which read: Jesus the Nazorean, the King of the Jews. Many Jewish people saw this title, because the place where Jesus was crucified was very close to the city; and the title was written in Hebrew, Latin and Greek. The chief priests said to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The king of the Jews’; but, ‘This man claimed to be king of the Jews.’” Pilate answered them, “What I have written, I have written.”

When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes and divided them into four parts, one part for each of them. But as the tunic was woven in one piece from top to bottom, they said, “Let us not tear it, but cast lots to decide who will get it.” This fulfilled the words of Scripture: They divided my clothing among them; they cast lots for my garment.
This is what the soldiers did.

Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister Mary, who was the wife of Cleophas, and Mary of Magdala. When Jesus saw the mother, and the disciple whom he loved, he said to the mother, “Woman, this is your son.” Then he said to the disciple, “There is your mother.” And from that moment the disciple took her to his own home.

Jesus knew all was now finished and, in order to fulfil what was written in Scripture, he said, “I am thirsty.” A jar full of bitter wine stood there; so, putting a sponge soaked in the wine on a twig of hyssop, they raised it to his lips. Jesus took the wine and said, “It is accomplished.” Then he bowed his head and gave up the spirit.

As it was Preparation Day, the Jews did not want the bodies to remain on the cross during the Sabbath, for this Sabbath was a very solemn day. They asked Pilate to have the legs of the condemned men broken, so that the bodies might be taken away.

The soldiers came and broke the legs of the first man and of the other man, who had been crucified with Jesus. When they came to Jesus, they saw that he was already dead, so they did not break his legs. One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a lance, and immediately there came out blood and water.

The one who saw it, has testified to it, and his testimony is true; he knows he speaks the truth, so that you also might believe. All this happened to fulfil the words of Scripture: Not one of his bones shall be broken.
Another text says, They shall look on him whom they have pierced.

After this, Joseph of Arimathea approached Pilate, for he was a disciple of Jesus, though secretly, for fear of the Jews. And he asked Pilate to let him remove the body of Jesus. Pilate agreed, so he came and took the body.

Nicodemus, the man who at first had come to Jesus by night, also came and brought a jar of myrrh mixed with aloes, about a hundred pounds. They took the body of Jesus and wrapped it in linen cloths with the spices, following the burial customs of the Jews.

There was a garden in the place where Jesus had been crucified, and, in the garden, a new tomb in which no one had ever been laid. And therefore, because the sepulchre was nearby, and the Jewish day of preparation was coming to a close, they placed the body of Jesus there.

 

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