“We even boast of our afflictions, knowing that affliction produces endurance, and endurance, proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the holy Spirit… Where sin increased, grace overflowed all the more… through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 5: 3-5, 20)
We just finished our “radio-thon” — an attempt to raise money to support our listener supported radio station — it did not go well. We cannot say some things on the radio, including “raffle” or even ask for money directly (supposedly) so we are limited in many ways on how we are to function.
We are technically illegal since there is not supposed to be Church programming on Mexican radio. And the programming that is allowed is to be of a “cultural nature” with few Masses celebrated on air (and only with the required permissions). However, though the laws have not changed, were are enjoying a time of “tolerance” where the government is not cracking down on the Church (for now). Remember, that in this predominantly Catholic country, until recently, priest and religious could not wear their distinctive habits or clerical garb in public and just a little over a half a century ago, the Church was in outright persecution.
And yet we thrive!
We had over 50 K people in our March for Life. Archdiocesan events are packed. Our Covenant Community is one of the largest and most active in Mexico (yet we still can’t hold a candle to San Luis Potosi — they’re really huge).
In adversity, Christ’s people thrive. Maybe we’re “gluttons for punishment” or more like it,
we really need to abandon ourselves to God’s grace and let Him do the work.
Not that we do not have to labor away or that we rest on our laurels. Certainly that would be a recipe for disaster. Rather, the grace of God is enough for us to multiply our efforts and, if the labor is truly His, His grace will prevail. This concept of media (print or aire time) is expensive.
I trust. And continue to do so. Thy will be done, Lord. 25,000 a month is a lot of money. But as Blessed Teresa of Calcutta, M.C. used to say: God has lots of money!
~Fr. Jeffrey David
Lord, as we begin these moments of prayer and meditation in the light of your Word,
We ask the Lord the help of the Holy Spirit.
May His Holy Fire engulf us in His love.
May His Holy Word instruct us and inform us.
O God, may you open our minds, our understanding and above all, our will to your call.
May your Word fill our daily living with LIFE.
May our hearts be afire with the desire to love you and serve you.
May we seek above all to imitate the life of prayer and sacrifice of Jesus, your Son.
Help us to seek you in every moment and be willing to give up all worldly allures to serve you.
Give us a heart open to praise you, open to hear you and open to follow you.
Help us have a submissive heart like Mother Mary’s Immaculate Heart to abandon ourselves more fully to you, Lord.
Our Father, Hail Mary,
Glory be.Glory be.
July 4, 2015, Saturday Independence Day
Read: Gn. 27:1-5, 15-29 Mt. 9: 14-17
“Why do we and the Pharisees fast much, but your disciples do not fast?” (Mt 9:14)
External manifestations of our faith are essential.
On occasions, Jesus urged the fulfillment of such ritual actions:
“See that you tell no one anything, but go, show yourself to the priest and offer for your cleansing what Moses prescribed; that will be proof for them.” (Mk. 1:44)
Yet the most important part of our religion is our internal attitude: of love, gratefulness, brotherly concern, etc.
“God is Spirit, and those who worship him must worship in Spirit and truth.” (Jn. 4:21-24)
We form a singular unity between body, mind and soul. Our entire person gives testimony and recognition to the Lord. We raise our hands in prayer. We sing hymns of praise with our mouths and throat; we say prayers with our tongue.
By the same token we can negate the great love and goodness of the Lord through our external actions by sinning and not showing a respect for the Lord’s Holy Will.
Fasting is a physical manifestation, which we can perform to show sorrow for sin and contrition of soul.
Fasting is a reparation, through the denial of sensual satisfaction and pleasure, for whatever overindulgences we may have engaged in when we chose sin and gluttony over love and moderation.
Yet fasting for fasting sake, independent from the feelings of our mind and heart is meaningless.
Fasting means something if it is an expression of our conversion to Lord.
Reflection and commentary
Psalm 25:16 “Look upon me, have pity on me, for I am alone and afflicted.“
PRAYERS OF PETITION
From the 1st to the 7th of July
Together, we offer our prayers to our Heavenly Father. We offer them in the unity and power motivated by the Holy Spirit. We now present our needs: Lord, hear us.
- Lord, we know that you have the words of eternal life. Help us to love those words and to put them into practice in our daily lives. Lord, hear us.
- To know you, Lord, is to know the Father, and that is enough for us. Guide us to know your divine assistance, to come to know you and look only to you, our true life. Lord, hear us.
- For our troops in harm’s way, that they may know you guiding and saving hand at all times. May their decisions be made with prudence and great faith. May they always practice restraint whenever possible. Lord, hear us.
- Belief, in today’s day and age, is difficult and takes courage. Belief, that is, that runs contrary to the “flow” of what everybody else is doing or thinking. Help us to be courageous, Lord, and to put our time, energy and resources at your disposal. Lord, hear us.
- You are the light of the world, and you promise to illumine the pathway for all believers. Light our path through the glory of your resurrection. Lord, hear us.
- You have always used messengers to proclaim your Holy Presence, in former times the prophets and angels did your Holy bidding. Today, in the Church, you call upon us to be your ambassadors. Give us courage, Lord. Lord, hear us.
- You are the way, the truth and the life, and no one can go to the Father except through you. Help us to understand the meaning of these words, and live them. Lord, hear us.
(Add your own petitions)
OUR PRAYER: God our Father, thank you for the gift of life, our first life from our parents and the new life you give us through the resurrection of your Son, Jesus Christ, our LORD. AMEN.