Monday, October 31, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rom 11: 29-36
Lk 14: 12-14
1999 Dedication of the Divine Master Church in Rome
In a few years we will be in one of the two eternities. Which will be ours? The one we are preparing for ourselves just now (VMC 913).
Father Tom: And on this note we end Octyober…forever! Sobering thought. But not, let’s prepare for November, ready to help our brothers and sisters on their way to Paradise!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Renato Magnani SSP (1962)—Sr. M. Addolorata Saracco FSP (1970)—Sr. Bernarda Lagrutta FSP (1973)—Sr. M. Edvige Bronska PD (1984)—Sr. Esterina Degni FSP (1994)—Fr. Enzo Quaglia IJP (1999)—Fr. Paolo Gilli SSP (2004)—Sr. Lidia Minnig FSP (2006)—Giovanna Corigliano HFI (2006)—Natalina Fortini IAM (2008)—Antonio Valdes (1950)
Sunday, October 30, 2011
A thought for October 30
OUR SPECIAL DEVOTION
As our century was beginning, the great Pope.Leo XIII, concerned about the future of humanity, wrote an Encyclical for the whole Church inviting people to " view all things in Christ, Way, Truth and Life".
The seed he sowed in the Encyclical ("Tametsi futura" - "On Jesus Christ our Redeemer" ) fell on the heart of Fr. Alberione and, under the action of the Spirit,he
conceived it as the " charism " proper to the Pauline Family.
Later he would write: "We were born in the Church to give people Jesus Master who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. Only in this way will the Father's design be carried out: ' To restore all things in Christ.
"We cannot give a greater richness to this poor and proud world than Jesus Master, Way, Truth and Life".
And so the first invocation which all of us learned as soon as we crossed the threshold of a Pauline house was: "O Jesus Master, Way, Truth and Life, have mercy on us!"
This invocation embraces the spirituality and the mission proper to the Pauline Congregations which were born of the Host; a spirituality which enlivens and directs all their Work of sanctification and of apostolate.
We should all recall Fr. Alberione's words: "I have neither silver nor gold, but what I have I give you: Jesus Master, Way, Truth and Life.
"A truth revealed to us by our Heavenly Father.
When we say: "Jesus Master, Way, Truth and Life", we know well that we are announcing a truth coming from Heaven, solemnly proclaimed and desired by God the Father: " This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!
Thus devotion to Jesus Master is born in the bosom of the Trinity.
It is a devotion ratified by Jesus himself: "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life" (Jn. 14). "You call me Master and you are right. That is what I am".
It is a devotion confirmed by Mary, Mother, of Jesus and our mother. The last words of hers registered in the Gospel are: "Do whatever he tells you." (Jn 2,5).
And so " Jesus Master, Way, Truth and Life " is not a devotional dreamed up by Fr. Alberione but a truth of faith; it is not an invocation which we repeat because we have got in the habit of doing so but is instead our most authentic reality. It is what we have to be, to do and to live if we are to give a meaning to our daily life and transform our "daytime face" into the face of someone "transfigured by grace" that is "divinized".
Yes! Divinized! Because since God In Jesus Christ assumed the appearance of a human being, human beings in Jesus Christ have assumed the appearance of God!
In his Apostolic Letter, "Tertio Millennio Adveniente" Pope John Paul outlined a broad but precise path of preparation for the great Jubilee. And this not just for Christians but for all of humanity.
We should remember that Christianity is not a composite of theological, moral and social doctrines, one more religion among many. Christianity is essentially a Person and that Person is Jesus Christ. So we are not talking of studying a doctrine or of going in depth Into the history of religions, but rather of knowing in his fullness the Person we call Jesus.
Only Jesus Master who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, can respond to humanity's three profound questions:
From where do I come?
What is the meaning of my life?
What will happen after my life ends with death?
His first coming - Christmas
1) - Christ is the Way through whom the divine Trinity, the Three Divine Persons come to us;
2)- Christ is the Way through whom man ascends to God and enters into the Trinity, as a son of the Father: " My father and your father";
as a brother of Christ: " Go to my brothers and tell them..."
as a new creature, generated and sanctified by the Holy Spirit.
Christ is the Way who brings the Truth to us and leads us to the Truth."
Nobody has ever seen God, but the only-begotten Son who is in the Father has revealed Him to us".
3)- Christ is the Truth, the whole created and uncreated truth, the eternal, infinite Truth who reveals the mysteries of God for eternity.
Christ is the Truth who introduces us into the mystery of the divine life, of the life beyond time and space which is true life, invulnerable to death and which, will; last forever and ever.
4) - Christ is the Life, the whole life: human and divine, temporal and eternal: " In him was Life . . . and of his fullness we have all received, grace following upon grace"; "He who comes to me will have Life"; " Come to me all you who are weary and heavily burdened and I will refresh you ".
Christ is the Way, the Truth and the Life because: "No one goes to the Father but through me". This is an absolute for every human being, every son or daughter of God, every disciple of Jesus Christ and temple of the Holy Spirit.
In this way the mystery of Christ involves our whole life: yesterday, today, tomorrow. It is a mystery of Creation, of Incarnation, of Redemption, of Resurrection, of Glorification. It is a peerless story of love.
And so to be a Christian does not mean just believing in Christ but belonging to Christ, following him as the Way,believing him as the Truth, living him as the Life, and so collaborating with the accomplishment of God's plans for the salvation of humanity.
His second coming
To become our Way, Christ had to take our poor and corruptible human nature and become the Man-God. This is the event which dominates history. In fact, without Christ humanity does not have a history. What do we mean? That God, in His Son, took human nature so as to share with it His divine nature.
But, if human beings were to enter into the mystery of the Trinity and become the temple of God, a second coming of Christ - Easter - was required.
And so we have the Eucharist!
1)- The plan of the Father was to give His Son to humanity and so raise it to the Divinity. But how could Christ make a reality of the gift of himself made to us by the Father? Love reaches the supreme divine heights in immolation: "No one has greater love than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends".
With his Blood shed on the Cross Christ makes reparation for all human sin, accepts into himself all human suffering, accepts in love all the deaths of all his brethren so as to obtain pardon, grace and eternal life for all.
Not only was he born as a human being, and lived among people, but he died on a cross and rose again to return to Paradise and so made a reality and an actuality in himself of the Father's gift of him to us through the Eucharist which is sacrifice in Holy Mass and food in Holy Communion: "He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life and I will raise him up at the last day".
2)- With the institution of the Eucharist, the real presence of Jesus Christ, body, blood, soul and divinity, the Father in His Son reveals to us the Way to arrive at the whole Truth so as to have the fullness of Life. It transforms us from human persons to human-divine persons and assumes us into His divinity.
There are no other possibilities of seeing God, of knowing Him, of loving Him, of enjoying Him in Paradise except through Christ: "He came into the world and to all who received him he gave power to become sons of God" (Jn 1, 11-12).
And there are no other possibilities of being in Christ, with Christ, through Christ except through the Eucharist. lt is through sacramental Communion that Christ makes us divine and shares with us his life generated by the Holy Spirit.
And it is through our daily response in love to the gratuitous love of Christ that we are saved and become saviors with him, no longer "in hope" but in act. It is in this way that all of humanity enters into the life which is eternal Life.
3) - Through the Eucharist Christ is with us, in our midst, today, tomorrow and forever: he is present in our personal history and in that of the whole of humanity: "I am with you always, until the end of the world".
Our brothers will not discover Christ in his wonderful reality until we Christians meet him authentically,until we can say to them: "I believe in God because I know Him and I know Him because in the Eucharist I know His Son". "The one who receives me, receives the Father, whoever hears me, hears my Father".
Fr. Alberione writes: "Holy Communion must bring the life of Christ into us. It can happen that we receive the Host as the ciborium receives It - it holds Hosts every day but does not grow holy. Be Eucharistic souls and you will be fervent apostles".
The Eucharist and the Trinitarian mystery
In the Eucharist not only is the Father present but also the Holy Spirit Who from all eternity generates the Son whom our Blessed Lady conceived and generated in time - but again through the work of the Holy Spirit. Each of us is, therefore, a son or daughter of the heavenly Father, a brother of Jesus Christ and a child of Mary.
There will be a third " Coming of Christ" at the end of time so as to hand over his Kingdom to His Father.
In this third coming also, he will be our "Way" who will unite us forever to the Father, to Himself and to the Holy Spirit and allow us to share in eternal glory.
And so each of us will reach the fullness of Truth and the fullness of Life.
The whole Gospel reveals that Jesus Christ is the great and unique Way who unites God to us and us to God:
in his "First Coming" through the humiliation of the Incarnation - "he emptied himself, assuming the condition of a slave";
in his "Second Coming" through his immolation on the cross: "And I, when I am raised up, will draw all to me".
In his " Third Coming" when he will come on the clouds of heaven in great power and majesty.
The image is of the Franciscan University's Portiuncula. I don't know who took the picture, but will gladly give credit if someone does.
A GARDEN FOR DAILY LIVING
Plant three rows of peas:
Peace of mind
Peace of heart
Peace of soul
Plant four rows of squash:
Plant four rows of lettuce:
Lettuce be faithful
Lettuce be kind
Lettuce be happy
Lettuce really love one another
No garden should be without turnips:
Turnip for service when needed
Turnip to help one another
Turnip the music and dance
Water freely with patience and
Cultivate with love.
There is much fruit in your garden
Because you reap what you sow.
To conclude our garden
We must have thyme:
Thyme for fun
Thyme for rest
Thyme for ourselves
Pretty nice garden, don't you think?
~October 2011 Concord
Oct. 30 - XXXI Sunday in Ordinary Time
Continuing his journey toward Jerusalem (both physically and metaphorically in the sense that the Messiah is destined to die in that city) , the Lord also continues to make himself increasingly unpopular with the religious leaders and all those who think and act like them. He puts his thought very bluntly: "Tell it like it is, lay down the law ... but don't be so extremely foolish as not to practice what you preach."
The First Reading could scarcely be more blunt: " O priests . . . you have turned aside from the way and have made many to falter by your instruction." These were the Old Testament priests but, unfortunately, the words of the Reading could be applied today and with even more force. Malachi is the last of the minor Hebrew prophets and we don't know his real name ("Malachi" means "my messenger") but his writing not only includes strong words of condemnation but also a prophecy that "people from one end of the world to the other will honor me" which we see as a foreshadowing of the Holy sacrifice. (The whole prophecy - less than three pages - is well worth reading)
Psalm 131, the Responsorial, is a beautiful prayer which we can copy out and make our own — "In you, Lord, I have found my peace." And where else, we might ask? It expresses in this context the correct attitude toward God and not the attitude of the Old Testament priests.
The second paragraph of the Second Reading expresses the correct nature of what is to be taught: "not a human word but, as it truly is, the word of God at work among you who believe." But St. Paul also makes clear what this effort cost him: "Working night and day in order not to burden any of you, we proclaimed to you the Gospel of God." It is precisely this effort and the intense prayer accompanying it that makes Paul's teaching effective. An exam of conscience: are my efforts to spread the good news of the Institute (or to share any good advice) preceded, accompanied and followed by prayer and sacrifice?
Finally, the Gospel is a species of "second and updated edition" of the first Reading. The Lord continues to make himself unpopular with the Powers that Be and he doubtless takes a side-glance at his own followers who probably have never got over the fact that THEY, of all people, unlettered and uncouth, have been chosen by this marvelous man from Nazareth. This can happen - and has happened - with the modern clergy. I recall my own experiences of being treated as a species of sage when the oils were still damp on my hands and I was far from skilled in theology or anything else. Fortunately I made no rash decisions and hoped the good people would not see just how ignorant I was. God bless all of them, now safe in Paradise forever and I hope I made it a little more pleasant for them!
~Concord October 2011
JESUS CHRIST, DIVINE MASTER
*** FEAST OF THE SISTER DISCIPLES and THE JESUS PRIEST INSTITUTE***
Mal 1: 14b-2: 2b, 8-10
1 Thes 2: 7b-9,13
Mt 23: 1-12
Oh Jesus, guide those responsible for audiovisual technologies to work in charity, respecting human dignity, always sowing the good grain and watching so the enemy may never sow weeds (PPF).
Father Tom: And so say all of us!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Eugenia Sanchez FSP (1994)—Rosa Esteves Martins IAM (1996)—Sr. M. Irene Kimura FSP (1997)—Sr. M. Rachel Sawal PD (2003)—Sr. Maria Cevolani FSO (2004)—Maria Scarciofalo IAM (2005)
Friday, October 28, 2011
Saturday, October 29
OF THE DAY
BLESSED VIRGIN MARY on Saturday
Rm 11: 1-29
Lk 14: 1, 7-11
Let there not be only external observances, but our whole being going to God and our whole person grafting itself of Christ, the Way, the Truth and the Life. Only then can we say: “Jesus Christ lives in me.” (APD 84).
Father Tom: Here again we can usefully practice “putting God first” so that He is the main actor in our lives and we have secondary roles. This involves fidelity to our various commitments, spiritual and temporal. Easier said than done—have you sincerely tried it?
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Giacomo Ricolfi SSP (1982)—Fr. Pietro Mozzanica IJP (1998)—Sr. Lucina Dal Pozzo SGBP (2000)—Sr. M. Editor Martinez PD (2000)—Giovanna Curreri IAM (2005)—Augustine A. Mennella (1978)
************* **************** ************** *************** *************
Friday, October 28
SS. SIMON AND JUDE, Apostles
Eph 2: 19-22
Lk 6: 12-19
We have to take up our stance viz a viz the eternal truths. Living by faith means keeping in mind these great truths and living our lives accordingly (VMC 915).
Father Tom: One way in which we can usefully do this is to take another stance: not thinking any more of living for OUR interests (even the eternal ones!) but for the interests of God—putting Him habitually in the first place as we go through our day.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Agostino Damonte sSP (2956)—Fr. Aurelio Nosetti SSP (1983)—Franca Lattuca IAM (2994)—Bro Candido Trubiani SSP (1995)—Sr. Clotilde Menno FSP (1997)—Sr. Valentina Borsoi FSP (1998)—Fr. Giuseppe Cricini SSP (2000)—Sr. Clotilde Vedovello FSP (2007)—Mary Wersinger (2003)--
Thursday, October 27, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rm 8: 31-39
Lk 13: 31-35
Let us think of “eternity”—the word is easy to say, the reality never ends. Let’s live in the real world…it’s geared to eternity, like it or not (VMC 911).
Father Tom: The problem in thinking of eternity is that we have no way of really understanding it. It’s not just time stretched out to infinity…it’s a situation where there is NO time…and what might that mean? Your guess is as good as mine!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Samuella Pattaro FSP (1973)—Bro SalvatoreStagliano SSP (1981)—Sr. M. Maurizia Mancosti PD (1982)—Fr. Alberto Carboni IJP (1983)—Sr. M. Marina Bianchi PD (1995)—Sr. Valeria Iannella FSP (1997)-Agnes Spaniel (1989)—Elizabeth Graff (2005)
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rm 8: 26-30
Lk 13: 22-30
The prudent individual does not concern himself about how pleasing something is but rather if it is better for the glory of God and for his own eternity (VMC 910).
Father Tom: A very simple rule, but anything but simple to apply in practice. Did my recent major choices—outside the daily routine—reflect a concern for eternity or perhaps for my short-term satisfaction?
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Arcangela Petrucci FSP (1943)—Sr. M. Alma Cortez FSP (1974)—Sr. M. Noemi Gatti FSP (1981)—Gr. M. Gemma Maselli PD (1999)—Sr. M. Ines Feretti FSP (2001)—Bro Clement Lachance SSP (2003)—Anthony Mumphrey HFI (2003)—Antonia Costendaro IAM (2006)
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rm 8: 18-25
Lk 13: 18-21
The day of greatest fervor should be the last day of our life. The year of greatest fervor, the last year of our life (VMC 909).
Father Tom: And because we cannot be certain which year this will be… the conclusion is obvious!”
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Saveria Pistamiglio PD (1942)—Sr. M. Chaira Virdis FSP (1956)—Fr. Antonio Brossa SSP (1984)—Bro Jesus Gamez SSP (1989)—Sr. M. Fidelis Di Sciacca FSP (1999)—Fr. Jose Vitor Sousa SSP (2004)—Antonietta Falappi HFI (2007)—Sr. Piergiovanna Dedola FSP (2008)—Bro Marcelino Punto SSP (2009)
Monday, October 24, 2011
OF THE DAY
ST. ANOTHONY MARY CLARET, Bishop
Rv 8: 12-17
Lk 13: 10-17
Paradise is our recompense—that is permanent. The earth is just loaned to us. And so those who enjoy life on earth are free to enjoy it. We want to enjoy Paradise (VMC).
Father Tom: The sort of life the earth offers these days could hardly be called “enjoyable”—suffering and privation confront us at every turn. Unfortunately, too many have lost the whole idea of an after-life and we—who have been enabled to maintain faith in the great and permanent values—should fee a sincere compassion for them.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Assunta Aimo PD (1970)—Sr. Teresinha Moraes FSO (1979)—Fr. Virginio Manzi IJP (2007)—Fr. Silvio Pignotti SSP (2009)
Sunday, October 23, 2011
Oct. 23 - XXX Sunday in Ordinary Time
The word "love" - like the quality it represents - is very likely to be misunderstood. We distinguish it from "like" which is an action of the human animal whereas "love" is an action,when fully understood, of the human spirit and especially the human will. Often we can surmise that "like" and "love" are blended in the same situations but there are also times when we are as far from "liking" as we possibly can be. In that situation we can show "love" - a noble action of the human will, leading us to do good to, and treat well, those we have no reason to like.
The First Reading today offers examples if the sort of people we may not naturally like and also the Lord's strictures on those who do not treat these people well. The theory is well known but the world is full of pride and prejudice and racism which shows no signs of going away no matter how much the media tell us about the stress and suffering of unfortunates all over the world.
The Responsorial Psalm is perhaps a little one-sided. " I love,you Lord my strength." Don't we all? How nice it is, usually,to sit or kneel before the Tabernacle and dwell on the goodness of God. But how do we feel (and behave) when we meet that awful woman of a few thousand words who manages to say nothing even after holding us up for ten minutes? Like her? Hardly. Love her, smile sweetly, inquire about her health, her family, her plans ... now, THAT'S love!
St. Paul hits the spot in the Second Reading. He shows his love and appreciation when there is in reality not all that much to like or be happy about. His converts in Thessalonica were, like all the others, delighted to hear parts of the Good News ("the Lord will return soon and we shall be swept up into the air" ) but less happy to be told: " Get to work, you people and stop bothering those who want to work!" St. Paul made both statements but mostly he said something on the lines of the first one, support, encouragement and praise where he might have taken the opposite view. That's an aspect of love: raise our voice once in a while to keep things from really getting out of hand, but mostly emphasize the positive.
In the Gospel, Jesus unites two Commandments: love of God (which we all feel we practice) and love of others (which we all think we practice until we reflect on the facts. Is there an old saying "Love makes the world go around."? True, if we think of the infinite love of God which makes everything happen. True of what we used to call "young love." Not so true of relations among young people any more. More and more ours is becoming a loveless world and it depends on us special people to do what we can to make it better.
~ October 2011 Concord
XXX SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
Ex 22: 20-26
1 Th 1: 5-10
Mt 22: 34-40
Spiritual Exercises can be made without a preacher and without a book, but never without reflection and prayer: reflect, apply, examine, resolve and…pray (VMC 902).
Father Tom: The Triduum is not, strictly-speaking Spiritual Exercises, but rather a cordial and positive meeting with others who can encourage us and whom we can encourage. However, nobody is forcing us to do any of this if we wish to concentrate on our life and…death.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Genesia Bonadie FSP (1975)—Sr. M. Raffaella Tozzi FSP (1992)—Fr. Paolo Careddu SSP (1997)—Sr. Virginia Costa FSP (2004)—Fr. Eduardo Barretta IJP (2006)—Sr. M. Innocenza Cellini FSP (2007)—Helen Beck (1998)
Saturday, October 22, 2011
BLESSED TIMOTHY GIACCARDO—first Pauline priest
*** Mass and Office in this year’s CEREMONIES book***
Rm 8: 1-11
Lk 13: 1-9
Our spirituality crates giants in sanctity, in virtue, but it requires that the one embracing it be extremely small, an infant, very humble. (Bl. Timothy)
Father Tom: And surely, he himself gave us a perfect example of what he writes!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Clelia Calliano FSP (1918)—Sr. M. Nicodema Spinelli PD (1972)—Bro Luigi Pasqualini SSP (1988)—Fr. Antonio Fioritto IJP (1998)—Bro Giuseppe Paolo Cirillo (2008)—Alan Spaniel (1999)
Friday, October 21, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rm 7: 18-25
Lk 12: 54-59
***Novena to the Divine Master begins; prayer at choice, perhaps “Invocations to Jesus Master”?***
The examination of conscience is a check on the state of our spiritual lives: our attitudes, the graces received, dangers, duties…and also our sins (VMC 889).
Father Tom: The exam, therefore is not only on our sins and defects but on our attitude which might be negative as regards, say, our vocation in general even if there are no specific sins.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Maria Rosso PD (1995)—Sr. Amedea Rizzo FSP (1995)—Sr Amedea Rizzo FSP (2001)—Grace Kantz (1995)
Thursday, October 20, 2011
ST PAUL OF THE CROSS, Priest
Rm 6: 19-23
Lk 12: 49-53
As soon as we abandon prayer, whatever spiritual life we have built up, collapses a little at a time (VMC 881).
Father Tom: The danger here is that we may be genuinely blind to what has taken place, excusing ourselves with advancing age, sickness, overwork, etc. Prayer always comes up against obstacles and the most serious ones we may not even notice.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Esperanza Magana PD (1974)—Sr. M. Giovanna Marino FSP (1987)—Sr. M Tarcisia Pasolini FSP (1988)—Sr. M. Giovanna Maria Roggero FSP (1992)—Fr. Francesco Formicola IJP (1994)—Sr. M. Redenta Gorlani PD (1995)—Sr. Giovanna Rosa Cunico FSP (1995)—Ana Maria Martin (HFI (2003)—Sr. Margarita Becerra FSP (2008)—Patricia Cadenhead McNair (2007)
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
JOHN DE BREBEUF & ISAAC JOGUES, and companions, martyrs
Rm 6: 12-18
Lk 12: 39-48
“The purpose of prayer is not to bend God’s will to ours but to find out what His will is and then do it (VMC 878).
Father Tom: Sometimes, even after much prayer, the will of God is not clear. In that case we have recourse to our commonsense or perhaps to the counsel of a trusted friend. If we are sincere in asking we will get the right reply.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Gabriele Piazzo SSP (1983)—Maria Patera HFI (1998)—Sr. M. Gian Piera Piacentini PD (2000)—Sr. M. Alejandra Herrera Lopz FSP (2004)—Sr. M. Feliciana Chiesa PD (2006)
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
ST. LUKE, EVANGELIST
2 Tim 4: 10-17
Lk 10: 1-9
“Always pray and never be discouraged.” (Lk 18:1). We don’t take food only at the beginning of each week, but during the wee also. And our prayer has to follow the same rule (VMC 877).
Father Tom: Ideally, our prayer has to be constant and the way to do this is to recite constant invocations, in our particular case, the invocation for more HFI vocations: “O Jesus, eternal shepherd of our souls, send good laborers into your harvest.” You have no time to say invocations? Then you have no time to breathe either!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Virgelina Ceballos FSP (1997)—Fr. Josephino Javellana SSP (2006)
Monday, October 17, 2011
ST. IGNATIUS OF ANTIOCH, Bishop, Martyr
Rm 4: 20-25
Lk 12: 13-21
The most effective means of finding a way out of our difficulties is always prayer. You can’t find a solution to your problems? Go to the Tabernacle (VMC 875).
Father Tom: Will we get the answer directly from the Lord? Rarely. He likes to work through other people, giving them all a share in the reward for good done. Just keep seeking a solution in the normal way…this time you will find it either personally or through someone else.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Dirce Duarte Ortigoso FSP (1992)—Sr. M. Guila Pattaro FSO (1995)—Pietro Tidei HFI (2003)—Sr. M. Alba Bertolin FSP (2008)—Fabrizio Vecchi, Gabrielite—Florence Seifert (1999)—Fr. Joe Small SJ (2004)
Sunday, October 16, 2011
Oct. 16 - XXIX Sunday in Ordinary Time
We continue this Sunday with another episode in the series: "Jesus vs the Religious leaders Not surprisingly, the Master wins all the arguments but, we can imagine, with a breaking heart. Why is my message not accepted: not only by the people who see me simply as the latest "prophetic" figure in a time and place when such figures were frequent, but not even by these learned men who should know better?
That is one point. The other is that we are talking here not just of religion but also of politics.
But first, the First Reading from Isaiah which is worth reading in its entirety. It recalls a figure from the Old Testament a pagan, but backed by God. The Persian king, Cyrus, also called "Cyrus the Great" was noted for his benevolent attitude toward conquered people in the period 559-530 B C. He did not treat them with contempt, taking them into exile, but rather with respect. Under him the Persian Empire became the first World Empire. Isaiah, however, makes it clear that the real Power involved is the almighty God and so the Reading parallels the message in the Gospel: the divine power and the secular power must co-exist with mutual respect and collaboration.
The Responsorial Psalm repeats the theme of the First Reading: God is supreme, He is king and so give Him glory and honor. Nothing new in this but it has been forgotten and ignored by one secular power after another down the centuries and in our time it is in danger of being ignored by millions of Catholics who in one way or another are neglecting Him.
The Second Reading does not at first sight appear to have much to do with the First Reading and the Gospel. And at second sight there is equally little connection. Church and State? Religion and Politics? They are not to be found here. We might trace a connection between the Lord's choice of the pagan Thessalonians and his choice of the pagan, Cyrus but the relationship is tenuous at best. Let's leave our holy Patron with Respect and love and move on to the encounter between Jesus and the Religious leaders.
The Gospel tells the story of a carefully-planned trap into which our Master, however, failed to fall. All precautions were taken to make it work and by two groups which had otherwise little in common. The Pharisees we already know - a sect among the Jews noted for their contempt for the common people. The Herodians were not a religious group but probably supporters of King Herod. In any case they served their purpose in coming with an apparently sincere question but in fact impossible to answer without either offending the Romans ("don't pay") or the people ("do pay"). Jesus' divine intelligence cut through the hypocrisy and laid down the law of God: we must be concerned for religion and spirituality but also for the social well-being of others and for our duties to the State, with the emphasis in favor of God not only at the spiritual level but also in terms of honesty in our dealings with the civil law.
~ October 2011 Concord
XXIX SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
Is 45: 4-6
1 Thes 1: 1-5
Mt 22: 15-21
We have to pray, to pray…If our prayer is first-rate, so much the better but let us pray anyway, even if imperfectly. And the one who perseveres… obtains (VMC 871).
Father Tom: On very few subjects was the Founder so insistent as on constant prayer---and very few Saints spent more hours in prayer than he did—his example spoke louder than his words!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Celestina Cappa FSP (1978)—Sr. Prescilla Dalle Piatte FSP (1984)—Sr. M. Illuminata Uy FSP (1989)—Faniamina Sedita FSP (1997)—sr. M. Teresina Doctor FSP (2002)—Sr. M. Rosa Pivetta FSP (2003)—Sr. M. Felicina Airano PD (2007)—Sr. M. Faminia Montecchio PD (2008)—Babrizio Vecchi, Gabrielite (2009)
Saturday, October 15, 2011
ST. TERESA OF JESUS, Virgin and Doctor
Rom 4: 13-16
Lk 12: 8-12
Work? But the Church, the Congregation, our own soul, call out for prayer… and then the rest to the extent possible.
Work? First God, then people.
Work? But the life of our work is divine grace which we obtain through prayer; and without prayer we do dead works!
Father Tom: Just reaching people with our apostolate is not the end of our efforts, but the beginning! At that point the Lord takes over…IF (big IF) He is in the work!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Deacon Pasquale Sterpone SSP (1943)—Sr. Tarcisia Pillai FSP (1959)—Sr. M. Leontina Vincenti FSP (1967)—Bro ONesimo Valli SSP (1979)—Sr. M. Pandrazia Frisone PD (1992)—Bro Celestino Marchese SSP 2007)
Friday, October 14, 2011
OF THE DAY
ST. CALLISTUS 1, Pope and Martyr
Rom 4: 1-8
Lk 12: 1-7
Self-deceived is the one who excuses his lack of prayer because he is overburdened with work. But is that the real reason…or is that person overburdened because he or she did not put prayer first and if he had the burden would have been lightened.
Father Tom: No comment this time! No need.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Sebastiano Trosso SSP (1952)—Fr. Pietro Zugna SSP (1954)—Sr. M. Cherubina Crudale PD (1957)—Sr. Milagros Banez FSP (1983)—Fr. Giovanni Bartolomasi SSP (1986)—Bro Raymond Kraus SSP (1989)—Bruna Capriotti IAM (1989)—Sr. M. Federica Cozzo FSP (1993)—Mary Culotta HFI (2004)—Sr. Anna Cestarollo FSP (2005)—Sr. Angela M. Di Nso FSP (2006)
Thursday, October 13, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rom 3: 21-30
Lk 11: 47-54
We can give no more useful contribution to the Congregation (=read “Institute”) than prayer. No work is more useful for us than prayer, nothing is more useful for the Church and for a priest than prayer
Father Tom: There is also, of course, the question of WORK and especially work to find new HFI members but, for now, let’s concentrate on prayer!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Nazarena Costa FSP (1938)—Sr. Adelaide Tarasconi FSP (1985)—Fr. Agostino Monticone SSP (1989)—Fr. Gabriele Colasanto SSP (1993)—Sr. Gaetanina Modenese FSP (1999)—Sr. Christine Driscoll FSP (2004)—Maryjane Mélodia HFI (2006)
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rom 2: 1-11
Lk 11: 42-46
For a human being, for a Christian, for a Religious, for a Priest…prayer is the maximum duty (VMC 870).
Father Tom: This is the beginning of a long statement by the founder on this vital subject in 1971, but of perennial relevance. We will continue to quote from the statement and – hopefully—continue, or begin, to put it into practice!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Bro Alfonso Pavan SSP (1948)—Fr. Dante Giovagnoli IJP (1977)—Sr. Scolastica Flosco FSP (1987)—Sr. M. Mansueta Cracco PD (1990)—Sr. Gasparina Sorrentini FSP (1993)—Fr. Fernard Bosio SSP (1992)—Sr. M. Eugenia Spiga FSP (1993)—Sr. M. Josephine Vas PD (1997)—Sr. M. Lourdes Moales PD (2001)—Sr. M. Laura Saraniti PD (2003)—Bro Umberto Moretti SSP (2006)—Giuseppe Ceccanti HFI (2008)—Carlos Loera (1957)
Tuesday, October 11, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rom 1: 16-25
Lk 11: 37-41
We are worth what our prayer is worth. The person who prays will rarely make a serious mistake except perhaps through ignorance and, even if that should happen, the Lord will come to his or her aid (VMC 869).
Father Tom: Which does not mean that we can go ahead blindly, but rather, that we should always pray AND act—one action complementing the other. The temptation is to act only, but then we are no longer taking the Lord with us and …(then) anything can happen!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Fr. Salvatore Occhetti SSP (1931)—Fr. Paolino Panunzi SSP (1960)—Sr. Candida Lex FSP (1975)—Sr. Gabriella Stellini SGBP (1989)—Sr. M. Marta Furukawa PD (2000)—Frnaco D’Eugenio HFI (2002)—Sr. Annabianca D’Alberto FSP (2008)—June Scheer (2000)
Monday, October 10, 2011
OF THE DAY
Rom 1: 1-7
Lk 11: 29-32
The lack of true meditation, reducing it to spiritual reading, without asking ourselves if what we read has something to say to us, is harmful, not helpful (VMC 859).
Father Tom: On the other hand, I like to talk aobut “conversation” which is genuine, warm, sincere and gives the idea of our being aware of Who is dialoging with us.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Giovanna Paola Leo FSP (1967)—Sr. M. Dolores Farci FSP (1988)—Sr. Giacomina Cardenti SGBP (2002)—Sr. M. Melania Tutino PD (2003)—William W. Berlo (1989)
Sunday, October 9, 2011
Oct. 9 - XXVIII Sunday in Ordinary Time
As we move toward the end of the Church year - just about six weeks away - we find also a quickening of the pace in the Divine Master's life. On a series of Sundays his clashes with the Pharisees are increasingly bitter. Clearly, something has to give: he wins the arguments but loses his life.
The main theme this Sunday, however, revolves around food and drink and what they imply. The First Reading from Isaiah emphasizes the goodness and liberality of God expressed in terms of bodily nourishment but also in spiritual terms - "The Lord God will wipe away tears from every face." This goes beyond the Jewish situation and concerns you and me who gather each Sunday for the celebration of the Eucharist. The theme of the wedding-garment - specifically-expressed in the Gospel - is relevant here also and could mean not only that we be free of serious sin when we receive Communion but also that our whole attitude to others should be a Christ-like attitude of goodness and openness.
The Responsorial Psalm is well-known and fits many situations - indeed, in a sense every situation because the Lord is always our Good Shepherd. Nothing new there.
As for the Second Reading it fits in with the First Reading and the Gospel... more or less. As we remember, the First Reading and the Gospel are usually chosen for their common theme. The Second Reading, if from St. Paul, may match the theme and again it may not. This Sunday he mentions food but only in the sense that he is not dependent on it. His real dependence is on God Who supplies all his needs. Sound thinking but not exactly the message in the overall liturgy.
The Gospel is the well-known one about the way people treat God's invitation. It is an outline of Jewish history. The "servants" are the great historical figures God sent to guide His people all though the Old Testament — but also to condemn their behavior and so suffer the consequences. In this parable God then "destroys those murderers" and, so to speak, cuts them out of His will, sending his servants to bring in all those they find even the less - attractive ones.
The final section where the king condemns the individual not wearing a wedding- garment does not make perfect sense because none of those found by the servants - good and bad alike" were clothed in this way. Perhaps it means that the "good and bad" ( we in today's Church) should realize that we were not the first "Chosen People" (who failed to understand the Messiah) and must live in accordance with that call - our just being Catholics is not enough. We have to live a genuinely- Catholic life.
~ October 2011 Concord
XXVIII SUNDAY IN ORDINARY TIME
Is 25: 6-10
Phil. 4: 12-14, 19-20
Mt 22: 1-14
We have a duty to carry out the apostolate, but must also absolutely give precedence to our practices of piety, including and especially, the visit (VMC 857).
Father Tom: This is the general rule. How we will apply it in our case depends on each one’s circumstances, but ideally, we should find time. The Mass, yes, of infinite value…but usually having time restraints. The Visit, ideally, has much less limits and much more possibility of truly establishing a special relationship with the Master.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Flavia Vignotto FSP (19982)—Sr. Tersa Quaino FSP (1990)—Fr. Alfonso Ferrero SSP (1996)—Fr. Vincenzo de Carli SSP (2005)—Frank Capuzello (1990)—Robert Curran (1990)
Saturday, October 8, 2011
OF THE DAY
Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday
Jl. 4: 12-21
Lk 11: 27-28
Entrusting ourselves to Mary, we will be protected and sanctified, our work will be odne with wisdom and produce abundant fruits (FSP 40).
Father Tom: Whether these “fruits” will always be visible is another matter—perhaps it would be harmful if we knew about them… and took all the credit ourselves. Much better to continue work in the vineyard until the Owner comes to settle accounts with us.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Attilia Trevisani FSP (1943)—Sr. Terenzinha Lopez SGBP (1995)—Domenico Nardis HFI (1998)-- Arthur Mullingan (1999)
Friday, October 7, 2011
OUR LADY OF THE ROSARY
First Friday of the Month—the Sacred Heart
Acts. 1: 12-14
Lk 1: 26-38
*** 1938: Foundation of the Pastorelle or Shepherdess Sisters ***
You are distracted at the Visit, thinking of the work (= apostolate) you did, the problems remaining and what you still have to do? (VMC 856).
Father Tom: These are not distractions—rather inspirations and a sign of your goodwill. (= words of the Founder—not mine).
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Luigia Boffa PD (1931)—Sr. M. Ilaria Vaia PD (1986)—Sr. M. Ida Bagli FSP (1991)—Domenica Strazzeri HFI (1992)—Sr. M. Augusta Arlorio PD (1997)—Mafalda Rosetto IAM (1999)—Fr. Carlo Berloni IJP (2002)—Sr. Susana Alvarez FSP—Vincenzo Arcione HFI (2008)—Bro Candido Bessegato SSP (2009) – Maria Arixi HFI (2009)—Maria Ernas HFI (2009)
Thursday, October 6, 2011
OF THE DAY
ST. BRUNO, Priest
BLESSED MARIE-ROSE DUROCHER, Virgin
First Thursday of the Month—the Guardian Angels
Mat. 3: 13-20
Lk 11: 5-13
Jesus is the light; we must be reflectors who direct this light to humanity (RSP p. 380).
Father Tom: Which means that we must have a well-polished surface…and under it a solid foundation. (Make what you like of that!).
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Gloria Boff SGBP (1988)—Fr. Emanuele Fassino SSP (1989)—Sr. Firmina Boano FSP (1990)—Sr. M. Paula Cufre´PD (1990)—Sr. Lucina Bianchini FSP (1993)—Fr. Lorenzo Foletto SSP (1994)—Mns Antonio D’Erchia IJP (1998)—Sr. Leonzia Spigarolo FSP (1998)—Fr. Angelo Leuzzi IJP (1998)—Fr. Pietro Romano IJP (2002)—M. Giovanna Palazzo HFI (2002)—Sr. Candida Rivi FSP (2008)—Elaine Bordelon Giroir (1999)—Edward Drouhard (1971)
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
OF THE DAY
First Wednesday of the Month—St. Joseph
Jon 4: 1-11
Lk 11: 1-4
The privilege, the great gift of the Congregation is precisely the Hour of Adoration (VMC 857).
Father Tom: While members with small children may have a problem finding this hour in a very full day…most of us are not in that situation and should act accordingly.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Vincenza Gasbarrone FSP (1947)—Fr. Francisco Peira SSP (1957)—Fr. Dionigi Bertone SSP (1972)—Fr. Felice Pisano IJP (1983)—Bro Marcello Bandinelli SSP (1986)—Alberto Rubini HFI (1992)—Fr. Manuel Linterna SSP (1997)—Sr. M. Angela Nishida PD (2002)—Fr. Giuseppe Riccobene IJP (2002)—Sr. M. Angeloa Monticelli FSP (2004)—Amalia Esther Avendano IAM (2005)—Susan V. Sereno (1995)
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
Tuesday, October 4
ST FRANCIS OF ASSISI, Religious
First Tuesday of the Month—The Souls in Purgatory
Gal 6: 14-18
Mt 11: 25-30
The Visit is the secret of our transformation in Christ—“Christ lives in me (VMC 854).
Father Tom: “Transformation in Christ” sounds rther high-toned and beyond our reach, but after all, any improvement is welcome and—who knows?—we may be changed more than we think!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. Emilia Nicoli FSP (1947)—Sr. M. Ausilia Ureghe FSP (1986)—Sr. Maggiorina Fraccaroli FSP (1990)—Sr. Anna Antonioli FSO (1992)—Fr. Girolamo Ghiglione SSP (1992)—Sr. Giannina Brunetti FSP (1996)—Fr. Carmine Fais IJP (1997)—Sr. M. Gesuina Lliguori FSP (2003)—Sr. M. Vittoria Aldegheri PD (2004)—Sr. Anselmina Satta SGBP (2006)—Fr. Antonio Piccolo (2007)
Monday, October 3, 2011
Monday, October 3
OF THE DAY
First Monday of the Month—st. Paul
Jon 1: 1-2: 2, 11
Lk 10: 25-37
During this month let us say the Rosary for the sanctification of our editorial, technical and marketing apostolates (RSP p. 259).
Father Tom: Our Lady also has the title of “Seat of Wisdom” and no gift of the Holy Spirit is more needed in this specially difficult field of apostolate. Let’s say many Rosaries!
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Pia Dogliani PD (1983)—Sr. M. Angela Parnoff FSP (1988)—Fr. Andrzej Garbulewski IJP (1994)—Sr. Erminia Jovine FSP (1996)—Fr. Giovanni Ferrero SSP ( 2001)—Giuseppe Fruento, Babrielite (2005)—Daniel J. Hickey (1997)—Otto W. Baack (2004)
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Oct. 2 - XXVII Sunday in Ordinary Time
Isaiah - the Shakespeare of the Old Testament - in this First Reading tells a familiar story: God is faithful and generous with his People (Israel) but they are not. In fact they were the first called and privileged but failed the test, somehow missed the message of the Prophets down the centuries and not only rejected the owner of the vineyard but put him to death!
That was their mistake. Now there is another situation: we, the members of the Church, are their successors and for us the challenge is exactly the same. The new vineyard, must bear fruit, and the workers in the vineyard must be honest and diligent. Unfortunately, even the most optimistic assessment of today's Church would have to conclude that the Lord would have to address to us the same lament: "Why, when I looked for the crop of grapes did it bring forth wild grapes?" Wild grapes indeed - and sour grapes too.
The Responsorial Psalm is the voice of the faithless workers who realize that their livelihood is in danger of being taken away and ask the Lord to give them one more chance to prove their worth. Not many in today's Church are apologizing for what is going wrong - rather, they feel the Church must reform, not them!
The Second Reading from St. Paul, while very beautiful in itself, is not quite in line with the overall thought of the liturgy - there is just a typical Pauline appeal to love God and live well. Right on. Paul!
The Gospel finds the Master in one of his many tense encounters with the religious leaders as he moved to the end of his time on earth. We can imagine them following the story with increasingly-darkened faces not to talk of curling toes. When he challenges them to draw the obvious conclusion it seems likely that they answered through clenched teeth, but perhaps not fully expecting what he was going to say next: "the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit!"
This was too much! "Why is this journeyman from some place called Nazareth even allowed to speak to us, not to talk of insulting us to our faces? " And we know the conclusion they drew: let's get rid of him!" And our Catholic Church today? It's religious leaders have been routinely insulted not, however, by a charismatic figure such as Jesus was, but by the rank and file and there is a near-breakdown of the organization matched, we may note, by a similar breakdown in civil society. The owner of the vineyard has much work to do to repair everything!
Do Not Be Anxious
“Brothers and sisters, do not be anxious about anything. In everything resort to prayer and supplication together with thanksgiving and bring your requests before God. Then the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
~ Phil 4: 6-7
OF THE DAY
First Sunday of the Month—The Divine Master
Is 5: 1-7
Mt 21: 33-43
Pauliine life, exposed to many dangers, will not survive without the Visit and the Constitutions without it would not have provided sufficiently for holiness and the apostolate (VMC 834).
Father Tom: True, but we must actually do the Visit. Moring Mss, yes, but we also need time to think of where we came from and wehre we want to go. At Mass that’s not feasible.
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Sr. M. Innocenza Jaio PD (2002)—Sr. M. Clemens Sanfilippo PD (2003)—Maria da Concelcao da Silva IAM (2005)—Fr. Francesco Simone IJP (2006)—Sr. Tersina Vitalini FSP (2009)—Sr. Lucia Badenchini FSP (2009)
Saturday, October 1, 2011
Saturday, October 1
ST. THERESE OF THE CHILD JESUS, Virgin, Doctor
First Saturday of the Month—Mary, Queen of Apostles
Bar 4: 5-12, 27-29
Lk 10: 17-24
That writers, technicians and marketing-people may be wise, animated by the spirit of the Gospel and witnesses to Christian life in the field of social communications.
Father Tom: Those sound like the sort of characteristics Institute people should also have even if they are not officially “writers, technicians or marketing-people.”
Please Pray for Our Deceased: Bro. Frannco Dario SSP (1995)—Sr. M. Ignacia Cufre PD (1998)—Sr. M. Alba Roagna FSP (2001)—Sr.M. Annunziata Stanizzi PD (2008)—Wm. Beck (1996)—Helen Vargo (2005)