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Friday, February 3rd 2017

The Fourth Week in Ordinary Time

                                Hebrews 13:1-8

                                Psalms 27:1, 3, 5, 8-9

                                Luke 8:15

                                Mark 6:14-29

Christians, because John, the Baptist said to Herod and Herodias, “It is not lawful for you to have your brother’s wife” Herodias hated, Saint John, and schemed to have him beheaded: Herodias wanted the entire population to go along with her little lie, her living in adultery, and when they did not -- Herodias was enraged, with anger, and took to her life, the fruit of murdering Saint John, the Baptist by beheading him.  Now Christians, Saint Paul faithfully teaches us, in the Letter to the Hebrews, the same things Jesus, the Son of God taught to us: “Let brotherly love continue!”  Christians, let us look at this phrase brotherly love, and ask ourselves some questions, about what is brotherly love and if there is something that would not be considered, brotherly love: is saying yes to adultery, brotherly love; is saying that it is all right to murder: is this than brotherly love; is saying that it is all right to covet: our neighbors wife, their goods, and the things they have worked for… is this than, brotherly love; is brotherly love encouraging one another and telling one another that the practice of sinful behaviors is all right and acceptable – of course not Christians.  Rather all of these previously listed types of behaviors, need brotherly and sisterly love, which is the admonishment, for wrong and sinful behaviors.  Furthermore, Christians, you have heard it said, “Friends do not let friends drive drunk!”  Yet ask yourselves “Would a true friend, be silent… in the face of their friend, almost certain outcome of losing their eternal soul, because of their sinful behaviors and choices...?” Now Christians, another fruit of brotherly love is hospitality, but hospitality is not defined as: a body of people, a government coming into your home and confiscating all of your goods and possessions, the things you have worked for day in and day out, to afford: rather this is a definition, an illustration of a communistic government, which is a socialist government and has nothing to do with hospitality, but everything to do: with thuggery, wickedness and false pride; it is vainglory in its actions.  Yes Christians, the trials in life are a many… but we must endure through all of our trials, in behaviors that are in accordance to Christ Jesus’ Gospel of life, for this is faith, in Jesus, and some in offering hospitality have unknowingly entertained angels.  Now Christians, let us consider the life of a prisoner; yes there are needs for prisons and the confinement of those individuals who have, acted out, and behaved criminally.  Still, we are to be mindful of the prisoner, as if we, ourselves we sharing in their imprisonment: the idea and form of prison is not a license for brutality, for those who behave with brutality or with sadistic or masochistic behaviors are themselves in need of confinement… or at least psychological attention.  As well, prison should not be seen or understood, as being a vacation; rather the idea that the prisoner is being punished, for their criminal behavior, must echo: in the hearts, minds, halls, and corridors of the prison moment to moment.  Now Christians, marriage, the joining of one man and one woman is another great gift that God has given, to humankind, and in the clarity of serving God, the Heavenly Father: “If the marriage bed is defiled, then the marriage is not being honored, in the manner of faithfulness and fidelity that a vow of marriage requires and if we sin without acknowledging our sin or repenting of our sin, then our honor and faithfulness towards God, the Heavenly Father is wanting…."   Indeed, God will judge the immoral and the adulterer, and those found wanting… will be cast into the unquenchable flame and like chaff of wheat will be left burning.  Now Christians, we need to understand and seek to live in the abundance that God, our Heavenly Father, has established, and not be turning our minds and hearts to the love of money: we cannot let our fleshes' greed -- rule our hearts and minds, but we are to let the words and teachings of Christ Jesus’ Gospel -- rule our hearts and our minds; yield... your flesh to Christ Jesus’ way, truth and life.  Now Christians, at times, in our own imagination and understanding, we may find it difficult, how, to pray for others; nonetheless, live your lives in the rest that Christ Jesus has brought, to life, and in Jesus’ name pray that the Heavenly Father’s Will, will be done.  Now Christians when King David wrote: “The LORD is my light and salvation; whom should I fear” – David was besieged by enemies of all kinds: there were enemies, in his own household, enemies within his own kingdom and enemies from foreign lands; still, while David remained faithful to God, our Heavenly Father no enemies did him harm….  Yet, we also know that King David suffered, greatly, and so did the Israelites because of the sins he and his household committed; for although it was said, of David, he is a man after my own heart – God, our Heavenly Father did not spare him punishment when David acted unfaithfully towards God, by having adulterous relations with Bethsabee, the Daughter of Eliam.  Now Christians, blessed are they who keep, and who have kept, the word of the Lord Christ Jesus with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance....  Now Christians in the name of the Lord Christ Jesus pray and be thankful.  Amen. 


Friday, February 10th 2017

Memorial of Saint Scholastica, Virgin

                                Genesis 3:1-8

                                Psalms 32:1-2, 5-7

                                Acts 16:14

                                Mark 7:31-37

Christians, Jesus ordered those people who witnessed him, heal the deaf man, “Not to tell anyone;” however, the more he ordered them, not to tell..., the more they proclaimed: “The Deaf Man Can Hear!”  The Israelites in the district of Tyre were exceedingly astonished, by Jesus, and said of him, “He has done all things well – he makes the deaf hear and the mute speak:” glory be… to the Lord Jesus Christ, Messiah and Savior.  Now Christians, as the question of evolution versus creation can only be answered in plausible theories; we are left with what we believe: whether it be creation or evolution and the same mystical, unanswerable, question about whether, the fruit of tree in the middle of the Garden of Eden is a symbol, for human sexual relations between Adam and Eve or whether this tree’s fruit was like a mind altering drug and then once taken – like a picture that cannot be unseen, a veil was lifted, from the eyes of Adam and Eve and they knew that they were naked.  Christians, speculate… as to whether sexual relations, between Adam and Eve, could have the effect of giving, them, the ability to know: what is good and what is evil...?  As well, speculate, to other possible understandings, but all the while knowing that it was the eating of this fruit, which changed Adam and Eve!  Now Christians, perhaps, Adam and Eve had to be fallen creatures; such as a seed that falls to the ground, which will not grow, until it is dead, and then is brought back to life…?  Christians, ever since Adam and Eve were disobedient humankind has been struggling, with what life is supposed to be: what is good and what is evil…?  Now Christians, when Moses came onto the scene, in human history, he and his brother, Aaron, the High Priest brought forth statutes, charges and ordinances that were present, from the truth of the Ten Commandments and through the fact that God, the Heavenly Father, regularly, communicated, with Moses, and the High Priest, Aaron, in the Holy of Holies.  Now in Eve’s understanding, and as well, Eve was listening to the temptations by the serpent: she considered the fruit on the tree to be good for food; it was pleasing to the eye; and Eve believed, Lucifer “Thinking she may gain wisdom by eating this fruit?”  Now Adam was there with her, and instead of Adam being the head of the family -- telling Eve no, “I will not be disobedient to God, our Heavenly Father,” Adam too ate: this mind altering, life changing fruit.  Christians, when we behave disobediently to God’s truths, then we become self-conscience – doing one of two things: choosing to rebel against God or choosing to acknowledge our wrong doing, repent, and then once again, live in the peace that Christ Jesus did establish.  Thus, we have the big lie: “Whether to believe that evil is good?” As well, Christians, we also have the choice of believing and living, according to Christ Jesus’ Gospel: the way, the truth, and the life.  Now when we are self-conscious our hearts become accusatory; we become haters of God; we behave with malicious intent; we become filled with envy; proud and haughty; and we become inventors of evil things; however, when we repent of our sin and sinfulness, and acknowledge God, our Heavenly Father then we begin to understand that loving our neighbor, as ourselves, is truth – not only in manifestation, of this love, but in our hearts and minds – we  become filled with love; for we are living and actively seeking to love the Heavenly Father with all of our hearts, souls, minds, and strengths.  Now Christians, the moment that Christ Jesus died on the cross, the perfect and eternal sacrifice for humankind’s sins was established.  For that one moment, all of our sins were forgiven; however this does not mean that we were born again in that moment.  No, it is not until we accept Christ Jesus as our personal savior and we are baptized, both with water and the spirit that we are born again.  As well, unless we are born again, in Christ Jesus, there is no way that we will enter into the kingdom of heaven.  In summary: Sin entered into the world through Adam and Eve’s eating the fruit, from the tree in the middle of the Garden of Eden; Abraham made a covenant with God and he became the father of many nations; Moses was given the Ten Commandments; and then Jesus brought to humankind grace and truth through his death and resurrection.  Okay, now, in this psalm reading, we are looking to what it is like, for the man / the person whose sins are forgiven: it teaches us that the person’s whose sins are forgiven, their spirit has no guile – they are a person, who is only seeking the true light of Christ Jesus: to walk in the love of Christ Jesus; to live in the peace of Christ Jesus; and to live in the grace and truth of Christ Jesus; thus, in all the things they do... the person with no guile is only seeking the kingdom of heaven and the Heavenly Father’s Righteousness.  Now Christians in the name of the Lord Christ Jesus pray and be thankful.  Amen.


Friday, February 17th 2017

The Sixth Saturday in Ordinary Time

                                Genesis 11:1-9

                                Psalms 33:10-15

                                John 15:15

                                Mark 8:34---9:1

Christians, rhetorically, Jesus asked the gathered crowd, “What profit is there for one to gain the whole world and forfeit their life…?”  Now Christians, looking from a perspective, of possible explanation, to what Jesus asked the gathered crowd; let us look at his question, through a perspective gleaned from the Letter of Saint James: James says ‘that we have not, because we ask not, and because we do not ask rightly!’  Saint James continues to teach us, if we ask for things… to spend, on: our passions and our lusts and our darkness we ask wrongly.  For our Heavenly Father, who is light, life, truth and love will not supply the things that we covet from our neighbors, but will furnish us, with every good thing, so that we may do His Will, which is the same Will of the Son, our Lord Christ Jesus; for the Heavenly Father and Son, the Lord Christ Jesus are one with each other.  Now Christians, Noah’s flood had come and past and the people were on the move…!  Coming to a land and speaking but one language, they began to build; however, they did not build on the foundation of God’s word; they became ambitious and wanted to make a name for themselves – rather than serve God and humble themselves – they exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God, our Heavenly Father into the likeness of corruptible man.  Now in Genesis, it teaches ‘that the Lord, our Creator, the Heavenly Father said: if they do these things now, while they are one people, all speaking the same language – nothing will stop them from doing what they presume to do:’ now these words “Presume to do” must be understood!  For God does not what us to refrain from doing things… for God wants to furnishes us with all that is good, so that we may do his will; however, God does not want us to exchange the glory of the incorruptible image of God, for the corruptible image of man: God does not want us to exchange what is good and right and do those things… that are not convenient and sinful.  Now Christians, it may be suggested that Socialism’s roots – are with these people of Babel; for they turned away from living lives of individual merit and since, when push comes to shove or the chips fall where they may – we are all individually responsible for our actions, the building of The Tower Babel to make a name for themselves was a work of folly and vanity and did not serve, the wellness of the individual people; the individual was not free to develop their own talents….  Now another thing, of interest, concerning the scattered people of Babel that we may surmise: they became, the people of many nations scattered around the world…?  Another point of interest: the population of the United States of American, in the 1492 AD was below ten million; whereas today’s population is about five hundred and forty million.  Therefore, in a matter some 525 years, the popular has increased, by five hundred and thirty million people and between Noah to Abraham there was some 500 years, so the scatter population of Babel may have increased exponentially to populate many nations around the world.  Yes!  Christians the Lord, our Heavenly Father did confuse the language, of the people of Babel, but it was not as punishment!  Rather, the Lord God, our Heavenly Father, already knew the outcome of the road that people of Babel were on: for these same people had just, relatively speaking, recovered from the flood of Noah!  Therefore, the Heavenly Father scattered them, in the hopes that they would acknowledge truth and love of neighbor, instead of living according to the lusts and desires of the flesh, which is of no avail.  Now Christians, every person on the earth could deny the truth, but that would not change the truth: for the truth is a living thing and has its own light.  Yes!  People can beat down the truth and harden their hearts and become things that they should never be: yet the truth will still be shinning, its light, and whispering in the hearts and minds, of our consciences the very essence of spirit and life.  Yes!  Men of notable remembrance have come and gone; ask, why it is 'that Ancient Egypt came and fell?'  Now we as men/humankind may speculate too many probable reasons, but the true answer is here in this Psalm: the Lord, our Heavenly Father brings to naught the plans of nations; he foils the designs of people.  Now these very designs, of nations and people failing, may be attributed: too many men and kings, too many women and queens and too many caliphs and priests: for the plan of the Lord, our Heavenly Father stands, forever, and if, the before mentioned do not build on the foundation of God – it is like the person who builds their house, their city, their nation on sand: for when the storms come: rain, floods, winds they beat against the house and the house will fall.  Christians it is only the man/woman, person who builds their homes and their lives on the words and teachings of Christ Jesus’ Gospel, who will have life and will have eternal life: by seeking the kingdom of heaven and the Heavenly Father’s Righteousness.  Now Christians in the name of the Lord Christ Jesus pray and be thankful.  Amen…. 


Friday, February 24th 2017

The Seventh Week in Ordinary Time

                                Sirach 6:5-17

                                Psalms 119:12, 16, 18, 27, 34-35

                                John 17:17

                                Mark 10:1-12

Now Christians, as Jesus was talking to the Pharisees of his time period; he referred to the hardness of hearts, of those, in the time… of Moses, saying, “From the beginning -- God made us male and female.  For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined with his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.”  Now Christians, look to the many people that we have in our lives: spouses, children, parents, siblings, friends, neighbors, and our community, and with each of these, we have a variety of feelings; still, feelings aside – we are to live, among one another, in the spirit and truth of Christ Jesus’ Gospel….  We are not be driven, by our emotions or the desires of the flesh: hate and love, desires and lust, sadness and happiness; rather we are to be in the love and grace and kindness and goodness that is stemmed, out of the cross of Christ Jesus’ grace and truth: emotions and feelings are one thing, but until we bring them into our spirituality, we have not chosen.  Remember Christians, Christ Jesus did not come into the world to condemn humankind, but to heal, and in this healing… there is not the acceptance of sin but the overcoming… of our sins and sinfulness.  Now Christians when we read this teaching, from Sirach, from the universal translation of the Bible – we cannot let the knowledge of both friendship and those who are anti-friendship escape from our understanding: yes, a kind mouth multiplies friends, but we are not to be yes men/women/people and as well, we know from Saint James teaches, if any man/woman/person thinks themselves to be religious and yet does not bridle their tongue – they deceive their own hearts and minds, and therefore their religion is worthless….  Now let us look, a little bit more, at this reading in Sirach: when it talks about appeasing our enemies – the notion of the word appease, in this reading, is not the typical, the colloquial meaning, of the word, appeasement of today…?  For appeasement of today means -- a giving into our enemies; it means – do not standup for your beliefs, your values, nor what you believe to be truth; rather in today’s philosophy, appeasement means – give up your belief about God!  Forget, that God’s first commandment is: I Am the Lord Thy God; Thou shalt not have strange gods before me.  Yes this is the typical meaning of appeasement in today’s society, but not what ‘appeasement’ has typically meant down through the ages or even four or five decades ago.  Continuing on, when Sirach talks about “appease” your enemies – it is more on the line of loving your enemies, which is not appeasement, but is learning to treat others, as you would want to be treated; regardless of the fact, that they are enemies and trying to kill you.  Yes, on the battlefield it is kill… or be killed and in prisoner interrogation – there is a need, for convincing questioning, but not bodily, harm or torture: practicing self-defense is not an act of hate, for truly – we would rather be loving neighbors than enemies….  Now Christians looking more at this reading in Sirach; it says, “Let your acquaintances be many.”  Now this is true; however, it does not mean that we go into every door we may encounter; nor does it mean that we should be acquainted with every that face we meet: attractive or unattractive.  What it is teaching us; is that within our own community and with travelers that we may meet and with other people, from other nations -- let your acquaintances be many: for we are to go out unto all nations and proclaim Christ Jesus Risen, from the dead, and His Gospel of life.  Sirach also teaches us; although we may have many acquaintances, few will be confidants!  As well, friends need to be tested, as God; the Heavenly Father does test us.  Moreover, we are not too, readily, trust people; similarly, Christ Jesus teaches us, that we are not to cast our pearls among swine.  In wisdom we understand that friends and people come in all sorts: some are friends when it suits them; some are friends when all is going well, but nowhere to be found when trouble comes; some are friends only if you follow in their beliefs and some believe encouraging sinful practices is acceptable: even though they know the just decrees of God, the Father and the Son, the Lord Christ Jesus….  Christians, in good common sense, we should keep away from our enemies, but we should also be on guard with our friends.  Still a faithful friend is a sturdy shelter, and if we are lucky enough to find a faithful friend; they are a treasure.  Sirach teaches, “A faithful friend is a life-saving remedy, [a panacea]; such as he who fears God, the Heavenly Father.  For he who fears God behaves accordingly, and his friends, will be like himself.  Now Christians, in the name of the Lord Christ Jesus pray and be thankful.  Amen.