Our meditation must be:. Reason must bow its head and confess its inability to grasp the mysteries that even Faith sees only darkly and through a glass. The story of Christ's humiliation is to the proud a sealed book; they see nothing attractive in it. Christ suffering has no beauty that they should admire Him.
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I must therefore begin by praying for humility. Full of confidence ; since the Passion is the source of all our confidence, it is the proof of the exceeding love wherewith Christ loved us. How can I fear with the sight before me of Christ suffering for love of me? It is, too, a medicine for every possible evil, for every temptation, for every sin; whatever the malady of my soul, the Passion of Christ can cure it.
At the foot of the cross each mortal wound will be made whole. The world considers it a degradation, the careless and the indifferent pass it by unmoved; even the faithful Christian scarcely penetrates beneath the surface of that Divine Mystery, unless he prays earnestly and continually to appreciate it. Only gradually and by degrees are we drawn by the sacred attractiveness of the cross. Before I begin my meditations I must ask God for this spirit of humility, confidence, persistency.
Short meditations combined with scripture allow you to deepen your lent and spiritual life and feed your contemplative life. Every meditation is listed on this page. The Anticipation of the Passion. Read St. Matthew xvi. But they said, Barabbas. The Preliminaries of the Passion. See the Preface for information on these meditations. Luke xxii. For more information on these meditations, and a guide to doing them well, read the Preface.
Mark xiv. Be sure to see the Preface for information on this meditation set and helpful guide on meditating. The Eating of the Paschal Lamb. Just find these meditations?
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See the Preface for information and some helpful hints. Luke xii. There are helpful hints and information about these meditations in the Preface. John xiii. Have you read the Preface yet? It has helpful hints and more information. The Farewell Discourse of Jesus. John xiv. You believe in God, believe also in me. If not, I would have told you: because I go to prepare a place for you.
On the Road to Gethsemani. The Sacred Agony in the Garden. Matthew xxv. Help me to know that You are with me always. Closing : Develop a habit of beginning each day with a morning offering.
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Continue to say this prayer each morning whether or not you feel like praying it. Invitation to Prayer : Jesus, help me to know you so that I may always walk in the light and help others to find their way. Reflection : Doubt. We doubt things even when we know what the truth is. Perhaps we often try to convince ourselves of an alternate truth that more conforms to the way we wish things were.
We always need proof. This can often be the case with our Catholic faith. Following Christ is not always easy. But we must always be aware of the fact that we are testifying on behalf of Christ and of the One who sent Him with our words and with our life. He is the Divine Truth. We know Him and we know the Father. We need to help others be a child of the light. We, as Christians, need to be the proof that others seek when we want to expose the truth.
We need to bring others into the light so they can know the Father. Closing: Take a moment and look for examples of ways you know the Father in your life. This teaches us a few things: 1. If we doubt in Jesus or that Jesus is God, we must meditate upon his suffering upon the cross, 2. If we wish to be like Jesus, we must also suffer for love of God and man this is in part what lent invites us to do , 3. Lent points us to look to the cross, just as Jesus does in this Gospel. These last few days of lent then, as we approach the paschal mystery, let us fix our eyes and minds upon the cross, reflecting and meditating upon it, for it is there that we shall find who Jesus is.
Prayer : Jesus, help me to fix my eyes upon the cross these last few days of lent. Lord, grant me the grace to continually offer my prayers and penances this lent in union with your sacrifice on the cross. Closing : In what ways have we failed to carry our cross this lent? What concrete steps can you take now to strengthen your Lenten commitments of prayer, fasting, and almsgiving? April Wednesday of the 5th Week of Lent. Invitation to Prayer : Lord Jesus, free me from the chains of my own self-importance that I might hear Your voice this day.
Reflection : We seem to relish when Jesus makes His challengers squirm with His simple words. Today, though, He challenged His supporters — those who believed in Him. How many claims do we make about our own faith lives? Do we live up to them? If we truly believe, then we need ACT as if we believe — constantly. Do your actions allow others to see your faith?
Is your faith an example and an encouragement to others? Prayer : Dear Jesus, help me to have the strength of faith that Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego displayed when they were put to the test. Closing : Think about how you show your faith to the world, and especially to close friends and family. During each remaining day of Lent, find one more way to align your actions with your professed beliefs. Invitation to Prayer: Submit to God; resist the devil and he will take flight. Draw close to God and he will draw close to you. James 4: Reflection: During Lent, we tend to become acutely aware of our temptations and the sins that sometimes follow.
We reflect on the times we have been weak and have fallen away from a close relationship with God. Through the Lenten practices of prayer, fasting and almsgiving, we attempt to reorient our spiritual lives away from evil and towards the Good — God Himself. We are reassured in the book of James that our efforts are not in vain. His love is so perfect that when we draw ourselves to Him, He draws even closer to us.
Prayer: Lord, I love you. I pledge to flee from the bonds of my selfishness and draw myself closer to you throughout my Lenten journey.
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Then at Easter, I will rejoice in the celebration of your love for all people, and I will rest in the warmth of your embrace. Closing : Will you take the first step today? Think about one way you can flee from evil today and draw yourself closer to God. Invitation to Prayer : Lord Jesus, help my actions to reflect my words, and my words to reflect my love for you. He performed miracles in their midst, yet turn a blind eye to them and instead wanted to condemn him for blasphemy.
They, like we, have trouble understanding the mystery that is Jesus. God, yet man. So, he challenged them to look at his works instead, to refocus their attention on something they could better reconcile. Words can be argued and disputed. Works cannot be contradicted, as they speak for themselves. If a man shows He is God, that is quite another. The same holds for us. Fulton Sheen noted that we are living in a new age in which the only argument we have left to convince others is holiness. Prayer : Lord Jesus, help me to shed those things that prevent me from being an effective witness.
My speech, my thoughts, my habits, my desires. Fill my heart instead with gifts of wisdom, grace and holiness. Nathan is married to Tricia and they have two terrific toddlers, Mary 3 and Jude 2. April Saturday of the Fifth Week of Lent. Reflection : Today is the last day before Holy Week, and the Gospel today sets the stage for what is about to happen.
The Pharisees begin to make plans to capture Jesus and eliminate him as a threat to their rule and Jesus goes into hiding and actually leaves Jerusalem just before the feast of Passover. That he will not come to the feast? In our everyday walk, as we attempt to live out the vocation God has placed on our hearts, there will be times when Jesus seems to be silent, or to be hidden from our view. Are we so quick to doubt that Jesus will not bring to fulfillment His plan for our lives? In my limited understanding of who God has made me to be, have I placed limits on what the Holy Spirit will be able to do in my life?
Prayer : Lord Jesus Christ, at those times in our life when you must be silent, or must be hidden from view, grant us the grace to trust all the more in your divine plan for our lives. Action : In the early s, Jesus revealed to Sr. How many times have we hurt him with our unbelief, doubts, worries, fears, insecurities, and withhold our mercy, forgiveness, and even acts of kindness towards our neighbor.
Prayer : My Dear Lord Jesus, into your hands I commend my spirit in all its weaknesses, failures, miss opportunities to share my gifts and talents with others, forgive me Lord. Closing : Through this Holy week, may we gather ourselves in the presence of Jesus accompanying him in his walk toward Calvary and console him as he consoles us. Judas rebukes her, saying it is a waste that should have been given to the poor.
He was the keeper of the money bag for the poor, and stole from it. Regardless, Mary is obviously making an excessive outpouring of love in recognition of who Jesus is, what He is about to do, and how He will die. Prayer : Help me to contemplate this week how extravagant Your love is for me, that You suffered, died and rose again for me, a sinner.
May I receive the grace to see how I can give my life more fully to You, and love with extravagance as You do.
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Closing : Just like the scent of ointment fills a house, the scent of prayer should also fill our lives. Holy Week invites us to spend more time with Jesus, just to bask in the extravagance of His love, the price He paid for our salvation. Whatever time you normally spend in prayer each day, try to double it this Holy week. Invitation to Prayer: Lord Jesus, open my heart to the hope that you offer, flawed as I am. First is Judas, going off to betray Jesus to the leaders. Denial is another form of betrayal. We, too, betray Jesus — often, and perhaps quite regularly — when we act contrary to His wishes.
That may be in denying, or even just hiding, our faith. When we fail those in need, those who are hurting, those who mourn, those who hunger, those who are strangers, and so many others that Jesus has mentioned in His ministry on earth, then we have betrayed our Lord. Fortunately, Jesus offers us hope. Though we may not be ready to follow Him to heaven this very day, we still have the opportunity to follow Him at the appointed time.
He continues to forgive us when we ask. That forgiveness is our hope for eternity! Prayer: Dear Jesus, help me to be a faithful servant to You. Thank You for the hope of eternal life with You, which is available through Your forgiveness. The cross is Your ultimate human act of forgiveness to all people. Help me to remember Your forgiveness when I need to forgive others or to beg their forgiveness.
These oils are used in the sacraments throughout the diocese in the coming year. Thus, they are signs of HOPE! Deacon Conrad Kolis was ordained from St Bartholomew parish in Judas and St. Peter both betrayed Jesus, but they came to two very different ends. The Lord calls us to greater humility following the example of St.
Because of his sincere repentance, St. Peter was called by our Lord to lead the Church and become a great Saint. Do I act like Judas by wanting Jesus to conform to my plans and desires, rather than having an openness to His saving truth? So the real question is not whether or not I have betrayed Jesus, but will I repent like St.
Peter and receive the mercy of Jesus, or will I remain obstinate in my sin and arrive at an end like Judas? Prayer: Lord Jesus Christ, as we begin these most solemn three days in the Church, grant me humility that I may acknowledge my sins and turn to you with true repentance. Grant me the grace to celebrate the Sacred Triduum with full attentiveness and devotion, ever thankful for your sacrifice for my salvation.
Today, we begin our final journey to Calvary with Jesus and we get to enter into one of the most beautiful scenes in all of scripture, the Last Supper. It is during this meal that Jesus truly reveals with tenderness and determination the plan for His Kingdom, and for his followers, for all time. He then goes on to express that love through humility and service. It is always striking to me to think of the power of that act. In our own lives, we can get so caught up in our own importance and self-worth, or we can get caught up in our own struggles and suffering.
We start to believe that we deserve to be served, not the other way around. However, Jesus makes it clear today that we cannot get caught up in our own needs, we cannot get caught up in our own suffering; in order to be like Christ, we must be ready to humble ourselves, take off our outer symbols of status and importance, and serve. Prayer: Lord Jesus, you have given us the example of a true servant leader. Grant us the grace to follow your example and to serve without expectation of receiving anything in return. Action: Begin a service challenge in your home.
Have each person look for ways to serve the other members of the family. At the end of the day, discuss all the ways you served one another. Thank the Lord and ask for the grace to find more ways to serve tomorrow. Reflection : The cross. The symbol of Christianity. It adorns the walls of our homes, churches, schools and hospitals. It hangs from our necks, our rosaries and perhaps from our rearview mirrors. We see it on everything from clothing to jewelry to grave stones. Today, in the solemn but awesome celebration of the Passion of the Lord, we have the opportunity to give reverence to the cross.
During the Good Friday service, each of us approaches the cross to venerate it. In a powerfully humbling gesture we show our Lord what His death on the cross means to us. How will you approach the cross this Good Friday? Will our personal pride or fear of looking silly allow us to simply give a casual nod to the cross? Or will we fall on our knees at the foot of the cross, with tears in our eyes and sorrow in our hearts, recognizing the incredible love which Jesus showed for me by enduring the unimaginable suffering of His death?
The celebration of Good Friday is solemn, but not sad. It is a time when we reflect upon how our sins nailed Jesus to the cross. But it is also a time to give Him gratitude from the depths of our hearts for the gift of love and salvation that He gives to us through the cross. And our gift back to Him? Let it be complete repentance from our past sinfulness, true gratitude for the forgiveness of our sins and the beginning of a new life with Him as he rises on Easter morning.
Prayer : Jesus, I cannot comprehend the love you have for me as you allow yourself to be scourged, ridiculed, beaten and nailed to the cross. Your suffering is beyond my capacity to grasp. The magnitude of your love causes me fall before your holy cross in grief, but also in gratitude. May my turning away from my sinfulness be my gift back to you, a gift of thanks and of love. Action : Immerse yourself in the presence of the cross today. Allow yourself to fully contemplate the love Jesus has for you, so much love that He endured the crucifixion just for you.
And then give to Him in return your praise, gratitude and love. Invitation to Prayer : O truly blessed night, when things of heaven are wed to those of earth! Easter is here, the time for tears of sadness is over! In ancient typology, deacons represent angels in that they are messengers and heralds of the Good News. Enjoy the great intercession of the Exsultet for a quiet and peaceful Easterime.
The graces available this night are manifold; acts of faith and expectant hope, reverence and admiration for the Easter mysteries, acts of gratitude for the charity and mercy of God. Savor the light of the Easter candle which blots out crime, restores innocence by forgiving venial sins and temporal punishments for sins. It banishes enmities, produces concord and gives joy to the sorrowful. Hear the dramatic invitation for heaven and earth to join together in joy and jubilation. This is one of the most beautiful liturgies of the year.
What a great chance to support all of the new Catholics who will come into the Church tonight. Reflection: Christ is risen! He is truly risen! Imagine the joy, the excitement, and even the shock that Peter and John had when seeing the empty tomb. When Mary Magdalene told them that the body of Jesus was missing, they rushed to the tomb as quickly as possible. But he saw the burial cloths, and the cloth that had covered the head of Jesus. Seeing all of this, and remembering all that Jesus had said about His rising, came together so that John believed.
He believed that Jesus had overcome death and rose as He promised He would.
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This is the belief that is at the heart of Christianity — the Resurrection of Jesus. We, too, are called to see and to believe. But we can see the power of the Resurrection in the lives of the Apostles. We can see the evidence of the Resurrection in the lives of the saints throughout the last 2, years. We can see how the Resurrection of Jesus has changed us, too — the hope, the peace, the love that we have experienced. As we begin this Easter season, let us look with the eyes of faith, let us see the evidence before us, and let us believe that Christ is Risen!
Founded in , The Catholic Telegraph is the official news source of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. July 8, July 6, July 5, Local News. March 9: Saturday after Ash Wednesday Invitation to prayer : Lord Jesus, give me the strength to embrace the vocation You have given me, be it single, married or religious. If we see it only in terms giving things up, and not as a gift from God and something which will enhance us, we can easily become depressed, like the rich young man who, not wanting to give up his possessions, went away sad We also need to remember that no matter how grave our sins are, Jesus is always asking us to follow Him.
March First Sunday of Lent Invitation to prayer : Lord, please be with me in my trials and tribulations. March Wednesday of the first week of Lent Invitation to prayer : Lord, help me to know your will and to repent when I do not act on it.
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March Solemnity of Saint Joseph, husband of the Blessed Virgin Mary Invitation to Prayer: Lord, help me to live the life you chose for me and to be the person you made me to be. March Friday of the Second Week of Lent Invitation to Prayer: Lord Jesus, teach us to use the gifts You have implanted within us and with which you surround us to produce a bountiful harvest of souls longing for Your kingdom. Just as the wicked tenants attacked the messengers the vineyard owner sent to collect his goods, and just as the people of old often harmed the prophets God had sent to spread His word, so too do we sometimes assault Jesus by rejecting His message.
March Saturday of the Second Week of Lent Invitation to prayer: Lord help me to love as you loved and forgive as you forgive. It will appeal to existing poetry lovers as well as those who want to start exploring how poems can be a resource for our spiritual lives, whether or not they are written with a consciously Christian intent.
Poets often address subjects our culture seeks to avoid, and poetry demands that we 'slow down to the heart's time' in order to discover deeper levels of meaning than at first appear. Janet Morley offers her own skilful and reflective commentaries on a fascinating themed sequence of both familiar and unexpected poems including works by Margaret Atwood, St Augustine, Charles Causley, E. Thomas and Rowan WIlliams.
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