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Monday of Holy Week

April 10, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Holy Monday!

Readings:
Isaiah 42:1-7 (the Messiah comes to rescue, not to destroy)
Psalm 27:1-3, 13-14 “The Lord is my light and my salvation”
+John 12:1-11 (Mary anoints Jesus’ feet)

Two ideologies
at war:
the one
treads down,

the other
elevates
.

Which ideology describes the way I live?
Which describes what I expect of God?

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Blessed Palm Sunday

April 9, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Palm Sunday!

We are entering into the most holy days of the Church year,
intensifying our preparation to unite ourselves with Jesus in His Passion and death
as He leads us through tragedy into triumph.
You will notice that we do not celebrate any saints this week or next.
Nothing may interrupt these high holy days.

The palms we receive today are blessed–they’re sacramentals (sources of grace)
that are intended to remind us of Jesus’ victory over sin and death
(palms have long been symbols of victory).
That means they must be treated with reverence.
One common practise is to make crosses of them
and tuck these crosses behind holy pictures or crucifixes hanging in your home.
Instructions for making simple palm crosses can be found here.
If you need to dispose of old palms (or scraps from making palm crosses),
they should be reverently burned or buried in a place that will not be disturbed–
not thrown away (this is true of all blessed items of devotion).

Readings:
+Matthew 21: 1-11 (Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem)
Isaiah 50:4-7 (God’s noble servant is not deterred by suffering and insult)
Psalm 22:8-9, 17-20, 23-24 “My God, my God, why have You abandoned me?”
Philippians 2:6-11 (because Jesus emptied Himself, God has exalted Him)
+Matthew 26:14-27:66 (Jesus’ Passion and death)

The members of the crowd
anticipate
a resurrection
of the fallen
House of David
from subjection
to the military
dominance
of Rome.

The one they hail
will far surpass
their wildest dreams;
the foe He faces
more formidable,
the weapons
in His keeping
more extreme.

The lines are drawn.

The full malevolence
of hell
is poised
to strike,
to spend itself
against
the powers of
humility,
obedience
and love.

It hasn’t got
the faintest chance.

Am I focused on the wrong enemy, the one who can only kill the body, but not the soul?
How well trained am I in the use of the weapons of humility, obedience and love?

First Saturday of Passiontide

April 8, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Saturday!

As we enter into the most sacred week of the Church year,
here are some ways to bring it to life in the home.

Readings:
Ezekiel 37:21-28 (God will unite His people in holiness)
Jeremiah 31:10-13 (The Lord will guard us, like a shepherd guarding his flock)
+John 11:45-57 (it is better for one man to die for the people)

Before the world
can be at peace
it must be purified,
for sin divides.

The holy tide
that flows
from Jesus’ side
will unify
all those
who plunge within
to die with Him.

What causes division within my heart & with others?
What would it take for me to die to my part of that?

First Friday of Passiontide (St. John Baptiste de la Salle)

April 7, 2017

JMJ

Blessed St. John Baptiste de la Salle’s Day!

He is patron of teachers & school principals.

You can find his story here.

Readings:
2 Timothy 1:13-14; 2:1-3 (Pass on the message to faithful people who will teach others)
Psalm 1:1-4, 6 “Those who are victorious I will feed from the tree of life”
+Matthew 18:1-5 (Whoever humbles himself like this child is greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven)

The price
of greatness

is much higher
than I ever dreamed.
It is much easier
to rise
than to descend
with regal grace.

But God provides!

Do I put my energy into conquering others or into conquering myself?
Do I draw on the grace God provides for the battle?

First Thursday of Passiontide

April 6, 2017

JMJ

Blessed Thursday!

Readings:
Genesis 17:3-9 (God establishes His covenant with Abram and changes his name to Abraham)
Psalm 105:4-9 “The Lord remembers His covenant forever”
+John 8:51-59 (Abraham rejoiced to see Jesus’ day)

HE IS
from all eternity,
Whom Abraham
rejoiced to see,
Who cut
the covenant
He now fulfills,
to carry out
the Father’s will.

Whoever
keeps His Word
will never die.

Do I fear the deadliness of sin more than physical death?
Do I fall down to worship God with Abraham
or to pick up stones to throw at Him like Jesus’ opponents?

First Wednesday of Passiontide (St. Vincent Ferrer)

April 5, 2017

JMJ

Blessed St. Vincent Ferrer’s Day!

He is patron of construction workers, pavement workers, plumbers, brick makers & tile makers

You can find his story here.

Readings:
2 Timothy 4:1-5 (Proclaim the Word, whether people listen or not)
Psalm 40:2,4,7-11 “Here I am, Lord, I come to do Your will”
+Luke 12:35-40 (Be prepared for the Lord’s return)

I do not know
how long I have.
I only know
I need to make
the most
of it.

There is
no time
to spare.

Eternity
is on the line
for me
and those
I reach.

How well do I manage time?
Do I share Jesus’ urgency for the salvation of souls?

First Tuesday of Passiontide (St. Isidore of Seville)

April 4, 2017

JMJ

Blessed St. Isidore of Seville’s Day!

He is patron of computers, the internet and students.

You can find his story here.

Readings:
2 Corinthians 4:1-2, 5-7 (We do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord)
Psalm 37:3-6, 30-31 “The mouth of the just murmurs wisdom”
+Luke 6:43-45 (You will be known by your fruit)

It wasn’t my idea–
so much the better!

That means
I can defend it
and proclaim it
in complete
humility.

My vanity
is not at stake.

I glory
that the One
Who spoke the Light
into existence

has the mettle
to involve
the likes of me!

How receptive am I to things that are not my idea?
When I look back, how do the outcomes compare of the things that were my idea with the things that weren’t?

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