| Shepherds of Christ
October 30, 2010
October 31st Holy Spirit Novena
Scripture selection is Day 1 Period I.
The Novena Rosary Mysteries
for October 31st are Sorrowful.
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October 30, 2010
My Way of Life
pocket Edition of St. Thomas The Summa Simplified for Everyone
by Walter Farrell, O.P., S.T.M. and Martin J. Healy, S.T.D., pp. 243-244
THE SUPERNATURAL VIRTUES, whether theological or moral, cannot be acquired through nature or natural human action. They must be infused into man's soul by God. The infused theological virtues of faith, hope and charity, have God Himself—as He is in Himself—for their immediate object. Since this Object—God as He is in Himself—is beyond the natural powers of man, the virtues which unite man to this Object are also beyond man's powers to acquire. God Himself must give virtues to man. The infused moral virtues of prudence, justice, temperance, and fortitude do not have God as He is in Himself as their immediate Object. But they are concerned with the right use of man's actions and passions in relation to the Object of the theological virtues, God in Himself. Consequently they cannot be acquired naturally by man, but must be infused by God. How God infuses these virtues will be discussed later. For the present it is sufficient to note that they must be infused by God if man is to act efficiently in the pursuit of the vision of God.
HOW DO THE VIRTUES WORK in the pursuit of happiness? Since all human action is intelligent action, it follows that every human act is directed to some goal. The perfection of any human act and the perfection of the virtue which produces the act will be measured by the goal itself or the suitability of the act to attain the goal. The virtues then will work according to the rule or measure that is proper to them.
John 11: 25-26
I am the resurrection.
Anyone who believes in me,
even though that person dies, will live,
and whoever lives and believes in me
will never die.
Do you believe this?
This week we celebrate All Saints
day and All Souls day —
To be identified with Jesus is to wish the
souls to go to heaven —
We see the vision of God — who wants souls
to go to heaven —
we work for this —
One, who gives into satan, who wants to
stop those loving, uniting, etc. -
can operate in impurity —
For their self-glory —
For their personal affection —
They can be weak in their image of themselves
in the world and
through competition — distorted vision —
they use not right reason, but
tainted vision — wrong reason —
to see themselves as victorious
when they act pridefully —
disobediently and think they need
men's affection, recognition and
power-over others to feel good
about themselves —
These affections of others do not ultimately
determine everlasting happiness.
Happiness comes more and more
from obedience to God and
seeing through His eyes —
Wrong behavior on the point of one
rationalizing to continue,
rebelling against God's will —
does not justify more wrong
This thinking is far from the truth of
Jesus who calls us to love
and forgive —
We need to forgive and to be forgiving —
We are told in the scriptures to not let
the sun go down on your anger —
Also if you have something against your
brother to leave your gift
at the altar to be reconciled
with your brother
A person that holds onto anger for days
and days, weeks and years, justifying
their wrong behavior is like one
building a house without the
Satan wants this — to try to get others
to sit down and try to force others
to disrespect structure and rules —
1 Corinthians 3: 9-13, 16-17
After all, we do share in God’s work; you are God’s farm, God’s building.
By the grace of God which was given to me, I laid the foundations like a trained master–builder, and someone else is building on them. Now each one must be careful how he does the building. For nobody can lay down any other foundation than the one which is there already, namely Jesus Christ. On this foundation, different people may build in gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay or straw but each person's handiwork will be shown for what it is. The Day which dawns in fire will make it clear and the fire itself will test the quality of each person's work.
Do you not realise that you are a temple of God with the Spirit of God living in you? If anybody should destroy the temple of God, God will destroy that person, because God’s temple is holy; and you are that temple.
When a person tries to disregard just
structure - they cut themselves
off from the power source and
now have left themselves to their
The Church has structure — Christ is the
head and we the baptized in the
Church are the members
of His mystical body —
The Church is one, holy, Catholic and Apostolic —
A person that lives their life and does
not obey just authority over them is
rebelling against the structure
making themselves the end, the
head, the purpose —
Satan works this way —
He uses old memories from hurts in
the past and he tries to get
the person to pin their old
anger, jealousies, possessiveness
on an innocent other —
A person - forgiving and wanting to be
forgiven — observes just structure —
recognizes through right reason
their faults and wants unity
Satan wants combat, disharmony, pride,
threatening the rules established
by others and acting in God's will —
How are families built, but on love —
If one dares to let go of selfishness
going out of self —
A person justifying their wrong behavior
is acting as satan wants —
Satan wants wrong to look right —
Satan wants right to look wrong —
A person can be tense
in anger and division they give into —
depriving themselves of the benefits
of the Mass —
they continue to abandon their
heart to rationalize their wrong
love is now, not the purpose, the
motive for why they act —
Father Mike talks of passive-aggressive
one who uses this behavior to
attack against God's will is
passive — holding out — being
untruthful of what really
And in this passivity — holding out —
secretly operating to make things
they are attacking the person —
institution — deceptively —
hidden — tearing things apart
for satan — It is falsity —
being two-faced —
Jesus carried His cross and showed
us that sufferings endured
in love can bring down great
Jesus showed us death/resurrection —
the Pascal Mystery
The person acting selfishly can throw
away the opportunity to help
bring down great grace by
being like Jesus in suffering —
God is working in our lives —
because of the wounded human nature,
the human weaknesses and sins —
others can cause us to suffer
a great deal by their sins, by
their passive-aggressive attacks —
To not be doing God's will passively is
to be acting in rebellion when
one is to do something God wants
them to do —
Holding out in anger the materials needed to
do God's work or services one is to give
by title or vocation is an action against
others, the institution in wrath —
One does not vindictively keep material
needed at work, to do the work
because of anger and punishment
or they will get fired —
Anger whether acted out aggressively or
anger acted out passively in holding
out to punish, to provoke,
to try to bring failure to those
doing God's will —
is acting and attacking in
Terrorist plan attacks in secret —
It is evil to do this —
To want others to live in fear of
our power to punish and
The devil acts in secrets —
The devil wants people filled with the
energy of anger, pride,
holding out —
Matthew 5: 23-24
So then, if you are bringing your offering to the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar, go and be reconciled with your brother first, and then come back and present your offering.
Anger acted out vengefully is one of
the deadly sins —
they are deadly because they
rob the one acting this
way of life
Matthew 7: 12
'So always treat others as you would like them to treat you; that is the Law and the Prophets.
Matthew 22: 36-40
'Master, which is the greatest commandment of the Law?' Jesus said to him, 'You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second resembles it: You must love your neighbour as yourself. On these two commandments hang the whole Law, and the Prophets too.'
Ephesians 4: 26-27
Even if you are angry, do not sin: never let the sun set on your anger or else you will give the devil a foothold.
Song: Why do We Hurt the Ones we Love
Song: Live This Day
Song: I am a God of Justice
Romans 5: 5-11
and a hope which will not let us down, because the love of God has been poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit which has been given to us. When we were still helpless, at the appointed time, Christ died for the godless. You could hardly find anyone ready to die even for someone upright; though it is just possible that, for a really good person, someone might undertake to die. So it is proof of God’s own love for us, that Christ died for us while we were still sinners. How much more can we be sure, therefore, that, now that we have been justified by his death, we shall be saved through him from the retribution of God. For if, while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of his Son, how much more can we be sure that, being now reconciled, we shall be saved by his life. What is more, we are filled with exultant trust in God, through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have already gained our reconciliation.
Romans 6: 3-9
You cannot have forgotten that all of us, when we were baptised into Christ Jesus, were baptised into his death. So by our baptism into his death we were buried with him, so that as Christ was raised from the dead by the Father’s glorious power, we too should begin living a new life. If we have been joined to him by dying a death like his, so we shall be by a resurrection like his; realising that our former self was crucified with him, so that the self which belonged to sin should be destroyed and we should be freed from the slavery of sin. Someone who has died, of course, no longer has to answer for sin.
But we believe that, if we died with Christ, then we shall live with him too. We know that Christ has been raised from the dead and will never die again. Death has no power over him any more.
Matthew 25: 34
Then the King will say to those on his right hand, "Come, you whom my Father has blessed, take as your heritage the kingdom prepared for you since the foundation of the world.
John 6: 37-40
Everyone whom the Father gives me
will come to me;
I will certainly not reject
anyone who comes to me,
because I have come from heaven,
not to do my own will,
but to do the will of him who sent me.
Now the will of him who sent me
is that I should lose nothing
of all that he has given to me,
but that I should raise it up
on the last day.
It is my Father's will
that whoever sees the Son
and believes in him
should have eternal life,
and that I should raise that person up
on the last day.
Philippians 2: 12-18
So, my dear friends, you have always been obedient; your obedience must not be limited to times when I am present. Now that I am absent it must be more in evidence, so work out your salvation in fear and trembling. It is God who, for his own generous purpose, gives you the intention and the powers to act. Let your behaviour be free of murmuring and complaining so that you remain faultless and pure, unspoilt children of God surrounded by a deceitful and underhand brood, shining out among them like bright stars in the world, proffering to it the Word of life. Then I shall have reason to be proud on the Day of Christ, for it will not be for nothing that I have run the race and toiled so hard. Indeed, even if my blood has to be poured as a libation over your sacrifice and the offering of your faith, then I shall be glad and join in your rejoicing- and in the same way, you must be glad and join in my rejoicing.
Luke 14: 25-33
Great crowds accompanied him on his way and he turned and spoke to them. 'Anyone who comes to me without hating father, mother, wife, children, brothers, sisters, yes and his own life too, cannot be my disciple. No one who does not carry his cross and come after me can be my disciple.
'And indeed, which of you here, intending to build a tower, would not first sit down and work out the cost to see if he had enough to complete it? Otherwise, if he laid the foundation and then found himself unable to finish the work, anyone who saw it would start making fun of him and saying, "Here is someone who started to build and was unable to finish." Or again, what king marching to war against another king would not first sit down and consider whether with ten thousand men he could stand up to the other who was advancing against him with twenty thousand? If not, then while the other king was still a long way off, he would send envoys to sue for peace. So in the same way, none of you can be my disciple without giving up all that he owns.
If we want eternal life we are to
plan now —
to have what God requires —
Living according to God's will —
who asks no interest on loans,
who takes no bribe to harm the innocent.
No one who so acts can ever be shaken.
Matthew 19: 27-29
Then Peter answered and said, ‘Look, we have left everything and followed you. What are we to have, then?’ Jesus said to them, ‘In truth I tell you, when everything is made new again and the Son of man is seated on his throne of glory, you yourselves will sit on twelve thrones to judge the twelve tribes of Israel. And everyone who has left houses, brothers, sisters, father, mother, children or land for the sake of my name will receive a hundred times as much, and also inherit eternal life.
Jesus: Follow Me
Follow Me —
I obeyed My Father's will to My death
on the cross
My way is love —
I am love —
You cannot hate your brother — be
envious — act hatefully and
say, you are serving Me —
You are a fool —
What you sow — so shall you
What you plant will be your yield —
A man opened a bank account and
then began to try to play games
with the bank —
The man lost for all his evil deeds —
His hands and heart was tainted —
Instead of acting straight forwardly —
his ways were twisted —
rebellious — angry — to
see if he could win while
he was playing games with
the bank —
I give you a message Mary delivered
long ago with the image —
December 19, 1996
Mary: My dear children, I give to you, my Son, Jesus, born in a stable in Bethlehem on Christmas morn. He is the Almighty God, the Light of the World.
I appear to you, my children, on a (former) bank in Florida. You have made money your god! Do you know how cold are your hearts? You turn away from my Son, Jesus, for your money. Your money is your god.
I am Mary, your Mother. I do not appear as I once appeared to you. I am asking you today to circulate my message given on a tape on the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, December 12, 1996. Please circulate this tape now. Give it to as many people as you can. I am Mary, your Mother. Please circulate my Rosary Book.
end of December 19, 1996
Jesus: Let your 'yes' be 'yes' and
your 'no' be 'no'
St. Paul says
Philippians 3: 3-8
We are the true people of the circumcision since we worship by the Spirit of God and make Christ Jesus our only boast, not relying on physical qualifications, although, I myself could rely on these too. If anyone does claim to rely on them, my claim is better. Circumcised on the eighth day of my life, I was born of the race of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew born of Hebrew parents. In the matter of the Law, I was a Pharisee; as for religious fervour, I was a persecutor of the Church; as for the uprightness embodied in the Law, I was faultless. But what were once my assets I now through Christ Jesus count as losses. Yes, I will go further: because of the supreme advantage of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, I count everything else as loss. For him I have accepted the loss of all other things, and look on them all as filth if only I can gain Christ
R. St. Paul after his experience of the light of
conversion did not deny his horrendous
sin of persecuting the Christians previous —
he was so sorry for his sin —
he worked tirelessly, then, for God —
his words speak to us today.
St. Luke says 15: 1-10
Luke 15: 1-10
The tax collectors and sinners, however, were all crowding round to listen to him, and the Pharisees and scribes complained saying, ‘This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.’ So he told them this parable:
‘Which one of you with a hundred sheep, if he lost one, would fail to leave the ninety–nine in the desert and go after the missing one till he found it? And when he found it, would he not joyfully take it on his shoulders and then, when he got home, call together his friends and neighbours, saying to them, "Rejoice with me, I have found my sheep that was lost." In the same way, I tell you, there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner repenting than over ninety–nine upright people who have no need of repentance.
‘Or again, what woman with ten drachmas would not, if she lost one, light a lamp and sweep out the house and search thoroughly till she found it? And then, when she had found it, call together her friends and neighbours, saying to them, "Rejoice with me, I have found the drachma I lost." In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing among the angels of God over one repentant sinner.’
Jesus: I died for your sins —
Why are you so selfish to partake
in evil — disregarding
I paid the price for your
anger, greed, envy —
pride, disobedience with
My Blood —
As you measure
So shall the unrepented be measured by
their own deeds of rebellion against God's will—
Matthew 7: 12
'So always treat others as you would like them to treat you; that is the Law and the Prophets.
John 15: 16
You did not choose me,
no, I chose you;
and I commissioned you
to go out and to bear fruit,
fruit that will last;
so that the Father will give you
anything you ask him in my name.
Philippians 3: 17 - 4: 1
Brothers, be united in imitating me. Keep your eyes fixed on those who act according to the example you have from me. or there are so many people of whom I have often warned you, and now I warn you again with tears in my eyes, who behave like the enemies of Christ’s cross. hey are destined to be lost; their god is the stomach; they glory in what they should think shameful, since their minds are set on earthly things. But our homeland is in heaven and it is from there that we are expecting a Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transfigure the wretched body of ours into the mould of his glorious body, through the working of the power which he has, even to bring all things under his mastery.
So then, my brothers and dear friends whom I miss so much, my joy and my crown, hold firm in the Lord, dear friends.
Luke 16: 18
What is this "short time"? We don't know what he means.'
Jesus: I died for you
September 4, 2004
Wisdom 11: 22 — 12: 2
The whole world, for you, can no more than tip a balance,
like a drop of morning dew falling on the ground.
Yet you are merciful to all, because you are almighty,
you overlook people's sins, so that they can repent.
Yes, you love everything that exists,
and nothing that you have made disgusts you,
since, if you had hated something, you would not have made it.
And how could a thing subsist, had you not willed it?
Or how be preserved, if not called forth by you?
No, you spare all, since all is yours, Lord, lover of life!
For your imperishable spirit is in everything!
And thus, gradually, you correct those who offend;
you admonish and remind them of how they have sinned,
so that they may abstain from evil and trust in you, Lord.
"I will praise your name forever —
my king and my God"
Psalm 145: 1-2, 8-14
Hymn of Praise Of David
Day after day I shall bless you,
I shall praise your name for ever and ever.
Yahweh is tenderness and pity,
slow to anger, full of faithful love.
Yahweh is generous to all,
his tenderness embraces all his creatures.
All your creatures shall thank you, Yahweh,
and your faithful shall bless you.
They shall speak of the glory of your kingship
and tell of your might,
making known your mighty deeds to the children of Adam,
the glory and majesty of your kingship.
Your kingship is a kingship for ever,
your reign lasts from age to age.
Yahweh is trustworthy in all his words,
and upright in all his deeds.
Yahweh supports all who stumble,
lifts up those who are bowed down.
Luke 19: 1-10
He entered Jericho and was going through the town and suddenly a man whose name was Zacchaeus made his appearance; he was one of the senior tax collectors and a wealthy man. He kept trying to see which Jesus was, but he was too short and could not see him for the crowd; so he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore tree to catch a glimpse of Jesus who was to pass that way. When Jesus reached the spot he looked up and spoke to him, ‘Zacchaeus, come down. Hurry, because I am to stay at your house today.’ And he hurried down and welcomed him joyfully. They all complained when they saw what was happening. ‘He has gone to stay at a sinner’s house,’ they said. But Zacchaeus stood his ground and said to the Lord, ‘Look, sir, I am going to give half my property to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody I will pay him back four times the amount.’ And Jesus said to him, ‘Today salvation has come to this house, because this man too is a son of Abraham; for the Son of man has come to seek out and save what was lost.’
Excerpt from Response in Christ by Fr. Edward Carter, S.J.
e) Relationship with Members of the Church
There is but one true Church of Christ. Yet this one Church has three different states of existence. There is the pilgrim Church, the Church of this world, composed of members who have received the grace of Christ and strive for its development. They have not yet obtained the goal of their efforts, as have the members of the heavenly Church, who enjoy God in eternal happiness. The Church suffering is an intermediate state of existence necessary for those who had not achieved the required purification as members of the pilgrim Church. Although there are these three phases of the Church’s existence, there is a profound union existing between all the members. All these members possess the same basic life of grace in Christ, and this common life establishes the most intimate bonds of love. In our preceding chapter, we discussed the pilgrim Church. Let us now consider the Church suffering and the heavenly Church.
The members of the Church suffering are those who have departed from this life in an incomplete state of Christian development. Their development is incomplete in the sense that grace has not fully taken possession of them, and, as a result, they are yet closed in upon themselves to a greater or lesser degree. They as yet cannot open themselves out in complete love to the Triune God in the beatific vision. They must undergo a further purification, a purification which could have been achieved upon earth with merit. Now the purification must be achieved with no merit attached. The pain of this purification is mixed with the certain expectation of achieving the vision of God. We can hasten the advent of this vision for this people by the offering of prayers and other good works. Scripture itself refers to our action on behalf of those in purgatory in Chapter 12 of the Second Book of Maccabees beginning with verse 38.
The members of the heavenly Church are those in whom the life of grace has taken full possession and has reached its completion in the life of glory. Faith now is unnecessary, as the light of glory gives the human intellect a new strength and capacity for seeing God face-to-face. While the Christian was a wayfarer, he received the imprint of the indwelling Trinity as he shared in God’s own life. Now in heaven that grace-life and possession of God reaches its completion—the absolute completion is not achieved, however, until the resurrection of the body. The divine persons give Themselves to the beatified in a profound union far surpassing that of the indwelling of the Trinity experienced here below.
This life of heaven is still the Christ-life, for just as we possess a share in Trinitarian life here below as mediated by Christ, and exercise this grace-life as structured by Him, so also in heaven is the mediation of Christ present. In the words of Rahner, "One always sees the Father through Jesus. Just as immediately as this, for the directness of the vision of God is not a denial of the mediatorship of Christ as man."14 And not only does the humanity of Christ unite the blessed to God, but also, in some way, to the whole of creation. This is merely a completion of what is begun here below, namely, the union with Christ in His humanity establishing the Christian in a special relationship with God, with other men, and with the whole of creation. We have a glimpse, therefore, of the fullness of life which members of the heavenly Church possess.
The heavenly Church, as St. Thomas says, is the true Church.15 The Church of this earth and the Church of purgatory are, each in its own way, reaching out in loving hope for the heavenly Jerusalem. Vatican II puts it very simply: "The Church, to which we are called in Christ Jesus, and in which we acquire sanctity through the grace of God, will attain her full perfection only in the glory of heaven."16
The members of the heavenly Church can help us in living our life of grace until we too share its fullness with them. Their power of intercession on our behalf is but another ramification of the communal aspect of Christianity. We are meant to help others grow in Christ. We, in turn, are intended by God to receive aid from others—yes, from members of the heavenly Church, as well as from those with whom we dwell here below.
Not only can we be aided by the saints’ intercession, but the example of the canonized saints can also be of great value to us. They have concretely proved that full holiness is possible. Such an inspiration is of real worth when we are tempted to think that Christian sanctity in its higher degrees is impossible of attainment. Moreover, the canonized saints, in their diversity, teach us that there are many authentic versions of Christian holiness. They can be innovators in showing us that there are numerous possibilities in assimilating the mystery of Christ, although the basic assimilation remains the same for all Christians of all times. In the opinion of Rahner this is one of the chief roles the canonized saints exert in the life of the Church.17
14Karl Rahner, Theological Investigations, Vol. III (Baltimore: Helicon, 1967), p. 44.
15 Cf. St. Thomas Aquinas, In Ad Ephes., c. 3, Lect. 3.
16Second Vatican Council, Constitution on the Church, No. 48.
17Cf. Karl Rahner, Op. cit., pp. 100-101.
Revelation 7: 2-4, 9-14
Then I saw another angel rising where the sun rises, carrying the seal of the living God; he called in a powerful voice to the four angels whose duty was to devastate land and sea, ‘Wait before you do any damage on land or at sea or to the trees, until we have put the seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God.’ And I heard how many had been sealed: a hundred and forty–four thousand, out of all the tribes of Israel.
After that I saw that there was a huge number, impossible for anyone to count, of people from every nation, race, tribe and language; they were standing in front of the throne and in front of the Lamb, dressed in white robes and holding palms in their hands. They shouted in a loud voice, ‘Salvation to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’ And all the angels who were standing in a circle round the throne, surrounding the elders and the four living creatures, prostrated themselves before the throne, and touched the ground with their foreheads, worshipping God with these words:
Amen. Praise and glory and wisdom,
thanksgiving and honour
and power and strength
to our God for ever and ever. Amen.
One of the elders then spoke and asked me, ‘Who are these people, dressed in white robes, and where have they come from?’ I answered him, ‘You can tell me, sir.’ Then he said, ‘These are the people who have been through the great trial; they have washed their robes white again in the blood of the Lamb.
1 John 3: 1-3
You must see what great love
the Father has lavished on us
by letting us be called God’s children—
which is what we are!
The reason why the world
does not acknowledge us
is that it did not acknowledge him.
My dear friends,
we are already God’s children,
but what we shall be in the future
has not yet been revealed.
We are well aware that when he appears
we shall be like him,
because we shall see him as he really is.
Whoever treasures this hope of him
purifies himself, to be as pure as he is.
Matthew 5: 1-12
Seeing the crowds, he went onto the mountain. And when he was seated his disciples came to him. Then he began to speak. This is what he taught them:
How blessed are the poor in spirit:
the kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
Blessed are the gentle:
they shall have the earth as inheritance.
Blessed are those who mourn:
they shall be comforted.
Blessed are those
who hunger and thirst for uprightness:
they shall have their fill.
Blessed are the merciful:
they shall have mercy shown them.
Blessed are the pure in heart:
they shall see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers:
they shall be recognised
as children of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted
in the cause of uprightness:
the kingdom of Heaven is theirs.
Blessed are you when people abuse you and persecute you and speak all kinds of calumny against you falsely on my account.
Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven; this is how they persecuted the prophets before you.
Sing: Blessed Are They
November 1, 2007
INTRODUCTION: Our first reading is from the book of Revelation. The section just preceding today’s passage described the end of the world. The sun became dark and the moon became red as blood and there was a great earthquake all over the earth. People tried to hide from all these terrible things and they asked: “Who can survive?” Today’s reading answers the question - those who have followed Christ faithfully. The number 144,000 is a symbolic number, symbolizing perfection. Notice after it refers to the 144,000 it speaks of those who are saved as such a large crowd that no one could count them.
HOMILY: It’s hard to believe it’s already November. As this year comes to an end we are reminded that time in this life will come to an end for each one of us. It’s not something most of us enjoy thinking about, but the Church reminds us through various liturgies at this time of the year that this life is not all there is. God has greater things prepared for us. And so we begin the month with the feast of All Saints, giving us an image of the glory God intends for us if we just travel along the way he has pointed out for us.
The first reading today is from the last book of the bible giving us a lot of hope that we will be among those who will enjoy God’s love for all eternity. Even though Jesus told us that those who take the easy way that leads to destruction are many, and there are few who enter into life through the narrow gate, those few are still quite a sizeable number, a number too large to count. Those who have been designated by the Church as saints are very easy to count. It’s obvious that the great number of saints our first reading tells us about include ordinary people like us, or like neighbors we’ve known, or parents or grandparents or relatives we’ve loved.
The hope that our first reading gives us is underscored in our second reading where we hear that “we are God’s children.” This is not just a nice, feel-good, poetic term, it is in fact what we really are if we have God’s grace in us.
Our gospel reading shows us Jesus preaching the beatitudes as he begins the Sermon on the Mount. As we hear the beatitudes, we can perhaps think of some of the great saints who lived out the various beatitudes. For example: “blessed are the single hearted” such as Mother Teresa, or “blessed are the poor in spirit” like St. Francis of Assisi, or “blessed are those persecuted for holiness sake” such as St. Lawrence or St. Boniface. Which of the beatitudes do you think appeals most to you? On this day of All Saints it might be a good idea to choose one of the beatitudes and try to live it out more fully. I believe if we do, we will find that we are at the same time living out all the others to a greater degree as well. ” Let us remember that Jesus ends them with these words: “Be glad and rejoice, for your reward will be great in heaven.”
2 Maccabees 12: 43-46
after this he took a collection from them individually, amounting to nearly two thousand drachmas, and sent it to Jerusalem to have a sacrifice for sin offered, an action altogether fine and noble, prompted by his belief in the resurrection. For had he not expected the fallen to rise again, it would have been superfluous and foolish to pray for the dead, whereas if he had in view the splendid recompense reserved for those who make a pious end, the thought was holy and devout. Hence, he had this expiatory sacrifice offered for the dead, so that they might be released from their sin.
November 2, 2008
– (2 Maccabees 12: 43-46, Romans 5: 5-11, John 6: 37-40) Our first reading, from the book of Maccabees, comes from about 100 years before Christ. At that time in history the Greeks were the dominant power and they were trying to get the Jews to abandon their faith and follow the beliefs of the pagans. Those who would not give in were persecuted and put to death. The loyal Jews fought back. In one of their battles, many Jews were killed. As they were being buried, it was found that they had small statues of pagan gods attached to their garments. These Jews were loyal to their Jewish beliefs, but they had, to some extent, given in to paganism. Just in case those pagan gods were real, they were carrying with them statues of pagan gods to give them protection. Their leader, Judas Maccabeus, took up a collection to send to Jerusalem for sacrifices to be offered up to the Lord for those people. He believed their hearts were, in general, in the right place, but for the weakness in their faith they had to be forgiven. In this piece of history from 100 B.C., we can see the beginnings of the belief that our prayers can help those who have died, a belief that is still part of our faith.
HOMILY– Praying for our deceased relatives and friends is what our feast of All Souls is about today. However, I had the hardest time getting started with today’s homily. I kept putting it off. It’s not as if I do not believe in praying for friends and relatives who have died. I do it all the time and it has been a tradition in the Church from the beginning, and even before that as we heard in our first reading.
I think the difficulty I had in developing my homily comes from two sources. First, many people don’t like to hear about death and what might come afterwards. We know we can’t avoid it, but my sense is that many people believe that if they don’t think about it, it won’t happen, at least not for a long time. My suspicion is that my father was that way. I constantly tried to get him to make a will but he never did. As a CPA he would have known it was a good idea. I think making a will would have made the prospect of his own death too concrete and too real for him to deal with.
The second reason today’s homily was hard was that I would have to talk about Purgatory. It’s an idea that many Christians deny. I remember once I was helping a family prepare the liturgy for their deceased father and they insisted “absolutely no mention of Purgatory.” It’s as if it were a bad word. They wanted to think their father was perfect, I guess, and was already in heaven. Most of us would like to believe that our loved ones go straight to heaven when they die – period. If this were true, then they would not need our prayers. If they went to the other place, God forbid, our prayers would do them no good. The Church teaches, in every Mass we have for a person who died and in today’s feast, that our prayers do help our relatives and friends who have left this world as they journey to eternal life.
Purgatory, among all the mysteries and beliefs of the Church is an extremely logical and comforting doctrine. It’s logical if we ask ourselves how many of us think we will be perfect when we die. There may even be some who are perfect right now. I would ask them to identify themselves, but if they’re perfect, they will also be too humble to do so. Even those who lived a good life may still have a little room for improvement, they may still not love God or others quite enough. That’s where Purgatory comes in – it’s an opportunity to grow into the most loving, most holy person we can possibly be. As a result we would then be filled with God’s peace and joy and love to the fullest extent. Luther rejected the idea of Purgatory because of the abuse of indulgences at the time. Today, the concept of Purgatory has been rejected by many because of all the negative images of suffering and punishment that we grew up with. Actually, I think for the souls in Purgatory, happiness far outweighs the unhappiness. Their salvation is sure, they are more closely united with God than they had ever experienced before in their lives, they are on their way to the enjoyment of God’s kingdom in the fullest possible way. But they’re not there yet and that’s the painful part.
If you read the book, “The Five People You Meet in Heaven,” I think you get a good, practical image of Purgatory. It’s not a religious book, it’s very entertaining and it pictured for me what Purgatory might be like as we work out issues, regrets, hurts, conflicts, etc., that we might take with us when we die.
To demonstrate that Purgatory makes so much sense, I think that those who deny Purgatory have had to find a substitute for it in their thinking about the next life. For many that substitute is reincarnation. In reincarnation a person supposedly keeps working for greater and greater purity and holiness until they are ready to be perfectly one with God. However, reincarnation comes from Hinduism. Actually a Hindu does not look forward to reincarnation because they don’t want to have to pass through this world of pain and suffering one more time. I suspect the notion of reincarnation has been adopted by many Westerners, even Christians, because it fits our culture of “buy now, pay later.” They figure they can live any way they want and can postpone having to pay any consequences. Our faith tells us, “now is the acceptable time, now is the day of salvation.” God gives us what we need in this life to help us know him and serve him in this life. If we do not do it perfectly, Purgatory is there to finish the job. Today, we renew our faith in life after death. Today too we renew our belief in the power of prayer to help our loved ones, even those who are no longer among us, for in Christ they are still one with us. With Christ our great high priest, we offer now the greatest prayer there is, the Eucharist.
Our mission in the Shepherds of Christ is to
help to renew the Church and the
In circulating these writings/homilies
of Fr. Joe last year to 38,000
priests in the United States and
the hierarchy around the world —
we were answering Jesus' call to
Fr. Carter 16 years ago to spread the
Priestly writing Shepherds of Christ
July 31, 1994
Words of Jesus to Members of
Shepherds of Christ Associates:
"My beloved priest-companion, I intend to use the priestly newsletter, Shepherds of Christ, and the movement, Shepherds of Christ Associates, in a powerful way for the renewal of My Church and the world.
"I will use the newsletter and the chapters of Shepherds of Christ Associates as a powerful instrument for spreading devotion to My Heart and My Mother's Heart.
"I am calling many to become members of Shepherds of Christ Associates. To all of them I will give great blessings. I will use them as instruments to help bring about the triumph of the Immaculate Heart and the reign of My Sacred Heart. I will give great graces to the members of Shepherds of Christ Associates. I will call them to be deeply united to My Heart and to Mary's Heart as I lead them ever closer to My Father in the Holy Spirit."
- Message from Jesus to Father Edward J. Carter, S.J., Founder, as given on July 31, 1994,
feast of Saint Ignatius Loyola, Founder of the Society of Jesus (The Jesuits)
We have circulated at least 15,000,000 Priestly Newsletters
individually and in books in 16 years —
we still try to spread the prayer
chapters — Jesus told Fr. Carter to
begin — Now in 8 languages
we have many on brochures and you
can request these for your
prayer chapter —
Also the message of Fr. Carter
to begin Apostles of the Eucharistic
Heart of Jesus
Apostles of the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus
My dear fellow Associate Members,
Jesus is calling special apostles to join a new division of the Shepherds of Christ Movement. Here is a message from Jesus given to Father Carter:
My beloved priest-companion, I am requesting that a new prayer movement be started under the direction of Shepherds of Christ Ministries. I am asking for volunteers who are willing to pray before the Blessed Sacrament for one hour, twice-weekly. Members of the Shepherds of Christ prayer chapters, as well as others, are to be invited to join this movement.
These apostles are to pray for the intentions I am giving you. For part of the hour they are to use the prayers of the Shepherds of Christ Associates Handbook. They may spend the rest of the hour as they so choose.
I will use this new prayer movement within My Shepherds of Christ Ministries in a powerful way to help in the renewal of My Church and the world. I will give great graces to those who join this movement. The name, Apostles of the Eucharistic Heart of Jesus, is to be given to this movement.
I am inviting My beloved Rita Ring to be coordinator for this activity.
I pour out the great love of My Sacred Heart to all. I am Jesus, Chief Shepherd of the flock.
This is indeed a special calling for us to unite in one heart with His Eucharistic Heart and pray for the following intentions:
1. For the spread of the devotion to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary culminating in the reign of the Sacred Heart and the triumph of the Immaculate Heart.
2. For the Pope.
3. For all bishops of the world.
4. For all priests.
5. For all sisters and brothers in the religious life.
6. For all members of the Shepherds of Christ Movement, and for the spread of this movement to the world.
7. For all members of the Catholic Church.
8. For all members of the human family.
9. For all souls in purgatory.
end of Apostles of the Eucharistic Heart
Jesus is telling us what to do —
He told Fr. Carter 16 years ago to
start these prayer chapters
Our mission is to help bring peace
to the world —
We must want peace and love in
our own hearts
Prayer for Union with Jesus
Come to me, Lord, and possess my soul. Come into my heart and permeate my soul. Help me to sit in silence with You and let You work in my heart.
I am Yours to possess. I am Yours to use. I want to be selfless and only exist in You. Help me to spoon out all that is me and be an empty vessel ready to be filled by You. Help me to die to myself and live only for You. Use me as You will. Let me never draw my attention back to myself. I only want to operate as You do, dwelling within me.
I am Yours, Lord. I want to have my life in You. I want to do the will of the Father. Give me the strength to put aside the world and let You operate my very being. Help me to act as You desire. Strengthen me against the distractions of the devil to take me from Your work.
When I worry, I have taken my focus off of You and placed it on myself. Help me not to give in to the promptings of others to change what in my heart You are making very clear to me. I worship You, I adore You and I love You. Come and dwell in me now.
-God's Blue Book, January 17, 1994
Peace means we live our consecration
to the Hearts of Jesus and Mary
Act of consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus
and the Immaculate Heart of Mary.
"Lord Jesus, Chief Shepherd of the flock, I consecrate myself to Your most Sacred Heart. From Your pierced Heart the Church was born, the Church You have called me, as a member of Shepherds of Christ Associates, to serve in a most special way. You reveal Your Heart as a symbol of Your love in all its aspects, including Your most special love for me, whom You have chosen as Your companion in this most important work. Help me to always love You in return. Help me to give myself entirely to You. Help me always to pour out my life in love of God and neighbor! Heart of Jesus, I place my trust in You!
"Dear Blessed Virgin Mary, I consecrate myself to your maternal and Immaculate Heart, this Heart which is symbol of your life of love. You are the Mother of my Savior. You are also my Mother. You love me with a most special love as a member of Shepherds of Christ Associates, a movement created by your Son as a powerful instrument for the renewal of the Church and the world. In a return of love, I give myself entirely to your motherly love and protection. You followed Jesus perfectly. You are His first and perfect disciple. Teach me to imitate you in the putting on of Christ. Be my motherly intercessor so that, through your Immaculate Heart, I may be guided to an ever closer union with the pierced Heart of Jesus, Chief Shepherd of the flock."
We want to be united as a body with
Christ our head —
Peace means seeing with the vision
of God's will —
not rebelling against it
Peace means working with each other —
loving each other — not
competing and being envious
trying to raise ourselves
up for vain glory and
put our brothers down
Peace means obedience to just
authority over us
Peace means not sacrificing
needed rules for selfish
people wanting chaos —
Peace in ourselves means —
loving one's vocation and
serving in love with others
for a common goal and
the plan of the Father
Sing: Let There Be Peace on Earth
July 13, 1917
"But in the end, my Immaculate Heart will triumph, the Holy Father will consecrate Russia to me, Russia will be converted, and a certain period of peace will be granted to the world." (13)
13. For background material on Fatima, I am particularly indebted to
Our Lady of Fatima's Peace Plan from Heaven (Rockford: TAN
Books and Publishers, Inc., 1983). p.5.
Please pray your prayers —
live your vocation
pray for an increase
of faith, hope and charity
Given October 29, 2010
The Father's Plan
To build the Kingdom of love
To be united
To be one
To be harmonious
To obey those over us —
Never to lie
Not to be prideful —
But to seek justice and peace.
Jesus died in perfect peace.
Living the pascal mystery of
Forgiving those who offend us
as we want God to forgive us —
Jesus taught us the
pascal mystery death/resurrection
Why do we operate —
To build God's Kingdom
To love God and to love others
To have deep relationships — like Mary and Jesus;
Mary and Joseph — Jesus and His Apostles —
Jesus and John; Jesus and Mary Magdalene,
Jesus and Peter —
We see the sufferings of Jesus and we see the resurrection —
We see the obedience of Jesus to His Father's will —
We want to work for Jesus with our whole heart,
our whole soul, our whole being —
We need to forgive — we need to be forgiven
The devil works in the angry heart —
The devil works in the weak link —
lies are so bad —
Pride — I can be better than you, prettier than you,
smarter than you —
A person living to be better than their brother and
proving it to themselves and others day long —
misses the purpose of life —
To use our gifts God gives us in His service —
loving our brother and being obedient to
God and those over us —
Satan works in the impurities of our heart —
say for example one may think
if I lose weight — everyone will see my
beauty and I will be prettier than everyone
but you were called to go on a mission this
day for souls — so you didn't eat — thought
of yourself and your beauty - and never even
prayed for those needing your life offered
up for the service of Jesus —
pride, lust, me, me, becomes the god that
you worship — MY AFFECTION — MY
Beauty — My intelligence — My being better
than you — These are focusing on the impurities
of the wounded human nature —
and then holding out to prove — I AM TOPS
over you — Power over —
Satan works this way to get us off praying for
building God's Kingdom —
the focus becomes my inferior feelings about
myself and my desire to look better, be
better than the people I need to obey or
work with as brothers
The saints sacrificed, some were beheaded, some
crucified — they lived for the souls — they
knew suffering was an opportunity to bring
down grace for their brothers, themselves
to be pleasing to God —
Not vain for their self glory —
So God calls you to partake in a great mission —
Satan comes and gets you to focus on yourself —
Oh you should be more pretty than
Suzie Q —
You need to not eat so you can lose weight
ie When you needed to do the work so important
to God — you went on an astringent
diet and said lets live on the Eucharist —
The Eucharist means thanksgiving - love —
going out of oneself —
being united —
serving God — focusing on God and living
in obedience to God's will —
The Eucharist means union — harmony —
obedience to God — service — love — giving
Order your Christmas presents that last!
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$10.00 each plus shipping
|Fr. Joe Robinson|
|Fr. Edward J. Carter|
Get a canvas print of Mary's image
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a cup with a Mary's image on it
Cost — $15
Rosaries with Mary's Image Available
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Sacred Heart of Jesus w/glass - 18
Our Lady-Guadalupe w/glass - 12
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I Heart - Ivory w/glass - 18
Our Lady of Grace w/glass - 18
Our Lady-Mt. Carmel w/glass - 18
Our Lady of Lourdes w/glass - 18
Infant of Prague w/glass - 24
Sacred Heart of Jesus w/glass - 24
Sacred Heart -Blessing w/glass - 24
Sorrowful Mother w/glass - 24
I Heart - Ivory w/glass - 24
I Heart of Mary w/glass - 24
Our Lady of Lourdes w/glass - 24
Our Lady-Guadalupe w/glass - 28
Our Lady of Grace w/glass - 24
Our Lady-Mt. Carmel w/glass - 24
St. Padre Pio
Pieta - Marble
Pieta - Color
St. Anthony - 18
St. Francis - 18
St. Joseph - 18
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Shepherds of Christ Ministries
P. O. Box 627
China, IN 47250
Size Price Quantity
St. Padre Pio
$100 St. Philomena
$100 St. Philomena
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$500 Sacred Heart of Jesus w/glass
$500 Sacred Heart -Blessing w/glass
Sorrowful Mother w/glass
$500 Immaculate Heart of Mary w/glass
$300 Immaculate Heart - Ivory w/glass
$300 Sacred Heart of Jesus w/glass
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18" $300 Our Lady of Guadalupe w/glass
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$160 Pilgrim Virgin w/glass 15" $200 Pilgrim Virgin w/glass 18" $250 Pilgrim Virgin w/glass
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