Mark

A DAILY JOURNAL

The Power of the Resurrection

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 18th, 2014
Opt. Memorial of St. Januarius

Liturgical texts here

 

 

A LOT hinges on the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. As St. Paul says today:

…if Christ has not been raised, then empty too is our preaching; empty, too, your faith. (First reading)

It’s all in vain if Jesus is not alive today. It would mean that death has conquered all and “you are still in your sins.”

But it is precisely the Resurrection that makes any sense of the early Church. I mean, if Christ had not risen, why would His followers go to their brutal deaths insisting on a lie, a fabrication, a thin hope? It’s not like they were trying to build a powerful organization—they chose a life of poverty and service. If anything, you’d think these men would have readily abandoned their faith in the face of their persecutors saying, “Well look, it was quite the three years we lived with Jesus! But no, he’s gone now, and that’s that.” The only thing that makes sense of their radical turnabout after His death is that they saw Him risen from the dead.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 18th, 2014 | No Comments »

The Heart of Catholicism

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 18th, 2014

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THE very heart of Catholicism is not Mary; it is not the Pope nor even the Sacraments. It is not even Jesus, per se. Rather it is what Jesus has done for us. Because John writes that “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” But unless the next thing happens…

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 18th, 2014 | No Comments »

Seeing Dimly

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 17th, 2014
Opt. Memorial of Saint Robert Bellarmine

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THE Catholic Church is an incredible gift to God’s people. For it is true, and it always has been, that we can turn to her not only for the sweetness of the Sacraments but also to draw upon the infallible Revelation of Jesus Christ that sets us free.

Still, we see dimly.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 17th, 2014 | No Comments »

One Flock

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 16th, 2014
Memorial of Saints Cornelius and Cyprian, Martyrs

Liturgical texts here

 

 

IT’s a question no “bible-believing” Protestant Christian has ever been able to answer for me in the nearly twenty years I’ve been in public ministry: whose interpretation of Scripture is the right one? Every once in awhile, I receive letters from readers who want to set me straight on my interpretation of the Word. But I always write them back and say, “Well, it’s not my interpretation of the Scriptures—it’s the Church’s. After all, it was the Catholic Bishops at the councils of Carthage and Hippo (393, 397, 419 AD) who determined what was to be deemed the “canon” of Scripture, and which writings were not. It only makes sense to go to the ones who put the Bible together for its interpretation.”

But I tell you, the vacuum of logic among Christians is at times stunning.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 16th, 2014 | No Comments »

When a Mother Cries

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 15th, 2014
Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows

Liturgical texts here

 

 

I stood and watched as tears welled in her eyes. They ran down her cheek and formed drops on her chin. She looked as though her heart could break. Only a day before, she had appeared peaceful, even joyful… but now her face seemed to betray the deep sorrow in her heart. I could only ask “Why…?”, but there was no answer in the rose-scented air, since the Woman I was looking at was a statue of Our Lady of Fatima.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 15th, 2014 | No Comments »

Run the Race!

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 12th, 2014
The Holy Name of Mary

Liturgical texts here

 

 

DON’T look back, my brother! Don’t give up, my sister! We are running the Race of all races. Are you weary? Then stop for a moment with me, here by the oasis of God’s Word, and let us catch our breath together. I am running, and I see you all running, some ahead, some behind. And so I’m stopping and waiting for those of you who are tired and discouraged. I am with you. God is with us. Let’s rest upon His heart for a moment…

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 12th, 2014 | No Comments »

Fatima, and the Great Shaking

 

 

AS many as a hundred thousand people saw it: the sun began to spin, pulsate, and radiate a multitude of colors. But then something happened that defied any explanation, even by the atheists gathered that October afternoon in 1917 at Fatima, Portugal:

Before the astonished eyes of the crowd, whose aspect was biblical as they stood bare-headed, eagerly searching the sky, the sun trembled, made sudden incredible movements outside all cosmic laws—the sun ‘danced’ according to the typical expression of the people. —Avelino de Almeida,writing for O Século (Portugal’s most widely circulatedand influential newspaper, which was pro-government and anti-clerical at the time. Almeida’s previous articles had been to satirize the previously reported events at Fátima). www.answers.com

In my article, Debunking the Sun Miracle Skeptics, I examined all the natural explanations that have failed to explain away the supernatural event that took place that day. But an atheist recently wrote saying that what people saw was “a physical impossibility” since the sun cannot dart about the sky. Of course not—what the people saw, obviously, was a vision of sorts. I mean, the sun can’t move about the sky… or can it?

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE GREAT TRIALS | on September 11th, 2014 | 1 Comment »

Preparing for Glory

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 11th, 2014

Liturgical texts here

 

 

 

DO you find yourself agitated when you hear such statements as “detach yourself from possessions” or “renounce the world”, etc.? If so, it’s often because we have a distorted view of what Christianity is all about—that it is the religion of pain and punishment.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 11th, 2014 | No Comments »

Time is Running Out

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 10th, 2014

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THERE was an expectation in the early Church that Jesus was going to return soon. Thus Paul says to the Corinthians in today’s first reading that “time is running out.” Because of “the present distress”, he offers advice on marriage, suggesting that those who are single remain celibate. And he goes further…

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 10th, 2014 | No Comments »

The Power of a Pure Soul

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 9th, 2014
Memorial of St. Peter Claver

Liturgical texts here

 

 

IF we are to be co-workers with God, this implies much more than simply “working for” God. It means being in communion with Him. As Jesus said,

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit. (John 15:5)

But this communion with God is predicated on a vital condition of the soul: purity. God is holy; He is a pure being, and He joins to Himself only that which is pure.1 Jesus said to St. Faustina:

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FOOTNOTES:

  1. from this flows the theology of Purgatory. See On Temporal Punishment []
Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 9th, 2014 | No Comments »

God’s Co-workers

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 8th, 2014
Feast of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Liturgical texts here

 

 

I hope you have had a chance to read my meditation on Mary, The Masterwork. Because, really, it reveals a truth about who you are and should be in Christ. After all, what we say of Mary can be said of the Church, and by this is meant not only the Church as a whole, but individuals on a certain level as well.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 8th, 2014 | No Comments »

Wisdom, the Power of God

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 1st – September 6th, 2014
Ordinary Time

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THE first evangelists—it might surprise you to know—were not the Apostles. They were demons.

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Published in: A DAILY JOURNAL, THE NOW WORD | on September 6th, 2014 | No Comments »