The Dark Night

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for October 1st, 2014
Memorial of St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus,
Virgin and Doctor of the Church

Liturgical texts here


St. Thérèse of the Child Jesus

 

YOU know her for her roses and the simplicity of her spirituality. But fewer know her for the utter darkness she walked in before her death. Suffering from tuberculosis, St. Thérèse de Lisieux admitted that, if she didn’t have faith, she would have committed suicide. She said to her bedside nurse:

I am surprised that there aren’t more suicides among atheists. —as reported by Sister Marie of the Trinity; CatholicHousehold.com

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Resolute

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 30th, 2014
Memorial of St. Jerome

Liturgical texts here

 

 

ONE man laments his sufferings. The other goes straight toward them. One man questions why he was born. Another fulfills His destiny. Both men long for their deaths.

The difference being that Job wants to die to end his suffering. But Jesus wants to die to end our suffering. And thus…

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The Everlasting Dominion

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 29th, 2014
Feast of Saints Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael, Archangels

Liturgical texts here


The Fig Tree

 

 

BOTH Daniel and St. John write of a terrible beast that rises to overwhelm the entire world for a short time… but is followed by the establishment of God’s Kingdom, “an everlasting dominion.” It is given not only to the one “like a son of man”, [1]cf. First reading but…

…the kingdom and the dominion and the greatness of the kingdoms under the whole heaven shall be given to the people of the saints of the Most High. (Dan 7:27)

This sounds like Heaven, which is why many mistakenly speak of the end of the world after the fall of this beast. But the Apostles and Church Fathers understood it differently. They anticipated that, at some point in the future, God’s Kingdom would come in a profound and universal way before the end of time.

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1. cf. First reading

Hell Unleashed

 

 

WHEN I wrote this last week, I decided to sit on it and pray some more because of the very serious nature of this writing. But nearly every day since, I have been getting clear confirmations that this is a word of warning to all of us.

There are many new readers coming aboard each day. Let me briefly recap then… When this writing apostolate began some eight years ago, I felt the Lord asking me to “watch and pray”. [1]At WYD in Toronto in 2003, Pope John Paul II likewise asked us youth to become “the watchmen of the morning who announce the coming of the sun who is the Risen Christ!” —POPE JOHN PAUL II, Message of the Holy Father to the Youth of the World, XVII World Youth Day, n. 3; (cf. Is 21:11-12). Following the headlines, it seemed that there was an escalation of world events by the month. Then it began to be by the week. And now, it is daily. It is exactly as I felt the Lord was showing me it would happen (oh, how I wish in some ways I was wrong about this!)

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1. At WYD in Toronto in 2003, Pope John Paul II likewise asked us youth to become “the watchmen of the morning who announce the coming of the sun who is the Risen Christ!” —POPE JOHN PAUL II, Message of the Holy Father to the Youth of the World, XVII World Youth Day, n. 3; (cf. Is 21:11-12).

The Timeless

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 26th, 2014
Opt. Memorial Saints Cosmas and Damian

Liturgical texts here

passage_Fotor

 

 

THERE is an appointed time for everything. But strangely, it was never meant to be this way.

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance. (First reading)

What the scriptural writer speaks of here is not an imperative or injunction that we must carry out; rather, it is the realization that the human condition, like the ebb and flow of the tide, rises into glory… only to descend into sorrow.

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Beheading God

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 25th, 2014

Liturgical texts here


by Kyu Erien

 

 

AS I wrote last year, perhaps the most short-sighted aspect of our modern culture is the notion that we are on a linear path of advancement. That we are leaving behind, in the wake of human achievement, the barbarism and narrow-minded thinking of past generations and cultures. That we are loosening the shackles of prejudice and intolerance and marching toward a more democratic, free, and civilized world. [1]cf. The Progression of Man

We couldn’t be more wrong.

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The Guiding Star

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 24th, 2014

Liturgical texts here

 

 

IT is called the “Guiding Star” because it appears to be fixed in the night sky as an infallible point of reference. Polaris, as it’s called, is nothing less than a parable of the Church, which has its visible sign in the papacy.

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Justice and Peace

 

THE NOW WORD ON MASS READINGS
for September 22nd – 23rd, 2014
Memorial of St. Pio of Pietrelcina today

Liturgical texts here

 

 

THE readings the past two days speak of the justice and care that is due our neighbour in the way that God deems someone to be just. And that can be summarized essentially in the commandment of Jesus:

You shall love your neighbor as yourself. (Mark 12:31)

This simple statement can and should radically alter the way you treat your neighbour today. And this is very simple to do. Imagine yourself without clean clothing or not enough food; imagine yourself jobless and depressed; imagine yourself alone or grieving, misunderstood or afraid… and how would you want others to respond to you? Go then and do this to others.

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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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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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