DAILY PRAYER REQUESTS

Please feel free to post your prayer request for today as a comment to this post. Your needs and intentions will be included in our daily offerings throughout the day and at the 3 o’clock hour for Divine Mercy, and your requests will be personally offered to our Heavenly Father, having faith in the words our Lord spoke to Saint Faustina, “Through the chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.” (Diary, § 1731)

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“Almighty and Most Merciful God, our Source of encouragement and inspiration in the life of faith which You call us to live each day,

– please fill us with the strength and joy in serving You as faithful followers of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, always embracing the virtues of humility, obedience and selfless love and compassion for others in our daily lives, so that we may truly become the extension of Your Love and Mercy in our world today. We humbly pray this in Jesus’ Most Holy Name. Amen.”

Mercy Minutes with Jesus (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

September 16 ~ Give Away Everything

Theme:  Jesus the Teacher

(Continued)

“Give away everything at the first sign of a demand, even if they were the most necessary things. Do not ask for anything without consulting Me. Allow them to take away even what is due you – respect, your good name – let your spirit rise above all that. And so, set free from everything, rest close to My Heart, not allowing your peace to be disturbed by anything. My pupil, consider the words which I have spoken to you.’(Mercy Minutes with Jesus/Diary, 1685c)

My prayer response:

Lord Jesus, what a marvelous freedom You taught Saint Faustina – to give away everything at the first sign of a demand, so that I may be completely Yours. Teach me what I must do to have such a free spirit, not allowing my peace to be disturbed by anything – totally absorbed and trusting in You. (Mercy Minutes with Jesus)

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Mercy Minutes (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

September 16 ~ My Heart is a Living Tabernacle

Theme:  Blessed Sacrament, Eucharist, Mass

“Most sweet Jesus, set on fire my love for You and transform me into Yourself. Divinize me that my deeds may be pleasing to You. May this be accomplished by the power of the Holy Communion which I receive daily. Oh, how greatly I desire to be wholly transformed into You, O Lord!” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1289)

“Today, I have come to understand many of God’s mysteries. I have come to know that Holy Communion remains in me until the next Holy Communion. A vivid and clearly felt presence of God continues in my soul. The awareness of this plunges me into deep recollection, without the slightest effort on my part. My heart is a living tabernacle in which the living Host is reserved. I have never sought God in some far-off place, but within myself. It is in the depths of my own being that I commune with my God.” (Mercy Minutes/Diary, 1302)

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

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Meditation for the Day

Thursday of the Twenty-fourth Week in Ordinary Time, September 16

We Are Called to Find within Ourselves a True Love for Our God, Longing to Feel His Love in Our Lives, Longing to Receive His Forgiveness and His Mercy, and Truly Living That Same Love in Our Relationship with Others.

“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; prudent are all who live by it.” – the first part of the final verse which we read from today’s Responsorial Psalm, yet it is a truth which lies at the very heart of our life of faith.

The concept of “fear of the Lord” is not one of dread or trepidation, but rather it is a relationship of reverence and adoration which one should have for his or her God.

“Fear of the Lord” is spoken of many times throughout the Bible. The Book of Sirach tells us that “The beginning of wisdom is fear of the LORD.” In the Book of Proverbs, it tells us that The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, turning one from the snares of death.”

For each of us, as a Christian people, “fear of the Lord” is focusing one’s life on what is truly most important – a personal and loving relationship with Jesus Christ.

In our First Reading today, Paul is advising Timothy to be absorbed in his life of faith, in his relationship with Jesus Christ, in order that he may, as Saint Paul writes, “…set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity.”

As parents and grandparents, do we not try to do the same? Do we not try to set a proper example by the life we live and the faith which we profess? Even though this Letter was written to Timothy, it is also a Letter which applies to each of us, when he writes, “Be diligent in these matters, be absorbed in them…”

The example that Paul was asking Timothy to set for others is a far cry different than the example we find from the Pharisee in today’s Gospel. Simon the Pharisee was apparently a man who was not able to see “the forest through the trees”, as the old adage goes.

He was a man who seemed to be governed by self-righteousness rather than an understanding and compassionate heart. He was a man who seemed more concerned with outward appearances rather than the internal spirit within the heart and soul of an individual.

Yet, it was the “sinful woman”, whom we read about in our Gospel, who truly felt the “fear of the Lord” in her heart. In her great love, she lived the virtue of true humility by attending to the feet of Jesus, washing them with her tears, drying them with her hair, and anointing them with ointment.

In her heart, she was filled with a love which Simon, the Pharisee, could neither understand nor express. In the example which she demonstrates to each of us, her “many sins” were forgiven due to the “great love” which she has shown.

In this moment, frozen in time for all future generations of faithful to study and learn, our Lord breaks open for us the very Heart of God Itself! – teaching us of the Loving Compassion and Mercy which God has for anyone who reaches out to Him in complete humility – no matter how broken that person may be, surrendering him or herself to the graciousness of a God who only wishes to embrace us with His Divine and Eternal Love!

And Saint Faustina, the Apostle of Divine Mercy, once wrote in her Diary, Divine Mercy in My Soul, “Mercy is the flower of love. God is Love, and Mercy is His deed. In love it is conceived; in mercy it is revealed.”

For Simon in today’s Gospel, however, due to the coldness which filled his heart and the disdain which he felt regarding this woman, “little is forgiven” for him because he “loves little.”

In the person of Simon, we find much of what is wrong in our society and in many of our world’s cultures today. For the sake of outward appearances and social acceptance, the hearts of many seem to be aloof and indifferent to the poor and the truly needy, to the downtrodden in today’s society, who are increasing at an alarming rate.

Also, the effects of greed and selfishness in many people oftentimes marginalizes the less fortunate, and leaves many suffering in a world which becomes more and more devoid of truly selfless love, especially when we consider all that is occurring in the world today, wherein the hearts of so many of God’s children are filled with a mindless evil and a godless hatred!

However, in the person of the “sinful woman”, we find true humility, and a truly selfless giving of herself out of a heartfelt love which comes from the very depths of her innermost being.

Within this woman and the example she gave, we should find ourselves, filled with a true love for our God – longing to feel His Love in our lives, longing to receive His Forgiveness and His Mercy, and truly living that same Love in our relationship with others.

Saint Augustine once said, “The measure of love is to love without measure.” It is the example of love, which this woman sets for each of us, which should become our own measure that we show towards others.

May the “fear of the Lord” and our own personal relationship which we live with our God, and the love we show for others, fill our hearts with a true humility and a selflessness which will allow us one day to hear our Lord say to each of us, as He says to the woman in today’s Gospel, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

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Scripture for the Day

  • “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom; prudent are all who practice it.” (Psalm 111:10ab)
  • “The beginning of wisdom is fear of the LORD, which is formed with the faithful in the womb.” (Sirach 1:12)
  • “The fear of the LORD is a fountain of life, turning one from the snares of death.” (Proverbs 14:27)
  • “…set an example for those who believe, in speech, conduct, love, faith, and purity…Be diligent in these matters, be absorbed in them…” (1 Timothy 4:12b, 15a)
  • “Have mercy on me, God, in accord with your merciful love; in your abundant compassion blot out my transgressions. Thoroughly wash away my guilt; and from my sin cleanse me.” (Psalm 51:3-4)
  • “Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good, his mercy endures forever.” (Psalm 118:1)
  • “Now there was a sinful woman in the city who learned that he was at table in the house of the Pharisee. Bringing an alabaster flask of ointment, she stood behind [Jesus] at his feet weeping and began to bathe his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them, and anointed them with the ointment.” (Luke 7:37-38)
  • “When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this he said to himself, ‘If this man were a prophet, he would know who and what sort of woman this is who is touching him, that she is a sinner.’” (Luke 7:39)
  • “…[Jesus] turned to the woman and said to Simon, ‘Do you see this woman? When I entered your house, you did not give me water for my feet, but she has bathed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but she has not ceased kissing my feet since the time I entered. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she anointed my feet with ointment.’(Luke 7:44-46)
  • “So I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven; hence, she has shown great love. But the one to whom little is forgiven, loves little.” (Luke 7:47)
  • “Forgive your neighbor the wrong done to you; then when you pray, your own sins will be forgiven…Can one refuse mercy to a sinner like oneself, yet seek pardon for one’s own sins?” (Sirach 28:2, 4)
  • “For…judgment is merciless to one who has not shown mercy.” (James 2:13)
  • “As I have loved you, so you also should love one another.” (John 13:34b)
  • “We have come to know and to believe in the love God has for us. God is love, and whoever remains in love remains in God and God in him.” (1 John 4:16)
  • “…[Jesus] said to the woman, ‘Your faith has saved you; go in peace.’(Luke 7:50)

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Prayer for the Day

“Eternal God,
Who are the Light of the minds that know You,
the Joy of the hearts that love You,
and the Strength of the wills that serve You.

“Grant us so to know You, that we may truly love You,
and so to love You that we may fully serve You,
Whom to serve is perfect freedom,
in Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.”

Saint Augustine of Hippo

Saint of the Day ~ September 16

SAINT CORNELIUS (?-253), pope and martyr
and SAINT CYPRIAN of CARTHAGE (c.190-258), bishop and martyr

Today, the Church honors two friends in the service of Christ and His Church, Saints Cornelius and Cyprian.

Cornelius was elected the 21st pope in the year 251 during the persecutions of the Roman emperor, Decius. His first challenge, besides the ever present threat of the Roman authorities, was to bring an end to the schism brought upon the Church by his rival, the anti-pope Novatian. Cornelius convened a synod of bishops to confirm him as the rightful successor of Peter.

Pope Cornelius was quoted by his friend Bishop Cyprian as saying, “There is one God and one Christ and but one episcopal chair, originally founded on Peter by the Lord’s authority. There cannot, therefore, be set up another altar or another priesthood. Whatever any man in his rage or rashness shall appoint, in defiance of the Divine institution, must be a spurious, profane and sacrilegious ordinance.”

Also, during Cornelius’ papacy, a great controversy arose as a result of the Decian persecution as to whether or not the Church could pardon and receive back into its fold those who had apostatized [renounced their faith] in the face of martyrdom, for it was not until the reign of Decius that the persecutions of Christians spread throughout the entire Roman Empire, and the deaths of Christians was on such a large scale that they could not be numbered.

Pope Cornelius, after much heated debate among bishops on both sides of the issue, and with the support of Bishop Cyprian, decreed that the apostates could reenter the Church after performing adequate penance.

At the beginning of the year 252, a new persecution suddenly broke out under a new Roman emperor, Gallus. Pope Cornelius was exiled to what is now called Civitavecchia, which is near Rome. Bishop Cyprian wrote that Cornelius died in June of 253 due to the hardships of his exile, declaring him a martyr for Christ.

Regarding the life of Cyprian of Carthage, his writings are of great importance, especially his treatise on “Unity of the Church”, in which he argues that unity is grounded in the authority of the bishop, and among the bishops in their recognition of the primacy of the See of Rome: “He that holds not this unity of the Church, does he think that he holds the faith? He who deserts the chair of Peter, upon whom the Church is founded, is he confident that he is in the Church?”

In his treatise, Cyprian continues to write, “You cannot have God for your Father if you do not have the Church for your mother…God is one and Christ is one, and his Church is one; one is the faith, and one is the people cemented together by harmony into the strong unity of a body…If we are the heirs of Christ, let us abide in the peace of Christ; if we are the sons of God, let us be lovers of peace.”

Like his friend Cornelius, Cyprian followed him in martyrdom. During the persecutions of Emperor Valerian, Cyprian was exiled to Curubis in 257, brought back to Carthage, and then was beheaded on September 14, 258.

We commemorate their joint feastday on September 16.

(From catholicnewsagency.com, saints.sqpn.com, americancatholic.org, catholicculture.org and newadvent.org)

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PRAYER

(The following prayer is from the Roman Breviary from the Proper for Saints Cornelius and Cyprian)

“God our Father, in Saints Cornelius and Cyprian, You have given Your people an inspiring example of dedication to the pastoral ministry and constant witness to Christ in their suffering. May their prayers and faith give us courage to work for the unity of Your Church.

“Grant this through our Lord Jesus Christ, Your Son, who lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

Saint of the Day ~ September 15

OUR LADY of SORROWS

Today, the universal Church commemorates the Memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows, or what is also called the Seven Sorrows or Seven Dolors of Mary.

Devotion to the Seven Sorrows of our Blessed Mother has its roots in Sacred Scripture and in Christian piety, and is dedicated to the spiritual martyrdom of Mary, always associating Mary’s sufferings with those of her Son.

This feast dates back to the 13th century. It was especially promoted by the Order of Cistercians and Servites, to the extent that by the 16th century it was widely celebrated throughout the Church.

The Seven Sorrows, or what are also called the Seven Dolors, are: (1) the prophecy of Simeon, (2) the flight of the Holy Family into Egypt, (3) having lost the Holy Child in Jerusalem, (4) meeting Jesus on the way to Calvary, (5) standing at the foot of the Cross, (6) Jesus being taken down from the Cross, and (7) the burial of Jesus.

Undoubtedly, the most common sorrow depicted in both paintings and sculpture is the Pietà, where Mary is holding her Son after His Body was taken down from the Cross.

We commemorate this special Memorial of our Blessed Mother on September 15.

(From catholicnewsagency.com, saints.sqpn.com, americancatholic.org, catholicculture.org and newadvent.org)

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PRAYER

(The following prayer is from the Roman Breviary from the Proper for Our Lady of Sorrows)

“Father, as Your Son was raised on the Cross, His mother Mary stood by Him, sharing His sufferings. May Your Church be united with Christ in His suffering and death, and so come to share in His rising to new life, where He lives and reigns with You in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.”

DAILY PRAYER REQUESTS

Please feel free to post your prayer request for today as a comment to this post. Your needs and intentions will be included in our daily offerings throughout the day and at the 3 o’clock hour for Divine Mercy, and your requests will be personally offered to our Heavenly Father, having faith in the words our Lord spoke to Saint Faustina, “Through the chaplet you will obtain everything, if what you ask for is compatible with My will.” (Diary, § 1731)

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“Most Merciful and Loving Jesus, You freely endured suffering and death upon Your Holy Cross out of Your unfathomable and limitless Love for each one of us, Your children; and, in Your Most Sorrowful Passion, You became the Supreme Model of what it truly means to forgive and show mercy;

– please help us to reflect in our own lives the example which You left us, as we grow in both sanctity and perfection, always striving to imitate Your Love for us in the love we give to others; for it is through Your Cross that we are truly healed, and it is through Your Cross that we are invited to share in Your Eternal Glory, all in Your Most Holy Name. Amen.”

Mercy Minutes with Jesus (from Saint Faustina’s Diary)

September 14 ~ Let Go of Yourself

Theme:  Jesus the Teacher

“During Holy Hour today, I asked the Lord Jesus if He would deign to teach me about the spiritual life. Jesus answered me, ‘My daughter, faithfully live up to the words which I speak to you. Do not value any external things too highly, even if it were to seem very precious to you. Let go of yourself, and abide with Me continually.’” (Mercy Minutes with Jesus/Diary, 1685a)

(To be continued)

My prayer response:

Lord Jesus, as You taught Saint Faustina about the spiritual life, teach me, too, that I might let go of myself and abide with You continually. (Mercy Minutes with Jesus)

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Please Comment, Like and Share, and Suggest to your Facebook friends – to spread the message of God’s Merciful Love.

Por favor Comente, Le Gusta y Comparta, y Sugiera a tus amigos en Facebook – en difundir el mensaje del Misericordioso Amor de Dios.