Wednesday, April 22, 2015
The Good Shepherd always cares for His
We invite you to take a few minutes and gaze upon the image
below. Consider one or each reflective question.
- When have I heard the Good Shepherd call to me? How did I
- Jesus says the Good Shepherd protects the sheep when danger
looms whereas the hired hand runs away. When have I been like the
hired hand? When have I been like the shepherd?
- Jesus says, "I have other sheep that do not belong to this
fold. These also I must lead, and they will hear my voice, and
there will be one flock, one shepherd." What does this mean to
Thursday, October 16, 2014
Though hidden, God comforts and loves us each
by Sister Mary Kabat
Have you had those experiences when for no reason at all you
remember something important you had forgotten, or you run into an
old friend you haven't seen in a long time and he/she says
something you needed to hear, or you hear a song on the car radio
that resonates with your life and brings a tear to your eye or a
smile to your heart?
If you think such moments are random or purely by chance, take
some time with the first reading for this Sunday from the Prophet
I, the Lord, have helped you, called you,
encouraged you, rescued you, loved you ... though you knew me
I believe God loves us beyond our comprehension and is near and
ready to give help or comfort whether we ask for it or not. Much of
the time we go through life unaware or weighed down by troubles and
sorrow. Let us walk through this day with a heightened awareness
that our God is with us and is blessing us with good from "the
rising to the setting of the sun."
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
Jesus is the new light and lamb for all
"Lamb of God, who takes away
the sin of the world." -- John 1:29
"I will make you a light to the nations." -- Isaiah 49:6
by Sister Charlene Hockers
We just completed the Christmas season
and celebrated the Baptism of Jesus, and now we move into Ordinary
Time. But John the Baptist is still at the forefront of today's
Gospel. As John sees Jesus coming toward him, he proclaims Jesus to
be the Lamb of God. Those words are so familiar to us from the
liturgy everyday, but how do we live that statement in our own
life? The Lamb comes to us in a gentle, simple way, opening our
hearts to people with a breath of peace. He breaks down the walls
of fear, aggression, violence and sin. We can grow in the spirit of
love if we allow Him to come into the sacred space within us. John
the Baptist is calling people to be attentive to the quiet voice
and presence of Jesus. We are called to be gentle followers of the
John also admitted, "I did not know Him." Do we know Jesus? The
Holy Spirit invites us to see Jesus by opening our eyes and our
hearts. We need to fix our eyes on Jesus each morning.
In the reading from Isaiah we hear, "I will make you a light to
the nations." Those nations can be far and wide, but we can be a
light to the far reaches of the human spirit as well. How aware are
we of the lonely, desperate, the rejected, the hopeless and the
poor? I can be the light of Christ by making Jesus known to others
through my quiet voice and constant presence of Jesus in my
Behold the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world,
have mercy on us, grant us peace.
Thursday, October 24, 2013
Prayer tip -- Remember how much God loves
by Sister Madonna Swintkoske
The Gospel for this Sunday is a story of two individuals, a
Pharisee and a tax collector, who went to the temple to pray.
There was a difference in their prayer. The difference was in
their attitude and in their focus.
The Pharisee was focused on himself. God was not the
center of his prayer. He reminded God of all that he (the
Pharisee) did for God. "I fast twice a week and I pay tithes on my
whole income." He forgot that God's love is the source of
all. He did not need to be pious and devout and loving to win
God's love. He was to be pious, devout and loving because God
already loved him.
The tax collector understood this. He left the initiative to
God. "Have mercy on me." It all starts with God and the love God
has for all of us.
Questions for reflection:
- How do you understand God's love?
- Have you ever thought you needed to earn God's love?
- Who helped you to know you were unconditionally loved by
'Year of Faith'
Moral Life -- Embrace Poverty of Spirit
|DID YOU KNOW:
The first Three Commandments concern love and fidelity to God,
while the other seven speak of love and forgiveness of neighbor as
an expression of God's love.
Chapter 34, US Catholic Catechism for Adults
You shall not covet your
by Sister Mary Kabat
The Tenth Commandment - You shall not covet your neighbor's
goods - completes the Ninth Commandment by focusing on the
intentions of the heart. While we all need to acquire earthly goods
for the care and well-being of ourselves and our families, there
are forces that motivate us to become overly attached to money and
possessions. Greed and envy can become rooted in our
hearts. The desire for what another has or to have more and
more possessions becomes our life goal.
Living the Tenth Commandment brings us to trust in the providence
of God. In the Beatitudes, Jesus tells us that poverty of
spirit enables us to inherit the Kingdom of God. The
commandment calls us to a healthy detachment from material things
and a generosity of heart. It enables us to adopt a
simplicity of life, a love for the poor, a care for creation and a
witness to justice and peace in the world.
"For where your treasure is,
there also will your heart be."
Friday, January 20, 2012
by Sister Lynne Marie Simonich
Many commercials we hear tell us to "Hurry - it's the biggest
sale of the season!" Remember the news reports before
Christmas of shoppers nearly breaking down the doors of stores to
get those last-minute deals? What about the mobs of people
stepping over each other to get that great bargain? They were
in a hurry -- they wanted the best for less.
Our three Scripture readings for this Third Sunday in Ordinary
Time have a sense of urgency. Jonah tells the people of
Nineveh that God has told him, "Forty days more and Nineveh shall
be destroyed." St. Paul reminds the people of Corinth and us
that "the world in its present form is passing away." In
Mark's Gospel, Jesus calls his first disciples telling them, "The
kingdom of God is at hand." There is no time to waste. Jonah,
Paul and Jesus want us to "hurry" -- not for low prices or big
sales -- but to answer God's call inviting us to change our hearts
and bring God's love into the world by our actions of compassion
and joy. The cost for us? Placing our minds, hearts and
souls into the hands of our God.
There's no "money back guaranteed" but there is the promise of
our God's continual love and grace that is with us as we answer
God's call each day.
Will you hurry to answer God's call?
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
by Sister Elise Cholewinski
Early one Sunday afternoon, as I was getting out of the pool at
the "Y", I had an opportunity to chat briefly with the
lifeguard. He was a bit frustrated. His shift was over
and he was anxious to get home for the Packer game, but his
replacement was not there to relieve him of his
responsibilities. It can indeed be very frustrating when
people are not responsible, when they don't show up, when they
expect someone else to cover for them.
This is the situation in the parable about the ten virgins that
Jesus tells in today's Gospel. Five virgins were ready; they
had enough oil for their lamps. The other five didn't bring
enough oil and expected the others to rescue them. When the
bridegroom arrived, they had disappeared from the scene, off to
obtain the oil for their lamps. They had missed the
As we now move toward the conclusion of the liturgical year, it
might do us well to take a personal inventory. In what ways
have we stalled in our relationship with God? In what ways
have we prevented the light of the Holy Spirit from burning
brightly within us? In striving to live our faith, when have
we expected others to cover for us and take on our
responsibilities? Where were we when Jesus was coming to meet
In the final analysis, how eager and excited are we to meet Him
Who is the Bridegroom?