Daily Catholic Mass – 2018-08-23 – Fr. Patrick

Daily Catholic Mass – 2018-08-23 – Fr. Patrick


A READING FROM THE BOOK OF THE PROPHET EZEKIEL. THUS SAYS THE LORD: I WILL PROVE THE HOLINESS OF MY GREAT NAME, PROFANED AMONG THE NATIONS, IN WHOSE MIDST YOU HAVE PROFANED IT. THUS THE NATIONS SHALL KNOW THAT I AM THE LORD, SAYS THE LORD GOD, WHEN IN THEIR SIGHT I PROVE MY HOLINESS THROUGH YOU. FOR I WILL TAKE YOU AWAY FROM AMONG THE NATIONS, GATHER YOU FROM ALL THE FOREIGN LANDS, AND BRING YOU BACK TO YOUR OWN LAND. I WILL SPRINKLE CLEAN WATER UPON YOU TO CLEANSE YOU FROM ALL YOUR IMPURITIES, AND FROM ALL YOUR IDOLS I WILL CLEANSE YOU. I WILL GIVE YOU A NEW HEART AND PLACE A NEW SPIRIT WITHIN YOU, TAKING FROM YOUR BODIES YOUR STONY HEARTS AND GIVING YOU NATURAL HEARTS. I WILL PUT MY SPIRIT WITHIN YOU AND MAKE YOU LIVE BY MY STATUTES, CAREFUL TO OBSERVE MY DECREES. YOU SHALL LIVE IN THE LAND I GAVE YOUR ANCESTORS; YOU SHALL BE MY PEOPLE, AND I WILL BE YOUR GOD. VERBUM DOMINI. DEO GRATIAS. I WILL POUR CLEAN WATER ON YOU AND WASH AWAY ALL YOUR SINS. I WILL POUR CLEAN WATER ON YOU AND WASH AWAY ALL YOUR SINS. A CLEAN HEART CREATE FOR ME, O GOD, AND A STEADFAST SPIRIT RENEW WITHIN ME. CAST ME NOT OUT FROM YOUR PRESENCE, AND YOUR HOLY SPIRIT TAKE NOT FROM ME. I WILL POUR CLEAN WATER ON YOU AND WASH AWAY ALL YOUR SINS. GIVE ME BACK THE JOY OF YOUR SALVATION, AND A WILLING SPIRIT SUSTAIN IN ME. I WILL TEACH TRANSGRESSORS YOUR WAYS, AND SINNERS SHALL RETURN TO YOU. I WILL POUR CLEAN WATER ON YOU AND WASH AWAY ALL YOUR SINS. FOR YOU ARE NOT PLEASED WITH SACRIFICES; SHOULD I OFFER A BURNT OFFERING, YOU WOULD NOT ACCEPT IT. MY SACRIFICE, O GOD, IS A CONTRITE SPIRIT; A HEART CONTRITE AND HUMBLED, O GOD, YOU WILL NOT SPURN. I WILL POUR CLEAN WATER ON YOU AND WASH AWAY ALL YOUR SINS. ALLELUIA ALLELUIA ALLELUIA ALLELUIA ALLELUIA ALLELUIA IF TODAY YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, HARDEN NOT YOUR HEARTS. ALLELUIA ALLELUIA ALLELUIA>>DOMINUS VOBISCUM. ET CUM SPIRITU TUO.>>LECTIO SANCTI EVANGELII SECUNDUM MATTHEUM. GLORIA TIBI, DOMINE.>>JESUS AGAIN IN REPLY SPOKE TO THE CHIEF PRIESTS AND THE ELDERS OF THE PEOPLE IN PARABLES SAYING, “THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN MAY BE LIKENED TO A KING WHO GAVE A WEDDING FEAST FOR HIS SON. HE DISPATCHED HIS SERVANTS TO SUMMON THE INVITED GUESTS TO THE FEAST, BUT THEY REFUSED TO COME. A SECOND TIME HE SENT OTHER SERVANTS, SAYING, ‘TELL THOSE INVITED: “BEHOLD, I HAVE PREPARED MY BANQUET, MY CALVES AND FATTENED CATTLE ARE KILLED, AND EVERYTHING IS READY; COME TO THE FEAST.”‘ SOME IGNORED THE INVITATION AND WENT AWAY, ONE TO HIS FARM, ANOTHER TO HIS BUSINESS. THE REST LAID HOLD OF HIS SERVANTS, MISTREATED THEM, AND KILLED THEM. THE KING WAS ENRAGED AND SENT HIS TROOPS, AND BURNED THEIR CITY. THEN THE KING SAID TO HIS SERVANTS, ‘THE FEAST IS READY, BUT THOSE WHO WERE INVITED WERE NOT WORTHY TO COME. GO OUT, THEREFORE, INTO THE MAIN ROADS AND INVITE TO THE FEAST WHOMEVER YOU FIND.’ THE SERVANTS WENT OUT INTO THE STREETS AND GATHERED ALL THEY FOUND, BAD AND GOOD ALIKE, AND THE HALL WAS FILLED WITH GUESTS. BUT WHEN THE KING CAME IN TO MEET THE GUESTS HE SAW A MAN THERE NOT DRESSED IN A WEDDING GARMENT. HE SAID TO HIM, ‘MY FRIEND, HOW IS IT THAT YOU CAME IN HERE WITHOUT A WEDDING GARMENT?’ BUT HE WAS REDUCED TO SILENCE. THEN THE KING SAID TO HIS ATTENDANTS, ‘BIND HIS HANDS AND FEET, AND CAST HIM INTO THE DARKNESS OUTSIDE, WHERE THERE WILL BE WAILING AND GRINDING OF TEETH.’ MANY ARE INVITED, BUT FEW ARE CHOSEN.” VERBUM DOMINI. LAUS TIBI, CHRISTE. IN THE PARABLE WE JUST HEARD, THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN IS COMPARED TO A JOYFUL WEDDING FEAST. IN THE PARABLE THE KING SENDS HIS SERVANTS TO THE INVITED GUESTS BUT THEY DID NOT WANT TO COME. SO HE SENT THEM A 2ND TIME. “TELL THOSE INVITED, BEHOLD I HAVE PREPARED MY BANQUET AND EVERYTHING IS READY, COME TO THE FEAST.” IF WE THINK ABOUT IT, EVERY DAY OUR LORD IS INVITING US TO PARTAKE OF HIM AS FOOD AT THIS GREAT FEAST OF THE HOLY SACRIFICE OF THE MASS. HE NOURISHES AND SUSTAINS US IN THE HOLY EUCHARIST. HOW MANY OF US DO NOT FULLY APPRECIATE THE GIFT THE LORD HAS GIVEN US AS A FORETASTE OF HEAVEN? WE EASILY CAN GIVE EXCUSES AS WE HEAR IN THE GOSPEL. EVEN WHEN WE GIVE EXCUSES OR REFUSE THE INVITATION THE LORD GIVES TO US HE STILL INVITES US. HE DOES NOT STOP INVITING US. IN THE PARABLE SOME IGNORE THE INVITATION AND WENT ON WITH THEIR DAILY WORK IN BUSINESS. THIS COULD BE A GOOD EXAMINATION OF CONSCIENCE FOR US. HAVE I BECOME INDIFFERENT TO THE LORD’S INVITATION BECAUSE OF MY OWN ROUTINE AND WORK; MY OWN CARES? DO I KEEP GOD AS THE MAIN PRIORITY IN LIFE? SOME WE KNOW FROM THE GOSPEL TODAY IGNORED THE INVITATION AND WENT AWAY ON THEIR OWN BUSINESS BUT OTHERS RESPONDED MORE EXTREME WAYS. THEY MISTREATED AND EVEN KILLED SOME OF THE KING’S SERVANTS. THIS DOES NOT SEEM TO MAKE SENSE. WE JUST HAD SERVANTS TO COME TO INVITE THEM TO A JOYFUL FEAST AND THEY WERE KILLED FOR THAT. THEY REACTED VIOLENTLY TO THIS INVITATION. WE SEE THIS IN THE LIVES OF THE PROPHETS THROUGHOUT SCRIPTURE. WHAT IRRITATED AND ANGERED THOSE WHO HEARD THE PROPHETS WAS NOT SIMPLY THE FACT THAT THEIR MESSAGE WOULD LEAD TO THEM EXPERIENCING JOY BY TURNING TO THE LORD, BUT WHAT IRRITATED THEM WAS THE FACT THAT THE MESSAGE REQUIRED THEM TO CHANGE THEIR LIVES. THEY DID NOT WANT TO CHANGE. WE DO NOT WANT TO CHANGE AND IT IS EASY TO GET STUCK IN OUR WAYS, BUT WE ARE CALLED TO CHANGE AND REPENT AND TURN BACK TO GOD WHOLEHEARTEDLY. WE ALSO SEE IN THE INVITATION PROCESS THAT AFTER THE INITIAL GUESTS REFUSED TO COME, THE SERVANTS WERE SENT OUT AGAIN TO INVITE AND GATHER ALL THEY COULD POSSIBLY FIND. SAINT MATTHEW TELLS US IT WAS BOTH BAD AND GOOD ALIKE. THIS REMINDS US OF ANOTHER PARABLE OUR LORD TOLD US. THAT IN THE CHURCH THERE WILL BE BOTH THE WEEDS AND THE WHEAT. LIKE A FISHING NET [THAT GATHERED FISH OF EVERY KIND BEFORE THE FISHERMAN SORTED THE GOOD INTO VESSELS BUT THREW AWAY THE BAD; THAT THEY CATCH IS ALL KINDS OF FISH. THAT AT THE JUDGMENT TIME THAT IS WHEN THE GOOD AND BAD WILL BE SORTED. ] SAINT JOHN CHRYSOSTOM INVITES EACH OF US AS WELL TO THINK BACK TO WHEN WE WERE CALLED. IN THE PARABLE, WE HEAR THAT THE SERVANTS WENT OUT AND INVITED OTHERS TO THE BANQUET AND THINK ABOUT THE MOMENT WHEN THE LORD CALLED EACH OF US TO THAT TIME OF DEEPER CONVERSION. SAINT JOHN CHRYSOSTOM SAID, “REMEMBER WHERE YOU WERE CALLED, AT A CROSSROAD. WHAT WERE YOU LIKE THEN? LIMP AND LAME OF SOUL. HOWEVER, OUR MERCIFUL LORD WANTED TO HAVE US CLOSE TO HIM.”. WE THANK GOD THAT HE INVITED US DESPITE OUR SINFULNESS IN MANY WEAKNESSES. THERE IS ANOTHER INTERESTING ASPECT OF TODAY’S PARABLE. THAT IS AFTER ALL THIS EFFORT THAT THE KING MADE INTO GATHERING AS MANY PEOPLE JUST TO FILL THE BANQUET HALL; HE SPENT ALL THIS EFFORT AND NOW HE IS CASTING OUT SOMEONE HE INVITED. VERY SIMPLY PUT, THIS MAN WAS NOT DRESSED IN A WEDDING GARMENT. SO EVEN THOUGH HE WAS INVITED, IT IS IMPORTANT FOR US TO KNOW IT IS NOT SIMPLY ENOUGH TO ACCEPT THE INVITATION. IN OTHER WORDS, IT IS NOT ENOUGH TO SHOW UP. THIS IS SIMILAR TO OUR LORD’S STORY OF THE SON WHO SAID HE WOULD DO HIS FATHER’S WORK, BUT HE DID NOT AND HE SAID, “YES FATHER I WILL GO OUT AND WORK IN THE FIELD.” BUT HE DID NOT DO IT. IF WE ARE INVITED, WE NEED TO PREPARE OURSELVES APPROPRIATELY. THE MAN IN THE PARABLE WAS NOT DRESSED WITH A WEDDING GARMENT. HOW CAN WE BE PROPERLY DRESSED OR PREPARED? SAINT PAUL HELPS US BY GIVING US SOME HELPFUL TIPS IN HIS LETTER TO THE COLOSSIANS. HE USED THE SAME FORM OF LANGUAGE OF PUTTING ON GARMENTS OR CLOTHING. SAINT PAUL SAID IN HIS 3RD CHAPTER IN HIS LETTER TO THE COLOSSIANS, “PUT ON THEN AS GOD’S CHOSEN ONES, HOLY AND BELOVED, COMPASSION, KINDNESS, LOWLINESS, MEEKNESS AND PATIENCE, FORBEARING ONE ANOTHER AND IF ONE HAS A COMPLAINT AGAINST ONE ANOTHER FORGIVING ONE ANOTHER.”. SO IT IS BY RESPONDING TO GOD’S GRACE AND SEEKING TO LIVE A VIRTUOUS LIFE, THAT IS HOW WE PREPARE OURSELVES FOR THAT JOYFUL FEAST. 1 VERY EFFECTIVE WAY THAT OUR LORD GAVE US TO PREPARE OURSELVES FOR THIS FEAST THAT HE IS INVITING US TO IS TO MAKE REGULAR AND FREQUENT USE OF CONFESSION IN WHICH HE CLEANSES US FROM OUR SINS. YOU MIGHT ALSO NOTICE THAT THIS PARABLE DOES NOT END ON THE MOST POSITIVE OR ENCOURAGING NOTE. IT CONCLUDES WITH THE SERVANT BEING THROWN OUT INTO THE DARKNESS WHERE THERE IS WAILING AND GRINDING OF TEETH AND THEN [WE HAVE] OUR LORD’S WORDS, “MANY ARE INVITED, BUT FEW ARE CHOSEN.”. WE TEND TO LIKE HAPPY AND ENCOURAGING ENDINGS, BUT THE WORD OF GOD DOES NOT ALWAYS MAKE US FEEL GOOD. THE WORD OF GOD IS MEANT TO LEAD US TO SALVATION AND THAT IS WHAT IS MOST IMPORTANT. IT IS THE ETERNAL LIFE AND THE ETERNAL HAPPINESS AND JOY AND CONSOLATION. YES, THE WORD OF GOD DOES COMFORT US, BUT NOT ALWAYS. AGAIN, THE GOAL IS TO HELP US TO GET TO HEAVEN WITH GOD. SO WE SHOULD NOT TAKE IT FOR GRANTED THAT WE ARE ALL GOING TO HEAVEN. WE HAVE IN THE GOSPEL TODAY- AND THE LORD REMINDS US OF [IT], THE REALITY OF HELL AND THAT IT IS POSSIBLE TO BE SEPARATED FROM HIM AND HE RESPECTS OUR FREEDOM AND HE RESPECTS OUR FREEDOM TO REJECT HIS LOVE AND GRACE. AGAIN WE CANNOT TAKE FOR GRANTED THAT WE ARE ALL GOING TO HEAVEN. WE KNOW THAT GOD CERTAINLY DESIRES THAT WE ALL BE SAVED BUT AGAIN HE RESPECTS OUR FREEDOM. TODAY’S GOSPEL IS A WAKE-UP CALL. HE SAID, “MANY ARE INVITED BUT FEW ARE CHOSEN.” THE CHOSEN ONES ARE THOSE ARE NOT ONLY THOSE WHO ACCEPT THE INVITATION BUT THEY ARE THE ONES WHO ACT ON THAT ACCEPTANCE ACT ON THE INVITATION AND SEEK TO LIVE HOLY LIVES IN CONFORMITY TO GOD’S WILL. REMEMBER THE LORD TOLD US TO ENTER BY THE NARROW GATE WHICH IS HARD BUT IT LEADS TO ETERNAL LIFE. THE JOURNEY IS WORTH IT. WE PRAY THE LORD WILL INCREASE IN OUR HEARTS A GREATER DESIRE TO ACCEPT HIS INVITATION TO ETERNAL LIFE AND PREPARE OURSELVES ACCORDINGLY. TODAY WE ALSO CELEBRATE THE MEMORIAL OF SAINT ROSE OF LIMA, WHO IS THE VERY 1ST CANONIZED SAINT OF THE AMERICAS. SHE IS ALSO KNOWN AS THE PATRON SAINT OF THE AMERICAS. SHE WAS BORN IN THE LATE 16TH CENTURY IN PERU AND SHE WAS BAPTIZED AS “ISABEL” BUT BECAUSE OF HER GREAT BEAUTY SHE WAS GIVEN THE NAME “ROSE”. SHE WAS GIVEN THE SACRAMENT OF CONFIRMATION BY SAINT TURIBIUS THE ARCHBISHOP OF LIMA AND THAT WAS ONE SAINT IN HER LIFE AND SHE WAS ALSO GOOD FRIENDS WITH ANOTHER SAINT MARTIN DE PORRES. REFUSING TO MARRY SHE MADE A VOW OF VIRGINITY AND GAVE HERSELF ENTIRELY TO GOD AND BECAME A DOMINICAN TERTIARY OR A THIRD ORDER MEMBER AND DEDICATED HER LIFE TO PRAYER, PENANCE AND WORKS OF CHARITY FOR THE SICK AND POOR. LIKE MANY SAINTS SHE EXPERIENCED INTENSE MOMENTS OF A LACK OF CONSOLATION AND SHE WENT THROUGH SPIRITUAL DRYNESS. INTENSE INTERIOR TRIALS. BUT LIKE THE SAINTS SHE PRAYED HARDER WHEN SHE ENCOUNTERED THIS DRYNESS AND LACK OF CONSOLATION. AFTER INTENSE SUFFERINGS, NOT ONLY WITH THE DRYNESS BUT ALSO VISIONS THAT MADE HER FEEL TERRIBLE AND EVEN FILTHY BECAUSE THE ENEMY WAS ATTACKING HER. SHE EMPLOYED THE HELP OF HER GREAT FRIEND SAINT MARTIN DE PORRES. HE ASKED HER IF HER SPIRITUAL DRYNESS MADE HER LOVE GOD MORE? SHE SAID, “YES, I KEEP SEEKING HIM AND STRIVING TO BETTER PLEASE HIM.”. AND HE SAID, “THAT, MY DEAR SISTER, THAT IS WHY THE LORD HAS SENT YOU THAT ARIDITY. WHY DO YOU THINK HE IS PERMITTING YOU THESE TRIALS?”. SHE REPLIED, “TO MAKE ME LOVE HIM MORE AND SEEK FOR THE WAYS OF PLEASING HIM BETTER SO THAT I MAY ESCAPE HELL AND ENJOY HIS PRESENCE?”. MARTIN SAID, “I AM NOT AT ALL SURPRISED AT THIS PURIFICATION THE LORD ALLOWS YOU TO BEAR. I WOULD BE MORE SURPRISED IF YOU HAD NOT BEGUN TO SUFFER MORE TRIALS. IT IS THE LOT OF THOSE WHOM GOD WISHES TO RAISE TO THE HIGHEST SANCTITY TO PASS THIS WAY. YOU SHOULD FIND THE VERY VIOLENCE OF YOUR TRIAL IS SOURCE OF ENCOURAGEMENT SINCE HE PURIFIES MOST THOSE FOR WHOM HE HAS DESTINED THE MOST PERFECT UNION WITH HIMSELF.”. SAINT ROSE ALSO WANTED TO REMIND EVERYONE THAT GRACE COMES AFTER TRIBULATION. SHE SAID, “LET THEM KNOW THAT WITHOUT THE BURDEN OF AFFLICTIONS IT IS IMPOSSIBLE TO REACH THE HEIGHT OF GRACE. THIS IS THE ONLY TRUE STAIRWAY TO PARADISE AND WITHOUT THE CROSS THEY CAN FIND NO ROAD TO CLIMB TO HEAVEN.”. SO THE CROSS IS A PART OF OUR LIVES AND WE LOOK TO THE SAINTS WHO PERSEVERE IN GREAT MOMENTS OF TRIAL. SO WE ASK SAINT ROSE OF LIMA TO PRAY FOR EACH ONE OF US TODAY THAT WE MIGHT SEEK TO FOLLOW CHRIST AS SHE DID EVEN THROUGH THE INTENSE TRIALS THAT GODS PERMITS AND TIMES OF DRYNESS AND LACK OF CONSOLATION KNOWING THAT THIS TIME OF PURIFICATION IS AN INVITATION FROM GOD TO DRAW CLOSER TO HIM.

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