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Posts Tagged ‘Apostles’

“May you not lack simplicity”

In 01 Daily Meditations on 2015/05/22 at 12:00 AM

 

Look: the apostles, for all their evident and undeniable defects, were sincere, simple… transparent. You too have evident and undeniable defects. May you not lack simplicity. (The Way, 932)

The first Apostles, for whom I have great affection and devotion, were nothing to boast about, humanly speaking. With the exception of Matthew, who probably earned a comfortable living which he left behind at the behest of Jesus, the Apostles were mere fishermen. They lived a meager existence, fishing all night to keep food on the table.

But social status is unimportant. They weren’t educated; they weren’t even very bright, if we judge from their reaction to supernatural things. Finding even the most elementary examples and comparisons beyond their reach, they would turn to the Master and ask: “Explain the parable to us” [1]. When Jesus uses the image of the “leaven” of the Pharisees, they think that he’s reproaching them for not having purchased bread [2].

They were poor; they were ignorant. They weren’t very simple or open. But they were even ambitious. Frequently they argued over who would be the greatest when — according to their understanding — Christ would definitively restore the kingdom of Israel. Amid the intimacy of the last supper, during that sublime moment when Jesus is about to immolate himself for all of humanity, we find them arguing heatedly [3].

Faith? They had little. Jesus Christ himself points this out [4]. They had seen the dead raised, all kinds of sicknesses cured, bread and fish multiplied, storms calmed, devils cast out…

And did these men of little faith at least stand out in their love for Christ? Undoubtedly they loved him, at least in word… They are ordinary men, complete with defects and shortcomings, more eager to say than to do. Nevertheless, Jesus calls them to be fishers of men [5], co‑redeemers, dispensers of the grace of God. (Christ is passing by, 2)

[1] Matt 13:36: Domine, edissere nobis parabolam

[2] Cf Matt 16:6‑7

[3] Cf Luke 22:24‑27

[4] Cf Matt 14:31; 16:8; 17:17; 21:21

[5] Matt 4:19 [Top]

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The Priesthood of Christ / audio

In 15 Audio on 2014/05/16 at 12:00 AM

The Priesthood of Jesus Christ Back to Series List

 

Program Name Audio File Name – Click to download
1. General Introduction
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood01.mp3
Fr. Miller briefly discusses the aspects of the priesthood which will be discussed in future episodes.
2. The Old Testament Prietshood
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood02.mp3
Fr. Miller looks at the priesthood of the Old Testament Jewish prietshood.
3. Christ’s Own Priesthood
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood03.mp3
Fr. Miller looks at Christ’s own words as recorded in Scripture concerning his own prietshood.
4. The Priesthood in the New Testament
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood04.mp3
Fr. Miller examines the priesthood as seen in the New Testament, especially in the letter to the Hebrews.
5. The Priesthood of the Apostles
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood05.mp3
Fr. Miller examines the priesthood of the Apostles as instituted by Christ.
6. The Priesthood in the Early Church
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood06.mp3
Fr. Miller delves into ancient Christian writings to examine the priesthood in near-apostolic times.
7. The Prietshood in the Early Church 2
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood07.mp3
Fr. Miller continues his examination of ancient Christian writings to further our knowledge of the priesthood in near-apostolic times.
8. The Attack on the Priesthood
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood08.mp3
Fr. Miller discusses how the priesthood has been attacked during the past 500 years.
9. The Priesthood of the faithful
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood09.mp3
Fr. Miller discusses the way in which all the baptized are said to be priests.
10. The Priesthood and Vatican 2
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood10.mp3
Fr. Miller briefly looks at the priesthood as seen in the documents of the second Vatican Council.
11. The Priestly Character
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood11.mp3
Fr. Miller looks at the indelible mark impressed on all who receive the sacrament of Holy Orders.
12. The Mission of the Priest
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood12.mp3
Fr. Miller looks at what the mission of the priest is in our world today.
13. The Holiness of the Priest
Host – Fr. Frederick Miller
priesthood13.mp3
Fr. Miller discusses the holiness that the priethood deserves and requires.

 

Solemnity of Pentecost by Fr. Reid

In 05 Homilies by Fr. Reid on 2011/06/11 at 7:00 AM

• Immediately before the Alleluia today we heard the singing of the Pentecost Sequence, Veni Sancte Spiritus, which is a poetic text set to a Gregorian chant mode.

• While there have many sequences for various Masses composed over the centuries, since 1570 there are only four feast days in the liturgical calendar that still employ these beautiful chants: Easter, Pentecost, Corpus Christi, and All Souls Day.

• The purpose of the sequence is to help us delve more deeply into the mystery of Faith that we are celebrating, but to do so in a way that not only provides some measure of catechesis, but that also inspires us with its artistic beauty.

• Moreover, the use of a sequence at Mass marks a feast day as being particularly important to the life of the Church. As such, today’s feast of Pentecost is one of the most important feasts that we celebrate each year!

• This is because this is the particular day of the year that we honor the 3rd Person of the Holy Trinity: the Holy Spirit, who is the Paraclete, the Advocate, the Comforter, and the Sanctifier.

• The sequence that we used today serves as an invitation to the Holy Spirit to come to us. Indeed, Veni Sancte Spiritus means “Come, Holy Spirit!” And in this sequence we invite Him to come and impart to us His gifts of holiness, comfort, and peace.

• On this glorious feast of Pentecost, not only should we beg for the Holy Spirit to come to us, but we should also meditate on His nature and role in salvation history.

• As the Holy Spirit is one of the three Persons of the Holy Trinity, because He is God, it is impossible to fully understand Him, but there is much that we do know.

• As we mediate on the Holy Spirit and contemplate His role in salvation history, we can see that the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth, the Spirit of Love, and the Spirit of Power.

• It is Jesus who, in the Gospel of John, refers to the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of Truth, and in doing so Jesus tells us that when the Holy Spirit – the Spirit of Truth – comes, He will guide us to all truth.

• This is because the Holy Spirit is a unifying force who has come not only to enlighten our hearts and minds, but Who also safeguards the Church’s teachings from error. He is also a light that shines upon our intellects so that we may know and accept the teachings of Christ.

• Jesus knew that He would not be staying on earth forever and that He would need a mechanism for continuing His mission on earth after He ascended into Heaven.

• Thus He created the Church, built upon the foundation of the apostles, to be both the repository for His teachings and the means for spreading those teachings throughout the world.

• Because man’s salvation depends upon His teachings, it makes perfect sense that Jesus would want some means in place to protect the truth of His teachings, and that means of protection is the Holy Spirit.

• Thus, because of the Holy Spirit, who is the Spirit of Truth, we can be confident that the teachings of the Catholic Church in matters of faith and morals are all objectively true and therefore can never be changed.

• While Church leaders may themselves fall into sin or have lapses of judgment, the Holy Spirit is our guarantee that what we believe as Catholics in matters of faith and morals is true and has been revealed by Christ Himself.

• The Holy Spirit is also the Spirit of Love, enflaming our hearts with desire for our Lord.

• The Scriptures tells us that when Our Lady and the Apostles were gathered in prayer at

Pentecost, the Holy Spirit descended upon them like tongues of fire. In fact, the red vestments that we wear today are meant to symbolize this fire of the Holy Spirit.

• This fire of the Holy Spirit is a fire of love, which purifies our hearts of sin and evil desires and enflames us with a desire to serve our Lord and our fellow man.

• As the Spirit of Love, the Holy Spirit enkindles within us a burning charity that helps us reach out to others and that ultimately sanctifies us.

• Thirdly, the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Power, a power that not only can affect natural phenomena, as we hear in the first reading today, but that can also change and purify hearts and bring unity and peace to people of disparate lands, cultures, and languages.

• As we consider the mystery of Pentecost, we must realize that the Pentecost is not an isolated event in Church history. Indeed, the Holy Spirit continues to come upon His Church in this way, particularly through the Sacrament of Confirmation.

• While we may not experience the same phenomena of tongues of fire and rushing winds that our Lady and the apostles experienced at the first Pentecost 2000 years ago, the Holy Spirit is no less powerful today.

• We experience the power of the Holy Spirit within ourselves. At times we experience Him as an inspiration or a sudden thought to do or say something. At other times we experience Him as a deep and abiding sense of peace in the midst of trials and sufferings.

• The history of the Church is suffused with examples of the Holy Spirit working in and through the saints. The Spirit has guided many holy men and women to witness to the Faith with their very lives, to found religious orders, and to teach and explain the doctrines of Catholicism.

• It was the Holy Spirit that led St. Augustine to conversion and inspired his teachings that the Church still relies upon today. It was the Holy Spirit that gave St. Paul the courage to preach the truth of Christ in the midst of terrible sufferings and persecutions, even to the point of death.

• It was the Holy Spirit who inspired Blessed Mother Teresa to found a religious order to care for the poorest of the poor. And it was the Holy Spirit who nurtured and stirred the young heart of St. Therese of Lisieux to teach the Church how to love.

• As we consider how the Holy Spirit works through us and in us as the Spirit of Truth, Love, and Power, we must do our best to receive Him and cooperate with Him.

• We do this first by exercising the virtue of docility, which enables us to be obedient to the teachings of Christ and His Church, which guide us and protect us from sin.

• We do this by seeking to unite ourselves to Him in prayer, conversing with Him, listening to His promptings, and asking Him to fill us with His love.

• And finally, we do this by exercising the virtue of courage, which enables us to embrace the cross, which is the heart of living our Christian faith and which is absolutely essential for growing in a life of holiness.

• Suffering comes to all of us, and this is not because God doesn’t love us. God allows suffering because He does love us! And it is the Holy Spirit that enables us to courageously accept our sufferings so that we may become more like Jesus.

• My dear friends, as we invite the Holy Spirit to come to us today, may we truly receive Him. Through humble docility, prayer, and the exercise of courage, may He transform us, comfort us, and sanctify us. And may He bless us always with His peace.

Copyright 2010 by Reverend Timothy S. Reid

Reverend Reid is pastor of St. Ann’s Catholic  Church in Charlotte, NC

First Easter

In 06 Scripture & Theology on 2011/04/12 at 5:56 PM

When our Lord rose from the dead, the apostles clearly realized His divinity. The risen Christ opened their minds and explained to them the Scriptures….Now they grasped the inner meaning of everything they had heard and seen Jesus do. The Holy Spirit reminded the apostles of everything Jesus said, and enabled them to understand the whole truth concerning Christ and His saving mission and the meaning of His words and miracles.  —Blessed John Henry Newman