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Daily Meditations

Daily Meditation April 14, 2018

  'The first is ... "you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind, and with all your strength." The second is this, “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.’ Mark 12:30-31   We live in a world that gives us easy access to an untold amount of information. Between newspapers, books, tv/radio and the internet, it's almost a flood. What advice do we give to somebody who's gotten swept away by that flood as they seek their path in life? We might tell them to start with the Bible - but where in the Bible? I think that each Bible that is published should come with a great big bookmark that has "Start Here!" printed on it. That bookmark should be placed on the passage from Mark that is quoted above. In this passage, Jesus tells that, no matter how big the flood, these are the things that are the most important. He doesn't tell us it will be easy to follow these commandments, but he does tell us exactly where to get started.   -Leo Steffens (reprinted from May 2014)  
Leo Steffens

Daily Meditation April 12, 2018

The secret of genius is to carry the spirit of the child into old age, which means never losing your enthusiasm. Aldous Huxley   They will still yield fruit in old age; They shall be full of sap and very green, Psalm 92:14   Even if you're not a Loyola University basketball fan, you've probably seen some news clips recently about their team chaplain Sister Jean. She was born in August 1919, which makes her 98 years old and she is having the time of her life right now! She became the team chaplain at age 75 and has prayed with them and for them for years. This year the team advanced to the final four, she lives in a freshman dorm on campus, and she threw out the first pitch at a Chicago cubs game. There is no such thing as 'old age' in her mind.   In past meditations I've mentioned the SHINE group that meets at St. Matthew's on Wednesday mornings. I love being in the office where I can hear their laughter and sharing of stories. The women in the group (although men are welcome) are a shining example of aging without slowing down! A couple volunteer at the CCC, they all help fold our Sunday bulletins, and others give rides. They all have an enthusiasm for life which they love to share with others. Blessings to them all.   What is your own mind set about growing older? Perhaps it's time for a visit to our SHINE program!   Kelly Kennerson, Parish Administrator
Kelly Kennerson

Daily Meditation April 10, 2018

Gazing   Fr. “Bill” McNichols, iconographer and religious artist, explains the need for icons: “What you gaze upon, you become.”   Since reading that, I have become a lot more mindful of where I allow my gaze to rest, the images that truly and fully engage my attention. I have little control over some of this; in my job, I have to spend a lot of time gazing at text on a computer screen. But I also have some pieces—not icons per se, but religious art—in my office, including a small poster, created by a young lady of this parish, that reads, “Keep calm and pray on.” I can also steal a moment occasionally to gaze upon the green, growing things sitting in my office window, or the changing seasons outside my window, images that reflect God’s creative, sustaining action, God’s gift of life.   McNichols puts it this way: “You gaze on the icon, but it gazes on you too. We need to gaze on truly conversational, truly loving images, images that will return our love.”   What will you gaze upon today? What will you become today?   Paul Peterson
Paul Peterson

Daily Meditation April 10, 2018

Gazing   Fr. “Bill” McNichols, iconographer and religious artist, explains the need for icons: “What you gaze upon, you become.”   Since reading that, I have become a lot more mindful of where I allow my gaze to rest, the images that truly and fully engage my attention. I have little control over some of this; in my job, I have to spend a lot of time gazing at text on a computer screen. But I also have some pieces—not icons per se, but religious art—in my office, including a small poster, created by a young lady of this parish, that reads, “Keep calm and pray on.” I can also steal a moment occasionally to gaze upon the green, growing things sitting in my office window, or the changing seasons outside my window, images that reflect God’s creative, sustaining action, God’s gift of life.   McNichols puts it this way: “You gaze on the icon, but it gazes on you too. We need to gaze on truly conversational, truly loving images, images that will return our love.”   What will you gaze upon today? What will you become today?   Paul Peterson
Paul Peterson

Daily Meditation April 10, 2018

Christ Has No Body   This blessing is credited to Teresa of Avila, 1515-1582. I think it is particularly poignant following Easter as we pray on the risen Christ. Christ has no body but can be seen in the actions of people here on earth.   Christ has no body but yours, No hands, no feet on earth but yours, Yours are the eyes with which he looks Compassion on this world, Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good, Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, Yours are the eyes, you are his body.   It is a tall order, but the second commandment tells us to love others. We can show our love by acting as Christ would act.   Joan Alayne Stevens (reprinted from April 2015)
Joan Alayne Stevens

Daily Meditation April 9, 2018

  The Annunciation by Fra Angelico 1387 – 1455   The Collect for the Feast of The Annunciation: Pour your grace into our hearts, O Lord, that we who have known the incarnation of your Son Jesus Christ, announced by an angel to the Virgin Mary, may by his cross and passion be brought to the glory of his resurrection; who lives and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

Daily Meditation April 8, 2018

Today is traditionally called “Low Sunday” because, being the Sunday after Easter, the attendance is low. I totally understand, but it’s still a shame because the Gospel reading for today is an amazing one in which Jesus appears to the frightened disciples and says, “Peace be with you.” He also shows Thomas his hands and his side so that he, too, can believe. I’ve been thinking about our fears and how Jesus might help us find peace in the midst of them and I will be preaching on this on Sunday.   It’s also Family Mass and we have some great songs we are singing, too - including    Shake another hand, shake the hand next to you, Shake another hand and sing the song.   Shake another hand, shake the hand next to you, Shake another hand and sing, And sing this  "A-la-la-la-la-la-la-le-lu-ia! A-la-la-la-la-la-la-le-lu-ia! A-la-la-la-la-la-la-le-lu-ia! A-la-la-la-la-la-la-le-lu-ia!”   Who could miss singing that?! See you at 8 or 10am.    Peace, Nancy  
Nancy

Daily Meditation April 7, 2018

Nothing is more practical than finding God, than falling in Love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you do with your evenings, how you spend your weekends, what you read, whom you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in Love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.   Fr. Pedro Arrupe, S.J.   The first time I encountered this quote was on a retreat in college. What brings me back to these words of Fr. Arrupe is his call to recognize that God's love surrounds us and influences all that we do. Sometimes, we get lost in the weeds of the daily grind and overlook where God's love is guiding us. These words help pull me out of that grind and cause me to think about where this love exists in my life. I hope these words help you, as they help me, think about the love that God creates all around us.    Shea Sennett (reprinted from April 2014)
Shea Sennett

Friday April 6, 2018

Like a summer wind   In the wake of Holy Week, I am reminded of this passage from one of my favorite books, Brendan, by Frederick Buechner. This strange, unsettling, but wonderful novel follows the ancient legend of Brendan the Navigator, an Irish saint from the darkest of the Dark Ages. In Buechner’s book, Brendan, alone at sea, makes this entry in his journal: “Good Friday brings a blue bright wind. Scarce a good Friday for Thee, Thou Lamb of Heaven. Life seeps from Thy death like blood from a wound. It’s the carefree laughing life of slaves set free. . . . O sweep like a summer wind through this wintry world, my dear, that the hearts of the heathen may grow Gospel green again.”   Where will you find God’s summer wind today?   Paul Peterson
Paul Peterson

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