Hardships

From Obstacle to Opportunity – First Reading of the Sixth Week of Easter

From Obstacle to Opportunity – First Reading of the Sixth Week of Easter

The Kingdom advances as men and women see every situation in life, even the most difficult, not as an obstacle but as an opportunity to advance the gospel. Philip did not go to Samaria on vacation. If you read the verses just before our passage you will realize he was driven there. Stephen had just been stoned to death, becoming the first martyr . On that day a great persecution arose against the church in Jerusalem and they were all scattered throughout the region …now those who were scattered went about preaching the word. Philip went down…” to Samaria because for him the persecution was not as much an obstacle as an opportunity. Twenty five years later the apostle Paul took up the same theme as he sat awaiting execution in a Roman prison: “”I want you to know brethren, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel so that it has become known throughout the whole praetorian guard”.” (Php. 1:12)

More

The Good Shepherd – Gospel for the Fourth Sunday of Easter

The Good Shepherd – Gospel for the Fourth Sunday of Easter

It is precisely this relationship of intimacy and trust that would draw them to him when he called—even if they could not see his face—and cause them to not turn back when the road ahead seemed difficult and interminable or run away when faced with overwhelming danger. And it is this relationship that the Lord longs to develop with each one of us—so that we, too, may learn to come when he calls, follow where he leads and not stray in the face of hardship or suffering, but trust in both his protection and provision.

More

The Serious Business of Heaven – John 16

The Serious Business of Heaven – John 16

Was not Bl. Mother Teresa of Calcutta an unforgettable witness of true Gospel joy in our time?…In one of her writings, we read: “We wait impatiently for paradise, where God is, but it is in our power to be in paradise even here on earth and from this moment. Being happy with God means loving like him, helping like him, giving like him, serving like him” (The Joy of Giving to Others, 1987, p. 143). Yes, joy enters the hearts of those who put themselves at the service of the lowly and poor. God abides in those who love like this and their souls rejoice. (Pope Emeritus Benedict XVI)

More

He is Near – Mark 13

He is Near – Mark 13

It is not as we would have expected. We would have expected that the moment in which the darkness seems the greatest would be the moment in which God’s absence would be most profoundly felt and proven true, but Jesus insists it is not. It is precisely in this moment that He is nearer than ever. He is at the gates; salvation is nigh.

More