PRAYING NIGHT AND DAY Lk 2:36-40.

It might seem like a bit too much to ask of a person for them to be praying night and day in the temple, or in the case of a Christian, a Church or Chapel. This is the case only if we have a very limited vision for prayer, that is, prayer is recitation of the devotional formulas in front of the Blessed Sacrament. There is far more to prayer than this! Our whole life ought to be one big prayer to God!

This is what the prophetess Anna is teaching us in today’s Gospel! Her life becomes a symbol or, better still, a living example of what all our lives should be – namely, a living sacrifice to God! The big question is: How is this possible in the midst of the busyness of our lives?

Any successful person will tell you that one of the keys to his or her success is the ability to prioritise well. It is important for us to realise that NOT every good thing we CAN do SHOULD be done. This can be hard to accept at first but is quite logical when we think it through properly. Jesus gave a certain priority to prayer […]

By |December 30th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

The Prayer of Faith

1 Jn 2: 3-11 The command to love God and one another has been with us from the beginning – it is rooted in our human nature as something essential to our very being. Without love we would cease to be human! Love is an aspect of discipleship that is often forgotten be cause we overlook it as obvious. We must ensure that we never forget to tell our loved ones that we love them, and to do so often.

Jesus, you have loved me while I was far from you because love does not hold a person ransom to their sins. Help me to forgive as freely as you do.

Lk 2: 22-35 This prayer of Simeon is the epitome of faith. He is a man who has believed in the coming of the Messiah all his life and been promised that he would see the fulfilment of this belief. It happens now! Good things come to he who is willing to wait for them and persevere in working for them. God helps those who help themselves. This does not mean that we can earn salvation – it does mean, however, that the more we […]

By |December 29th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

FEAST OF THE HOLY FAMILY

 

Gn 15: 1-6; 21: 1-3 As we celebrate the Feast of the Holy Family this year let us spare a thought for all those families suffering in the midst of wars and the effects of wars. We may be struggling with all sorts of things but at least we are not refugees in a crowded camp in the middle of nowhere. We may be divide through choice of work or even broken relationships but we do not have the worry of where our loved ones are in the midst of a war zone.

Jesus, help me to be thankful for the gift of my family no matter what the challenges we have to face at this time. Let me be grateful for the blessings and work generously to overcome the difficulties.

Heb 11: 8. 11-12. 17-19 Family is a gift from God. It is not a right! We live in an age when so many think they are entitled to whatever they want. This is not the case. There will always be those couples who cannot physically have children – their challenge, and it may be a difficult one, is to discover other ways to […]

By |December 28th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

St John THE MYSTICAL EVANGELIST Jn 20:2-8.

The title I have chosen for this reflection is a little misleading in that all of the Evangelists are mystics in their own rights. It is just that the Gospel of John seems to be more so in that it often refers to many of the mysteries of our faith. John was obviously a deep thinker. He was not satisfied with simple explanations of realities that failed to express them truly. Even if it meant leaving our understanding of articles of faith open to the mystery of God and His Holy Spirit, this did not deter him in his writings. In many ways this is the beauty of John’s Gospel – the openness to the transcendent that he places in the Gospel can be the launching point for many fruitful meditations and reflections.

There was a time in my life when I feared uncertainty and all that uncertainty meant. Now I have learned to love it and embrace it with faith, trusting that if and when necessary, the Holy Spirit will give me whatever understanding I need at any given time! I think that this type of attitude captures something of the essence of the meaning of the word, ‘faith.’ As […]

By |December 27th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

St Stephen THE CROWNED ONE Acts 6:8-10; 7:54-59.

As you have all probably realised by now my name is Steven, an alternative spelling of Stephen. There was a time that I wondered what my name meant so I looked it up in a dictionary of names and their meanings. I found out that it is Greek in origin and means literally, ‘crowned one.’ Great I thought, my name has kingly meaning. It was only later, when I was talking to my dad about the meaning of my name that I discovered that the reference to being crowned in relation to St Stephen, the first martyr, is a reference to being crowned with the crown of martyrdom. This was not so appealing as being crowned with a royal crown as we understand it being a part of the royal family who rules a particular country here on earth!

It was not until many years later, when I began to study the lives of the martyrs and saints that I began to understand that the crown of martyrdom is far greater than any crown that the kings and queens of this earth will wear. To receive the crown of martyrdom is to receive the crown of eternal life! It is to […]

By |December 26th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments
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When Love is terrifying

We speak of love as though it is always wonderful. Yet the reality is that it can often be terrifying. When someone approaches you and bears their soul, speaking of their undying love for you, it demands a response. It is as though love breaks into your life like an intruder, demanding that your life changes according to its demands. While we may never consciously think of Love in this way, there can be a deep fear that we will lose something of our freedom or autonomy if we allow the love of another to take over our life.

This is particularly the case with Christ. We can find it very threatening to acknowledge the madness of God’s love shown through his birth in Bethlehem or his death on Calvary. The safest option (which has been used throughout the Church’s history) is to wrap the story up in a nice pious or theological coating so that the personal reality of this love never has to impact us.

Perhaps it is time to step away from our fear, allow ourselves to be loved, and let the Love of Christ to set its demands on our life.

By |December 25th, 2014|The Call|0 Comments

Where true peace is found

In a world full of violence and hatred, Christ comes to bring peace to our troubled hearts. Fr Ken Barker MGL calls us to invite Christ into the violence within our own hearts in this homily for Christmas. RIGHT-CLICK TO DOWNLOAD

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By |December 25th, 2014|CRADIO, Homilies|Comments Off on Where true peace is found

Where true peace is found

In a world full of violence and hatred, Christ comes to bring peace to our troubled hearts. Fr Ken Barker MGL calls us to invite
By |December 25th, 2014|CRADIO, Homilies|Comments Off on Where true peace is found

Christmas Day THE LIGHT HAS COME Jn 1:1-5, 9-14.

The coming of the Son of God among us as a man is one of the most important events in human history. God chooses not to remain somewhat aloof and distant from His creation and joins us as one of us! This is really quite a remarkable truth to dwell upon. On of the images that John the Evangelist uses to present this reality to us is the image of the light coming in to the midst of darkness and banishing the darkness forever.

The whole interplay of the life, ministry, death and resurrection of Jesus is played out within this image. There are forces of darkness, that we might also call ‘sin’ that seek destroy Him. Just when it looks as though the powers of darkness have won, when Jesus hangs dead on the cross, we find, a few days later, that He is not dead any more, but has been raised from the dead by the glory of God the Father!

The little child that is born this day, 2000 or so years ago in a town called Bethlehem, has all this awaiting Him and more. As we begin to follow His journey, which is in reality, our journey of […]

By |December 25th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments

LETTING OUR LIGHTS SHINE IN THE DARKNESS Lk 1:67-79.

Jesus is THE light of the world. Each of us is called to be little lights that shine and point the way to THE light. This call may not be as easy as it first sounds. There are times when it is easy, but there are also going to be many testing times when it will be difficult for us to fulfil our task of being lights to the world.

For John the Baptist, the call to be a light shining in the darkness to prepare the way for Jesus, will eventually cost him his life! He will have his head cut off by a weak and jealous Herod who is not strong enough to resist the temptation to rid himself of his outspoken opponent.

Perhaps we too will be forced to make a stand one day that will cost us – maybe money, friends or even our own lives! It probably will not come down to the latter however, it will eventually come down to the other two and more besides! There is a cost involved in following Jesus, and the cost can be high. However, the results of giving all for Jesus and the Gospel ALWAYS far outweigh the costs […]

By |December 24th, 2014|Daily Scripture|0 Comments