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Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Monday of the Fourteenth Week in Ordinary Time.

Alleluia, alleluia.
Our Savior Jesus Christ has destroyed death
and brought life to light through the Gospel.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel:  Matthew 9:18-26
“Take heart, your faith has made you well”

18 While he was thus speaking to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, “My daughter has just died; but come and lay your  hand on her, and she will live.” 19 And Jesus rose and followed him, with his disciples. 20 And behold, a woman who had suffered from a hemorrhage for twelve years came up behind him and touched the fringe of his garment; 21 for she said to herself, “If I only touch his garment, I shall be made well.” 22 Jesus turned, and seeing her he said, “Take heart, daughter; your faith has made you well.” And instantly the woman was made well.  23 And when Jesus came to the ruler’s house, and saw the flute players, and the crowd making a tumult, 24 he said, “Depart; for the girl is not dead but sleeping.” And they laughed at him. 25 But when the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took her by the hand, and the girl arose.  26 And the report of this went through all that district.

Quote from the early church fathers:

Daughter, your faith has made you well, by John Chrysostom (347-407 AD)

“So what did Messiah do? He did not let her go unnoticed but led her into the center of attention and made her visible. He had many reasons for doing this. Some might imagine that ‘he did this merely for love of glory – otherwise why would he not allow her to remain concealed?’ But what are they proposing who might say this? That he should keep her silent, that he should ignore her need, and thereby pass up miracles too numerous to mention, all because he is in love with glory? What an unholy thought, inspired by the most unholy one of all.”

“What then is his intention in bringing her forward? First, Jesus puts an end to her fear. He does not want her to remain trapped in dread. He gives no cause for her conscience to be harmed, as if she had stolen the gift. Second, he corrects her assumption that she has no right to be seen. Third, he makes her faith an exhibit to all. He encourages the others to emulate her faith. Fourth, his subduing the fountains of her hemorrhage was another sign of his knowledge of all things. And finally, do you remember the ruler of the synagogue? He was at the point of despair, of utter ruin. Jesus is indirectly admonishing him by what he says to the woman.”
(excerpt from the  THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW, HOMILY 31.2)

Prayer:
“Lord Jesus, you love each of us individually with a unique and personal love. Touch my life with your saving power, heal and restore me to fullness of life. Help me to give wholly of myself in loving service to others.”

 

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Wednesday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
The Father willed to give us birth by the word of truth
that we may be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel:  Matthew 8:28-34
“Jesus frees those who are bound up”

28 And when he came to the other side, to the country of the Gadarenes, two demoniacs met him, coming out of the tombs, so fierce that no one could pass that way.  29 And behold, they cried out, “What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?” 30 Now a herd of many swine was feeding at some distance from them. 31 And the demons begged him, “If you cast us out, send us away into the herd of swine.”  32 And he said to them, “Go.” So they came out and went into the swine; and behold, the whole herd rushed down the steep bank into the sea, and  perished in the waters. 33 The herdsmen fled, and going into the city they told everything, and what had happened to the demoniacs.  34 And behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus; and when they saw him, they begged him to leave their neighborhood.

Quote from the early church fathers:

Christ is triumphant over the forces of demons, by Peter Chrysologus (400-450 AD)

“[Jesus] said to them, ‘Go!’ The foul-smelling animals are delivered up, not at the will of the demons but to show how savage the demons can become against humans. They ardently seek to destroy and dispossess all that is, acts, moves and lives. They seek the death of people. The ancient enmity of deep-rooted wrath and malice is in store for the human race. Demons do not give up easily unless they are forcibly overcome. They are doing the harm they are ordered to do. Therefore the foul-smelling animals are delivered up that it may be made clear to the demons that they have permission to enter the swine but not to enter humans. It is by our vices that we empower them to do harm. Similarly, by our power of faith we tread on the necks of demons. They become subject to us under Christ who is triumphant.”
(excerpt from SERMONS 16.8)

[Peter Chrysologus (400-450 AD) was a renowned preacher and bishop of Ravena in the 5th century]

Prayer:
“Lord Jesus, unbind me that I may love you wholly and walk in the freedom of your way of love and holiness. May there be nothing which keeps me from the joy of living in your presence.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Feast of Saint Thomas, Apostle

Alleluia, alleluia.
You believe in me, Thomas, because you have seen me, says the Lord;
blessed are those who have not seen, but still believe!
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel: John 20:24-29
“Do not be faithless – but believing”

24 Now Thomas, one of the twelve, called the Twin, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord.” But he said to them, “Unless I see in his hands the print of the nails, and place my finger in the mark of the nails, and place my hand in his side, I will not believe.” 26 Eight days later, his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. The doors were shut, but Jesus came and stood among them, and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here, and see my hands; and put out your hand, and place it in my side; do not be faithless, but believing.” 28 Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet believe.”

Quote from the early church fathers:

Touching the wounds of Christ and healing the wounds of our unbelief, by Gregory the Great (540-604 AD)

“It was not an accident that that particular disciple was not present. The divine mercy ordained that a doubting disciple should, by feeling in his Master the wounds of the flesh, heal in us the wounds of unbelief. The unbelief of Thomas is more profitable to our faith than the belief of the other disciples. For the touch by which he is brought to believe confirms our minds in belief, beyond all question.” (excerpt from FORTY GOSPEL HOMILIES 26)

Prayer:
“Lord Jesus Christ, through your victory over sin and death you have overcome all the powers of darkness. Help me to draw near to you and to trust in your life-giving word. Fill me with your Holy Spirit and strengthen my faith in your promises and my hope in the power of your resurrection.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Monday of the Thirteenth Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
If today you hear his voice,
harden not your hearts.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Reading:
Matthew 8:18-22
“Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go”

18 Now when Jesus saw great crowds around him, he gave orders to go over to the other side. 19 And a scribe came up and said to him, “Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go.”  20 And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man has nowhere to lay his head.” 21 Another of the disciples said to him, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” 22 But Jesus said to him, “Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead.”

Quote from the early church fathers:

Following the Lord Jesus, by Augustine of Hippo, 354-430 A.D.

“‘Come follow Me, says the Lord. Do you love? He has hastened on, He has flown on ahead. Look and see where. O Christian, don’t you know where your Lord has gone? I ask you: Don’t you wish to follow Him there? Through trials, insults,the cross, and death. Why do you hesitate? Look, the way has been shown you.”
(excerpt from Sermon 64,5)

Prayer:
“Take, O Lord, and receive my entire liberty, my memory, my understanding, and my whole will. All that I am and all that I possess you have given me. I surrender it all to you to be disposed of according to your will. Give me only your love and your

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Tuesday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
I am the light of the world, says the Lord;
whoever follows me will have the light of life.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel: Matthew 7:6,12-14
“Do not throw your pearls before swine”
6 “Do not give dogs what is holy; and do not throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under foot and turn to attack you. 12 So whatever you wish that men would do to you, do so to them; for this is the law and the prophets. 13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. 14 For the gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those who find it are few.

Quote from the early church fathers:

Unreadiness to receive Godly teaching, by Augustine of Hippo, 430-543 A.D.

“Now in this precept we are forbidden to give a holy thing to dogs or to cast pearls before swine. We must diligently seek to determine the gravity of these words: holy, pearls, dogs and swine. A holy thing is whatever it would be impious to profane or tear apart. Even a fruitless attempt to do so makes one already guilty of such impiety, though the holy thing may by its very nature remain inviolable and indestructible. Pearls signify all spiritual things that are worthy of being highly prized. Because these things lie hidden in secret, it is as though they were being drawn up from the deep. Because they are found in the wrappings of allegories, it is as though they were contained within shells that have been opened.(1) It is clear therefore that one and the same thing can be called both a holy thing and a pearl. It can be called a holy thing because it ought not to be destroyed and a pearl because it ought not to be despised. One tries to destroy what one does not wish to leave intact. One despises what is deemed worthless, as if beneath him. Hence, whatever is despised is said to be trampled under foot… Thus we may rightly understand that these words (dogs and swine) are now used to designate respectively those who assail the truth and those who resist it.” (excerpt from SERMON ON THE MOUNT 2.20.68–69)

Prayer attributed to
Clement XI of Rome

“Let me love you, my Lord and my God, and see myself as I really am – a pilgrim in this world, a Christian called to respect and love all whose lives I touch, those in authority over me or those under my authority, my friends and my enemies. Help me to conquer anger with gentleness, greed by generosity, apathy by fervor. Help me to forget myself and reach out towards others.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Monday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
The word of God is living and effective,
able to discern reflections and thoughts of the heart.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel Reading:
Matthew 7:1-5
“First take the log out of your own eye”

1 “Judge not, that you be not judged.  2 For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get.  3 Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?  4 Or how can you say to your brother, `Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?  5 You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye.

Quote from the early church fathers:

Judge from justice, forgive from grace, by Ephrem the Syrian, 306-373 A.D.

“Do not judge, that is, unjustly, so that you may not be judged, with regard to injustice. With the judgment that you judge shall you be judged (Matthew 7:2). This is like the phrase ‘Forgive, and it will be forgiven you.’ For once someone has judged in accordance with justice, he should forgive in accordance with grace, so that when he himself is judged in accordance with justice, he may be worthy of forgiveness through grace. Alternatively, it was on account of the judges, those who seek vengeance for themselves, that he said, ‘Do not condemn.’ That is, do not seek vengeance for yourselves. Or, do not judge, from appearances and opinion and then condemn, but admonish and advise.” (excerpt from COMMENTARY ON TATIAN’S DIATESSARON 6.18B)

*Prayer:*
“O Father, give us the humility which realizes its ignorance, admits its mistakes, recognizes its need, welcomes advice, accepts rebuke. Help us always to praise rather than to criticize, to sympathize rather than to discourage, to build rather than to destroy, and to think of people at their best rather than at their worst. This we ask for thy name’s sake. (Prayer of William Barclay, 20th century)

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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June 18, 2018
Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
A lamp to my feet is your word,
a light to my path.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel: Matthew 5:38-42
Do not return evil for evil

38 “You have heard that it was said, `An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ 39 But I say to you, Do not resist one who is evil. But if any one strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also; 40 and if any one would sue you and take your coat, let him have your cloak as well; 41 and if any one forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to him who begs from you, and do not refuse him who would borrow from you.

Quote from the early church fathers:

You tear yourself apart by hating, by an anonymous early author from the Greek church

“We have seen how murder is born from anger and adultery from desire. In the same way, the hatred of an enemy is destroyed by the love of friendship. Suppose you have viewed a man as an enemy, yet after a while he has been swayed by your benevolence. You will then love him as a friend. I think that Christ ordered these things not so much for our enemies as for us: not because enemies are fit to be loved by others but because we are not fit to hate anyone. For hatred is the prodigy of dark places. Wherever it resides, it sullies the beauty of sound sense. Therefore not only does Christ order us to love our enemies for the sake of cherishing them but also for the sake of driving away from ourselves what is bad for us. The Mosaic law does not speak about physically hurting your enemy but about hating your enemy. But if you merely hate him, you have hurt yourself more in the spirit than you have hurt him in the flesh. Perhaps you don’t harm him at all by hating him. But you surely tear yourself apart. If then you are benevolent to an enemy, you have rather spared yourself than him. And if you do him a kindness, you benefit yourself more than him.” (excerpt from INCOMPLETE WORK ON MATTHEW, HOMILY 13, The Greek Fathers)

Prayer of Anselm, 1033-1109 AD
“O merciful God, fill our hearts, we pray, with the graces of your Holy Spirit; with love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control. Teach us to love those who hate us; to pray for those who despitefully use us; that we may be the children of your love, our Father, who makes the sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. In adversity grant us grace to be patient; in prosperity keep us humble; may we guard the door of our lips; may we lightly esteem the pleasures of this world, and thirst after heavenly things; through Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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June 16, 2018
Saturday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary

Alleluia, alleluia.
Incline my heart, O God, to your decrees;
and favor me with your law.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel:  Matthew 5:33-37
Let what you say be simply Yes or No

33 “Again you have heard that it was said to the men of old, `You shall not swear falsely, but shall perform to the Lord what you have sworn.’  34 But I say to you, Do not swear at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, 35 or by the earth, for it is his footstool, or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the great King. 36 And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make one hair white or black. 37 Let what you say be simply `Yes’ or `No’; anything more than this comes from evil.

Meditation:

How forceful are honest words! (Job 6:25) Jesus addressed the issue of honesty and truthfulness in one’s conduct and speech. What does it mean to be true to one’s word? To be true to oneself and to others requires character. Unfortunately many people today miserably fail here. No wonder we don’t trust many in positions of leadership and influence. God is the source of all truth and there is nothing false or deceitful in him. His word is truth and his law is truth. His truth liberates us from illusion, deceit, and hypocrisy.  Jesus told his disciples that the truth will make you free (John 8:32).

Quote from the early church fathers:

The Light of Truth, by Chromatius (died 406 AD)

“By the grace of gospel teaching, the law given by Moses acquired an advantage. The law prescribes that one must not swear falsely; but according to the gospel one must not swear at all. The Holy Spirit had seen fit to order this through Solomon when he said, ‘Do not accustom your mouth to oaths’ (Sirach 23:9). And again: ‘Even as a well-chastised servant is not deterred from envy, whoever swears and does business will not be purged from sin’ (Sirach 23:11). Therefore it is absolutely inappropriate for us to swear. What need is there for us to swear when we are not allowed to lie at all and our words must always be true and trustworthy, so much so that they may be taken as an oath? On this, the Lord not only forbids us to swear falsely but even to swear, lest we appear to tell the truth only when we swear and lest (while we should be truthful in our every word) we think it is all right to lie when we do not take an oath. For this is the purpose of an oath: Everyone who swears, swears to the fact what he is saying is true. Therefore the Lord does not want a gap between our oath and our ordinary speech. Even as there must be no faithlessness in an oath, in our words there must be no lie. For both false swearing and lying are punished with divine judgment, as the Scripture says: ‘The mouth that lies kills the soul’ (Wisdom 1:11). So whoever speaks the truth swears, for it is written: ‘A faithful witness will not lie’ (Proverbs 14:5). (excerpt from TRACTATE ON MATTHEW 24.2.2–4)

[Note: Chromatius was an early Christian scholar and bishop of Aquileia, Italy. He was a close friend of John Chrysostom and Jerome. He died in 406 AD. Jerome describead him as a “most learned and most holy man.”]

“Set a watch, Lord, upon my tongue, that I may never speak the cruel word which is not true; or being true, is not the whole truth; or being wholly true, is merciless; for the love of Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Quote from the early church fathers:

The Light of Truth, by Chromatius (died 406 AD)

“By the grace of gospel teaching, the law given by Moses acquired an advantage. The law prescribes that one must not swear falsely; but according to the gospel one must not swear at all. The Holy Spirit had seen fit to order this through Solomon when he said, ‘Do not accustom your mouth to oaths’ (Sirach 23:9). And again: ‘Even as a well-chastised servant is not deterred from envy, whoever swears and does business will not be purged from sin’ (Sirach 23:11). Therefore it is absolutely inappropriate for us to swear. What need is there for us to swear when we are not allowed to lie at all and our words must always be true and trustworthy, so much so that they may be taken as an oath? On this, the Lord not only forbids us to swear falsely but even to swear, lest we appear to tell the truth only when we swear and lest (while we should be truthful in our every word) we think it is all right to lie when we do not take an oath. For this is the purpose of an oath: Everyone who swears, swears to the fact what he is saying is true. Therefore the Lord does not want a gap between our oath and our ordinary speech. Even as there must be no faithlessness in an oath, in our words there must be no lie. For both false swearing and lying are punished with divine judgment, as the Scripture says: ‘The mouth that lies kills the soul’ (Wisdom 1:11). So whoever speaks the truth swears, for it is written: ‘A faithful witness will not lie’ (Proverbs 14:5). (excerpt from TRACTATE ON MATTHEW 24.2.2–4)

(Note: Chromatius was an early Christian scholar and bishop of Aquileia, Italy. He was a close friend of John Chrysostom and Jerome. He died in 406 AD. Jerome describead him as a “most learned and most holy man.”)

Prayer:

“Set a watch, Lord, upon my tongue, that I may never speak the cruel word which is not true; or being true, is not the whole truth; or being wholly true, is merciless; for the love of Jesus Christ our Lord.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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Friday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Alleluia, alleluia.
Shine like lights in the world,
as you hold on to the word of life.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel: Matthew 5:27-32
“If your eye causes you to sin”

27 “You have heard that it was said, `You shall not commit adultery.’ 28 But I say to you that every one who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.  29 If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body  be thrown into hell. 30 And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away; it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole  body go into hell.  31 “It was also said, `Whoever divorces his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’  But I say to you that every one who divorces his wife, except on the ground of unchastity, makes her an adulteress; and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

Quote from the early church fathers:

The fuel of adultery, by Chromatius (died 406 AD)

“Because adultery is a serious sin and in order to uproot it, lest our conscience be defiled, he [Jesus] forbade even lust, which is the fuel of adultery. According to the words of blessed James in his epistle, ‘Lust when it has conceived gives birth to sin; and sin when it is full-grown brings forth death’ (James 1:15). The Holy Spirit speaks concerning this to David: ‘Happy shall he be who takes your little ones and dashes them against the rock’ (Psalm 137:9). The symbolism here is that the blessed and truly evangelical person roots out the desires and lust of the flesh arising from human weakness. He does this immediately before they grow, at the onset, through faith in Christ who has been described as a rock” (1 Corinthians 10:4) (excerpt from TRACTATE ON MATTHEW 23.1.6–7)

[Note: Chromatius was an early Christian scholar and bishop of Aquileia, Italy. He was a close friend of John Chrysostom and Jerome. He died in 406 AD. Jerome describead him as a “most learned and most holy man.”]

Prayer:
“Lord Jesus, begin a new work of love within me. Instill in me a greater love and respect for your commandments. Give me a burning desire to live a life of holiness and righteousness. Purify my thoughts, desires, and intentions that I may only desire what is pleasing to you and in accord with your will.”

Daily Gospel and Meditation by Fr Daniel Ribeiro, scj

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13 June 2018 (Wednesday)
Memorial of Saint Anthony of Padua, Priest and Doctor of the Church.

Alleluia, alleluia.
Teach me your paths, my God,
and guide me in your truth.
Alleluia, alleluia.

Gospel: Matthew 5:17-19
Great are those who teach and obey the commandments,

17 “Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfill them. 18 For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away,not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. 19 Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

Quote from the early church fathers:

What you teach, you should do, by Chromatius (died 406 AD)

“While it is sinful to abolish the least of the commandments, all the more so the great and most important ones. Hence the Holy Spirit affirms through Solomon: ‘Whoever despises the little things shall gradually die’ (Sirach 19:1b). Consequently nothing in the divine commandments must be abolished, nothing altered. Everything must be preserved and taught faithfully and devotedly that the glory of the heavenly kingdom may not be lost. Indeed, those things considered least important and small by the unfaithful or by worldly people are not small before God but necessary. For the Lord taught the commandments and did them. Even small things point to the great future of the kingdom of heaven. For this reason, not only words but also deeds are important; and you should not only teach, but what you teach, you should do.” (excerpt from TRACTATE ON MATTHEW 20.2.1–3)

[Note: Chromatius was an early Christian scholar and bishop of Aquileia, Italy. He was a close friend of John Chrysostom and Jerome. He died in 406 AD. Jerome described him as a “most learned and most holy man.”]

Prayer:
“Lord Jesus, grant this day, to direct and sanctify, to rule and govern our hearts, minds, and bodies, so that all our thoughts, words, and deeds may be in accord with your Father’s law and wisdom. And thus may we be saved and protected through your mighty help.”

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