Articles by Fr. Alfonse
“Oh Mother of God, some may rejoice in their innocence, others may be glad of their plentiful merits, let others exult in God’s mercy shown to them without intermediaries; but you, my Mother, you are the only hope and solace of my life. When I completely despair of God and of myself, thinking of you, recalling you, my spirit comes alive again, as if out of the deepest darkness. You are my glorying, my well-being, my honor, and my life.” – Blessed Henry Suso
This meditation was written by Jennifer Burgin. Please follow her blog: Jennifer’s Spectrum of Spirituality
What is wrong with me? Why does he punch when he gets liquored up? Why does he slap me around when he’s mad at someone else? I do not know where to go or where to turn to! The make-up may cover up the bruises on the outside but I’m bleeding on the inside –so much pain and hopelessness. Will I ever get away from the violence? What about the safety of my children? Dear God, please help me!
Like the battered wife, the widow in today’s gospel reading felt the sting of the adversary’s abuse. We are not sure what her problem was. Did a land owner treat her unfairly? Was she being forced into slavery of some sort? Did some how she get cheated out of her property? All we know is that she was fed up with the judge’s inaction. She demanded justice, a resolution of some sort. Her hounding and pleading bothered the judge so much that he gave in and granted her request. How come he was so scared that she would strike him? I can’t help but think of the judge as a cranky old wimp too unmanly to deal with a strong, resilient woman. The widow had enough of the injustice! She remained persistent and eventually got what she asked for.
Render Justice Remember these words: Pray always without becoming weary! When bad things happen to us, lift them up to the Lord. Seek help when things seem hopeless. Get away from a dangerous situation however difficult it may be. Be resilient and strong when life whips us around in the most unexpected ways. Remember that God does not wish for any of his children to be abused and neglected. Do not give up on justice! Sometimes we think those who hurt us will never get punished. However, God has an amazing way of handling people and situations. We just need to remain faithful and trust in his Holy Will.
-Blessed Oscar Romero
Memorial of St. Martin of Tours, Bishop(Click here for readings)By FR ALFONSE NAZZAROAs Jesus was entering a village, ten lepers met him. They stood at a distance from him and raised their voices, saying, “Jesus, Master! Have pity on u…
Saturday of the Thirty-First Week in Ordinary Time
By JENNIFER BURGIN
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The Pharisees, who loved money, heard all these things and sneered at him. And he said to them, “You justify yourselves in the sight of others, but God knows your hearts; for what is of human esteem is an abomination in the sight of God.”
My freshman year of college I registered for an Intro to Archery class. I thought: What a cool opportunity to learn one of the oldest methods of hunting and defense. Maybe I can “Wow” a Handsome “Bo” with my bow and arrow skills!
Unfortunately, my inner romanticism clouded my judgment. I believed the archery class would be easy “A”, but it turned out painfully difficult. Each class left me with bruised arms, callused hands, and sore shoulders. I hit areas of my body more than the target itself! Mid-point through the semester the instructor noticed my struggles. She began working with me one-on-one and determined that I am left-eye dominant. Simply wearing an eye patch helped better aim the arrows toward the bullseye. Eventually I hit the target consistently and stopped bruising my arms. I felt like Miss One-Eyed Robin Hood but without Little John or Friar Tuck.
I never picked up a bow and arrow ever again after I barely passed that archery class….
God knows our hearts. He knows what we think, how we feel, and why we do what we do. We may think he doesn’t notice our struggles. We may curse him when we believe our lives are going nowhere. The bow is broken and the arrows are used up. We’ve shot an arrow here, there and everywhere but out of reach of a target. Do we even realize God’s love is the target of choice? Why do we shoot off arrows of fear, insecurity, rage and jealousy in all directions possibly wounding ourselves and others?
We shoot an arrow into a pot of fool’s gold only to discover riches do not buy happiness. We knock over a whiskey or prescription pill bottle with arrows thinking we can drink away the pain. We waste arrows promoting sexual indecency all in the name of personal freedom.
Why use the bow and arrow in sinful ways? Hand the archery equipment over to God and trust in him. He will not let us down. In fact, through our faith he will pierce our own hearts with arrows of unconditional love. To God, we are his precious targets. He hunts us down not to destroy us but bring us the comfort, support, and wisdom that we all so desperately need! Our ultimate target is to get to heaven someday. Why not let Our Lord, the perfect marksman, lead us on the right path?!
“Father-like he tends and spares us;
Well our feeble frame he knows;
In his hand he gently bears us,
Rescues us from all our foes.
Widely yet his mercy flows.”
-Divine Office Saturday Morning Prayer Hymn
This meditation was written by Jennifer Burgin. Please visit her blog Jennifer’s Spectrum of Spirituality
(Click here for readings)
By BENEDICT AUGUSTINE
Halloween 1994 – Fall semester of my junior year at Texas A&M University. My sorority sponsored a Trick or Treat for Canned Foods to benefit a local food pantry. We were encouraged to dress up in costumes and knock door-to-door in neighborhoods around College Station.
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