“All you need say is “Yes” if you mean yes, “No” if you mean no; anything more that this comes from the evil one”.Matthew 5: 37
3:16 “Wherever you find jealously and ambition, you find disharmony, and wicked things of every kind being done;”James 3:16; 4:23
4:2 “You want something and you haven’t got it; so you are prepared to kill. You have ambition that you cannot satisfy; so you fight to get your way by force. Why you don’t have what you want is because you don’t pray for it; when you do pray and don’t get it, it is because you have not prayed properly, yo have prayed for something to indulge your own desire.
“Who is this who darkens counsel with words of ignorance?”.Job 38:2
13 ‘Enter by the narrow gate, since the road that leads to destruction is wide and spacious, and many take it;Matthew 7: 13-14
14 but it is a narrow gate and a hard road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
Now I say this to you: the man who divorces his wife – I am not speaking of fornication – and marries another, is guilty of adultery.’Matthew: 9
Be Not Afraid
“..but whoever listens to me will dwell secure and will be at ease, without dread of disaster.”Proverbs 1:33
“And you, son of man, be not afraid of them, nor be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns are with you and you sit upon scorpions; be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, for they are a rebellious house. And you shall speak my words to them, whether they hear or refuse to hear; for they are a rebellious house”.Ezekiel 2:6-7
“I would like you to be free from anxieties”1 Corinthians 7:32
“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will”Romans 12:2
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid.”John 14:27
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you shall eat or what you shall drink, nor about your body, what you shall put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?Matthew 6:25
“Fear is nothing but the failure to use the help that reason gives. When you lack the confidence to rely on reason, you give in to the fears caused by ignorance”Wisdom 17:12-13
“God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and love and of a sound mind”2 Timothy 1:7
Finally, brothers, fill your minds with everything that is true, everything that is noble, everything that is good and pure, everything that we love and honour, and everything that can be thought virtuous or worthy of praise. Keep doing all the things that you learnt from me and have been taught by me and have heard or seen that I do. Then the God of peace will be with you.Philippines 4: 7-9
24 “for false Christs and false prophets will arise and provide great signs and portents, enough to deceive even the elect, if that were possible”.Matthew 24:24
“Test everything, retain what is good.”1 Thessalonians 5:21.
“Everything now covered up will be uncovered, and everything hidden will be made clear”.Luke 12:2
“You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free”John 8:32
“And Jesus answered them, “Take heed that no one leads you astray”.Matthew 24:4
9“Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither the immoral,[b] nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals,[c][d]10 nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor robbers will inherit the kingdom of God”.1 Corinthians 6:9
N.B. homosexual orientation is not a sin, but homosexual acts are (cf RM)
“Were your faith the size of a mustard seed you could say to this mulberry tree, “Be uprooted and planted in the sea,” and it would obey you”.Luke 17: 6
“I tell you solemnly, if your faith were the size of a mustard seed you could say to this mountain, “Move from here to there”, and it would move; nothing would be impossible for you.”Matthew 17: 20
“..and I filled him with the Spirit of God, with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship, to devise artistic designs.”Exodus 31: 3
14 It was he who created man in the beginning,Sirach 15:14-16
and he left him in the power of his own inclination.
15 If you will, you can keep the commandments,
and to act faithfully is a matter of your own choice.
16 He has placed before you fire and water:
stretch out your hand for whichever you wish.
‘I bless you, Father, Lord of heaven and of earth, for hiding these things from the learned and the clever and revealing them to mere children. Yes, Father, for that is what it pleased you to do.Matthew 11:25-26
14 “It was you who accused the Holy One, the Just One, you who demanded the reprieve of a murderer while you killed the prince of life”Acts 3: 14, 17-19
17 “Now I know, brothers, that neither you nor your leaders had any idea what you were really doing; this was the way God carried out what he had foretold, when he said through all his prophets that his Christ would suffer. Now you must repent and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out”.
“Charm is deceitful, and beauty empty”.Proverbs 31:30
“Alas for you when the world speaks well of you!Luke 6: 26
This was the way their ancestors treated the false prophets.”
“And nobody after drinking old wine desires new wine, but says, ‘The old is good.’”Luke 5: 39
“Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me’.”John 14: 6
“I came among you in great ‘fear and trembling’ and in my speeches and the sermons that I gave, there were none of the arguments that belong to philosophy; only a demonstration of the power of the Spirit.”1 Cor. 2:1-5
“Nor is he dependent on anything that human hands can do for him, since he can never be in need of anything; on the contrary, it is he who gives everything – including life and breath – to everyone. From one single stock he not only created the whole human race so that they could occupy the entire earth, but he decreed how long each nation should flourish and what the boundaries of its territory should be”.Acts 17:24 – 26
“For although they knew God, they did not accord Him glory as God or give Him thanks. Instead, they became vain in their reasoning, and their senseless minds were darkened. While claiming to be wise, they became fools.” Romans chapter 1Romans 1: 21-22
“Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no help”.Psalms 146:3
“They are a nation without sense, there is no discernment in them”.Deuteronomy 32:28
“When a country is rebellious, it has many rulers, but a ruler with discernment and knowledge maintains order”.Proverbs 28:2
8. “The Lord loves the righteous (just).Psalm 146 (145): 8,9.
9 “..but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin”.
“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land”2 Chronicles 7: 14
“As long as Moses kept his arms raised, Israel had the advantage; when he let his arms fall, the advantage went to Amalek”Exodus 17: 11
N.B. Prefiguring Christ’s victory on the cross.
Not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts.Zechariah 4:6
“Then he told them a parable about the need to pray continuously and never give up”.Luke 18:1
There is no need to worry; but if there is anything you need, pray for it, asking God for it with prayer and thanksgiving, and that peace of God, which is so much greater than we can understand, will guard your hearts and your thoughts, in Christ Jesus.Philippians 4: 6-7
“Proclaim the message and, welcome or unwelcome, insist on it. Refute falsehood, correct error, call to obedience – but do all with patience and with the intention of teaching”.2 Timothy 4: 2
“The rich man replied, “Ah no, father Abraham, but if someone comes to them from the dead, they will repent. Then Abraham said to him, “if they will not listen to Moses or to the prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone should rise from the dead”.Luke 16: 30-31
“But though we, or an angel from Heaven, preach a gospel to you besides that which we have preached to you, let him be anathema. As we said before, so now I say again: if any one preach to you a gospel, besides that which you have received, let him be anathema.”Galatians, 1:8-9
Some quotes via Ascension Present
“So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”Genesis 1:27
“You shall not kill.”Exodus 20:13
“For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise thee, for thou art fearful and wonderful. Wonderful are thy works! Thou knowest me right well; my frame was not hidden from thee, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth. Thy eyes beheld my unformed substance; in thy book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me…”Psalm 139
“Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you; I appointed you a prophet to the nations.’”Jeremiah 1:4-5
“And when Elizabeth heard the greeting of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit and she exclaimed with a loud cry, ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!’ ”Luke 1:41-42
“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”John 10:10
“The body is not meant for immorality, but for the Lord, and the Lord for the body … Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.”1 Corinthians 6
“What God has joined together, let no man put asunder”Mark 10:9
“..passing unjust sentences, condemning the innocent, and freeing the guilty, although the Lord says, ‘The innocent and the just you shall not put to death.”Daniel 13:53
“Can wicked rulers be allied with thee,Psalm 94: 20-21
who frame mischief by statute.
They band together against the life of the rightous,
and condemn the innocent to death”
Jesus said to the people in the synagogue at Nazareth:Luke 4: 24
“Amen, I say to you,
no prophet is accepted in his own native place”.
“For nothing is hid that shall not be made manifest, nor anything secret that shall not be known and come to light”Luke 8: 17
20 “do not despise prophesying, 21 but test everything; hold fast what is good, “1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 (RSVCE)
“Stand firm and hold to the traditions which you were taught by us, either by word of mouth or by letter”.2 Thessalonians 2:15
“Come to me, all you who labour and are overburdened, and 1 will give you rest. Shoulder my yoke and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Yes, my yoke is easy and my burden light.”Matthew 11:28-30
3 “Do not put your trust in princes, in any child of Adam, who has no power to save”.Psalm 146:3
(Ed. Today’s equivalent of ‘princes’ are ‘politicians’.
“Thus says the Lord: ‘Cursed is the man who trust in man..”Jeremiah 17: 5
Mary the Mother of God
Jesus performed his first miracle at Mary’s request, even though he first protested that his hour had not yet come [John 2:1-12]. This demonstrates Mary’s power of intercession with Jesus, on which we can continue to rely now that she is in heaven with her Divine Son.Extract from pamphlet: Vision of Knock – Icon of the Family of God. Nazareth Family Institute. (www.nazarethfamilyinstitute.org)
Mary’s influence with Jesus is prefigured in the Old Testament. Jesus is king in the line of David, and in the Davidic kingdom the Queen Mother occupied the highest place of honour at the right hand of the king, who would grant her every request, if possible [1 Kings 2: 13-20; Psalm 45:9]
The Easy RouteExtract from: Understanding the Faith; Fifth Sunday of Lent Year B; 25 March 2012, Rollerbon Press.
“The peace that comes from avoiding trouble lasts only as long as I manage to avoid the trouble; part-time peace is no peace at all; I cannot avoid trouble forever. If all my efforts are directed to avoiding trouble, then even the thought of it is enough to deprive me of peace. I have to find peace even in the midst of trouble; only then is it unconditional peace”.
“Just because God wills our salvation, however, does not mean that it is automatic i.e. that every human who ever lived will ultimately be saved, regardless of how the live their life on earth (historically, the doctrine of universal salvation is known in Greek as apokatastasis, and was condemned as heretical at the Council of Constantinople in 543 A.D.). Such a view would deny the gift of human freedom which God gives to every person.
Correction is Needed
God respects our freedom, so human beings are always free to reject God’s love, even definitively. Although this choice is made at the moment of death, it results from the habit of living, or not living, in charity throughout one’s life. How we live now, is how we will die.
External exclusion from the kingdom of God is portrayed by Christ as a real possibility, and it is a place of tremendous sorrow:Extract from: Understanding the Faith; Twenty-First Sunday of Lent Year C; 25 August 2019, Rollerbon Press.
“There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth” [Luke 13:29]
..the Lord desires to save us from this, so salvation is available to all men and women”.
St. John Paul II
“We must prepare ourselves, to suffer great trials before long, such as will demand of us a disposition to give up even life, and a total dedication to Christ and for Christ. With your and my prayer it is possible to mitigate this tribulation, but it is no longer possible to avert it, because only thus can the Church be effectively renewed”.St. John Paul II, 1981.
“What would it profit your country to go the easy way of the world and suffer the los of her own soul? Your country seems in a sense to believing again the temptations of Christ: Ireland is being asked to prefer the ‘kingdoms of the world and their splendour to the Kingdom of God (cf. Mt. 4:8). Satan, the Tempter, the Adversary of Christ, will use all his might and all his deceptions to win your country for the way of the world. What a victory he would gain, what a blow he would inflict on the Body of Christ in the world, if he could seduce men and women away from Christ. Now is the time of testing for your country.”St. John Paul II, visit to Ireland, 1979
“The Rosary is the weapon against evil”St. Padre Pio
St. Therese of Lisiux
“At first sight, it appears easy to do good to souls, to make them love God more, and mold them according to one’s own ideas, but in practice one finds that one can no more do good to souls without God’s help than make the sun shine in the night.”St. Therese of Lisiux
St. Archbishop Óscar Romero
Archbishop Romero was martyred on 24 March 1980 when he was shot dead by a gunman as he celebrated Mass in a hospital chapel.
“A church that suffers no persecution but enjoys the privileges and support of the things of the earth – beware! – is not the true church of Jesus Christ. A preaching that does not point out sin is not the preaching of the gospel. A preaching that makes sinners feel good, so that they are secured in their sinful state, betrays the gospel’s call”.Oscar Romero
Bishop Robert Barron
“One of the most fundamental statements of faith is this: your life is not about you. You’re not in control. This is not your project. Rather, you are part of God’s great design. To believe this in your bones and to act accordingly is to have faith”.Bishop Robert Barron, Feb. 15th 2021
Fr. Pat Collins C.M.
(Referencing the above comments from St. John Paul II)
“More than forty years have passed since the Pope spoke those challenging words. Sadly, we would have to acknowledge that many Irish people have failed to heed them. Here are some reasons why I say this.
* Since 1979 Church attendance has dropped from around 80% to 30%
* There are very few vocations to the priesthood or religious life
* Although contrary to Christian values, the referendums on abortion and same-sex marriage were passed by two-thirds majority.
* Last November (2019) the pagan Festival of Puca was revived at Hallowe’en with the support of Fáilte Ireland (Irish Tourism board) and the County Councils of Meath and Louth.
* Week by week we hear of terrible crimes, such as the murder and dismemberment of a 17-year-old teenager in Drogheda.
* In recent years there has been a growing demand for prayers for deliverance and exorcism from people who feel oppressed or possessed by evil spirits.
*Currently there is a growing addiction problem, for example, the current epidemic of cocaine use.
* The social media abound in vile and hate-filled messages.
Fr. Pat Collins goes on to point out that Joachim Jeremias in his New Testament Theology says that:Fr. Pat Collins CM, Interpreting the Signs of the Times; Newspringtime Community; 18th March 2020
“..God allows suffering, in order to summon people to repentence lest they suffer a greater catastrophe”.
Editor’s comment: Abortion, voted for by 66% of the Irish voting population (2018), claimed 6,666 babies during the first year of legalised abortion (2019). Both sets of numbers taken together amount to six sixes. [cf. Rev.13:18]. I am not saying that this is ‘the’ mark of the beast, but ‘a’ mark of the beast. A signifier pointing to the signified. See also Maria Steen briefly allude to this in an interview. Human Life International, Aug. 2020, states that “St. Bridget of Sweden, the 14th Century mystic recounts that Jesus revealed to her that his body was struck 6,666 times during his passion. Is this a coincidence?”.
Rabbi Jonathan Sachs via saintedmunds.net
“You can’t delegate moral responsibility away. When you do, you raise expectations that cannot be met. And… society becomes freighted with disappointment, anger, fear, resentment and blame. People start to take refuge in magical thinking, which today takes one of four forms: the far right, the far left, religious extremism and aggressive secularism.Rabbi Sachs (Source: Mercatornet 3/2/2021)
“The far right seeks a return to a golden path that never was. The far left seeks a utopian future that will never be. Religious extremists believe you can bring salvation by terror. Aggressive secularists believe that if you get rid of religion there will be peace. These are all fantasies, and pursuing them will endanger the very foundations of freedom…”
Instead, he advocates listening to “an inner moral voice” and “recovering the moral dimension that links our welfare to the welfare of others, making us collectively responsible for the common good.”
He concludes with this:
“We owe it to our children and grandchildren not to throw away what once made the West great… We need to restate the moral and spiritual dimensions in the language of the 21st century, using the media of the 21st century, and in ways that are uniting rather than divisive.”
“The people never give up their liberties but under some delusion.”Edmund Burke, 1784
G. K. Chesterton
G.K. Chesterton by Lafayette (Lafayette Ltd), whole-plate film negative, 20 July 1926
“The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.”G.K. Chesterton, ‘What’s Wrong with the World’
“The function of imagination is not to make strange things settled, so much as to make settled things strange; not so much to make wonders facts as to make facts wonders.”G. K. Chesterton
“Fallacies do not cease to be fallacies because they become fashions.”G. K. Chesterton
C. S. Lewis
“Human life has always been lived on the edge of a precipice. Human culture has always had to exist under the shadow of something infinitely more important than itself. If men had postponed the search for knowledge and beauty until they were secure, the search would never have begun.”C.S. Lewis
“In an age of universal deceit, speaking the Truth becomes a revolutionary act”George Orwell