“Our private prayer is meant to mirror the public prayer of the Church—the liturgy. In the first part of the Mass, our prayer is devoted to listening to God’s Word: the Liturgy of the Word. In the second half of the Mass, we participate in the most beautiful prayer of thanksgiving: the Liturgy of the Eucharist. Sandwiched cozily in between listening to Scripture and giving thanks, we lift up our petitions to God, what we call the Prayers of the Faithful. But here’s the thing about our petitions: they make up a mere fraction of the entirety of the liturgy. Almost all of the Mass, we are listening to God and giving thanks and praise to God, and for just a few brief moments, we are telling Him what we need.”
Today we celebrate the birth of John the Baptist, the great herald of the Gospel, preparing the way for Christ. John recognized his mission from God to point to the son of God and the coming of the Kingdom, and he lived that vocation with great passion…even unto death. His attitude toward Christ is summed up in his beautiful words:
“He must increase; I must decrease.” (John 3:30)
We can all learn from John and point others toward Christ every day of our lives. How can you bring the Good News to people in your life today and this week?
Blessed John XXIII is perhaps most well known for his convening of the Second Vatican Council. He was a humble man, passionate about bringing the Church to understand the Gospel better.
“Mother and Teacher of all nations—such is the Catholic Church in the mind of her Founder, Jesus Christ; to hold the world in an embrace of love, that men, in every age, should find in her their own completeness in a higher order of living, and their ultimate salvation.” -Blessed John XXIII, Mater et Magistra (Mother and Teacher)
Today we celebrate the feast of the conversion of the great “apostle to the Gentiles.” After his conversion, St. Paul spread the Gospel fervently and with tremendous love for the Lord about whom he preached.
Read about the conversion of this great saint here.
St. Paul, great evangelist and example of God’s mercy, pray for us!
Looking for a GREAT Christmas gift idea? Check out this fabulous new Catholic commentary on the Gospel of Matthew by Edward Sri and Curtis Mitch. This new book is the perfect companion to your Scripture reading.
Today is the Feast of St. Matthew, tax collector turned apostle of Christ. In his Gospel, we read: “…’Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?’ But when he heard it, he said, ‘Those who are well have no need of a physician, but the sick.'” (Matthew 9:11-12)