Our Lord invited us, if we would be his disciples, to take up our cross and follow him. A few days later he manifested his divinity to three of his apostles in the Transfiguration, as we will see him in his glory in heaven. In this meditation, using texts from Scripture, St Josemaria and St John Vianney, we consider how:
Our pathway to heaven passes by way of the cross
The cross is truly a blessing, in that it purifies us and it can be offered up for others
The cross is a manifestation of God’s love for us
When we have a cross to bear, we can think that Christ suffered more than we ever will, and that many others are suffering more than we are
If we love the crosses life brings, we will find joy in them and they will unite us with Christ
We should seek the cross too through mortification and penance
With God and Christian values being pushed more and more out of our laws, culture and lives, people agree that the world is not in a good place. But what can be done to change this? In this meditation we use texts of the Second Vatican Council, St John Paul II, St Josemaria and Edmund Burke to consider how:
Christ sent twelve apostles out to the whole world and they transformed the Roman Empire
Society is transformed through man, through each person
God will do the work but he needs us to help him
We begin by struggling for holiness
We can help parents to bring up their children in faith and values
We can help politicians, journalists, teachers and others to have good values
We can join political parties, professional associations and pro-life groups
When we go through difficult times, as the whole world is at present with the coronavirus crisis, we find great comfort in entrusting ourselves and our loved ones into the hands of our loving mother Mary. In this meditation we use texts of St Josemaria, St John Paul II and St Bernard to consider how:
Everyone loves Christmas, when we celebrate the birth of Christ in Bethlehem. In this meditation we use the Catechism of the Catholic Churchand texts of St Josemaria to pray about why God became man and the consequences this has for us. According to the Catechism, God became man for four reasons:
St Paul tells us that the greatest of the virtues is charity. If we are to live this virtue well, we must first grow in love for God so that his love fills us and overflows into those around us. In this meditation we consider how:
The more we love God, the easier it will be to love our neighbour
We can learn charity from saints like Mother Teresa of Calcutta and St Josemaria, who loved God with their whole heart and their neighbour as themselves
We can grow in four aspects of charity: patience, love for people of all backgrounds, forgiveness and kindness
The Second Vatican Council, using some words of St Josemaria Escriva, called the Mass the centre and root of the interior life. If we make the Mass our centre and root, we will attend it better and we will unite all our acitivities with it. In this meditation we consider how:
At Christmas we have the wonderful custom of giving gifts to others. But the first Christmas gift came from God himself, who so loved the world that he gave his only-begotten Son to dwell amongst us and redeem us by his death on the Cross. In this meditation we consider:
The Gospel passage of St Luke narrating the birth of Christ in Bethlehem
The Prologue of the Gospel of St John telling us who the Child born in Bethlehem is
The many benefits that flow from the Incarnation of God in Jesus
How we can show our gratitude for God’s Gift by welcoming Christ into our life, speaking to him in prayer, doing promptly what he asks of us, giving ourselves to him through those around us and sharing the Gift with others by bringing them to Christ
God so loved the world that he sent his only begotten Son, and Jesus loved us so much that he suffered and died on the cross for us. Jesus invites us to love him in return but we so often show him by our sins that we love him too little. In this meditation we consider how:
We cannot avoid all sins – even the saints in heaven committed them – but we can try harder to avoid sinning.
God expects more from us than from many others.
We should strive especially to avoid committing mortal sins and deliberate venial sins.
We should identify the occasions of our sins and strive to avoid them.
We should foster true contrition for our sins.
We should do penance to make up at least in part for our sins and to strengthen our will to resist future temptations.
We should strive to go regularly to the sacrament of penance, knowing that there God always pours out his mercy on us.