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June 26, 2017 – Monday of the Twelfth Week in Ordinary Time

Judging Others Matthew 7:1-5 Jesus tells his followers to let God be the judge. Focusing on others’ faults stands in the way of seeing their own. As disciples, they do have the responsibility to correct and challenge others gone astray, but they must first acknowledge their own sin. Prayer: When I stand in judgment of others, I lose sight of the good in them. Let me see them through your eyes, dear Lord, and when possible guide them lovingly in a new direction.

June 25, 2017 – Twelfth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Courage under Persecution Matthew 10:26-33 Three times Jesus tells his disciples not to fear what might cause them to abandon the mission. The disciples must boldly proclaim the kingdom of God, confident in his love for them. Though their opponents may kill the disciples’ bodies, they cannot harm their souls. Prayer: I pray this day for those throughout the world who are persecuted for their love of you. Give them consolation and courage to carry on your holy work

June 24, 2017 – Solemnity of the Nativity of Saint John the Baptist

The Birth of John/The Canticle of Zechariah Luke 1:57-66, 80 On the day of John’s circumcision, Zechariah regains his ability to speak once he confirms the name, designated by the angel, of his son. At this, Zechariah opens his mouth and prays aloud a hymn of praise. Those who witness these events are amazed and wonder who this child will one day be. Prayer: You loved and caressed me into being. Your handprint will always be on me.

June 23, 2017 – Solemnity of the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Praise of the Father Matthew 11:25-30 Jesus praises the Father for his wisdom, a pure gift to those willing to receive. God reveals himself to those who are open and receptive, “the little ones.” One knows the will of the Father through the Son. Rather than living as though burdened, Jesus offers his invitation to discipleship, the easy yoke — symbolism for the law — of loving God and neighbor. Prayer: Why do I make that which is so very simple, complicated to the point that I become exhausted and ready to give up? Let me rest in your love, O Lord.

June 22, 2017 – Thursday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

Teaching about Prayer Matthew 6:7-15 Jesus tells the disciples the Father already knows what they need to make their prayer to him simple and straightforward. They are to begin by giving honor to God and then go on to petition him for their needs, mindful of the importance of the willingness to forgive as God forgives them. Prayer: Our Father, old hurts and grievances weigh me down. I give them to you only to take them back. The longer I hold on to them the less inclined I am to forgive. Please free me once and for all.

June 21, 2017 – Memorial of Saint Aloysius Gonzaga, Martyr

Teaching about Almsgiving, Praying, and Fasting Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18 Jesus talks to the disciples not so much about what they do, though that is important, but about why they do what they do. If the motivation behind prayer, fasting, and almsgiving is to impress others, then it is not of God, nor is it pleasing to God. Prayer: When I am tempted to “toot my own horn,” remind me that anything I do in your name is for your glory, not mine.

June 20, 2017 – Tuesday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

Love of Enemies Matthew 5:43-48 Jesus tells his disciples that love must be inclusive. To love as God loves is to love everyone, even and especially those who are enemies or simply difficult to love. Prayer: By following your example, Jesus, may my love be an example that inspires another, and another, and another to walk in your way.

June 19, 2017 – Monday of the Eleventh Week in Ordinary Time

Teaching about Retaliation Matthew 5:38-42 Jesus tells his disciples there is nothing gained by responding to violence with violence. Retaliation becomes a dangerous cycle. The only way to stop the cycle is to respond with mercy and love. Prayer: “Turning the other cheek” is often easier said than done, and it doesn’t always bring the results hoped for. But it is your way, Lord.

June 18, 2017 – Solemnity of the Body and Blood of Christ

Bread of Life Discourse John 6:51-58 Those listening to Jesus’ discourse haven’t the first clue what he is talking about. Perhaps John’s community doesn’t either. Jesus is inviting them to eat a new kind of food, one that nourishes their spirits, not their bodies, and will bring them to eternal life with him. Prayer: Thank you for the faith to believe you are really present in the bread and wine consecrated.

June 17, 2017 – Saturday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Teaching about Oaths Matthew 5:33-37 The taking of oaths is the subject of this antithesis. Jesus tells his disciples to be simply honest and straight forward. Dishonesty is evil. To tell the truth is an expression of love. Prayer: It seems the world thrives on falsehood and dishonesty. It is sometimes difficult to speak the truth. When what we say and do is rooted in love, it is the right way, your way.