Tag: Jesus

Do Not Hinder The Children: Let Them Come To Jesus 

Do Not Hinder The Children: Let Them Come To Jesus 

​*Do not Hinder the Children; Let them Come to Jesus*

(Homily for August 18, 2018)
_“Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them; for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven. And he laid His hands on them and went away” *(Matthew 19:14-15).*_
Once upon a time, a parent asked a priest, “when is the right time to start teaching my child about God?” In response, the priest asked, “How old is your child?” And the child’s father said, “He is just two years old.” The priest said, “You are two years late.” 
Dear friends in Christ, one very common mistake we often make as parents is to assume children are too young to know or understand the things of God and by so doing, we indirectly hinder them from coming to Jesus. 
It is such an irony that we do not think twice before playing the latest secular music for a child on his/her first birthday but when it comes to prayer, the child is completely left out. Some children never get to know the meaning of prayer or develop a relationship with God even after learning all the alphabets. 
Jesus was not happy with the disciples because they were trying to prevent children from coming to him. A few days ago, we read of how Jesus said: “See that you do not despise one of these little ones; for I tell you that in heaven their angels always behold the face of my Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 18:10).
As a nation, the greatest injury we suffered was the forceful take-over of schools from the Christian missionaries. When learning became devoid of the God-aspect, we produced a generation of persons whose religiosity could not go beyond the skin, a generation of church/mosque-goers who draw a demarcation between the dictates of God and their everyday choices.
In our first reading, God explains to prophet Ezekiel that He shall not judge a person based on his/her parents’ righteousness rather everyone shall answer for his or her own deeds. This implies that no matter how good we are, our goodness will not benefit our children if they themselves are not good. We must, therefore, make every effort to bring our children up to know God, to love God and serve God.
If the only reason your child remembers to pray or read the Bible is that you told him so, then know that you have not done a good job. This is because such shallow spirituality is done only to please you. The moment that child steps out of the house, he or she quickly drops any religious attachment. 
Let us pray: Lord Jesus, may I be a bridge connecting my children with you. Amen


*Be Happy. Live Positive. Have Faith. It is well with you. God bless you. (Saturday of the 19th Week in Ordinary Time: Bible Study: Ezekiel 18:1-32, Psalm 51:12-19, Matthew 19:13-15).*
Fr. Abu.  
*Say a little prayer for me as i clock 6years in the priesthood today August 18th, 2018. Pray that God sustains me and contines to speak His word through this platform. Amen*🙏🏻

Why Did Jesus Address His Mother, As “Woman” In The Bible?  

Why Did Jesus Address His Mother, As “Woman” In The Bible?  

Why is it that Jesus calls His Mother “Woman” in the Bible?

In few parts of the gospel, we noticed that Jesus addressed his Mother Mary as “Woman”. Many non-Catholics and protestants point to this fact in trying to downplay the importance of the Blessed Mother in Christian life. In fact, many of them seemingly use this to justify NOT giving the Blessed Mother the respect and veneration that Catholics give her.

Is Jesus being disrespectful of His Mother when He calls her woman? And as such, are we supposed to follow the Protestant “logic” that since Jesus called His Mother “Woman”, we should not give her as much honor as we should?

There are two (2) ways of answering this question.

First, does Jesus’ calling Mary “Woman” connote a certain level of disrespect? The answer, of course, is NO! Simple logic will answer this. 

Jesus, the Son of God, gave this as one of His principal commandments: “Honor your father and your mother.” Do you think that Jesus, who is God, will contradict Himself and not practice what He taught? That is, do you think that He Himself, who gave the command to honor father and mother, will NOT Himself honor His own mother?

Second, Jesus’ calling Mary “Woman” has a deeper theological meaning. Church scholars preach that the reason Jesus calls His Mother “Woman” is to refer to her as the “Woman” foretold in Genesis. In Genesis 3:15, after banishing Adam and Eve from the heavenly paradise, God made a promise to the serpent. He said that He will “put enmity between you and the Woman, between her offspring and yours. She will crush your head, and you shall bite her heel.”

At the very beginning of our salvation history, God promised to send a “Woman” whose offspring will crush the head of the serpent. That “Woman” is Mary, and the “offspring” is Jesus.

Whenever Jesus calls Mary “Woman”, therefore, He exalts her by pointing out to us that Mary is the fulfillment of the prophecy and promise that God made at the very beginning of human history. Mary is the “Woman” who will crush the head of the serpent! She is the victorious “Woman” who gave birth to Jesus, her Offspring, who triumphs over Satan.

‘Transfigured’ – Heavenly Encounter: How A Homeless Drug Addict Encountered Christ – The True Story Of Patricia Sandoval 

‘Transfigured’ – Heavenly Encounter: How A Homeless Drug Addict Encountered Christ – The True Story Of Patricia Sandoval 

Patricia Sandoval

Patricia Sandoval, a California-born daughter of Mexican immigrants, is a renowned, full-time, international pro-life and chastity speaker who was miraculously raised from the ashes of post- abortion syndrome (PAS) following three abortions, methamphetamine addiction, homelessness, and the horror of employment at Planned Parenthood. Now through her life-changing presentations and riveting new book: TRANSFIGURED: Patricia Sandoval’s Escape from Drugs, Homelessness, and the Back Doors of Planned Parenthood, Ms. Sandoval shares her message of God’s mercy and gift of life, inspiring and healing countless souls, and saving countless lives, with her miraculous story of redemption.

Buy on Amazon

Excerpt Chapter 1

When I  was a toddler, my mother bought a large picture of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, and she hung it above the headboard in the master bedroom. In the image, which framed Jesus’ head and chest, His exposed heart was wrapped in thorns and set aflame by love. He looked alive, especially His eyes.

They seemed to penetrate my thoughts, my feelings. Jesus wasn’t merely looking at me;
He was looking through me, and followed my every move around the room. At times, I hesitated before entering my parents’ bedroom, wondering if He might tilt his head my way and call out my name. Fearfully, I would crawl on the floor, hoping to avoid His all-pervasive glare.

 “Who is He?” I asked my mom incessantly, wanting to hear her answer over and over again.

This is your Papi Dios (Daddy God) who takes care of you in heaven. He’s with the angels,” she’d say. Although she never prayed or went to church, my mom’s belief in Jesus was genuine. Little did she know that her words would become a reality for her little girl.

One night at age three, as I lay awake in my bed, tummy down, I somehow knew that Jesus was waiting for me just outside of a high
rectangular window close to the ceiling. For reasons beyond my understanding, I could sense His arms extend toward me, although I didn’t dare look up. My heart began to beat rapidly, but I didn’t want Him to know that I felt scared. After all, He was
Papi Dios, and I’d been taught not to be afraid of Him. 

Eventually, I mustered the courage to twist my head farther to one side and glance upward. And there was Jesus, outside my window, smiling adoringly at me, His arms reaching right through the glass toward my tiny frame. Caught up in his loving gaze, my body began to levitate off the bed. Unable to feel my little legs touching the bedcovers, I wanted to know if this floating sensation was real; still facing downward, I lowered my chin toward my chest to see the front of my white pull-up diaper and my white T-shirt. Sure enough, my legs weren’t touching the bed—nor was any other part of me. I was hovering face-down in midair. Amazed, I turned my head to the left and saw my five-year- old sister in her twin bed across the room, tossing and turning in her sleep. “Oh my gosh,” I told myself, “this is real.” I knew I couldn’t be dreaming or outside of my physical body or my room because I was clearly still in them. Slowly, delicately, my body began to float upward towards the window.

My little palms started to sweat and my heart seemed to stop, as if I were at the crest of a roller coaster. Scared and confused, I remained face down, eyes bulging, looking at my sister, wondering why she wasn’t
floating too. Then my body changed to a sitting position, facing Jesus.

As I floated closer to Him, I noticed fresh wounds in the center of 
Jesus’ upturned palms. Then I saw His gown, made of three dark, rich, and shiny colors: a magnificent gold covering His torso, an intense forest
green draping around his left arm, and a dark, burgundy red swooping across His right. Last, I noticed His hair: brown, wavy, falling a little past his shoulders. Each aspect of his appearance was perfectly clear. The
glass in the window had disappeared.

He didn’t say a word to me, but the warm look in his eyes put me at ease. With great tenderness and compassion, He reached out his arms in anticipation of holding me, and His smile expressed His pure delight in
my innocence. When I got so close as to touch Him, my arms instinctively wrapped tightly around His neck. Next to my bare arms and
legs, His garments felt like silk, and His hands, which cupped my sidesaddle legs, felt strong and safe.

We took off flying full force through the sky. I could feel Jesus’ hair against my right cheek and His left arm tight and secure under my knees as each cloud quickly brushed my face and the wind whipped by, tossing my hair in all directions.

My arms were gripping Him so tightly that I wondered if I might be choking Him. Finally, we stopped and hovered in midair. I let go of His neck and turned my head to the right to see what lay before us. It was a scene in shades of radiant light blue. Grand stairs, so wide they traveled sideways past my area of vision, led up to a spectacular wooden door,
much like the entryway of a medieval castle. About twenty feet high and wide with an arched top, the door was fortified with rivets and metal bars and secured shut with an iron bolt.

Off slightly to the right on the top step, stood two angels, facing each other and playfully conversing. In the center of the steps, sat another angel in repose, resting his elbow on one lifted knee, his chin cupped in his right hand. All of them wore long, light-colored tunics, looked about twelve years old, and had wings rising from their thin frames. They were waiting for me to arrive.

The entire scene was suspended in midair and lasted for a blink. Jesus gave me instant knowledge that heaven was behind that door. He was going to leave me with the angels who would take me there, and I was going to have a wonderful time. I also knew I would remember little to nothing of what I was about to see.

What happened in heaven and how long I stayed, I do not know. I only recall wanting to remain there forever. My next memory is of
clinging to Jesus with my arms squeezing His neck, back outside the high window. Without talking, I communicated that I didn’t want Him to leave. I knew I had been somewhere that was a lot of fun, and I wanted to stay
with Him; but He let me know I had to go back into my room. And so we said our sweet good-byes without words. Then He lovingly released His arms and, touching my diapered bottom with one hand, gave me a tiny push inside. I began to float down as though an angel were tenderly and carefully carrying me in his arms. As I approached the bed while still in midair, my body was gently turned to face the window and then moved into a sitting position so that when I landed on my bed, my back rested against the cold wall. After remaining there stunned for a moment, I started yelling for my mom.

My mother has since told me that my screaming woke her up, and she took me into my parents’ room to sleep in their bed. Sandwiched between them, I talked all night about how Papi Dios had taken me to heaven where I played with the angels and had so much fun. My parents kept telling me to be quiet and settle down, but I didn’t sleep a wink.

In the days that followed, my parents didn’t believe me. But over time, they realized that my tale never faded or changed or ceased to bring me joy. By the time I was six years old, my mother was so convinced of my story’s veracity that she began asking me to share it with friends and family.

Never before or since have I had such a miraculous encounter with God, one that was not only spiritual but also tactile and embodied. I’ve always known that it wasn’t a dream or simply my imagination. I’d never
seen the movie Peter Pan, and floating in the air or flying without a plane had never appealed to me. Those were someone else’s childhood fantasies, not mine. Throughout my life, this encounter with Jesus remained such a vivid memory that belief in Him never once left my heart. I would need this belief as time went on. Only the Good Lord knew how much.

. . . Jesus said, “Let the children come to me, and do not prevent them; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”

Matthew 19:14.

For full story purchase the book Transfigured: Patricia Sandoval’s Escape From Drugs, Homelessness, And The Back Door Of Planned Parenthood Written by Christine Watkins & Patricia Sandoval on Amazon 

Did Mary Know That Her Son Jesus Was God?

Did Mary Know That Her Son Jesus Was God?

Did Mary Know That Jesus Was God

How well and how much did the Blessed Virgin Mary know about Jesus? The Catholic Church teaches that the Holy Spirit revealed to Mary the knowledge of the divinity of Christ and His incarnation, from the beginning of the Annunciation: when the angel Gabriel informed her. Mary’s knowledge of Christ’s divinity from that time on is an explicitly biblical teaching:

Luke 1:26-35 (RSV-CE) In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, [27] to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. [28] And he came to her and said, “Hail, full of grace, the Lord is with you!”  [29] But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered in her mind what sort of greeting this might be.  [30] And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. [31] And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. [32] He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, [33] and he will reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there will be no end.” [34] And Mary said to the angel, “How shall this be, since I have no husband?” [35] And the angel said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.”

Simeon’s prophecy perhaps informed her (if she didn’t know it already) of another aspect of her role as the Mother of God: that a sword would pierce her heart (Luke 2:25-35). The text (2:33) says that Mary and Joseph were “amazed” at these words, but that could just as easily refer to their amazement that Simeon had this knowledge and word from the Lord, as opposed to the content of his message.

Furthermore, Mary’s knowledge was — shall we say — “confirmed” when she visited Elizabeth, mother of John the Baptist, who called her the “mother of my Lord” (Lk 1:43). Right after that passage, we see Mary praising God in the famous Magnificat (Lk 1:46-55). For what? It was because she was to be the mother of the Son of God, the Messiah, God the Son, God incarnate, which is precisely why she has been called “blessed” (Lk 1:48). She obviously knew all this.

The prophetess Anna also appeared in the temple at that time and spoke about Jesus’ messianic mission (1:36-38). Not only did Mary and Joseph know full well Who Jesus was, but also all who heard (and believed) her words, or Simeon’s.

And that’s not even mentioning the preaching of John the Baptist and the knowledge of the Three Wise Men (Matthew 2:1-6, 9-11). Their knowledge that Jesus was Messiah was precisely what caused Herod to try to kill all the infants, so as to kill the Messiah, Jesus, among them (Matthew 2:7-8, 16-18).

Lastly, Joseph was told by “an angel of the Lord” in a dream Who Jesus was, that “he will save his people from their sins” and that one of His names would be “Emmanuel, which means ‘God is with us’” (Matthew 1:18-25).

Yet some would have us believe that Mary — the very one whom an angel visited, to announce the virgin birth and incarnation — did not know what many others already knew soon after Jesus’ birth; that her celebrated “yes” or “fiat” to the angel’s glorious announcement (Lk 1:38) was made without having the slightest idea what she was consenting to? Such a scenario is beyond strange in its sheer implausibility.

Fr. William G. Most observed:

The traditional view holds that Mary did know the divinity of Christ at the time of the Annunciation.

Would God ask her to consent in the name of the whole human race, and still withhold from her knowledge of that to which she was consenting?

Most theologians believe that God had also given her infused knowledge of all that she needed to know at any given stage of her mission. (Mary in Our Life, Garden City, New York: Doubleday Image, 1963 [originally 1954], 278, 280, 240-241).

Venerable Archbishop Fulton Sheen concurs: 

“Mary’s mind was filled with the thought of Divinity in the stable” (The World’s First Love, New York: McGraw-Hill, 1952, 212). The Blessed Virgin Mary didn’t “grow in awareness” or “gradually figure out” Who Jesus was.

Some argue that Mary was unaware that Jesus was God the Son, or that she disagreed with His mission, based on the following passages:

Mark 4:21-22, 31 And when his family heard it, they went out to seize him, for people were saying, “He is beside himself.” [22] And the scribes who came down from Jerusalem said, “He is possessed by Be-el’zebul, and by the prince of demons he casts out the demons.” . . . [31] And his mother and his brothers came; and standing outside they sent to him and called him.

It is not at all clear that Mary is included among those “family” who were doubting Jesus (insofar as the doubt goes; she came, yes, but it is not stated or implied that she doubted or was puzzled). We know that some doubted and disbelieved, because we are informed of that in inspired Holy Scripture, and Jesus said that “a prophet is without honor in his home town.”

We can’t determine simply from this data, that Mary agreed with any of the negative appraisals. It’s an argument from silence. She may have gone out of concern (for any number of reasons, such as His personal safety from the unruly mobs), but to conclude that she was puzzled about Jesus or His mission, is not warranted from the biblical text.

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