Gospel Thoughts and Reflective Music for Meditation

Today’s Gospel – Gospel of John 2:13 – “The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!”

Why was Jesus so angry? I never really understood this passage about Jesus’ anger before. But today, something changed. What? Well, today, I meditated silently for 15mins. after hearing it read. And then, reading it for myself later on, I meditated again. The silence allowed it to speak to me or rather to penetrate my heart space and reveal itself to me. What was going on inside of Jesus and why was He so very angry?

WHY?…Because it implied Priestly corruption. The Priests were turning away the animal offerings brought by the people claiming some imperfection in order to disqualify them from having followed the Word of God regarding the selection of a perfect animal without blemish. In that way, they would have to purchase an offering from the Sellers on the staircase to the Temple in order to enter. And since their currency was not the same as that of the area they had travelled to, they also had to exchange their money with the money changers for a fee. The Priest would then receive a profit from the Sellers and the Money Changers. This entire enterprise was a grave perversion against the actual Law of the Lord and its requirements which were to be followed strictly in obedience to God’s Covenant with them.

Think about that for a moment. The scene Jesus must have witnessed when he arrived at the Temple and found animals moving about all over, being bought and sold like at a Market, people all crowded onto the steps exchanging their money, loud talking…

Jesus knew immediately that this could not be taking place without the Priest’s consent. And right on the steps of His Father’s House….

On this 4th Sunday of Lent, lets ponder this a while together using another of our dear brother Mark’s instrumental meditations:

May God Open Our Hearts To Hear His Word!

+Theresa HHC

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Gospel Thoughts and Reflective Music for Meditation

Today’s Gospel – Gospel of John 2:13 – “The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. In the temple he found people selling cattle, sheep, and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. Making a whip of cords, he drove all of them out of the temple, both the sheep and the cattle. He also poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. He told those who were selling the doves, “Take these things out of here! Stop making my Father’s house a marketplace!”

Why was Jesus so angry? I never really understood this passage about Jesus’ anger before. But today, something changed. What? Well, today, I meditated silently for 15mins. after hearing it read. And then, reading it for myself later on, I meditated again. The silence allowed it to speak to me or rather to penetrate my heart space and reveal itself to me. What was going on inside of Jesus and why was He so very angry?

WHY?…Because it implied Priestly corruption. The Priests were turning away the animal offerings brought by the people claiming some imperfection in order to disqualify them from having followed the Word of God regarding the selection of a perfect animal without blemish. In that way, they would have to purchase an offering from the Sellers on the staircase to the Temple in order to enter. And since their currency was not the same as that of the area they had travelled to, they also had to exchange their money with the money changers for a fee. The Priest would then receive a profit from the Sellers and the Money Changers. This entire enterprise was a grave perversion against the actual Law of the Lord and its requirements which were to be followed strictly in obedience to God’s Covenant with them.

Think about that for a moment. The scene Jesus must have witnessed when he arrived at the Temple and found animals moving about all over, being bought and sold like at a Market, people all crowded onto the steps exchanging their money, loud talking…

Jesus knew immediately that this could not be taking place without the Priest’s consent. And right on the steps of His Father’s House….

On this 4th Sunday of Lent, lets ponder this a while together using another of our dear brother Mark’s instrumental meditations:

May God Open Our Hearts To Hear His Word!

+Theresa HHC

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Walking With Sophia

This is now the Second Sunday of Lent. However it has been undertaken this year, one thing we probably all have in common is our thoughts…Have I been keeping up with my prayers, my promises, my sacrifices for the Lord? Am I feeling guilty about not doing well enough? Bro. Mark knew well what Walking the Journey with Wisdom (Sophia), the God-given Spirit of Wisdom, involved. Much like his painting, his Music spoke from his heart.

Take a few moments and let your hearts be open to the Wisdom of your Own Journey and Listen to what the Spirit is saying to You…

Traveling with you,

+Theresa – HHC

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ASH WEDNESDAY – 2021

Ash Wednesday 2021 – Much has happened since the last post made by our dear Bro. Mark. In his humble way and because of his most sincere love of God, neighbor and country, his posts were always so uplifting and served to inspire whomever might read them. He never was concerned with whether or not his Blog had a tremendous following. It only mattered that his words gave hope to the suffering, Suffering he, himself, was well acquainted with.

Bro. Mark had a rare illness called Proteus Syndrome. We lost him to it a few months ago. His loss has been felt deeply; by his family and by his Lay Contemplative Community who shared his Spiritual Vision; The Hermits of The Holy Cross.

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A Podcast for the Homebound

In the past, I had only used podcasts for background noise to help me fall sleep. But I recently discovered one that I actually use for its content. And as a person with many limitations and physical challenges, I would like to recommend it to all of you who share in the frustrations of being unable to manage the holding of a heavy Bible or the small print of a lighter one. Or even just the inability to sit up in your bed to read one.

Ascension Press has a Catholic Podcast available for FREE now, so we can listen to the Bible read to us, chronologically, for only 15 to 20 minutes a day. And after the Readings conclude, there is even a 5 or 10 minute lesson on why the passages read are important for us. It is offered by Fr. Mike Schmitz and available through many podcast sources; for iPhones, iTunes and on the Website directly.

You can also print out a Free Copy of the Reading Plan for the Entire Year so you will know what each day’s Readings will be ahead of time.

I know it has been something I look very forward to each day and I do hope you will find it helpful.

God Love and Bless you today and always!

Please Pray for Us Hermits of the Holy Cross. Thank You!

Blessings,

Theresa – HHC

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May We Share In The Divinity of Christ.. by bMark

In the Holy Liturgy at each Eucharistic celebration the priest, usually quietly, recites “by the mingling of this water and wine may we come to share in the divinity of Christ who humbles Himself to share in our humanity.” Christ Jesus, the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, God made man to share in His own divinity. Christ came to us as a child. One who is so vulnerable, one who is dependent upon others to keep Him protected. Our Blessed Mother & St. Joseph were called for this, the greatest event in human history. A young girls “yes” would change the world by lifting us up into His divinity. We are reminded of this wonderful gift each Advent & Christmas Season. I’m sure this decision by Mary wasn’t taken lightly. How would She be able to tell others. They would have thought She’s lost Her mind. That somehow this Holy Spirit overshadowed Her. The punishment of adultery was stoning. She wasn’t yet married to St. Joseph. They were engaged “betrothed” at the time She was with child. She had to inform Her parents Anna and Joachim. How would they take it? They could have rejected Her too, but thank God for His grace provided to them that their hearts would be open to understanding and acceptance. Christ came to us as a child. Let us give thanks to our Blessed Mother that She said “yes” to God for all of humanity, that we may share in the divinity of Christ who humbled Himself to share in our humanity. Have a blessed Christmas. Stay safe and please think of others first. Please pray for us, the Hermits of the Holy Cross. You are all in our daily prayers. We love you. Merry Christmas!

In Christ Jesus,

bMark

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A Deserted Place

In the Gospel of Mark it reads, “Rising very early before the dawn, Christ left and went off to a deserted place, where He would pray.” Before the dawn to a deserted place where He could commune with His Father. The Love between Father and Son is the Holy Spirit. That pure Love that wishes to abide within our heart as well. Christ knocks upon the door of our heart, but it is we who must answer the door. Prayer opens us to relationship with the Blessed Trinity. “The one who loves Me shall be loved by My Father and I will love you and manifest Myself to you.” It may be difficult to trust. It may be difficult to love. God waits patiently for us to open our heart. “For God does not treat us according to our sins nor repay us according to our faults. For as far as the East is from the West, so far does He remove our sins.” Ps 103 For me, I find my deserted place in my bed since I am now homebound. I tell you this because I want you to understand a deserted place can be anywhere you can be alone with God. It could be a closet space or your bathroom. The object is to find a few minutes each day to be alone with Him. There you may commune with God. Lay everything before His feet. Your senses, your feelings, your intellect. Open your heart to the Holy Spirit. You are opening your heart to pure Love. Do not be afraid. You will soon find an inner joy and a peace that can only come from God.

Have a blessed and happy Thanksgiving!

Your brother in Christ Jesus,
Mark
Hermits of the Holy Cross

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The Election of an American President

This week was unprecedented in ways never before experienced by the American people. The Election of a President during a period of time when our Nation was inundated and overwhelmed by unrest, unemployment, a world-wide pandemic of proportions previously never even imagined by most Americans, shortages of food and necessary supplies, fear, isolation, anger and displays of violence everywhere. Threats from other Countries interference in our election process also added to the insecurities of a large part of our population.

How many I wonder; how many ran towards God and sought God’s help believing in Faith that God would somehow get them through? How many prayed entrusting their lives, livelihoods and families to God? And how many had to offer their total heartbreak in light of the loss of a loved one to the fatal effect of Covid 19? Some may be experiencing tremendous joy today, now that the Election results have been announced. And for many who ask why their loved ones had to die because so many refused to wear masks, they might feel a kind of bitter-sweet relief in hopes that the new Administration will act more quickly and decisively now to put an end to this nightmare that has touched all of our lives in some way or other. Still for others, the loss of their preferred Candidate might be impacting their lives in entirely different ways, but through their own eyes just as painfully. I think we can all attest to the stark reality we have witnessed of the division of our own beloved Country today more than ever.

When God broke my heart open with His Grace and let my bitterness and selfishness drain out, and then filled it with His own Love, I never suspected at the time that it would change my entire egocentric way of acting and reacting. I personally can no longer see in anyone an enemy. I can no longer judge my neighbor as if I have a true understanding of who they are in God’s eyes. Instead I can feel in my soul the heartbreak when I see the harm caused by those who do not love their neighbor as God has loved them. And I can pray for them. I can feel the suffering of those on the receiving end, as well as on those who are responsible for its cause, since they have not allowed the Grace of God to enter their lives and are thusly suffering as well. And I pray for them, too. Observe, Judge not, Act with Love and Pray! This is what I offer today for all Americans who, in light of the Results of America’s choice for our next President, might be feeling the temptation to physically or verbally act against some one or side without first discerning God’s Will. Pray, Love, and do Not judge. Praise God and always be grateful for His life of Love alive within you! The true Kingdom of God IS within!

Blessings,

Theresa HHC

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Into the Heart of Christ by bro. Mark

It’s been five months since I have last written a blog to you. We are still contending with Covid-19 here in the United States. In other countries throughout our world, the Coronavirus is also ticking up once again. Thank God for our front line healthcare workers. They are very selfless human beings, often times being the only ones helping those struggling through the effects of this debilitating disease, many times even guiding them through the process of dying so they won’t have to die alone. The Hermits have been offering God our sufferings and lifting our prayers in intercession with you and for you. Please, continue to send us your prayer requests. We are all together on this journey to the Heart of God. “Here we have no lasting City” When I am ready to give up carrying my cross because of its weight and I’m just sick of my sufferings, I often remind myself of this fact that, “Here we have no lasting City” Heb 13:14 Keep your hearts and minds focused on the Kingdom of Heaven. Lately, through our darkness I have been meditating on the pure love that Christ Jesus has for each of us. Pure Love has His Heart wide open for us to share in it with Him. He knows we are all broken in some way but never, ever gives up on us. Our personal sufferings are our Cross and when we pick it up, carry it, and follow Him He will be “yoked” to us walking side by side with us. When we walk with Him, in the Heart of Christ, our soul/spirit will find healing and our own hearts will find an inner joy and peace that can only come from Him.

We are with you spiritually along your journey. Know you are not alone. Please pray for us. We’re all in this together.

Love,

bro. Mark Hermits of the Holy Cross
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God Chose Us In Him by b.Mark

“God chose us in him *
before the world began
to be holy *
and blameless in his sight.”
Ephesians 1:3

  • Let’s rejoice in God for He takes us in His loving arms whispering to us that we are His children and that He wants us to share in His pure love with Him. We are called to be as holy as we can possibly become to share in that pure love. You may believe it’s to overwhelming for yourself, that there’s no way you could muster that, that your not good enough. Well, I got a secret, none of us can live up to this. That’s why we have our brother Christ Jesus showing us how as He gives us the grace to climb that mountain. What we’re striving for is not only to spend eternity with Him but to build a relationship with Him. Remember He said, “the kingdom of Heaven is within you” He wants us to share in that pure love now. If the great Saints, who were just human beings like you and I could reach the heights of Heaven, we can too. How did they do it? They opened their heart to grace and the Holy Spirit. Christ knocks on the door but it is we who must open that door. We must let God know we want to enter into relationship with Him. We must want to act as He did for “faith without works is dead” What He shows us is for us to show compassion toward others; to show respect for all of Gods children; to care for the less fortunate; to visit the sick. He shows us only good things. Basically, to care for others before we care for ourselves. If we have anger in our heart, to forgive and ask for healing in our broken heart. We also grow in relationship with God through prayer. We can recite the Liturgy of the Hours each day, we can pray the Holy Rosary and meditate on the life of Christ, we can recite the Jesus Prayer, “Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, have mercy on me.” We can even spend time in Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament on YouTube if we can’t find a Church that has it in your neighborhood. Hopefully, when this pandemic ends we can start going back to Church and receive the Holy Eucharist at Mass once again. Prayer is conversation and communion. When an elderly couple grows old together they use less and less words for they are just happy to be content in each other’s presence. It is the same with our relationship with our loving God. It leads to communion and with Gods grace we can begin this journey today. Have a blessed week.

Your brother in Christ Jesus,
bMark
Hermits of the Holy Cross

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