The Carpenter’s Work

The Christ by Kovalenko (Dollarphotoclub.com)

The Christ by Kovalenko (Dollarphotoclub.com)

By Robert Schnitzius

I felt strength in the Carpenter’s hands as he cut me from the tree.
I felt the care with which he worked as he shaped and fashioned me.
He sawed and planed with purpose; he formed me straight and long.
He wanted me to serve him well, to stand both true and strong.

I didn’t know, just why he chose my wood to be a cross,
Or that some day, my wood would help him to redeem your loss.
And then that solemn day of pain and crucifixion came.
But when they made him carry me, his hands felt just the same.

He built me for this purpose. I did the best I could.
The blood he shed upon me made me sacred wood.
I bore his weight as he bore yours, this man who is God’s son.
And as he gave his all for you my blessed work was done.

His work of love continues. His work is done by you.
For with your prayer and sacrifice you bless God’s people too.
And when you ponder what He did to save all who were lost
Remember that He gave His all upon a humble cross.

Then Jesus told his disciples, ‘If any man would come after me,
Let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me
.”

(Matthew 16:24)

(© 2017 Robert Schnitzius)

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Friars Corner: Behold, the King of kings, our savior Jesus Christ

Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR

Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR

Matthew 21:1-11; Isaiah 50:4-7; Ps 22:8-9, 17-20, 23-24; Phil 2:6-11; Matthew 26:14-27, 66

This Sunday begins the saddest 6 days in the life of our savior Jesus Christ and his church. God sent his Son, Jesus Christ, to tell us in person, God’s loving plan for our life and that of the whole human family. God had a daily personal relationship with Adam and Eve, Gen 3:8-9. Yet they did the one thing God told them not to do. They were deceived by the devil and ate from the tree in the center of the garden. Sin entered the world and continued to spread even to our own day as you see and hear on the daily news.

The second reading tells us that God sent his Son to show us his love, heal and teach us and die to atone for the sins of all humanity. The Son set aside his radiant glory as God and took on himself a complete human nature, except sin and its effects. He was the perfect human being. Jesus spent the three years of his public life showing us how much God loves us. He healed great numbers and taught 120 men and women the values and guidelines of living in God kingdom. Continue reading

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Got Joy? Latest JoyAlive.net posts 4-7-17

Girl on swing at sunset

  • Lent: You Are in Me – In You Are in Me, Amy Welborn writes, There’s really no substitute for being in the presence of a real, live human being…or God.
  • Gift of a Free Lunch – featured on NewEvangelizers.com – How do we teach our children generosity and humility? Nancy Ward shares a conversation in which she learned the lesson of a free lunch.
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Today’s Good News

CMom Prayer Companion CoverFrom The Catholic Mom’s Prayer Companion; A Book of Daily Reflections for April 7 by Nancy HC Ward

“Jesus wants evangelizers
who proclaim the good news
not only with 
words,

but above all by a life
transfigured by God’s presence.”

Pope Francis
(Evangelii Gaudium no. 259)

Who is on God’s list of people for you to evangelize today?

Pope Francis encourages us to proclaim God’s Word by the way we live. You can allow God to be God, living in your heart and working through you wherever you are, or you can do the sidestep dance and be miserable.

Do you know that when you read scripture and pray you are in God’s presence, where he can transform you more and more into his image? Continue reading

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Lent: You Are in Me

ReconciledToYouCover51vUvAvX80L

by Amy Welborn

In a little while the world will no longer see me, but you will see me, because I live and you will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father and you are in me and I in you.
(John 14:19-20)

In this online world, it’s possible to “know” someone you’ve never met in person. It was always possible, of course—some of us may have had “pen pals” as children. But these days, it’s even easier and more common.

I always appreciate being able to really meet someone I’ve only “known” online. It’s an interesting experience for they’re never exactly what you expect. There’s really no substitute for being in the presence of a real, live human being…or God. I can think about God, argue about God and form opinions about God. But God, really present to me, will always surprise. Stripping away the veils as I fast, pray and give during these weeks, I look forward to becoming more deeply aware of God’s real presence, Jesus Christ—and willing to be surprised by him.

Lord, I am seeking you as you are.

“You Are in Me“ was selected from Reconciled to God, Daily Lenten Devotions (Creative Communications for the Parish)  with Amy Welborn’s permission to publish it on JoyAlive.net.  Amy, mother of five, has worked as a Catholic high school teacher, Parish Director of Religious Education, writer for the Florida Catholic, columnist for Our Sunday Visitor and Catholic News Service. She has been writing full time since 1999 and has written nineteen books and many pamphlets and study guides. She is a regular contributor to the Living Faith and Living Faith for Kids devotionals.

 

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The Gift of a Free Lunch

A Bite by Sebastian Danon (FreeImages.com)

A Bite by Sebastian Danon (FreeImages.com)

featured on NewEvangelizers.com

Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow. (James 1:16-17 NAB)

Mariana, my friend from exercise class, told me she was bringing a meal to a woman who couldn’t pay rent or buy groceries because someone had stolen her identity. I commended Mariana for her generosity.

Yes, we all need affirmation. We thrive on it. But why the need to tell our good intentions? What happened to not letting the left hand know what the right hand is doing?

I was dressing in the almost empty locker room when a woman I barely knew turned to me with the question, “Why do we feel we have to praise people for being good?” Apparently, I wasn’t the only one Mariana told about her good deed. The questioning woman now looked intently at me, waiting for an answer. Continue reading

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Friars Corner: The Spirit of Christ offers us his new life

Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR

Fr. Bob Hilz, TOR

Ezekiel 37:12-14; Ps 130:1-8; Romans 8:8-11; John 11:1-45(I am the resurrection and the life.)

This week we are presented a vision of a spiritual body apart from our limited earthly body. In the first reading, God promised us through Ezekiel that God’s Holy Spirit would be placed in us to live a growing new life. Psalm 130 tells us that God is compassion, redemption and forgiveness of our sins. St. Paul tells us that at baptism we receive God’s forgiveness. His Spirit was given to us to lead us through this life to a new life forever in heaven.

The Lazarus gospel story today is an amazing preparation for the redemption Jesus won for us by his death on the cross. Christian faith is different than science, which gives us a lot of theories about existence, life and its end in death. There are some proven things in science like when life begins and ends. Human life begins when one female egg (once a month) unites with one male sperm. Our genetic code, and much of what we shall become in life, are set in that first cell, which can only be human. A species can only produce its own kind. Continue reading

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Got Joy? Latest JOYAlive.net posts 3-31-17

  • Lent: An Open Spirit– by Amy Wellborn – Who knows what seeds were planted and what she took away. She put everything else aside, came inside and listened.
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