Misa y Procesion del Señor de los Milagros
@ 6:00 PM
Our Lady Queen of Heaven Church
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Archdiocese mobilizing to reach youth
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When the Pharisees heard that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together, and one of them, a scholar of the law tested him by asking, “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest and the first commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments.”
Bill and Mary met each other at a party in the house of a mutual friend. They liked each other and decided to go out. On the second date, Bill said to Mary: “I love you; I adore you; I need you.” To which Mary replied, “Listen, Bill, I don’t want to get serious.” To which Bill replied: “Who’s serious?”
True love is a serious business as today’s Scripture readings tell us. In the Gospel passage, a Pharisee put Jesus to the test by asking Him which of the 612 prescriptions in the Law was the greatest? Without hesitation, Jesus underlined the two commandments which are the basis of the Law and the Prophets—total personal love for God and simultaneously love of neighbor as one loves one’s self.
Which one of us can say that we absolutely and always love and will love God? As we approach Halloween, you may remember hearing of a party that took place at a church’s parish hall. The parishioners were there celebrating while revelers in costume walked through the neighborhood. When a violent storm came up, everyone ran for cover. Into the parish hall came a person dressed up as the Devil. He was all in red, with pointed ears and horns, and pitchfork, cape, and tail. One of the parishioners saw him and screamed, and then everyone tried to escape out the doors. Everyone got out except a little old lady whose dress got caught in the metal folding chair. As the Devil strode toward her, the frightened lady said, “Mr. Devil, I know I always went to church every day, prayed the rosary, and said my morning and evening prayers. But I want you to know, I was always on your side!”
To always be on the side of God takes a lifetime of daily commitment; and temptations to such commitment comes to us all—even to Jesus. You recall Satan’s third temptation to Jesus. Having showed the Lord all the Kingdoms of the world at one glance, he said to Jesus, “All this I will give you if you kneel down and adore me.” Jesus’ response was immediate, “You shall do homage to the Lord your God; Him alone shall you adore.” Jesus was able to respond so quickly because His 40 days in the desert were ones of prayer and fasting—of communion with God and desiring nothing more than to be fed on His Word.
If we are serious about loving God, Jesus, as always, shows us the way. Like the Thessalonians whom St. Paul addressed in the 2nd Reading, we need to turn away from idols “to serve the living and true God and to await His Son from heaven”. Unlike pagans of old, our idols are not made of silver and gold, but are often attitudes or vices that can tempt us away from love of God, others and ourselves. You know them in the form of the seven deadly sins—Pride, Anger, Sloth, Greed, Gluttony, Envy, and Lust.
How can we defeat such temptations? By being serious about giving God first place in our lives. To strengthen us for this, we can follow the example of Jesus. We pray on a daily basis so as to encounter strength from God. We fast from time to time so that our desires are ordered to love of others And, as the 1st Reading teaches us, we practice the compassionate love of God for others. We take care of those who are poor and needy; for, that is exactly what God has done for us. Our care for others shows both our gratitude to God and our ability to love others as ourselves.
Are you and I serious about love? Then loving God above all things and our neighbor as ourselves will be our everyday goal and commitment. Striving for these will enable us to cross over our spiritual goal line into Heaven— into the waiting arms of God the Father.
NFP can be very effective, depending on how strongly motivated the couple is and whether they follow the rules of the method. Couples who carefully follow all the rules to avoid pregnancy can achieve a success rate of 97-98%.
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Our Lady Queen of Heaven Church
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Archbishop Edward A. McCarthy HS
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Holy Redeemer Church
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Coral Gables Congregational Church
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Belen Jesuit Preparatory School
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Our Lady of Charity National Shrine
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St. John XXIII Church