Friday, 30 November 2012
To demonstrate his point he put two glasses on the pulpit. One contained water and one contained whisky. He then produced a small box containing two worms which he had dug from the garden before the service began.
He placed a worm in the glass of water and it floated about merrily. He then put the second worm in the glass of whisky and after wriggling for a few seconds it died.
“What does this tell you?” he asked.
A member of the congregation replied, “If you have worms drink whisky”.
There’s a message in this joke for us Christians. How often, whilst well-meaning, we try to tell others about our beliefs and end up confusing them and perhaps, un-wittingly, driving them away from God rather than towards Him.
It is worth remembering that not everyone is at the same stage of knowing God as perhaps we are.
You wouldn’t feed a new-born baby pizza or French fries; would you? So let’s go easy with new Christians or people who have yet to know the Lord as we do.
The best way to teach Christianity is by living it as Jesus would want us to.
“Preach the Gospel at all times and when necessary use words.” St Francis of Assisi.
Wednesday, 28 November 2012
I went to my favourite Italian Restaurant for one of their famous pizzas.
The customer at the counter was waiting for his pizza take away (or "to go" as they say in USA).
The restaurant assistant put the hot pizza in a cardboard box and then holding the pizza slicer said: "Would you like it cut in eight or six slices?"
The customer replied: "Oh ... only six slices; I don't think I can eat eight slices".
Sunday, 25 November 2012
It shows a generosity of spirit, love and caring for each other - just as Our Lord asked us.
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Monday, 12 November 2012
Why is it that people mistake the way I dress for what it is not?
Let me explain.
The other day we went to the circus as a family. I was dressed in my usual cowboy type hat with a large feather on the side, an orange colored jacket with large squares in a lighter shade of orange, and bright red tartan trousers; not forgetting my favorite bow tie of course!
We sat in the big top, which as you all know is a large circular tent with the audience sitting all round the circumference with the show taking place in the middle area of the tent.
The music was blaring loudly, every one was happy with excitement and all was going well … until someone pointed out that they’d forgotten something in the car. Being the gentleman that I am I got up to get the forgotten item.
On the way back I must have mistakenly taken the wrong opening in the tent. I stood in a long corridor type enclosure with a lot of other people some dressed as clowns, others in Tarzan type outfits carrying heavy weights, others in ballerina costumes, and then behind me people came holding on to horses, and one man gave me a small donkey to hold by a rope tied to his neck. Then further behind us came more people with elephants and tigers in cages on trucks.
There was a big drum roll from inside the tent and pretty soon everyone moved forwards to a loud fanfare.
It was obvious to every one but me that I was part of the big entrance into the large tent announcing the start of the show.
I had no option but to walk forwards with the crowd holding on to the donkey.
As we entered the tent the clowns beside me started to throw a large beach ball at each other.
One of them caught the ball and threw it at me knocking my hat off!
I heard the audience roar in delight.
I stopped and bent down to pick up my hat when the clown behind me kicked me in the backside to the delight of the audience, except my family sitting nearby!
I let go of the rope holding the donkey and went back for my hat. At which point, for some reason, the donkey ran away from the orderly queue and started hopping up and down like a wild bucking bronco.
This frightened the elephants which started trumpeting loudly.
Fortunately someone caught the donkey quickly and order was restored although the audience thought it was all part of the show as they applauded enthusiastically and laughed loudly.
I put on my hat and walked in unison with everyone else once more around the big tent. Whilst looking straight ahead trying to avoid eye contact with my family I accidentally stepped into a deposit left there by an elephant. The audience near me at the time whooped in delight!
Eventually I followed everyone else out of the big tent and I made my way back to the car to get cleaned up.
I returned to my family and had great difficulty explaining the whole situation to them.
Saturday, 10 November 2012
Friday, 9 November 2012
What's all that about?
In fact, it is a silent prayer all by itself.
The Sign of the Cross on one's forehead reminds us that the word of God should always be in the forefront of our minds. No matter what we do throughout life, it should always be in accordance to God's wishes and God's Commandments. By keeping God always on our mind we ensure that we're always close to Him and that we're less likely to go against His will.
The Sign on our lips means that we pray that we're always prepared to witness for God when the right time requires it. Many people often shy away from speaking up for God in conversation with family and friends, especially when He is ridiculed or spoken against. People tend to keep quiet for fear of offending others, or for fear of being ridiculed themselves. Instead, our lips can often be used to gossip, malign others, to spread rumours, lies and ill will. The Sign on our lips is a prayer that our lips are always used to glorify and serve God in all that we say.
The Sign on our breast is a prayer that God may always be within our heart and that we may grow to love Him and never stray from His love. Hearts can often hide grudges, hatred, revenge, envy, and all sorts of other sins. Signing the Cross on our heart is a prayer that we may be always pure and receptive to God's love and grace.
The Sign of the Cross on our forehead, lips and hearts. A silent prayer all in itself.
Tuesday, 6 November 2012
Originally, the Mass in Eastern Europe, where it started, was celebrated in Greek.
With time, as Christianity spread further West into Europe it was celebrated in Latin.
And as time moved on, it is now celebrated in English, or whichever language is spoken in the Country where Mass is celebrated.
Except for three words which have survived time and are still from the original Greek Mass.
Meaning "Lord have mercy" and "Christ have mercy".
It is important to remember that by "Lord", or "Sir" we do not mean that we look up to Our Lord as some Master or Ruler. In this context, the word "Kyrie" means "Lord" in the sense of a child looking up to one's loving parent and asking for help, love, guidance and protection.
So when we sing at Mass "Kyrie Eleison" we look up to God our loving Father and ask Him to be always by our side and have mercy on us. And we call upon Christ His Son, in the same prayer.
Sunday, 4 November 2012
When celebrating a Catholic Mass, just before the reading of the Gospel, the congregation and choir sing "Alleluia".
It's an old English word, derived from Latin, and originally from the Hebrew word Halleluyah meaning "Praise the Lord!"
Now ... if we look carefully in our Missal, it says "May be omitted if not sung".
Have you ever wondered why it says so?
Well ... let's imagine you are at a Birthday Party and in a straight face you recite calmly:
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday to you
Happy Birthday dear friend
Happy Birthday to you
It doesn't quite have the same effect does it? It just has to be sung.
Some songs have to be sung. They cannot be recited, however well we might try.
And it's the same with the "Alleluia. It is an ancient song of praise to Our Lord giving us all an opportunity, however bad we may think our voices are, to praise Our Lord in song for all He has done for us.
So let us raise our voices in joy and Praise Him now and when we next attend Mass.