Meditation is an ideal way to pray. Using God's word (Lectio Divina) allows me to hear, listen and reflect on what the Lord wants to say to me - to one of his disciples - just like He did two thousand years ago.
The best time to reflect is at the beginning of the day and for at least 15 to 30 minutes.
Prior to going to sleep, read the Mass readings for the next day and then, in the morning, reflect on the Meditation offered on this website.
I hope these daily meditations allow you to know, love and imitate the Lord in a more meaningful way.
God bless you!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Mt 19:16-22 The Rich Young Man

Matthew 19:16-22 He Went Away Sad

(Click here for reading)

“I will preach the Gospel whether convenient or inconvenient.”
(2Tm 4:2) This is great news, some Good News! Finally, someone who will stand up and tell us what we should say and do. No more re-inventing the wheel. No more learning from our own mistakes. It is the coming of age, an authentic “Enlightenment”, a willingness to embrace that the Lord is the Master of life and death, mission and recognition, faith and morals, truth and beauty. “Have you become unmindful of that Rock that begot you? Have you forgotten the God who gave you birth…What a fickle race they are, sons with no loyalty in them!” (Dt 32:18-19)

Not too long ago I was speaking to a couple who disagreed with me about pre-marital sex. They asked a simple question, why is it wrong? I gave them a simple answer, “Because it doesn’t work.” The Commandments are God’s answers to our problems. Those who wish to follow another commandment, another god, will follow a false god.

“Teacher, what good must I do to gain eternal life? He answered him, Why do you ask me about the good? There is only One who is good.”
This is where all discussions must begin. Do you believe that God is good? That he is my good, and not that he simply gives me the goods?

The Lord instructs the rich young man to “keep the Commandments!” The young man asks Jesus, “Which ones?” The Lord’s reply may be summarized in the following way: All of them! It’s all or nothing. “I have done all these things.” We know the Lord must have loved him because he began to demand more from him: “Go, sell what you have and give it to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” The Apostles, Christ’s followers, are called to be in the world, but not possessed by the world. Leave all behind and come follow me. But isn’t there a shortage of priests and nuns? Don’t we need to make it easier? Shouldn’t priests get married (and divorced)? Aren’t they just like us?

In the days following Vatican II, many theologians, clerics and lay members believed that the 1960’s liberal agenda was the future. They called themselves “The Future Church.” Today, they would be best described as “The Fossil Church.” Our mainline protestant brothers embraced the “all-embracing” doctrines of (a) demand nothing from your members except the god of “tolerance”; (b) defang all dogmas and doctrines; (c) embrace 1960’s sexual morality. We have done all these things, what else must we do?” The response from the recent past is clear: die. Catholics account for less than 10 percent of England’s population; however they significantly outnumber Anglicans when it comes to Sunday observance in a country where 60 percent identify themselves as Anglicans! Mainline protestant churches throughout Europe are dying.

The wisdom of the Church Fathers has always been simple: follow the Lord’s example. Never water down the faith; never loosen her commitments. “Whatever you loose on earth, will be loosed in Heaven.” But whatever you bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven!” (Mt 16:19) What makes men commit to the Lord? A demanding God! “The blood of the martyrs is the seed for the Church.” (Tertullian) When the Church is in need of more holy men and women, they tighten the lifestyle of their men and women, they demand more from them - they make it harder and this draws more men to the Lord’s inner circle.

Today, let us pray, petition and sacrifice to the Lord for an increase in holy men and women, the seed of the Church, the hope of the world! Let us go out and preach the great news!


  1. Its, the message of 'die' is not a popular one, mostly amongst newer protestant churches (seeker-friendly). 'Reinventions of the wheel' are exactly what spring up on street corners but with a sort of gospel-twist...taking up your cross, sacrifice, leaving all for the sake of Jesus is no longer included in the message. It is what I term 'The Americanized Gospel' - getting without giving (unless its giving to the organization of course), blessing without sacrifice. The narrow road has been traded for the wide and luxury has become the new poverty. When the message is deluded, the longevity of ones faith seems shorter. Luke 12:15 is so easily forgotten.
    You put it well Fr. Alfonse in regards to the remedy...the response from the recent past is clear: die.

  2. Thank you for posting your daily meditations online Father. I have missed hearing your daily Mass homilies.

  3. "We know the Lord must have loved him because he began to demand more from him"

    This statement just brought back a memory from my daughter's middle school years. You know the ones where YOUR prayer life increases immeasurably!

    We had constant arguments about how mean I was because I wanted to know where she was at all times and I wouldn't just buy her a cell phone like all the other kids' parents and just let her go where ever she wished and do whatever she wanted with whomever she wanted.

    I told her constantly that I loved her and was sad that the other kids' parents didn't care enough to set boundaries or have any expectations and that I expected her to live by the rules, would never give up on her or quit loving her even when she behaved badly and hated me.

    On one occasion she begged me not love her, like her friends' parents. She didn't even realize what she said.

    Later in high school, a counselor told me that she told her that my refusal to give in & give up on her probably saved her life.

    She actually thanked me for it later.

    I’m already thanking God for letting me know what the rules are, how far is too far, what the consequences are. And especially for the Catholic Church who has never changed the rules or lowered her expectations to gain in popularity and for His refusal to give in or give up on me.

    Thank you Father for loving us enough to speak the truth when it's not what we want to hear, it's not popular or you're likely get criticized for it.

    We definitely need more holy courageous men like you in our Church and in our world!

  4. When I think about "The blood of the martyrs is the seed for the Church" (Tertullian), I am reminded of the many sacrifices that parents make for the holiness of their children. I am also reminded of the sacrifices that our youth make when they choose to resist the temptations of our current culture in their decision to wait until marriage for sex. They are the seeds of the Church, the holy young adults, who are tightening their lifestyles, demanding more of themselves in comparison to the general public. Their more difficult choices compared to past generations, draw more into the Lord's inner circle of holiness. Praise God for their willingness to stand up for what they believe in even when they stand alone. We must keep praying for them in their struggle for holiness.


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