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Simple Diakonia

Simple Diakonia

By Deacon Hector Ortiz

A podcast about diaconate spirituality
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Lenten Reflection Day 26: Psalm 118:22

Simple DiakoniaMar 14, 2021

00:00
01:13
Reflection: John 10:11

Reflection: John 10:11

"I am the good shepherd."

Reflection:
Jesus is truth, strength, and protection. Under his care, faith sanctifies frailty; hope overcomes darkness; charity provides shelter.

Today's Intention
Lord, be my shepherd today and always.

Peace and Goodness
Apr 27, 202100:43
Lenten Reflection Day 46 Holy Week: Mark 16:6

Lenten Reflection Day 46 Holy Week: Mark 16:6

"Do not be amazed! You seek Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified. He has been raised." (Mark 16:6)

Reflection
Holy Saturday is hope; the time of the Resurrection. Jesus has overcome sin and death. Let us rejoice, for today, salvation has come to us through the water and blood of our Lord.

Today's Intention
Jesus, your Resurrection is the hope of our lives, the never-ending light. Christ, Son of the Living God, have mercy on us.

Peace and Goodness
Apr 03, 202101:04
Lenten Reflection Day 45 Holy Week: Luke 23:46

Lenten Reflection Day 45 Holy Week: Luke 23:46

Reflection
Good Friday is the affirmation of faith.
There are many aspects of our lives that are always not in our control. Some of them cause us a great deal of inconvenience and, at times, sorrow. Jesus on the Cross shows us that no one is immune from life's perils and injustice. However, when we place our trust in God, life's trials offer transformation and redemption.

Today's Intention
Lord Jesus, you give us the Passion as a sign of trust in your Father and the Holy Spirit. We ask that you move our hearts with the same grace of faith.

Peace and Goodness
Apr 02, 202101:16
Lenten Reflection Day 44 Holy Week: John 13:15

Lenten Reflection Day 44 Holy Week: John 13:15

"I have given you a model to follow, so that as I have done for you, you should also do." (John 13:15)

Reflection

The foundation of Holy Thursday is charity.

Aware of the certainty of the Cross and confident in his victory over death, Jesus focused on what he did throughout his ministry, serving others. He taught a model of service to his disciples by washing their feet, the lowest of a servant's duties at the time.

Today's Intention
May we be blessed this the Holy Thursday, O Lord, with the graces of charity, which flow from the Father through the Holy Spirit.

Peace and Goodness
Apr 01, 202101:08
Lenten Reflection Day 43 Holy Week: Isaiah 50:7

Lenten Reflection Day 43 Holy Week: Isaiah 50:7

The Lord God is my help, therefore I am not disgraced." (Isaiah 50:7)

Reflection
Fear is death when humiliation is its cause. When we place our faith in God, however, disgrace produces life. The Word of God humbled Himself that we may live. He embraced dishonor in exchange for our redemption.

Holy Week symbolizes victory over humiliation. The overcoming of light over darkness, life over death.

Today's Intention
O Lord, walk with us this Holy Week. May we do not let disgrace prevent us from living our faith.

Peace and Goodness


Mar 31, 202101:13
Lenten Reflection Day 42 Holy Week: Isaiah 49:6

Lenten Reflection Day 42 Holy Week: Isaiah 49:6

"I will make you a light to the nations,
that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth." (Isaiah 49:6)

Reflection
We hear it over and over again, yet sometimes we do not get it. Jesus' servant mission was universal. He is the shepherd of every child. Despite what we may imagine, Jesus is the savior for all. Holy Week is the light that shines on that truth.

Today's Intention
Jesus, help us to become a light of salvation this Holy Week and beyond.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 30, 202100:59
Lenten Reflection Day 41 Holy Week: Isaiah 42:1

Lenten Reflection Day 41 Holy Week: Isaiah 42:1

"Here is my servant whom I uphold,
my chosen one with whom I am pleased." (Isaiah 42:1)

Reflection
What is Holy Week?
Holy Week affirms obedience to the Father.
Holy Week fulfills God's promise of salvation.
Holy Week models the perfect sacrifice of service.
Holy Week unites our human suffering with the divine.
Holy Week gathers the lost and the scattered sheep.
Holy Week celebrates victory over sin and death.
Holy Week is Jesus, and in him, Holy Week is us.

Today's Intention
O God, may we too be pleasing to you this Holy Week and always.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 30, 202101:15
Lenten Reflection Day 40: Mark 11:8

Lenten Reflection Day 40: Mark 11:8

"Many people spread their cloaks on the road, and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields." (Mark 11:8)

Reflection
Did you hear? The Messiah has entered Jerusalem.
Come, let us honor him. Bring your palm leaves.
Let us shout: "Jesus Christ is Lord!"

Did you hear? A woman poured perfumed oil on Jesus’ head.
Together with his disciples, Jesus broke bread.
What can we do to prepare him for his death?

Did you hear? One of his disciples betrayed Jesus; another one denied him.
He rests crucified now. He has died so that we may live.
Come, let us join Mary and John at the foot of the cross.

Today's Intention
Thank you, Lord, for humbling yourself; for sharing our humanity so that we may share your divinity. Following your Father's will, may the Holy Spirit fills us with a sense of mystery, worship, and prayer this Holy Week.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 28, 202101:43
Lenten Reflection Day 39: John 11:51-52

Lenten Reflection Day 39: John 11:51-52

"he prophesied that Jesus was going to die for the nation, and not only for the nation, but also to gather into one the dispersed children of God." (John 11:51-52)

Reflection
Passover is upon us; the Lenten season is approaching its fullness. A day when Jesus willingly offered himself as a spotless lamb, establishing a new Passover of salvation. One sacrifice to unite us all, the near and the far.

Today's Intention
Jesus, Son of the living God, you established a new Passover of eternal life to those who believe. May we praise you eternally for your priestly offering of redemption.

Peace and Goodness

Mar 27, 202101:09
Lenten Reflection Day 38: John 6:63

Lenten Reflection Day 38: John 6:63

"The words I have spoken to you are spirit and life." (John 6:63)

Reflection
From Scriptures flow Redemption, for from them flow spirit and life. Spirit because the Divine inspired them, spoke them, fulfilled them. Life because through them and in them Resurrection has come to us.

Today's Intention
O Lord, your words are spirit and life. May they bless our Lenten journey and beyond.

Peace and Goodness

Mar 26, 202100:58
Lenten Reflection Day 37: Luke 1:31

Lenten Reflection Day 37: Luke 1:31

"Behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name him Jesus." (Luke 1:31)

Reflection
The announcement of the birth of Jesus is eternal salvation.
When the Angel Gabriel spoke to Mary, we too became overshadowed by the Holy Spirit's grace: Jesus within us.

The Lenten season is a chance to meditate on the meaning of the Annunciation in our lives. Are we servants of the Lord? Is the joy of the Word of God manifested in us? The answers lie in our hearts.

Today's Intention
May the Holy Spirit teach us to live out the child Jesus conceived within us.

"Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you."

Peace and Goodness
Mar 25, 202101:23
Lenten Reflection Day 36: Daniel 3:56

Lenten Reflection Day 36: Daniel 3:56

"Blessed are you in the firmament of heaven,
praiseworthy and glorious forever." (Daniel 3:56)

Reflection
Some people view Lent mainly as a time of self-sacrifice. However, Lent is more than that. Lent is also a time of joy.

During the Lenten season, we celebrate the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter, the Solemnity of St. Joseph, and the Annunciation of the Lord. Also, there is no fasting on Sundays. Then, on Easter Sunday, we celebrate the Resurrection of the Lord.

Lent is joyful too. Let us embrace it as much as self-sacrifice.

Today's Intention
May the last days of Lent, O Lord, open ours hearts to experiencing the joys and blessings you have given us, and may we share them with those we encounter.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 25, 202101:23
Lenten Reflection Day 35: Psalm 102:2

Lenten Reflection Day 35: Psalm 102:2

"Lord, hear my prayer;
let my cry come to you." (Psalm 102:2)

Reflection:
Prayer and Lent are inseparable. One sustains the other.
Prayer is Lent, and Lent is prayer.
In prayer with talk with the Lord, in Lent, the Lord listens to us.
Prayer comes from our heart, and Lent flows from the heart of Jesus.
Prayer is our voice, and Lent unites our voices with our Savior.
In prayer, we seek relief, and in Lent, we find refuge.

Today's Intention
You know my prayer, O Lord, have mercy on me.
Jesus, you shared our humanity; wipe away our tears.
Holy Spirit, you are our advocate; we trust our prayers to you.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 24, 202101:29
Lenten Reflection Day 34: Psalm 23:4

Lenten Reflection Day 34: Psalm 23:4

"Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil, for you are with me" (Psalm 23:4)

Reflection:
Lent can be challenging. Even the most fervent believer struggles at times in their prayer, almsgiving, and fasting. However, agony in itself is a reminder to continue to fix our gaze upon Jesus unless we want to live in fear. For Jesus walked in the shadow of death and overcame it and by the grace of the Holy Spirit so can we.

Today's Intention:
Your presence, O God, is the light of goodness and mercy in troubled times. May we dwell in your house with Jesus and the Holy Spirit this Lenten season and always.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 22, 202101:15
Lenten Reflection Day 33: John 12:26

Lenten Reflection Day 33: John 12:26

"The Father will honor whoever serves me." (John 12:26)

Reflection:

Today is a day for rejoicing in the Lord, for today we remember Jesus' agreement with us. Our Savior expresses the perfection of his covenant in three parts.

First, the Father will honor his followers. No human being can ever make this claim, only the Son of God. Second, Jesus died for all humanity. It is Jesus' sacrifice of love on the cross that unites us with him. Third, our works in faith, obedience, and charity aim at glorifying the Lord, not us.

Today's Intention:
O God, thank you for this Lenten day of service in worship, thanksgiving, and joy through the grace of your Son and the Holy Spirit.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 21, 202101:21
Lenten Reflection Day 32: John 7:46

Lenten Reflection Day 32: John 7:46

"Never before has anyone spoken like this one." (John 7:46)

Reflection:
Lent is the season of hope. When someone touches our hearts as never before, we see in them hope. Unfortunately, at times, we misplace our hope.

The chief priests and the Pharisees placed their hope in the laws, but Jesus in his Father. Their expectations produced different results. Hope in the rules harvested fear, betrayal, and death. Hope in the Father conceived faithfulness, forgiveness, and salvation. In who we place our hope determinates our fate.

Today's Intention:
Lord, your triumphant 40-day journey in the desert gives us hope. Please continue to walk with us so that we, too, can complete our Lenten journey with the same determination.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 20, 202101:23
Lenten Reflection Day 31: Matthew 1:20

Lenten Reflection Day 31: Matthew 1:20

"Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary your wife into your home." (Matthew 1:20)

Reflection
We know little about St. Joseph, the husband of Mary. What we do know, however, is a blessing.

The descendent of a human king obediently humbled himself for the glory of the divine King. He fasted from fear to serve his family courageously. He was a righteous man, a man of prayer. When it meant the most, he trusted in his faith to protect his family from peril and, indirectly, us from the sting of death.

Today's Intention
Lord, you give us St. Joseph as an example of righteousness, obedience, and courage. May we, who are responsible for others' care, enjoy the same graces of humility, fortitude, and charity from the Holy Spirit as we near the end of the Lenten season and beyond.

St. Joseph, pray for us.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 19, 202101:33
Lenten Reflection Day 30: Psalm 106:20

Lenten Reflection Day 30: Psalm 106:20

106:20)

Reflection
When our desires become our master, we lose our identity. We walk not under the light of life but within the snare of darkness. Then, as we wander without a clear sense of who we are, we make for ourselves gods to fill the empty spaces we created.

The good news is that God is patient and merciful. Lent is our opportunity to experience his glory.

Today's Intention
Jesus, we ask for your mercy this Lenten season. Teach us through the grace of the Holy Spirit to recognize all the glory God has bestowed upon us.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 18, 202101:21
Lenten Reflection Day 29: John 11:25

Lenten Reflection Day 29: John 11:25

"I am the resurrection and the life; whoever believes in me, even if he dies, will live." (John 11:25)

Reflection
The foundation of Christianity is Jesus' resurrection. Lent is an act of faith. A time of preparation leading to the remembering and celebrating of the Paschal Triduum: Jesus' crucifixion, death, and resurrection. During this time, we join Christ's suffering with ours, the loss of loved ones receives new meaning, and we celebrate the joy of the resurrection's promise.

Today's Intention
O God, we believe that Jesus is the resurrection, the source of eternal life. However, there are times when we struggle with our faith. We ask that the Holy Spirit continue to be our companion in those moments, and Jesus, the light of our lives.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 17, 202101:32
Lenten Reflection Day 28: Psalm 46:8

Lenten Reflection Day 28: Psalm 46:8

"The Lord of hosts is with us;
our stronghold is the God of Jacob." (Psalm 46:8)

Reflection
Lent is a door into the divine fortress of God's kingdom. A place where we find the strength to face our problems with faith, hope, and charity.

Life is both joy and pain. At times, it feels like suffering has the upper hand. It can be easy to be discouraged when our prayers appear unanswered by God; our almsgiving goes unappreciated; we are unable to fast as we intended. Yet, it is on those occasions that we must stay put within the walls of His protection.

Today's Intention:
You are our refuge, O God. Help us to remain always within the stronghold of your love.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 16, 202101:26
Lenten Reflection Day 27: Amos 5:14

Lenten Reflection Day 27: Amos 5:14


“Seek good and not evil,
that you may live;
Then indeed the Lord, the God of hosts,
will be with you as you claim.” (Amos 5:14)

Reflection
We cannot claim the Lord as our God when our faith does not match our actions. Lent is a training season to live-out our claim that God is with us. We do that with words, deeds, and sacrifices pleasing to God and edifying others.

Today's Intention
Help us this Lent, O Lord, to seek good in ourselves, others, and the world.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 15, 202100:60
Lenten Reflection Day 26: Psalm 118:22

Lenten Reflection Day 26: Psalm 118:22

"The stone the builders rejected
has become the cornerstone." (Psalm 118:22)

Reflection
Jesus is the cornerstone of our Lenten journey path. When we travel on that road, we walk with confidence that our lent is in accord with God's will. Even on the coldest of desert nights, the heat stored on the cornerstone of our salvation, Jesus Christ, keeps us warm.

Today's Intention
O God, thank you for the gift of your Son. Without Jesus as the foundation of our faith, we are doomed. May the Holy Spirit continue to direct our footing this lent.

Peace and Goodness

Mar 14, 202101:13
Lenten Reflection Day 25: Hosea 6:3

Lenten Reflection Day 25: Hosea 6:3

"He will come to us like the rain,
like spring rain that waters the earth." (Hosea 6:3)

Reflection
When our prayer, almsgiving, and fasting are in union with Jesus, their effects are like water that nourishes and cleanses. Being in Jesus transforms us and those we encounter. Our words are genuine, our actions sincere, and our restraint is peaceful.

Today's Intention
O God, we want to be cleaned; come to us like the rain. May we, like your Son, receive the graces of the Holy Spirit.

Peace and Goodness



Mar 13, 202101:00
Lenten Reflection Day 24: Hosea 14:7

Lenten Reflection Day 24: Hosea 14:7

"His splendor will be like the olive tree
and his fragrance like Lebanon cedar." (Hosea 14:7)

Reflection
Imagine being in the desert and finding a tree to offer relief from the sun. Hopefully, as we continue our Lenten journey, all of us have discovered or are about to encounter our tree in the desert, Jesus' love. It will be a tree which splendor will be visible at a distance. Its fragrance will act like a compass pointing to the tree of life.

Today's Intention
Jesus, you are our refuge. May the Holy Spirit guides us to the comfort of your shade.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 13, 202101:08
Lenten Reflection Day 23: Luke 11:23

Lenten Reflection Day 23: Luke 11:23

"Whoever is not with me is against me, and whoever does not gather with me scatters." (Luke 11:23)

Reflection
Our Lenten journey points to the heart of Jesus. In his heart, we find the love that binds us, the arms of mercy that gather us. However, there are children of God who have walked away from Him. Let us pray and walk with them in charity in their journey back to Jesus' heart.

Today's Intention
Jesus, you walked alone in the desert, but your gaze always pointed to your Father. We pray that we, too, are engulfed by the Holy Spirit to remain with you and never scatter away from you.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 13, 202101:09
Lenten Reflection Day 22: Matthew 5:17

Lenten Reflection Day 22: Matthew 5:17

"Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets. I have come not to abolish but to fulfill." (Matthew 5:17)

Reflection
Lent is a reminder that Jesus died for us to fulfill God's promises of salvation spoken through the prophets. The Lenten observance opens the door to the beauty of the law witnessed in the life of our Savior: to love God and neighbor.

Today's Intention
Through our baptismal waters, Lord Jesus, we share your office of prophet. We ask that through God's grace, may the Holy Spirit descend upon us to prophesy and fulfill your laws, especially during our Lenten walk.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 10, 202101:13
Lenten Reflection Day 21: Matthew 18:21

Lenten Reflection Day 21: Matthew 18:21



"Lord, if my brother sins against me, how often must I forgive him?" (Mt 18:21)

Reflection
Forgiveness is an excellent fasting habit to practice during Lent. When we forgive others, we free ourselves from the gluttony of resentment and hate, protecting our body and soul from physical and spiritual harm. As author Marianne Williamson wrote: "Unforgiveness is like drinking poison yourself and waiting for the other person to die."

Fasting from forgiveness is not always easy or painless, but with God's help and human intervention, we can persevere.

Today's Intention
O God, teach us how to make forgiveness a habit in our lives.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 09, 202101:16
Lenten Reflection Day 20: John 4:14

Lenten Reflection Day 20: John 4:14

"Whoever drinks the water I shall give will never thirst." (John 4:14)

Reflection:
Water is essential to our body. In most cases, the human body cannot survive without water for more than three days. After that time, the body reaches a dangerous point of collapse, possibly leading to death.

The same is true for our spirituality. A Lenten journey without Jesus, the fountain of living water, will lead to a fruitless spiritual life.

Today's Intention:
God, we pray that the Holy Spirit directs us in prayer, almsgiving, and fasting to the fountain of living water, Jesus Christ.

Peace and Goodness

Mar 09, 202101:02
Lenten Reflection Day 19: Ecclesiastes 3:7

Lenten Reflection Day 19: Ecclesiastes 3:7

"A time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak." (Ecclesiastes 3:7)

Lent is a time of spiritual silence with God.
By journeying into the desert, Jesus found a place to block the noise and focus on prayer.

The fruit of spiritual silence provides nourishment to overcome temptation.

Today's Intention:
Lord, help me make spiritual silence with you a priority in my life.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 08, 202100:50
Lenten Reflection Day 18: Psalm 103:12

Lenten Reflection Day 18: Psalm 103:12

"As far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our sins from us." (Psalm 103:12)

Reflection
It is foolish to try to measure God's mercy. The effects of Jesus' sacrifice of compassion on the cross are boundless. God the Father and God the Son desire to forgive us. They wish to bless us with their love through God the Holy Spirit.

During this Lent, let us reject the lies that tell us that we are undeserving of Jesus' love and mercy.

Today's Intention
Lord, help us to seek your forgiveness. May we bathe in the waters of reconciliation this Lenten season.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 06, 202101:11
Lenten Reflection Day 17: Isaiah 53:11

Lenten Reflection Day 17: Isaiah 53:11

"My servant, the just one, shall justify the many,
their iniquity he shall bear." (Isaiah 53:11)

Reflection:
At times, we forget the many blessings God has bestowed upon us. The greatest among them, Jesus Christ our Savior. The focus on Lent is on prayer, almsgiving, and fasting. We should add a fourth pillar, gratitude.

A grateful heart is a prayerful heart because it knows salvation comes from above. A thankful heart is filled with charity because it understands that almsgiving without love is a fancy act. A grateful heart realizes that fasting is not about suffering but joy, a healthy balance of self-giving and control.

Today's Intention:
Lord, move us through the Holy Spirit to live in gratitude. To give you thanksgiving every day for the gift of Jesus Christ who justifies us and bears our iniquities.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 05, 202101:41
Lenten Reflection Day 16: Jeremiah 17:10

Lenten Reflection Day 16: Jeremiah 17:10

"I the Lord test the mind
and search the heart,
to give to all according to their ways,
according to the fruit of their doings." (Jeremiah 17:10)

Reflection:
We can hide what is in our hearts from others, but God's reach goes beyond our intentions. That notion is unsettling to some, and to others, it brings peace.

Safe to say, our actions have consequences. Lent is a moment to prayerfully reflect in our ways and doings—a chance to ask the Holy Spirit to guide us in changing our lives as necessary.

Today's Intention:

"God, grant us the courage to change our ways. Bless our doings so they may produce this Lenten season fruit filled with your love.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 05, 202101:24
Lenten Reflection Day #15: John 8:12

Lenten Reflection Day #15: John 8:12

"I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8:12

Reflection:
All of us experience darkness. If you are there right now, you are in my prayers.

Pray this Lenten season for God to reveal the light of life through the Holy Spirit, our Advocate. Walk not alone in the darkness—instead, seek divine intervention and almsgiving from others.

Today's Intention
Lord, bring joy this day to those in darkness, and may the Holy Spirit shows us how to assist them. May they embrace the light of life upon them.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 04, 202101:09
Lenten Reflection Day 14: Isaiah 1:16

Lenten Reflection Day 14: Isaiah 1:16

"Wash yourselves clean!
Put away your misdeeds from before my eyes;
cease doing evil." (Is 1:16)

Reflection
I cannot function well when I do not take a shower. I am less patient, loving, and caring if I feel dirty.

The same is true for my spirituality. When misdeeds stain my heart, I cannot perform my vocations properly as husband, father, and deacon.

One spiritual activity we can benefit from this Lenten season is reconciliation or confession. Its grace is like soothing water that removes our hearts’ impurities.

Today's Intention:
Lord, I want to be cleaned from my misdeeds; please forgive me.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 02, 202101:21
Lenten Reflection Day 13: Luke 6:36

Lenten Reflection Day 13: Luke 6:36

"Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful." (Luke 6:36-RSV)

Reflection
Many of us have been fasting unaware before Lent. We have been on the fasting from mercy. The waitress forgot our order; we immediately complain about it. A teammate did a poor presentation. We think of them as incapable. Our spouse or child had a difficult day; we do not care. The list goes on.

During this Lent, let us practice fasting from mercilessness. Let us give almsgiving to the strangers, those with collaborate, and our loved ones.

Today's Intention
Lord Jesus, we cannot expect mercy when we are merciless ourselves. We ask you to send the Holy Spirit to teach us to be merciful towards others as your Father is merciful towards us.

Peace and Goodness
Mar 01, 202101:18
Lenten Reflection Day 12: Mark 9:2-3

Lenten Reflection Day 12: Mark 9:2-3

"And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no fuller on earth could bleach them." Mark 9:2-3

Reflection
Lent offers transfiguration. However, like other graces available to us through the love of God, it is up to us to accept this gift of spiritual transformation.

The good news is that when we accompany Jesus with a humbled and contrite heart, we, too, can experience the"light of Tabor" in our hearts as Peter, James, and John did.

Today's Intention
Lord, open our eyes this Lent to see your radiance and be transformed by your love into faithful children of God.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 28, 202101:11
Lenten Reflection Day 11: Matthew 5:46

Lenten Reflection Day 11: Matthew 5:46

"For if you love those who love you, what recompense will you have? Do not the tax collectors do the same?" (Matthew 5:46)

Reflection
Lent challenges us to disengage the auto-pilot of our spirituality. It is an occasion to grow in faith, hope, and charity by praying and ministering to those we dislike. To fast from hatred toward those who we do not consider deserving of our love.

Today's Intention:
Lord, give us opportunities this Lent to step away from our spiritual comfort zone by praying and ministering to those we disapprove.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 27, 202101:07
Lenten Reflection Day 10: Psalm 130:1

Lenten Reflection Day 10: Psalm 130:1

Out of the depths I call to you, Lord;
Lord, hear my cry! (Psalm 130:1)

Reflection:
There is so much despair in our world, and its consequences are infecting us physically, emotionally, and mentally. Grief, loneliness, depression are robbing us of connections, joy, and peace. All of us, directly or indirectly, have been touched by the claws of despair. The pain we experience begs the question: Where is God?

The good news is that God is within each of us. He is present in the prayers we offer for each others. God is present in our almsgiving to those in need. God is present when we unite our suffering with the Passion of Jesus Christ.

Today's Intention:
Lord, hear our cry for help this Lent and give us relief. May the Holy Spirit give us the strength to withstand suffering; to inspire those with resources to share them compassionately with those in need.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 26, 202101:34
Lenten Reflection Day 9: Psalm 51:12

Lenten Reflection Day 9: Psalm 51:12

"A clean heart create for me, God;
renew within me a steadfast spirit." (Psalm 51:12)

Reflection:
Before entering the desert, the Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus. Therefore, during his Lent, Jesus was not alone; the love of God was in his heart, which Jesus kept cleaned and willing through humility, prayer, and fasting.

The good news for us is that during our baptism, the Holy Spirit descended upon us too. We are not alone during our Lenten journey. Let us seek to be humble, prayerful, and abstinent as well.

Today's Intention:
O God, I desire a clean and willing heart today and always. May the Holy Spirit sustain me.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 25, 202101:20
Lenten Reflection Day 8: Psalm 51:19

Lenten Reflection Day 8: Psalm 51:19

“My sacrifice, O God, is a contrite spirit;
a contrite, humbled heart, O God, you will not scorn.” Psalm 51:19

Reflection:

If nothing else, Lent is the realization that God is always there to forgive us.

Most of us become the prodigal child at some point in our lives (see Luke 15:11-32). We think that we know what is best and walk away from God's love. As a result, we place ourselves in sinful situations. The good news is that when we show humble repentance and atonement for our sins, God showers us with divine mercy.

Today’s Intention:
"O my God, I am heartily sorry for having offended You, please have mercy on me."

Peace and Goodness
Feb 24, 202101:14
Lenten Reflection Day 7: Matthew 4:4

Lenten Reflection Day 7: Matthew 4:4

"Man shall not live by bread alone,
but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God." (Mt 4:4)

Lectio Divina is a spiritual way of almsgiving to nourish our body with the word of God, and Lent is the perfect season to start it.

Sit quietly with your bible or a spiritual book and Read a passage for meaning. Next, Meditate on its meaning: What is God trying to tell you? Then, engage in a prayerful conversation with God on the connection to your life and others. Finish in quiet Contemplation with the Lord.

Today's Intention:
Lord, I desire to nourish my soul with your word. May the Holy Spirit help me fulfill it.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 23, 202101:14
One-Minute Reflection: Romans 12:12 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #30)

One-Minute Reflection: Romans 12:12 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #30)

Reflection:

On this the last reflection of our 30 Days of Prayer for Unity, let us remember that what we seek is never-ending.

There will always be situations or people that will push us toward division. The good news, however, is that we have a Savior who understands our struggles. Therefore, let us continue to place our hope in Him to guide our hearts and our nation. Blessed with His strength, we can continue to endure through prayer.

Today's Intention
Lord, we ask that you continue to sustain our hope, comfort our afflictions, and strengthen our determination for peace and unity in our nation.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 22, 202101:22
Lenten Reflection Day 6: Mark 1:14

Lenten Reflection Day 6: Mark 1:14

"After John had been arrested, Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the gospel of God." (Mark 1:14)

Reflection
Lent is a time of transformation. Upon Jesus' return from the desert, the Prophet John the Baptist gave way to the Word of God.

The effects of Lent are lasting. After his death, Jesus passed on the fruits of his desert experience to Peter and the apostles. As a result, we too have access to Jesus' Lent experience. Let us make the most of it.

Today's Intention
Lord Jesus, you used John the Baptist, Peter, and the apostles to prepare the way for you and spread the gospel of God. We humbly ask that you give us the same grace this Lenten season and the strength to fulfill it.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 22, 202101:18
Lenten Reflection Day 5: Nehemiah 8:9,10

Lenten Reflection Day 5: Nehemiah 8:9,10

"Today is holy to the Lord your God. Do not lament, do not weep! Go, eat rich foods and drink sweet drinks, and allot portions to those who had nothing prepared; for today is holy to our Lord." (Nehemiah 8:9, 10)

Reflection
Let us not fast on the Lord's day. God made Sunday for prayer, almsgiving, and joy.

Today is a day for worship. A celebration of the blessings in our lives. An occasion to relieve others' sufferings according to our gifts.

Today's Intention
Lord, this is the day you made for us. Please help us to experience and share it fully as you command us today.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 21, 202101:17
One-Minute Reflection: Luke 5:27 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #29)

One-Minute Reflection: Luke 5:27 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #29)

"Follow me." (Luke 5:27)

Reflection:

What a beautiful command: "Follow me." We are all invited to follow Jesus in unity, because we all form part of his body, the Church.

Christians and non-Christians, Democrats, Independents, or Republicans. We are all children of one Creator. Let us seek to unite, not to divide.

Today's Intention:
Lord, we ask that you remove the barriers that divide us and direct our hearts to follow you.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 20, 202101:00
Lenten Reflection Day 4: Ezekiel 33:11

Lenten Reflection Day 4: Ezekiel 33:11

"I swear I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that they turn from their ways and live." (Ezekiel 33:11)

Reflection:
Lent is a time of conversion. A time to clean our hearts from the impurities blocking the flow of spirituality within. A chance to change our ways, repent and live in fellowship with God and each other.

God loves everyone unconditionally. He desires a deep relationship with us. Let us not let lies, life difficulties, and misconceptions about Him to deprive us of His grace of salvation.

Today's Intention:
Lord Jesus, this Lenten season, give us the courage to turn away from our ways and send the Holy Spirit to guide our return to God.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 20, 202101:18
Lenten Reflection Day 3: Isaiah 58:8

Lenten Reflection Day 3: Isaiah 58:8

"Is this what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the Lord?" (Isaiah 58:8)

Reflection
Fasting is a sacrifice in humility intended to glorify the Lord.

Therefore, let us be mindful of hypocritical fasting. When we fast but ignore others' suffering, act immorally, or consume things that defile our spirituality, our sacrifice is for vainglory. It is fasting from those things that make fasting genuine.

True fasting is transformative, kind, and loving. It changes our lives and those of others. More importantly, it reflects the entirety of our lives concerning God and neighbor.

Today's Intention
O God, may our fasting be acceptable to you.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 19, 202101:28
Lenten Reflection Day 2: Mark 9:29

Lenten Reflection Day 2: Mark 9:29

Reflection:
When the devil tempted Jesus in the desert, he probably expected Jesus to fall for his lies. Instead, Jesus cast him out not by force or power but by prayer and fasting. The result was the victory of life over death.
We, too, like Jesus, can use prayer and fasting to triumph over death. Prayer to call on the good spirits' protection and fasting to free us from flesh's temptations.

Today's Intention
O Lord, this Lenten season, hear our prayers of need, sustain our fasting in temptation, and encourage us to persevere in our falls.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 18, 202101:22
One-Minute Reflection: Galatians 3:28 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #28)

One-Minute Reflection: Galatians 3:28 (30 Days of Prayer for Unity #28)

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”
(Galatians 3:28-RSVCE)

Paul has defined for us what unity is like when we live in Christ. We cannot rely on politicians to sustain our spirituality because politics tend to divide. We ought to rely on Jesus' teachings of diversity and inclusion instead.

Today's Intention:
Lord, give us the wisdom to distinguish politics from spirituality. May You, not politicians, direct our morality. May your love for all be the source of unity in our nation.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 18, 202101:16
Lenten Reflection Day 1: Joel 2:12

Lenten Reflection Day 1: Joel 2:12

“Return to me with your whole heart, with fasting, and weeping, and mourning" (Joel 2:12).

Reflection:
Lent is a four-legged stool of spirituality:
The season for repairing our relationship with our Creator through prayer
An opportunity to grow in perseverance and patience by embracing fasting
A moment to share with profound gratitude from our well of blessings
A chance to be born anew in the waters of consolation and conversion
Lent is the spiritual return home of the prodigal child to the warm-forgiving embrace of merciful love.

Today's Intention:
O Lord, thanks for the gift of Lent, a time of spiritual renewal. We humbly pray for joy, courage, and strength during the journey ahead.

Peace and Goodness
Feb 17, 202101:19