Audio Readings November 21, 2012 The Presentation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Revelation 4:1-11;Psalm 150:1-6; Luke 19:11-28

“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God almighty.” (Revelation 4:8)

Reading this passage, we might feel pretty far removed from what John is describing. The saints are in heaven, praising God, and we’re still stuck in this earthly existence with our hang-ups and sins. But we don’t have to wait until we get to heaven to start living a heavenly life! In fact, today’s reading tells us one way to begin right here and right now: through the prayer of praise.

Praise is one of the secret weap­ons of our faith. It not only brings us closer to God, it sanctifies us in the process. To understand this truth, reflect on these words of Fr. Raniero Cantalamessa, preacher to the papal household:

“Praise is, par excellence, anti-sin. If, as St. Paul has said, the moth-er-sin is impiety, that is a refusal to glorify and thank God, then the exact opposite to sin is not virtue but praise! … We must learn to overcome sin with big means and not small ones, with positive ones and not negative ones… .

“The Bible often talks of a sac­rifice of praise and thanksgiving: Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiv­ing… . He who brings thanksgiving as his sacrifice honors me… . I will offer you the sacrifice of thanksgiv­ing (Psalm 50:14-23; 116:17). What relationship could possibly exist between praise and sacrifice? Sac­rifice indicates the immolation and destruction of something, but what does praise immolate and destroy? It immolates and destroys our pride!

“Whoever offers praise sacrifices to God the most acceptable vic­tim that could exist: his or her own glory. This is what the extraordinary purifying power of praise consists of. Humility is concealed in praise. The most extraordinary thing of all is that nothing exists that cannot be transformed, if we want, into a rea­son for praising and giving thanks to God, not even sin. There is no state of conscience, however difficult, that cannot be reversed if a person tears himself away from all the contrary reasoning of the flesh and decides to glorify God.”

“Come, Holy Spirit, and reveal to me the goodness and power of the Lord! Help me to lift my heart and mind to Jesus in praise today. May I forget what lies behind me and fix my eyes only on you.” ~WAU

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About gemdk

I am a cradle Catholic who made my first Holy Communion over 5o years ago at All Saints Catholic Church in Houston,TX in 1961. Went to Mass every Sunday as a child and teen and then young adult. Fell away for about 12 years in the late 80's, early 90's and then realized what was missing in my life was my Catholic upbringing and faith. Found my home at Sacred Heart in Crosby. Filling up the void I had for those 12 years in more ways than I can imagine, loving every minute of it. But this blog is not about me as much as it is for me and anyone who wants/needs to hear the word of God. I'm merely the instrument God uses to post the readings.
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