Category Archives: Miscellaneous

Entrusting our Lives to the Lord

In the Holy Gospel of Matthew, our Lord Jesus tells us, “Behold the birds of the air, for they neither sow, nor do they reap, nor gather into barns: and your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are not you of much more value than they?” (Matthew 6:26) Jesus is reminding us of the tender care and providence of our heavenly Father. Just as He provides for the birds of the air, so too does He provide for each and every one of us. It is easy for us to become anxious about our daily needs, worrying about what tomorrow may bring. But Jesus instructs us to trust in the Father’s loving hands, knowing that He will never forsake us.

Trusting in the hands of our Heavenly Father requires a surrender of our own will and a deepening of our faith. It means letting go of our fears and insecurities and placing our lives entirely in His hands. This does not mean that we become lazy or complacent, but rather that we make sure our will is in accordance with His own, knowing that His plans for us are good and perfect.
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God is With Us

In the Gospel of St. Matthew, we encounter the beautiful prophecy from Isaiah (7:14), fulfilled in the person of our Lord Jesus Christ: “Behold a virgin shall be with child, and bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.” (Matthew 1:23) This announcement brings us great joy and hope; it signifies the extraordinary act of God breaking into human history, taking on our flesh, and dwelling among us. This was not simply a historical event that occurred in Bethlehem over two thousand years ago. The fact that God is with us is a timeless truth that is deep within our hearts and every part of our being. God’s presence is not confined to a particular time or place but extends to every moment of our lives.

In our moments of joy, God is with us, celebrating with open arms. In times of sorrow and struggle, God is with us, offering solace and strength. When we feel lost and uncertain, God is with us, guiding our steps with His light. This reality is both comforting and reassuring. Prayer becomes our means of communication with the One who is always near, listening to the whispers of our hearts and responding with unfailing love. The sacraments, especially the Eucharist, are tangible encounters with the living God, where we partake in the divine mystery and receive the grace that sustains us on our pilgrimage.
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The Infinite Love of Christ

In the Gospel, we encounter the words of Jesus inviting us, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) These words call out to us with the gentle invitation of the Sacred Heart, a heart pulsating with boundless love for each of us. Embracing the Sacred Heart entails embracing this love—a love that is pure, merciful, and unfailing. It is a love cognizant of our joys and sorrows, our triumphs and failures. In our quest for holiness, let us turn to the Sacred Heart as the fount of grace and strength.

As we approach the mystery of the Sacred Heart, let us earnestly and intentionally open the doors of our hearts to the life changing power of Jesus’ boundless love. In this intimate encounter, permit His love not only to touch the surface but to permeate the depths of our being, moulding us into vessels of His divine grace.
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Unwavering Faithfulness

The faithfulness of God is a subject that has many threads throughout the Scriptures, echoing throughout time, a testament to the divine constancy that has guided the people of God throughout their existence.

In the Book of Genesis, we are reminded of the covenant that God established with Abraham. Through the passage of time, through trials and tribulations, the Lord remained steadfast in His promise. The journey of the Israelites, as chronicled in the Exodus, portrays a pilgrimage marked by divine guidance, a pillar of cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night. In the midst of the wilderness, God’s faithfulness illuminated their path and sustained them.

The Psalms, those timeless hymns of praise and lament, resound with the melodies of gratitude for God’s unwavering faithfulness. “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want,” declares Psalm 23, encapsulating the profound assurance of God’s provision and care. The prophets, messengers of divine truth, spoke of God’s faithfulness even in times of rebellion and waywardness. Hosea’s life, symbolizing God’s enduring love for a wayward people, vividly illustrates the commitment that transcends human failings.
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Our Light and Salvation

“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?” (Psalm 26:1/27:1) In a world replete with sin and confusion, the Lord illuminates our path, revealing the way to righteousness and truth. His light dispels the shadows of doubt and fear, enabling us to walk confidently in His grace. He serves as our guiding light amid the darkness. The psalmist is not merely alluding to deliverance from earthly troubles; he speaks of our ultimate salvation and how it rests in the hands of the Almighty. In Jesus Christ, we discover the source of our redemption, the one who liberates us from the bondage of sin and opens the gates of eternal life.

The Church holds in high esteem the Apostolic teachings and traditions handed down through the ages. Our faith is anchored in the mysteries of the Holy Mass, the sacraments, and our liturgical heritage. Through these sacred elements, we draw closer to the light of Christ and partake in the salvation He offers. In times of darkness, may we turn to the Lord, our true light, seeking His guidance and wisdom. In moments of struggle, let us trust in His saving grace, knowing that He is the source of our strength and the anchor of our hope.
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A Channel of God’s Grace

The Blessed Virgin Mary’s role in our faith is multifaceted and deeply significant. Beyond her historical role as the mother of Jesus, she holds a central place in the hearts of Catholics around the world. Her significance is rooted in several key aspects of her life and character. First and foremost, Mary serves as an exemplar of faith and obedience. Her “fiat,” her resounding “yes” to the angel Gabriel’s message announcing her divine motherhood, illustrates her unwavering trust in God’s plan. Mary’s complete surrender to God’s will serves as a timeless model of authentic faith for us today. We are encouraged to imitate her faith, recognising that embracing God’s plan, even in times of uncertainty, is a deep expression of trust.
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Faithful to Our Traditions

In a world that often seeks change and novelty, we, as Catholics, are called to embrace the timeless traditions that have been handed down to us through the ages. In the Gospel, Jesus teaches us to “go and make disciples of all nations.” (St. Matthew 28:19-20) This Great Commission is not an invitation to create something new, but rather to pass on the teachings and traditions that have been given to us. Our faith is rooted in the past, in the teachings of Christ and the Apostles. It is a faith that has been nurtured and preserved through the centuries. The traditions of the Catholic Church are like a precious inheritance. They are the practices and beliefs that have been preserved and passed down from generation to generation. Our sacraments, and our moral teachings are all part of this sacred tradition.

In the epistle to the Hebrews, we are reminded of the importance of holding fast to our confession of faith. “Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering (for he is faithful that hath promised).” (Hebrews 10:23) This passage reminds us that our faith is not subject to the changing winds of the world. It is a constant, an anchor in the stormy seas of life.

Remaining faithful to tradition means cherishing the wisdom of those who have gone before us and using it as a guide for our lives today. It means finding comfort and strength in the familiar rituals of our faith, in the Eucharist, in the rosary, and in the timeless teachings of the Church.

We are not alone in this journey. We are part of a great communion of saints, both living and departed, who have embraced the same traditions and passed them down through the ages. We are united with Catholics across the world and throughout history.

May each of us remain faithful to the traditions of our ancient faith. Let us continue to pass on the beauty and richness of our faith to the generations that follow. In doing so, we honour the legacy of our forebears and, most importantly, we remain faithful to the unchanging truth of Christ.

God bless you +
Fr. Charles

Praying for Others

Prayer is a divine gift, a means for us to communicate with our Lord and a way to connect with one another in the love of Christ. Specifically, to pray for others is a powerful expression of our faith, a way to fulfil our Lord’s command to love our neighbours as ourselves.

Scriptures abound with guidance on the importance of intercessory prayer. In the Gospel of St. Matthew, Jesus teaches us, “Love your enemies: do good to them that hate you: and pray for them that persecute and calumniate you.” (Matthew 5:44) This call to pray for others, even those who may harm or oppose us, demonstrates the life-changing power of prayer. When we place others in prayer, we invite God’s grace into their lives and become instruments of His love and mercy.
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The Danger of Blindly Following Political Leaders

I wish to briefly address a topic this evening that has become increasingly relevant in our society: the danger of blindly following political candidates and government officials. In a world filled with political polarisation and division, it is crucial for us, as Catholics, to remember that Jesus Christ is our only true King.

In the Gospel of St. Matthew, Jesus said, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s; and to God, the things that are God’s.” (22:21) Jesus is teaching us about the distinction between our earthly obligations as citizens and our ultimate allegiance to our God. While we are called to be responsible citizens and to be aware of issues in the world and to engage, when necessary, the political process, we must do so with discernment and a deep awareness of our Christian values. First and foremost, we must recognise that no political candidate or government official is infallible or without flaws. They are human beings, like all of us, and are susceptible to error, corruption, and self-interest. When we blindly follow political leaders, we risk placing our trust in fallible individuals and expecting them to fulfil our hopes and dreams. We are cautioned against this in the Bible. “Put not your trust in princes: In the children of men, in whom there is no salvation. His spirit shall go forth, and he shall return into his earth: in that day all their thoughts shall perish” (Psalm 145:2-4, Douay-Rheims)
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Saint Pius of Pietrelcina

Today I would like to take a brief moment to share with you the life and legacy of a remarkable saint, Saint Pius of Pietrelcina, commonly known as Padre Pio. His life was a testament to the boundless mercy and love of our God, and his example continues to inspire us today. He was born Francesco Forgione on May 25, 1887, in the small Italian town of Pietrelcina. From a young age, he exhibited a deep devotion to God and a wholehearted desire to serve Him. At the age of 15, he entered the Capuchin Friars and took the name Pio. Little did anyone know that this humble friar would one day become one of the most beloved and revered saints of the 20th century.

One of the most striking aspects of Padre Pio’s life was his close and mystical relationship with our Lord, which was exemplified by the stigmata—the wounds of Christ—that he bore on his hands, feet, and side. For over 50 years, he carried these wounds, sharing in the physical sufferings of Christ. It was not only the physical wounds that made Padre Pio a true follower of Christ; it was his unwavering faith, his deep prayer life, and his commitment to the Sacraments that set him apart. Padre Pio once said, “Prayer is the best weapon we have; it is the key to God’s heart. You must speak to Jesus not only with your lips but with your heart. In fact, on certain occasions, you should only speak to Him with your heart.” He lived this truth daily, spending long hours in prayer and offering himself as a living sacrifice to God. His life was a constant reminder to us that prayer is our lifeline to the divine, a means of drawing closer to God and seeking His will in our lives.
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