The dust is almost settled from the construction, and we think you will like our new home. Really, though, think of it as more of a portal – to help you get to where you are going on your spiritual journey – for the annual Bishop Perry Men’s Forum, and a point of entry for a new comer to Catholic Men Chicago Southalnd. Because most everything there will be shared with you through the mailing list.
That’s the way things are today in this digital information age, we like our interests fed to us in our busy lives. So, other than a welcome message from Bishop Perry, we’ll get starting with blogging next week over there.
This Catholic Chicago Men Blog will stay public for the foreseeable future to serve as an archive of sorts, and the event and apostolate pages will be moved to the new home.
Watch this video for the Gospel Daily Reflection for Saturday July 18, 2020.
God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. To become configured to be more like Jesus.
Jesus shows us that instead of cutting people down to carry out injustice, reach out to those who know their need for healing and forgiveness. Prayer should lead us to the depths of loving and serving others.
To do this, instead of taking action for justice Jesus first withdrew, as should we to address our own need for healing our own wounds.
Love is the only thing that can conquer hate, darkness, and intolerance.
hate for hate only intensifies the existence of hate and evil in the universe. . . . The strong person is the person who can cut off the chain of hate, the chain of evil. . . . and inject within the very structure of the universe that strong and powerful element of love.
The highest and best way to love others is to apply the SALT Principle:
See others as Jesus sees them.
Accept others as Jesus accepts them.
Love others as Jesus loves them.
Touch others as Jesus touches them.
Too often we get wrapped up in our own little world, and we’re consumed with our own needs without even noticing the needs of those around us. Or we’re so exhausted at the end of each day that we can’t imagine giving out to anyone else, especially to demanding kids or a spouse who is at least as tired as we are.
We have to break this cycle, back up, regroup, and bring some sanity to our lives so we’ll have the perspective, energy, and compassion for the people we see each day, and especially those who live under the same roof with us.
Then we can love them like we love ourselves. ….
God created us to function best when we are fully devoted to Him. When we do that, each part of our lives comes into alignment – or drops away because it’s no longer important. When we fail to put God first, everything seems equally important, and we spend all our energies trying to please people, proving ourselves, or hiding from risks. God’s first commandment demands complete devotion, and it makes perfect sense. It’s the way he created us to live.
If we remain in Him, we can bear fruit from Him to give to others with a servant heart.
Our first job as a Catholic man is to get ourselves to Heaven. Then, if married, to get our families to Heaven. This provides the foundation for God working through us towards making a positive difference in the world. Here are some things to reflect on how Jesus shows us to live as a Catholic man:
Matthew 20:26-28 – Serving is greater than being served. 26But it shall not be so among you. Rather, whoever wishes to be great among you shall be your servant; 27e whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave. 28 Just so, the Son of Man did not come to be served but to serve and to give his life as a ransom for many.”
Jesus was on mission with God’s vision for having and sharing a servants heart. His leadership / lifestyle comes from the actions that supplemented His words.
Proverbs 31:8-9 – Use our gifts and authority for others. 8Open your mouth in behalf of the mute, and for the rights of the destitute; 9Open your mouth, judge justly, defend the needy and the poor!
Look for your neighbors in need, and try to connect with helping them develop. Imagine the investment you would be making using the advantage you have to lift another person up.
Matthew 7:7 – Offer our acceptance. 7Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
Many times in Jesus’ life He was know to accept people who approached Him, and the way they should go. Like Jesus, we should not be selective and never force someone to change, but encourage and pray for them to keep seeking God’s transformation in their life.
John 8:7, 10-11 – Provide others grace. 7But when they continued asking him, he straightened up and said to them, “Let the one among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her. 10Then Jesus straightened up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11She replied, “No one, sir.” Then Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you. Go, [and] from now on do not sin any more.”
The one thing about offering someone grace is it opens for them to reflect on their own heart instead of to defend an accusation. The result from this brings freedom from bondage with a fruitful repentant heart.
Luke 23:34 – Be compassionate towards people. 34[Then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.”] They divided his garments by casting lots.
Compassion was the foundation for Jesus’ ability to forgive. This requires for us a connection to the Father, as Jesus did nothing without the will of the Father. Think of the relationships and broken places in your life, and pray to find compassion and for Jesus to meet you there.
1 Corinthians 13:3 – Serve as Jesus did. 3If I give away everything I own, and if I hand my body over so that I may boast but do not have love, I gain nothing.
Jesus made our giving possible because He became our vine. If we remain in Him, we can bear fruit from Him to give to others with a servant heart. Because we have been served, we can now serve as Jesus did, and live the goodness of a Catholic man.
Books help us “Listen to the Lord” for ways that we can continue our Mission in manhood
“I have read three books thus far during this COVID-19 lockdown and am starting a fourth. Good reading is food for the soul. The Daughters of St. Paul offer a healthy menu of reading material for any Catholic wishing to fill in the time that’s on our hands, find tips from the lives of the saints, feed meditation and keep us abreast soberly with issues affecting the Church and the Christian lifestyle today.”
Bishop Joseph Perry
+JMJ+ Easter Greetings, We hope that you are doing well, and getting some extra time to pray and do some things that you wouldn’t get a chance to if things were all “normal” in the world…
Here at Pauline Books & Media, we are praying more and trying to “listen to the Lord” for ways that we can continue our Mission in spite of limited travel, the new sanctions of “social-distancing” and closing the door to our downtown bookstore. We are so sorry that the major impact of the “stay-at-home” regulations happened right before your scheduled Men’s Conference on April 18.
Hopefully, the group has been able to stay in contact through email, and social media and support one another with messages and prayers. We Sisters have added an extra Hour of Adoration each day to pray for everyone; including all those whom we would have met through our outreach evangelization events. So, please be assured that you and the Men of the Southland Forum have not been forgotten; and share daily in our prayers.
In case anyone in the group is interested in getting resources for themselves or inspirational gifts we are “open” for call-in orders during our normal hours of operation (M-Sat, 10 am to 6 pm — we now pray from 5-5:30 pm).
Habits are an important part of our lives, when put in right perspective. Just like in the business world, systems are another word for business habits. It is said the fastest way to success in life, is to replace bad habits with good habits.
As Catholic men, we know that whatever we feed our brains is what forms our habits. Our Faith promotes through the sacraments a method to develop the good habit of study and living the scriptures everyday.
The daily readings feed us like a dinner plate of different foods: Old Testament, Psalms, New Testament, and prayers for adoration and supplication. But we have to develop the habits and spend time with it each day, and then practice it in our lives. Baby steps lead to walking our spiritual journey with the Lord.
When we make the decision to go off this path, and do things in our own thinking, it is known as sin. Feeding our habits with things like pornography, too much booze, abuse of others verbally or physically, or getting sucked into the drama of things shared on social media, can take us to a visit with our priest for confession. The good thing is that God is a God of second chances.
But the thing about second chances is we have to make the corrections so that we don’t keep going back. As Henry Ford once said, “Failure is an opportunity to begin again, only more intelligently”. Our shortcomings serve the purpose to embrace God and depend on His will for our lives.
Feeding our good habits, with Christ as the center of our lives, is what helps to transform our bad habits into virtues, and is what makes working towards being a saint is all about.
Pray this each day, whether or not you are employed.
O God, Father of us all, You bestow on us gifts and talents to develop and use in accord with your Will and to advance your kingdom on earth. Grant to me, through the intercession of Saint Joseph, the man chosen by God to care for you in your childhood and youth, employment and work that I may with dignity provide for my family. Grant me the opportunities to use my energy and abilities for the good of those who depend upon me for care and support. You placed me in charge of this family. I beseech your assistance in helping me provide for them as you would have me do. You are our God and head of this family. Amen