Manhood Monday: Covered by the Glory of God

Your weekly dose of “Living the Goodness of a Catholic Man”.

From Today’s Readings:

Monday of the Second Week of Easter

Alleluia Col 3:1

R. Alleluia, alleluia.
If then you were raised with Christ,
seek what is above,
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.
R. Alleluia, alleluia.

[3:14] By retaining the message of the gospel that the risen, living Christ is the source of their salvation, the Colossians will be free from false religious evaluations of the things of the world (Col 3:12). They have died to these; but one day when Christ…appears, they will live with Christ in the presence of God (Col 3:34).

As our relationship with God unfolds and we begin to celebrate the love relationship we have with our Creator, we will lose our preoccupation with trying to score points for heaven or achieving some personal satisfaction and learn how to love and embrace all things and people as God does. We will understand that the primary task of discipleship is learning how to discern and cooperate with God’s life-giving, loving, and all unifying plan of salvation. Only a contemplative heart can love those most difficult to love and do what is most challenging and risky to do. O God, let all the nations praise you!
Rev. Mark Suslenko

God bless your day.

The CMCS-Team


Frank’s Photo of the Week

He Has Covered Himself in Glory Copyright 2013 Frank J Casella

If Love was easy, it would not be Love.

With the Catholic Faith we often see the crucified Christ, death on the cross. With this cross, however, we see the submissive Christ, with arms stretched out.

The symbolism of both versions I think is to remind believers that it is through our suffering that we become a new person in Christ. The Church is known as an redemptive agency in the world.

Christ exampled Love though giving of self and through suffering, so that we might all live that example and be covered by the Glory of God.

All we have to do is receive it with our heart, and then live what we received and now believe.

Thanks for Reading.

Make it a great week. See you back here again next Monday.

Frank J Casella,
CMCS Executive Director

A larger collection of photographs can be viewed on my portfolio.


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Click here to learn about the annual Bishop Perry’s Catholic Chicago Men’s Forum held on the Saturday after Easter. All men from around the Archdiocese of Chicago and surrounding Chicagoland are invited to attend.

Discipleship in Christ

These are the thoughts and questions that all of us men have during the seasons of life and desire to answer.

So, answer this … how does CMCS help you, as a Catholic man, to live faithfully the implications of your baptism and discipleship in Christ for these times?

The way we came to know love was that He laid down His life for us

For Christians, proof of deliverance is love toward others, after the example of Christ. This includes concrete acts of charity, out of our material abundance.

Living a life of faith in Jesus and of Christian love assures us of abiding in God no matter what our feelings may at times tell us. Our obedience gives us confidence in prayer and trust in God’s judgment. This obedience includes our belief in Christ and love for one another.

Read each sentence in the scripture below as a separate thought … absorb it. Invite the Holy Spirit to speak to your heart.

 

Beloved:
This is the message you have heard from the beginning:
we should love one another,
unlike Cain who belonged to the Evil One
and slaughtered his brother.
Why did he slaughter him?
Because his own works were evil,
and those of his brother righteous.
Do not be amazed, then, brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.
We know that we have passed from death to life
because we love our brothers.
Whoever does not love remains in death.
Everyone who hates his brother is a murderer,
and you know that no murderer has eternal life remaining in him.
The way we came to know love
was that he laid down his life for us;
so we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers.
If someone who has worldly means
sees a brother in need and refuses him compassion,
how can the love of God remain in him?
Children, let us love not in word or speech
but in deed and truth. Now this is how we shall know that we belong to the truth
and reassure our hearts before him
in whatever our hearts condemn,
for God is greater than our hearts and knows everything.
Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us,
we have confidence in God.

1 Jn 3:11-21

 

How do you lay down your life for others as Jesus examples to us? One way is to practice the Virtues of a Catholic Man. Another way is to be a living sacrifice for your wife and those in your household. It is not easy, yet Christ led by example and so should we as Catholic Men. Go to Mass every Sunday and bring your family with you, and when you receive the Holy Eucharist bring yourself to the Alter as a living sacrifice. The Mass is not so much what we get out of it, but that we bring ourselves into Communion with the Lord Jesus.

My wife and I have in raising our children always sat in the front pew. From the moment we had our first child we have always sat in the front pew (interesting how no matter when you show up for Mass there is always room in the front pew). When our kids first acted up in church we moved to the very back pew, and they didn’t like it. We told them that when they do behave we sit in the front pew where they can see everything. Now they are young adults, their Faith is important to them as they have their own ministries in everyday life. We always went to Mass as a family, sports and other events took second place.

“Do not be amazed, then, brothers and sisters, if the world hates you.” Was it St. Paul who asked at every moment ” do I go Left or do I go Right”?

What direction do you take in the path of life or have you gone? Are you consistent, or do you act like a Chameleon changing your ‘color’ with your environment?
– Frank J. Casella is an artistic photographer and co-founder of Catholic Chicago Men’s Forum.

 

 

 

 

On Living Our Lives To Bring Goodness Into The World

Branch Out
Photo © Frank J Casella All Rights Reserved here

 

Branch Out

By Frank J Casella

When I saw this moment of the golden hour morning sunlight illuminate the twisting branches of a tree, it made me think about family, friends, and the (end of year) holidays.

Our lives are a work in progress, they take many twists and turns, and each of us takes a different direction in life.

As we gather for the holidays, sometimes it can be very trying. Said another way, sometimes our friends can be more like family than our own family.

My take on it — branch out.

My late brother used to pick on me often at family gatherings, almost to the point that I didn’t show up at times. After he passed away it hit me in a big way what he was doing. That he was trying to express how much he believed in me but didn’t know how say it or show it. He really loved me as a brother.

Two days before he passed, it was he who called me to tell me how much he loved me.

If we allow the actions of others to build resentment towards them, we face the danger of spending the rest of our lives judging them instead of loving them for the person they are.

It is said that ‘hate corrupts the container it is in.’

All this to say, we branch out when our actions are what bring Family together or not. Be patient and try to see what others are saying or where they are coming from.

I learned from a very important friend the hard way, that every person has a right to their opinion. We also have a right to accept it or progress on without it.

For those of us who live our Faith, to branch out means that He is the vine and we are the branches. See everyone through the eyes of Christ. Love them, don’t judge them …

Yes, easier said than done. But unless we are on the edge of our chair, then we are not depending on God’s will and living our faith.

 

Frank J Casella is a professional photographer and co-founder of Catholic Chicago Men’s Forum.

 

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Lenten Meditation by Bishop Joseph N. Perry

We run into people all the time who admire Jesus Christ as a good man from the past who somehow ran afoul of the authorities and was executed and has nevertheless endured over the long stretch of history as a figure of wisdom. But many of these same individuals will not hand their lives over to Him. Truth be told, Jesus Christ does not want our admiration of Him. He wants our discipleship. There’s a difference. Discipleship entails a well thought-out, calculated, intentional commitment to Jesus Christ with a modeling of our lives after His life.

Bishop Joseph Perry

 

CMCSVirtues – Changed Men Can Change the World

 

 

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CMCSVirtues for December 3, 2014

…. Again, the modeling comes from Jesus and the empirical experience of Christians at their earliest.  The New Testament letter to the Ephesians (5, 25-33) exhorts, “men, love your wives as Christ loves his bride, the Church!”  And how does Christ love his bride?  Well, he sacrificed himself for her.  He bled for her and squeezed out his life for her. There was no egoism or narcissism or me-first in any of that action on his part.

Jegar Fickel and Bishop Joseph Perry