The last half of Chapter 19 proves the difficulty in the change of culture that needed to happen for people to come to faith in Jesus Christ. A silversmith named Demetrius complained about how Paul was refuting his work, saying that his work was useless. Paul said he made false idols for worship, and that the works of human hands were not gods at all. That would mean Demetrius would be out of a job. A riot was almost started. It was so dangerous, the faithful made sure Paul would not come out and preach. It took some effort for the town clerk to convince the people to do everything through the legal system and not start a riot, which could have put everyone in danger. Continue reading
Holy Hour and Healing Service will be held this Friday, April 6 at 5pm in St Mary Church in Freeport, IL.
It is Catholic Tradition to have extra spiritual activities on the first Friday of the Month to take advantage of the 15 Promises of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. Here in Freeport we have a Holy Hour that focuses on healing. This healing can be any kind of healing. We tend to focus on the physical ailments we may have. However, it can be emotional or spiritual healing as well. It can from something that was done yesterday or long ago. It might be a person you have a hard time forgiving. It could be any spiritual struggles you may have. Maybe you have a hard time even to pray. Jesus just may be waiting to give the gift of prayer. There is no issue too big or small for Jesus in the Eucharist. Non-Catholics are even invited. All are welcome to the hospital of souls.
In Chapter 13, Paul and Barnabas are told to go to on a mission (v2). How did they get this mission? How was it that God spoke to them and they knew that they had a specific mission to accomplish? They prayed. They worshiped and listened. They also fasted.
Some people may say that fasting is something done in the past; that Jesus would not want us to fast any more. But here we see at least six believers fasting. The fruit of this fasting and worship is clarity in God’s will. The fasting was a gift of self to God. Because of the death and resurrection of Jesus, worship is now an act of thanksgiving for His goodness and mercy towards us. When united to worship, this fasting takes on the disposition of the worship that it accompanies. Gift giving assumes a relationship between the giver and the one receiving the gift. So the first Catholics saw themselves as having a relationship with Jesus. Continue reading
Chapter twelve accounts the death of the First Apostle James and the arrest of Peter. Herod wants to be popular among the people and has many guards to guard him. The biblke states that there were four squads of four guards. Doing the math, that means sixteen guards were guarding Peter to keep him in jail. He was shakled by “double chains”. Two chains are holding Peter in place and two guards are right next to him on each side. Two guards are right outside the door and the others are about the place. Sounds like he is heavily guarded. Does this have anything to do with the resurrection of Jesus and only the two at Jesus’ tomb? Who knows. Either way, Peter getting out is not a very likely prospect.