Act of Contrition
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Litany of St Joseph

Litany of the Blessed Virgin Mary
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Novena Prayer to St Philomena

Prayer for the Conversion of Australia
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the Holy Ghost &
Veni Creator
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Thoughts for the Week


Fourteenth Sunday after Pentecost

Thoughts for the Week - Fr R Taouk 
September 2017

The Offertory of the Mass and Us by Archbishop Fulton Sheen 

Our Lord does not suffer alone on the Cross; He suffers with us. That is why He united the sacrifice of the thief with His own. It is this St. Paul means when he says that we should fill up those things that are wanting to the sufferings of Christ. This does not mean Our Lord on the Cross did not suffer all He could. It means rather that the physical, historical Christ suffered all He could in His own human nature, but that the Mystical Christ, which is Christ and us, has not suffered to our fullness. All the other good thieves in the history of the world have not yet admitted their wrong and pleaded for remembrances. Our Lord is now in Heaven. He therefore can suffer no more in His human nature but He can suffer more in our human natures. So He reaches out to other human natures, to yours and mine, and asks us to do as the thief did, namely, to incorporate ourselves to Him on the Cross, that sharing in His Crucifixion we might also share in His Resurrection, and that made partakers of His Cross we might also be made partakers of His glory in Heaven.


As our Blessed Lord on that day chose the thief as the small host of sacrifice, He chooses us today as the other small hosts united with Him on the paten of the altar. Go back in your mind's eye to a Mass, to any Mass which was celebrated in the first centuries of the Church, before civilisation became completely financial and economic. If we went to the Holy Sacrifice in the early Church, we would have brought to the altar each morning some bread and some wine. The Priest would have used one piece of that unleavened bread and some of that wine for the Sacrifice of the Mass. The rest would have been put aside, blessed, and distributed to the poor. Today we bring its equivalent; we bring that which buys bread and wine. Hence the offertory collection. In bringing those two things, which give us life, nourish us, we are equivalently bringing ourselves to the Sacrifice of the Mass.


We are therefore present at each and every Mass under the appearance of bread and wine, which stand as symbols of our body and blood. We are not passive spectators as we might be watching a spectacle in a theatre, but we are co-offering our Mass with Christ. There were two attitudes in the soul of the good thief, both of which made him acceptable to Our Lord. The first was the recognition of the fact that He deserved what He was suffering, but that the sinless Christ did not deserve His Cross; in other words, he was penitent. The second was faith in Him whom men rejected, but whom the thief recognised as the very King of Kings. He knew Our Lord could deliver Him. But he did not ask to be taken down from the cross, for Our Lord did not come down Himself even though the mob challenged Him. The thief would be a small host, if need be, unto the very end of the Mass. He wanted life, and a long life, and he found it, for what life is longer than Life Eternal. To each and every one of us in like manner it is given to discover that Eternal Life. But there is no other way to enter it than by penance and by faith which unite us to that Great Host - the Priest and Victim Christ. Thus do we become spiritual thieves, and steal Heaven once again.