21st Sunday in Ordinary Time photo-quote
Today's Inspirational Snippet: What Jesus did 2000 years ago to free people from evil he still does today through you and me.

Good News Reflection
August 24, 2014
21st Sunday in Ordinary Time

This Sunday’s Readings:
Isaiah 22:19-23
Psalm 138:1-3, 6, 8
Romans 11:33-36
Matthew 16:13-20
USCCB Podcast of the Readings:

When Jesus ordained Peter to become the rock upon which he would build his Church, he made a promise. The gates of hell, he said, speaking of the netherworld that belongs to the principalities and powers of darkness (see Ephesians 6), "shall never prevail against it."

Jesus did not say that hell would never win battles against the Church. He said that the gates of hell would not win. Of course they won’t; gates don't attack! Gates protect. Gates hold inside their boundaries whatever has been enclosed by a fence or wall. Do you know anyone who's been imprisoned by their sins? Or by hellish circumstances?

Christians are not called to take a defensive posture against attacks and encroachments from evil-doers. Christians are called to take the offensive – we are called to attack the very gates of hell, knock them down, and conquer the devils that are trying to drag people into their kingdom of misery and eternal death.

What Jesus did 2000 years ago to free people from evil he still does today through you and me.

For the sinners who want to escape from evil before it's too late, Jesus gave gate keys to Peter when he ordained him as the first shepherd (priest and pope) of Christianity. These keys have been passed from generation to generation through the unbroken line of Catholic priests.

What are the keys? The gates of hell are unlocked by Sacraments; they open the way to eternal life. When a priest "looses" (releases) the grace and forgiveness of God upon a repentant sinner during the Sacrament of Reconciliation, or when a priest "binds" a man and woman together in the Sacrament of Marriage, it's Jesus who's doing it through him.

The supernatural power of the Sacraments conquers evil every time we take them seriously and rely on the graces they provide.

Questions for Personal Reflection:
Where is there a locked gate in your life, which needs to get blown open so that Jesus can rescue you from some sort of darkness? What will you do this week to utilize the Sacraments more deeply, more profoundly?

Questions for Community Faith Sharing:
Who do you say Jesus really is, and how do you encounter this Jesus in the Sacraments? Which Sacrament (Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist, Reconciliation, Marriage, Ordination, or the Anointing of the Sick) is most powerful for you personally? Why?
© 2014 by Terry A. Modica; All Rights Reserved.
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News - Good News Ministries In this issue of Insider's View:
• Open the door to God's abundance
• New eBook!
• Help us beta-test our Good News app

Open the door to God's abundance

Living in God's Abundance photobook

We think we know what we want, but God wants more for us than that. We think we know what's best for us, but God has something even better in mind – far better.

With our small imaginations, we plan and picture and strive to possess what we think will make us happy. God's imagination is limitless, and yet we often think that what He wants is contrary to what would make us happy. So, with our puny minds and hugely self-benefitting prejudices about what should be right and what should be wrong, we rationalize that what is immoral is really morally okay and we spin our own interpretations onto what Scripture tells us is the best way to live.

This is not just the "why" of sin; it is also the reason why we close ourselves off from God's abundance. God's abundant goodness, God's abundant generosity, and God's abundant love are not as available to us as He would like them to be, because we insist on protecting and maintaining  our small view of the Truth.

To open up to the greater goodness of God, we have to dare to break through the walls of the little world we've been trying to protect, the world of our own making that holds within it the lesser life that we created for ourselves. Like a blossoming bud, we have to allow the light of truth to change us.

New eBook!

That short reflection is the theme and purpose of my newest digital flipbook of reflections and photos, Living in God's Abundance. It's not a book about having an abundance of stuff, as if God were our personal Santa Claus. It's a book about opening ourselves to the "more" that God wants for us, more of whatever goodness he wants to give us.

It's free, just click the link above and fill out the form you'll find on our website. Of course, any donation toward my ministry, as a thank-you for this book, will be hugely appreciated and very helpful.

Help us beta-test our Good News app

Have an internet-connected phone or tablet? Try our new app!

Initially, it's only available as a webpage app. It is not yet available from in the Apple App Store and Google Play where it will be discoverable by multi-thousands of people whom we're not yet reaching through our website and elists. Please beta-test it with us. If you and enough others download our app and give us feedback, we'll invest in the time and cost of making it a full-featured app.

Currently, you can use it see the daily Good News Reflections, a photo gallery of favorite photo-quotes from past reflections, popular videos, and our postings on Twitter and other social sites. What else would you like it to do?

Our newest tool for sharing the Good News!
Download our free app!
Download our free app!

I'm praying for you:

Thank you for reading this newsletter. Every morning, I lift up in prayer all those who help Good News Ministries in any way (donors, volunteers, prayer supporters, etc.) and all the prayer requests posted on our site. May God's grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. (2 Peter 1:2)

Terry ModicaYour servant in Christ,
Terry Modica
Executive Director
Good News Ministries

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