THEHOOKOFFAITH.COM

Digitally proclaiming the Gospel in the diocese of Ferns and beyond

‘The Hook of Faith’ is brought to you by ‘FERNS C.A.F.É’ (Catholic Adult Formation and Education) – a group in the diocese of Ferns, Ireland who are committed to the work of evangelisation and adult faith formation. It seeks to bring the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to bear on all sectors of society in a way that offers life and meaning to everyone. We recognise the challenge of this task at a time in the Church that needs healing and hope. The mission of ‘The Hook of Faith’ is to ‘Digitally proclaim the Gospel in the Diocese of Ferns and beyond’. Our hope is that the light that comes from our faith will reach a wide audience through this new age of digital media and will help transform lives through the joy of the Gospel.

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STATIONS OF THE CROSS - IV JESUS MEETS HIS MOTHER

Separation Selfhood begins in the going away Love is proved in the letting go Here the one who suffered by his coming into the world now suffers in his going out of it. The age-old prophecy of Simeon to Mary when Christ was presented in the Temple is now being fulfilled; ‘And your own soul a sword shall pierce that the secret thoughts of many may be revealed.’ Through the centuries hearts have opened freely to the one whose heart was pierced. Mary had begun her role as the ‘Help of Christians.’ In someone who has suffered there is no judgment, but only acceptance, compassion and understanding. Motherhood is a precious gift but a temporary role. The life Mary bore was not her own. It had come

'WHEN YOU HAVE LIFTED UP THE SON OF MAN THEN YOU WILL KNOW THAT I AM HE': READINGS AND REFLE

In the Gospel today, Jesus predicts his crucifixion and being lifted up for all to see - not as a wealthy king enthroned in a high place but as a tortured criminal condemned to death. So often we expect God to rise above us and all creation with a magnificent and spectacular show of miraculous power. But Jesus teaches that even this would not change hearts or lives. And even if it did, our faith would be in a false god. Instead, by his cross, God shows his power by emptying himself into weakness and death in order to love and save all humanity. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/readings-for-tuesday-31-march-2020

STATIONS OF THE CROSS - III JESUS FALLS FOR THE FIRST TIME

Only in the Father’s Will Do we find our True Life At the beginning of his public ministry Jesus was tempted to fall three times but withstood. Each temptation began with the devil trying to throw a seed of doubt in his mind as to his true identity. So he says, ‘If you are the Son of God, you would turn stones into bread,’ which means go the route of materialism and work on the assumption that by accumulating more and more of what you want you will find what you need. Jesus responds wisely quoting the scriptural truth that, ‘It is not on bread alone that we can truly live. Until this crisis stopped us dead in our tracks many had everything the world could offer and yet were running on empty

READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR MONDAY 30TH MARCH 2020

The readings today show the vindication of both the innocent Susanna and the woman caught in adultery. God wishes to condemn no one but wants everyone to turn away from sin, self-righteousness and the condemnation of others. Ultimately, none of us is without sin and so stand in need for God's mercy. For the readings from the Mass and a reflection from Fr Martin Pender, follow the link below. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/readings-and-reflection-for-monday-30-march-2020

'THE BEST OF TIMES, THE WORST OF TIMES' - BY MGR. JOE MC GRATH

CHARLES DICKENS in his novel A TALE OF TWO CITIES describes the social situation in his day in the following terms- “It was the best of times, it the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity ,it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair”. We might describe our present situation in similar terms.. We could say we have gone from what we thought were the best of times to what seems to be the worst of times in a matter of weeks. We are invaded by an invisible enemy which has taken away our freedom, our livelihoods, our confidence,

STATIONS OF THE CROSS - II Jesus Receives his Cross

Acceptance It is as it is, how can we deal with it. Things are as they are How can we make the most of them? The Cross, whether it comes from within or is imposed from without bites deep. Reality can be extremely hard to bear. Yet acceptance of reality is essential to moving forward. Every journey can only begin from where we are at just now. The crosses of life need to be transformed in our lifetime or they become transferred to another generation. Life breaks us all; the challenge is to grow strong at the broken places. We are defined not by what happens to us but by what we have faced and transcended. The cross we carry at this present time will not leave us as it found us; even in the wi

READINGS AND HOMILY IN AUDIO FOR FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT

In the Gospel today, Jesus faces death and overcomes it, not by avoiding it or rushing to prevent it but by allowing it to happen in the case of Lazarus and to experience it in his own case. Here we follow the whole Mass with Readings and homily with Fr Martin Pender, Ballymitty, CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/mass-readings-for-fifth-sunday-of-lent-29th-march-2020

READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR SATURDAY 28TH MARCH 2020. ALSO THE STATIONS OF THE CROSS

The Gospel today testifies to a truth that remains up until this day. 'There has never been anybody who has spoken like this man'. There have been many wonderful teachers, speakers and leaders over the history of humanity. But none can compare with the lasting impact of Jesus of Nazareth and the words he spoke. What he spoke and what he taught continues to shape and inspire countless lives around the world CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/readings-for-saturday-28-march-2020 Beginning today on the Hook of Faith we have a daily reflection on each of the Stations of the Cross. Thanks to Fr Jim Cogley for creatively drawing out the richness of contemplating the God who

READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR FRIDAY 27TH MARCH 2020

In today's Psalm, we are reminded that 'The Lord is close to the broken hearted'. What a beautiful and necessary message for these times! Thanks as always to Fr Martin Pender for these readings and homily available in audio form. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/readings-for-friday-27-march-2020 Life without Labels - by Fr Jim Cogley Society tends to value labels less than it values people. The more prestigious the label the more respect is afforded to the bearer. Instead of labels being attached to persons the reverse has happened and persons came attached to their label. This created the hierarchical society with which we were so familiar. We so bought into it th

VIRUSES, CONSPIRACIES AND GOD

During the 20th Century, our understanding of viruses as infectious agents expanded from basic discovery to sophisticated levels of technical knowledge. Significant advances in chemistry, physics and molecular biology during the past fifty years or so have revolutionised our ability to study viruses. The nucleic acids contained in viruses enable them (upon entering a living host) to reproduce, synthesise unique proteins and change cellular functions. Although viruses are not fully categorised as ‘living’ organisms, they are found wherever there is life and are likely to have been around for as long as living organisms have existed upon the earth. When we hear about viruses in the public sphe

A SPIRITUALITY FOR STRANGE TIMES

Here Brendan McManus SJ draws on the wisdom of St Ignatius, the founder of the Jesuits, to formulate his ten tips for dealing with the Covid-19 crisis. Brendan is the author of a number of books including Finding God in the Mess, and Deeper in the Mess, both co-authored with Jim Deeds. They share a down-to-earth approach to spirituality that follows the example of Ignatius who urged his fellow companions and the people of his time to ‘find God in all things’. This is a particularly tough time in human history where the new coronavirus has many people worried, unsure as to how to act and often undermined by fear. There can be for some a tendency to behave in a selfish or irrational way, where

HOPE DURING THE CORONAVIRUS CRISIS

The coronavirus outbreak has left countless people all over the world asking themselves: Why is God allowing this to happen? How do we respond? And where can we find hope? In this bonus episode of “The Word on Fire Show,” we discuss these and other questions, exploring the ancient problem of evil, the impact of the virus on Catholic sacramental life, and other spiritual dimensions and effects of this crisis.

READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR 26TH MARCH 2020 -THURSDAY OF FOURTH WEEK OF LENT

Today we listen to the readings where Jesus criticises the Pharisees for the one thing they lack that was most important of all - knowledge of God. They spoke and wrote much about God but unless he is known, God remains a distant stranger, a theory and an abstraction. Jesus also warns about seeking the approval of people before the approval of God. Here I think of a beautiful prayer of St Thomas Aquinas: 'Lord may I not desire to please or fear to displease anyone but you' (Prayer for the Wise Ordering of one's Life). CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/readings-and-reflection-for-thursday-26-march-2020 A Time to Sift Yesterday we reflected on how the Chinese word for

'COURAGE, BE NOT AFRAID!'

What a time to have faith! What a time to believe God when he invites us to “be not afraid”. In the midst of the chaos we see on the news and the panic in everyone’s voices, we have a particular call as Catholics to face this crippling fear with courage and hope. This is a moment of uncertainty. We do not know what will happen and we cannot predict the future. But we have faith in a God in whom we can trust completely. God, who does not abandon us, who fulfils every promise he makes, in whom we can put our trust in with utmost confidence. This God, our God, looks on us in our distress and says “Courage! It is I! Do not be afraid.” (Mt 14:27) So let us all listen to his words as they speak di

HOMILY FOR FIFTH SUNDAY OF LENT (A)

Whatever message that goes out from our churches this weekend it will have little relevance unless it is set against the backdrop of the Corona Virus. A passage of scripture can be precisely that, a backdrop, against which something currently happening in our lives can be understood in a much broader light. Today’s Gospel, the Raising of Lazarus is one that we can easily associate with grief and loss and how we can resolve it. The topic of grief is particularly relevant in relation to this virus in so far as it primarily attacks the lungs. These are the organs that seem to be particularly vulnerable while coming to terms with any form of loss in our lives. How often have we seen instances of

MASS READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR SOLEMNITY OF THE ANNUNCIATION. 25TH MARCH 2020

On this beautiful feast of the Annunciation, Fr Martin Pender proclaims the readings and offers a reflection on Mary's unconditional 'Yes' to what God wanted of her. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/mass-readings-for-wednesday-25-march-2020 Below is another refection by Fr Jim Cogley who offers us the hope that this time of crisis is also a time of opportunity A Time of Opportunity Sometimes the root meaning of certain words gives us a clue as to their deeper meaning. In the China, where this virus began, the word ‘crisis’ means, ‘a dangerous opportunity.’ This seems to capture the reality of the times we live in quite accurately. There can be do denying the danger

COMPANION FOR THE JOURNEY - QUESTIONS AT A TIME OF CRISIS

Companion for the Journey 24/3/20 Setting out on a long journey its important to have a suitable travel companion. For this reason many set out together but return alone having discovered that they were never compatible in the first place. My primary companion as I set out on this Corona journey is myself. I may need a compatibility check! Am I comfortable with silence or do I always need noise and distractions? Does the TV have an off button? Can I sit still for very long, or am I always restless and on the go? If my habitual reply to how are you is, ‘getting there’, where was I going? What do I say to myself when others are not around? How is my inner dialogue? How comfortable am I in rela

MASS READINGS AND REFLECTION FOR TUESDAY 24TH MARCH 2020

As we continue to pray through the COVID-19 pandemic, one of the graces of this time has been the use of digital platforms. The digital age has provided the means to join us for daily Mass, the ability to stay connected during a time of social distancing, and the opportunity to continue meditating on God's Word. As believers, we need to understand how best to use the new media and how, even in a time of crisis, we can share the Gospel. Here are the readings for Mass today with a reflection afterwards with thanks as always to Fr Martin Pender. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/mass-and-reflection-for-tuesday-24-march-2020

MASS WITH READINGS AND HOMILY FOR 4TH SUNDAY OF LENT - 22ND MARCH 2020

Our thanks again to Fr Martin Pender and his community at Ballymitty for this opportunity to share the readings, homily and celebration of the Eucharist to all our followers on the Hook of Faith. CLICK HERE TO LISTEN: https://soundcloud.com/user-297441672/04-sunday-of-lent-2020-martin-pender

 
 

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