An online Community for Prayerful Scripture Reflection.
During this time, when many of our usual ways of expressing our Faith have been removed, and we can no longer gather together due to the Coronavirus, it is all the more important that we find ways to invest in our relationships with God and each other.
Here is one small way that we can communicate our faith and support each other whilst encouraging daily prayer with a Scriptural focus. It is also a great way for people who are usually involved with Metanoia Project groups and events to keep in touch and continue to feel part of the Metanoia family as well as the wider Church community.
God wants to speak to us all and has given us His Word as a constant source of life and relationship with Him. The aim of this group is to encourage each other to spend time each day praying with Scripture and allowing God to speak to us. Please then share your thoughts, questions and reflections to help us all hear from our Loving Father.
Metanoia Project ‘The God Who Speaks’ Scripture Reflection Group
John the Baptist said to his disciples:
‘He who comes from above is above all others;
he who is born of the earth is earthly himself
and speaks in an earthly way.
He who comes from heaven
bears witness to the things he has seen and heard,
even if his testimony is not accepted;
though all who do accept his testimony
are attesting the truthfulness of God,
since he whom God has sent
speaks God’s own words:
God gives him the Spirit without reserve.
The Father loves the Son
and has entrusted everything to him.
Anyone who believes in the Son has eternal life,
but anyone who refuses to believe in the Son will never see life:
the anger of God stays on him.’ ... See MoreSee Less
Jesus said to Nicodemus:
‘God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son,
so that everyone who believes in him may not be lost
but may have eternal life.
For God sent his Son into the world
not to condemn the world,
but so that through him the world might be saved.
No one who believes in him will be condemned;
but whoever refuses to believe is condemned already,
because he has refused to believe in the name of God’s only Son.
On these grounds is sentence pronounced:
that though the light has come into the world
men have shown they prefer darkness to the light
because their deeds were evil.
And indeed, everybody who does wrong
hates the light and avoids it,
for fear his actions should be exposed;
but the man who lives by the truth comes out into the light,
so that it may be plainly seen that what he does is done in God.’ ... See MoreSee Less
Jesus said to Nicodemus:
‘Do not be surprised when I say:
You must be born from above.
The wind blows wherever it pleases;
you hear its sound,
but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.
That is how it is with all who are born of the Spirit.’
‘How can that be possible?’ asked Nicodemus. ‘You, a teacher in Israel, and you do not know these things!’ replied Jesus.
‘I tell you most solemnly,
we speak only about what we know
and witness only to what we have seen
and yet you people reject our evidence.
If you do not believe me when I speak about things in this world,
how are you going to believe me when I speak to you about heavenly things?
No one has gone up to heaven
except the one who came down from heaven,
the Son of Man who is in heaven;
and the Son of Man must be lifted up
as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert,
so that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.’ ... See MoreSee Less
From Bishop Robert Barron's reflection. Tuesday, April 13, 2021 ￼ SECOND WEEK OF EASTER JOHN 3:7B–15 Friends, after speaking of being born of the Spirit, Jesus says in today’s Gospel: “No one has gone up to heaven except the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.” Genesis tells us that, at the beginning, the Spirit of God hovered over the surface of the waters, drawing order from chaos. Creation is nothing but the overflow from the intensity of Trinitarian love. Thus, all things—to the very root of their existence—flow from and are marked by the Spiritus Sanctus (Holy Spirit). He is their ground, their secret origin, their principle. And more to the point, the Holy Spirit is the end of all things. God has created a dynamic universe, moving restlessly and relentlessly toward a goal, and this goal has been disclosed to us in Christ: the sharing in the love between the Father, who has given his only Son to the world, and the Son, who has offered himself back to the Father. ￼ Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, PO Box 170, Des Plaines, IL 60016, United States Manage Your Email Preferences . ￼
Copied from the Evangeli app. Comment: Fr. Xavier SOBREVÍA i Vidal (Castelldefels, Spain) «You must be born again from above» Today, Jesus talks about the difficulty of foreseeing and knowing the action of the Holy Spirit: in fact, «it blows where it pleases» (Jn 3:8). He ties it in with the testimony He is also giving and the need to be born from above. «You must be born again from above» (Jn 3:7), clearly says the Lord; a new life is necessary to have access to eternal life. It is not enough just to get by to reach the Kingdom of Heaven; a new life, regenerated by the Spirit's action, is needed. Our professional, family, sporting, cultural, ludic and, most than all, pious life, must be transformed by our Christian feeling and by God's action. Everything must be transversely impregnated by his Spirit. Nothing, but nothing at all, should make us stay outside the renewal God's Spirit, offers us. A transformation where Jesus Christ is the catalyst. He, who previously had to suffer the Crucifixion and then resurrect, is who will send us God's Spirit. He who has come from above. He who has shown his power and his goodness, through his many miracles. He who always makes his Father's will. He who has suffered to the last drop of blood for us. Thanks to the Spirit He will send us, we «shall be able to ascend to the Kingdom of Heaven; by the Spirit we obtain his filial adoption; by the Spirit we are allowed to call God our “Father”, to participate of Christ's Grace and to receive the right to share the eternal glory» (Saint Basil the Great). Let us give the Spirit's action our warmest welcome, let us listen to him and let us apply his inspirations so that each one of us —wherever we should be— can set up a good lofty example that inflames Christ's light.
Tonight at 22:00 Tuesday The Sorrowful Mysteries. Praying for the end of the covid 19 virus throughout the world And for world peace and mankind to love one another. For the poor to be taken care of by his neighbours.
There was one of the Pharisees called Nicodemus, a leading Jew, who came to Jesus by night and said, ‘Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who comes from God; for no one could perform the signs that you do unless God were with him.’ Jesus answered:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
unless a man is born from above,
he cannot see the kingdom of God.’
Nicodemus said, ‘How can a grown man be born? Can he go back into his mother’s womb and be born again?’ Jesus replied:
‘I tell you most solemnly,
unless a man is born through water and the Spirit,
he cannot enter the kingdom of God:
what is born of the flesh is flesh;
what is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Do not be surprised when I say:
You must be born from above.
The wind blows wherever it pleases;
you hear its sound,
but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going.
That is how it is with all who are born of the Spirit.’ ... See MoreSee Less
From Bishop Robert Barron's reflection. Monday, April 12, 2021 ￼ SECOND WEEK OF EASTER JOHN 3:1–8 Friends, in today’s Gospel, Jesus tells us that no one can enter the kingdom of God without being born of water and spirit. He says: "What is born of flesh is flesh and what is born of spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I told you, ‘You must be born from above.’ The wind blows where it wills, and you can hear the sound it makes, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes; so it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit." The Holy Spirit is the love shared by the Father and the Son; he is, in the lovely image proposed by Fulton Sheen, the sign of affection that goes up when the Father looks at the Son and the Son looks back at the Father. We have access to this holy heart of God because the Father sent the Son into the world, into our dysfunction, even to the limits of godforsakenness—and thereby gathered all of the world into the dynamism of the divine life. Those who live in Christ are not outside of God as petitioners or supplicants; rather, they are in God as friends, sharers in the Spirit. ￼ Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, PO Box 170, Des Plaines, IL 60016, United States Manage Your Email Preferences . ￼
Copied from the Evangeli app. Comment: Fr. Josep Mª MASSANA i Mola OFM (Barcelona, Spain) «No one can see the kingdom of God without being born from above» Today, “a ruler of the Jews” (Jn 3:1) comes to Jesus. The Gospel says he does it by night: what would his comrades say should they find out? In Jesus' teachings we find a baptismal catechesis that, most surely, circulated in the Evangelist community. A few days ago we were still celebrating the Paschal Vigil. An integral part of it was the Baptism celebration, which is the Passover, a step from death to life. The solemn benediction of water and the renewal of baptismal promises were key points of that holy night. In the baptism ritual there is an immersion in water (death symbol) and an emergence from water (a new life image). We are submerged in sin and we come out of it renewed. This is what Jesus calls “to be born from above” or “to be born again” (cf. Jn 3:3). This is “to be born of water”, “to be born of the Spirit” or “of the blowing wind...”. Water and Spirit are the two symbols used by Jesus. Both express the action of the Holy Spirit that purifies and grants life, cleans and encourages, calms the thirst and breathes, soften and speaks. Water and Spirit make a single thing. But Jesus also says the flesh is in opposition to the Spirit: “What is born of flesh is flesh, and what is born of Spirit is spirit” (Jn 3:6). Carnal man is humanly born when he appears down here. But the carnal man is defeated by the spiritual man, who is spiritually born in the Baptism. Which means to be born anew and of above. A beautiful formula by Saint Paul could be our reflection and action motto, mostly in this Paschal time: “Or are you unaware that we who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were indeed buried with him through baptism into death, so that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might live in newness of life” (Rm 6:3-4).
Tonight at 22:00 Monday The Joyful Mysteries. For the end of the covid 19 virus throughout the world And for world peace and mankind to love one another. For the poor to be taken care of by his neighbours.
**As it is Sunday, after the Gospel passage you will find a few points to consider, and some thoughts on how we can apply today’s Gospel to our lives today. We hope you will find it useful!**
In the evening of that same day, the first day of the week, the doors were closed in the room where the disciples were, for fear of the Jews. Jesus came and stood among them. He said to them, ‘Peace be with you’, and showed them his hands and his side. The disciples were filled with joy when they saw the Lord, and he said to them again, ‘Peace be with you.’
‘As the Father sent me,
so am I sending you.’
After saying this he breathed on them and said:
‘Receive the Holy Spirit.
For those whose sins you forgive,
they are forgiven;
for those whose sins you retain,
they are retained.’
Thomas, called the Twin, who was one of the Twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. When the disciples said, ‘We have seen the Lord’, he answered, ‘Unless I see the holes that the nails made in his hands and can put my finger into the holes they made, and unless I can put my hand into his side, I refuse to believe.’ Eight days later the disciples were in the house again and Thomas was with them. The doors were closed, but Jesus came in and stood among them. ‘Peace be with you’ he said. Then he spoke to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here; look, here are my hands. Give me your hand; put it into my side. Doubt no longer but believe.’ Thomas replied, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him:
‘You believe because you can see me.
Happy are those who have not seen and yet believe.’
There were many other signs that Jesus worked and the disciples saw, but they are not recorded in this book. These are recorded so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing this you may have life through his name.
Today’s Gospel is one of my absolute favourites as I think there are so many aspects of this story that are so relatable for us today. Saying that, there are two themes I’d really like to focus on – peace and doubts.
It is important to put today’s passage into context – we hear from the mid-point of chapter 20 to its end. The chapter began with Mary Magdalene meeting Jesus outside His empty tomb, with Him saying, “Do not hold onto me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father” and commanding her to tell the disciples that she had seen Him. Today’s Gospel happens, “that same day” when Jesus appears to them. In this passage, we see the beauty of Jesus’ equally human and divine nature. The doors are closed, but He enters the room. He is resurrected from the dead, but He shows them the scars where the nails pierced His hands. Jesus reveals Who He is – not only their (and our) saviour who died and was resurrected, but their friend who comes to show His love and be with them in their fear. Jesus shows them His love for them – not merely our human love, but the divine love of God which surpasses all else.
When I imagine the disciples in the upper room with “the doors closed”, I think this goes beyond physical doors. Jesus, the apostles’ beloved friend and leader, had just suffered a terrible death, and most of them abandoned Him out of fear before He even reached Calvary. Today, we again see them paralysed by fear; physically and literally trapped. I’m sure that the physical doors were locked, but I imagine that the doors of their hearts were also shut tightly. But then Jesus enters the room. “Peace be with you”, He says and repeats this. Before He says or does anything else, He gives them His peace. On His second visit to the upper room, Jesus again gives His peace. In Philippians, St Paul describes, “the peace of God which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds”. Jesus’ peace doesn’t need reasons or explanations. Jesus’ peace defeats fear. When Jesus walks into that room with the apostles, He dispels fear and restores their hearts.
In my own life, there have been many times where I’ve allowed myself to be paralysed by fear. Like the apostles, I lock my doors and hide, hoping that my fears will just vanish. But the peace that Jesus brought to them is for us, too. After Jesus said, “peace be with you”, He breathed on them and said, “receive the Holy Spirit”. We also have been breathed on, we too have received the gift of the Holy Spirit. We used to hear these words at Mass every week, but the fact we don’t anymore doesn’t mean that Jesus is no longer giving His peace. So let’s pray this week that we would remember to allow God’s peace to fill us and bring us peace that conquers every fear.
The other part of today’s Gospel I’d like to talk about is doubts. I think poor St Thomas can get a bit of a bad reputation, but if we look a bit deeper, we can see how he is us. Imagine being absent from the group, then returning and being told that your friend and leader who had died three days earlier, was now alive and had been in the room. Let’s remember again that this Gospel account is from the same day as the discovery of the empty tomb. Everything happens very quickly… I think we’d be sceptical too!
And then Jesus appears again in the room and says one of my favourite things: “Give me your hand”, asking Thomas to put his hands into His wounds, to feel the places His human body was broken. When the soldier pierced Jesus’ side, blood and water gushed out of it (John 19:34). This blood and water is Jesus’ love and mercy that He pours over us. It is through Jesus’ death and the outpouring of His blood that we receive the gift of eternal life. When Jesus invited Thomas to put his hand in His side, Jesus invites him to touch His divinity, to enter the fount of mercy.
The same invitation is extended to us. Jesus wants us to touch His humanity – to remember that He feels pain as we do, has physical scars as we do. But Jesus is also fully divine, and it is in recognising this that we are brought closer to Jesus; not only our friend, but our Saviour.
Jesus asks us the same as Thomas: “Give me your hand”. He asks us to trust Him, to walk with Him. On this Divine Mercy Sunday, perhaps we can pray with those beautiful words of Jesus. Do we give Him our hand, allow Him to lead our steps; direct our lives? Or do we hold back? Do we trust Jesus? Perhaps we can start a habit of praying, “Jesus, I trust in You” throughout our day, reminding ourselves to give Him our hands.
(Divine Mercy image shared with permission from Therese Withers, firstsaturday.co.uk) ... See MoreSee Less
Having risen in the morning on the first day of the week, Jesus appeared first to Mary of Magdala from whom he had cast out seven devils. She then went to those who had been his companions, and who were mourning and in tears, and told them. But they did not believe her when they heard her say that he was alive and that she had seen him.
After this, he showed himself under another form to two of them as they were on their way into the country. These went back and told the others, who did not believe them either.
Lastly, he showed himself to the Eleven themselves while they were at table. He reproached them for their incredulity and obstinacy, because they had refused to believe those who had seen him after he had risen. And he said to them, ‘Go out to the whole world; proclaim the Good News to all creation.’ ... See MoreSee Less
Jesus showed himself again to the disciples. It was by the Sea of Tiberias, and it happened like this: Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael from Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee and two more of his disciples were together. Simon Peter said, ‘I’m going fishing.’ They replied, ‘We’ll come with you.’ They went out and got into the boat but caught nothing that night.
It was light by now and there stood Jesus on the shore, though the disciples did not realise that it was Jesus. Jesus called out, ‘Have you caught anything, friends?’ And when they answered, ‘No’, he said, ‘Throw the net out to starboard and you’ll find something.’ So they dropped the net, and there were so many fish that they could not haul it in. The disciple Jesus loved said to Peter, ‘It is the Lord.’ At these words ‘It is the Lord’, Simon Peter, who had practically nothing on, wrapped his cloak round him and jumped into the water. The other disciples came on in the boat, towing the net and the fish; they were only about a hundred yards from land.
As soon as they came ashore they saw that there was some bread there, and a charcoal fire with fish cooking on it. Jesus said, ‘Bring some of the fish you have just caught.’ Simon Peter went aboard and dragged the net to the shore, full of big fish, one hundred and fifty-three of them; and in spite of there being so many the net was not broken. Jesus said to them, ‘Come and have breakfast.’ None of the disciples was bold enough to ask, ‘Who are you?’; they knew quite well it was the Lord. Jesus then stepped forward, took the bread and gave it to them, and the same with the fish. This was the third time that Jesus showed himself to the disciples after rising from the dead. ... See MoreSee Less
From Bishop Robert Barron's reflection. Friday, April 9, 2021 ￼ THE OCTAVE OF EASTER JOHN 21:1–14 Friends, we must attend to the mystical depth of today’s Gospel. At the break of dawn, the disciples spy a mysterious figure on the distant shore who shouts out to them, “Children, have you caught anything to eat?” When they answer in the negative, he instructs them to cast the net over the right side of the ship. When they do, they bring in a huge catch of fish. This fishing expedition is a symbol of the Church (the barque of Peter), across space and time, at its apostolic task of seeking souls. The life and work of the Church, John seems to be telling us, will be a lengthy, twilight struggle, a hard toil that will often seem to bear little or no fruit. But after the long night, the dawn of a new life and a new order will break, the transfigured world inaugurated by Jesus. The catch of fish that he makes possible is the totality of people that Christ will gather to himself; it is the new Israel, the eschatological Church. We know this through a subtle bit of symbolism. When the fish are dragged ashore, John bothers to tell us their exact number, 153—a figure commonly taken in the ancient world to signify the total number of species of fish in the sea. ￼ Word on Fire Catholic Ministries, PO Box 170, Des Plaines, IL 60016, United States Manage Your Email Preferences . ￼
Copied from the Evangeli app. Comment: + Fr. Joaquim MONRÓS i Guitart (Tarragona, Spain) «This was now the third time Jesus was revealed to his disciples after being raised from the dead» Today, for the third time, Jesus reveals himself to his disciples after his rising. Peter has gone back to his old fisherman job and the others have decided to join him. It stands to logic that, if he was a fisherman before following Jesus, afterwards, he gets back to his old job; and there still are those who are surprised to see that it is not necessary to leave one's honest work to follow Christ. That night they caught nothing! And when the day breaks and Jesus appears, they do not recognize him until He asks them for something to eat. When they tell him they have nothing, He just points out where they are to throw their net. And, even though fishermen seem to know all the answers and they had spent the night to no avail, they obey him. “The power of obedience! The lake of Tiberias had denied its fishes to Peter's nets. A whole night in vain. — Then, obedient, he lowered his net again to the water and they caught 'a huge number of fish'. — Believe me: the miracle is repeated each day” (Saint Josemaria). The Evangelist points out “the net ashore full of one hundred fifty-three large fish” (Jn 21:11) but, in spite of being so many, the net was not torn. These are details to bear in mind, as Redemption, amid normal work, takes place with responsible obedience. They “realized it was the Lord. Jesus came over and took the bread and gave it to them” (Jn 21:12-13). He did the same with the fish. If we obey him we shall not lack either the spiritual or the material food. He taught this to his closest followers and Saint John Paul II said it too: “At the beginning of the new millennium, our hearts ring out with the words of Jesus when one day (…) he invited the Apostle to "put out into the deep" for a catch: "Duc in altum" (Lk 5:4). Peter and his first companions trusted Christ's words, and they caught a great number of fish" (Lk 5:6). Duc in altum! These words ring out for us today”. With our obedience —like Our Lady Mary's obedience— we ask the Lord to go on giving his Church his apostolic fruits.
Tonight at 22:00 Easter Friday The Sorrowful Mysteries. For the end of the covid 19 virus throughout the world And for world peace and mankind to love one another. For the poor to be taken care of by his neighbours.