Humanly speaking, we could understand and interpret the Sermon on the Mount in a thousand different ways. Jesus knows only one possibility: simple surrender and obedience, not interpreting it or applying it, but doing and obeying it. That is the only way to hear his word. He does not mean that it is to be discussed as an ideal; he really means us to get on with it.

– Dietrich Bonhoeffer (4 February 1909 – executed 9 April 1945), The Cost of Discipleship

Sophie Scholl, West German stamp 1964 [Wikipedia]

Sophie Scholl, born 9 May 1921, and her brother Hans, born 22 September 1918, were executed by the Nazis on 22 February 1943 for their involvement with White Rose, a movement in the University of Munich that distributed anti-Nazi leaflets.

The only remedy for a barren heart is prayer, however poor and inadequate... if I can't write anything else just now, it’s only because there’s a terrible absurdity about a drowning man who, instead of calling for help, launches into a scientific, philosophical, or theological dissertation while the sinister tentacles of the creatures on the seabed are encircling his arms and legs, and the waves are breaking over him. It’s only because I’m filled with fear, that and nothing else, and feel an undivided yearning for him who can relieve me of it.

– Sophie Scholl, The White Rose written by Sophie’s sister Inge (1917 – 1998).

Sophie Scholl: The Final Days (trailer)

The full movie, with English subtitles, is here.

St Guthlac, stained glass, Crowland Abbey, England [Wikipedia]

Have you not read that with him who is united with God in a pure spirit all things are joined together in God, and that he who forsakes the companionship of men, seeks the companionship of animals and the friendship of angels?

– St Guthlac, Hermit (d. 714)

Fr Peter Leonard with friends in Ozamiz City

If our culture can be described as our ‘window on the world,’ then we need to accept that there are endless windows on the world. Other societies have their windows on the world. There are endless ways of perceiving reality and responding to it – all of which have their own validity.

– Columban Fr Peter Leonard  (1933 – 2003), Yeast in the Dough

Read Peter Leonard: Man of God (MISYON, November-December 2004)

It is wrong to be sad. Christians cannot be pessimists. Christians must always nourish in their hearts the fullness of joy. Try it, brothers and sisters; I have tried it many times and in the darkest moments, when slander and persecution were at their worst: to unite myself intimately with Christ, my friend, and to feel a comfort that all the joys of the earth do not give – the joy of feeling yourself close to God, even when humans do not understand you. It is the deepest joy the heart can have.

– Blessed Oscar Romero, The Violence of Love.

Blessed Oscar Romero was beatified on 25 May 2015 in San Salvador, Salvador, by Cardinal Amato Angelo SDB

Bishop Bienvenido Tudtud of Marawi [Source]

In a dialogue of life, there is no superiority or inferiority, either in religion or culture. Everyone is on equal footing. There must be a basic respect for the other person. There is no conversion or any attempt under any guise to convert or weaken the faith of the other person – only to convert people to God. We come as ‘learners’ and also as ‘servants’ of the community.

– Bishop Benny Tudtud
(1931 – 1987)

St John Paul II with Young People

‘Rabbi, where are you staying?’ Each day the Church responds: Christ is present in the Eucharist, in the sacrament of His death and resurrection. In and through the Eucharist, you acknowledge the dwelling-place of the Living God in human history. For the Eucharist is the Sacrament of the Love which conquers death. It is the Sacrament of the Covenant, pure Gift of Love for the reconciliation of all humanity. It is the gift of the Real Presence of Jesus The Redeemer, in the bread which is His Body given up for us, in the wine which is His Blood poured out for all. Thanks to the Eucharist, constantly renewed among all peoples of the world, Christ continues to build His church: He brings us together in praise and thanksgiving for salvation, in the communion which only infinite love can forge. Our worldwide gathering now takes on its fullest meaning, through the celebration of the Mass. Dear young friends, may your presence here mean a true commitment in faith! For Christ is now answering your own question and the questions of all those who seek the Living God. He answers by offering an invitation: This is My Body, take It and eat. To the Father He entrusts His supreme desire: that all those whom He loves may be one in the same communion.

– St Pope John Paul II, World Youth Day, Homily on 24 August 1997, Paris, France