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shutterstock_47135593_200x153.jpg 1.  SONGS OF ENDLESS LOVE.  The lyrics of this song are based on Ps.96:1 & Ps.98:1, as well as Mark 8:34-35; John 9:5; 12:36 and 1Cor.11:23-26.  We are created by the God of Love to live lives of love in order to enjoy the fullness of that life in the Kingdom of Perfect Love, after this earthly life.  This knowledge causes us to sing songs of endless love.  We express our joy through Psalms and Canticles, through our gathering at the Eucharist, where we are reminded of the Supreme acts of love:  Jesus suffered, died and rose again.  He gives us his Body and Blood to be our food and drink.  We need this Heavenly Food, because it is not possible for us to "hear his call to follow in his footsteps, and to carry our daily cross" on our own.  The Lord Jesus told us that we will encounter challenges and difficulties in this world, but have courage:  He has conquered the world. 


shutterstock_8823967_200x134.jpg 2.  BY THE SEA OF GALILEE.  The lyrics for this song are taken from Matt.4:18-20; Mark 2:14; John 9:5; 15:5 and Ps.84:11a.  Jesus was at the Sea of Galilee when he called the first disciples at the beginning of his earthly ministry.  Since then, he continues to call each and everyone of us to follow him in Faith, Hope and Love.  Our response to this loving call is an unconditional "YES."  We sing with the Psalmist of the joy of "living with" and the happiness of "belonging to" this Light from on high, who is the Light of the world and also the Light of our life.  We are the branches of which he is the VINE.  Our Faith in and Love for Him give us the strength to carry our daily cross.  We praise and thank him for this "ongoing call" and ask him to come and be present in our lives.


shutterstock_93457555_200x200.jpg 3.  ALL THE WAY TO GLORY.  This song continues the "Invitation to Follow Jesus " that was introduced by the previous song " By The Sea Of Galilee."  Our call to follow started with being Born again by the Water and Words of Life.  This Rebirth enables us to bear not only our own suffering, but also the pain of others.  By doing so, we share in the redemptive mission of Jesus.  The Creator has placed in our "being" a longing to belong, to thirst for something and someone greater than ourselves to fill our valley of needs and to level our "less than perfect" tendencies.  Like St. John the Baptist, we want to decrease in order to let Jesus increase his Life of Love in us.  It is only through this love that we find fulfillment on this earth and a Life of Glory in the next.

shutterstock_25752124_-_2_200x130.jpg 4.  LORD OF HEAVEN & EARTH.  The Refrain of this song invites us to "Seek the Lord of Heaven and Earth" through the "Water of Rebirth" by dying and rising with Christ.  This new life enables us to have a "new" heart to replace the old and hardened one, to let go of the hunger and thirst of an unfulfilled life, to pass from darkness and death of the past into the life of love and service, and to spread the Good NEWS of the Kingdom to come.  In other words, we are called to follow Christ, who is Lord of Heaven and Earth - for "In Him, we live and move and have our being," Acts 17:28a.     


shutterstock_1609144_375x500_200x267.jpg 5.  ENDLESS LOVE.  This song celebrates the essence of our faith - LOVE.  The God of the Old Testament commanded us to love Him "with our whole being" Deut. 6:5 .  Jesus in the New Testament commanded us to not only love Him with our whole heart, soul, mind and spirit, but also love others as we love our self.   He further said, that the way for us to show love for Him is to keep His commandments.  St. Paul in 1Cor.13 showed us the "how to" of love - to believe, to bear, and to endure all things.  Kindness, tenderness and forgiveness are some of the most authentic hall marks of Christ's followers.  The Refrain of this song is our petition to ask the Lord to walk with us, as we experience our own "way of the cross";  to be lifted up when we "stumble and fall."   Christ, in his Human Nature, has gone before us, has experienced our weakness and other "human" conditions, except sin.  He is the manifestation of the compassion and love of God the Father, who loved the world so much that He gave us His Only Begotten Son.

shutterstock_34063024_200x132.jpg 6.  LET THE SON SHINE ON.  The Son of the Heavenly Father and of Mary, Jesus Christ, tells us He is "the Light of the World, those who follow Him will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life" John 8:12.  Jesus also tells us He came to "set the earth on fire, and how he wish it were already blazing" Luke12:49.   As baptized Christians, the "Water of Rebirth" enables us to "put on Christ";  His light cures our blindness and reaches the innermost of our being to help us die to what is not of the light.  We are called to open our eyes, our hearts and our minds to let this Son of God into our lives.  As we experience the light - the warmth, the tasting of the Heavenly Food in the form of Bread and Wine - we will go into the world and, in turn, be light, fire and food for others through acts of service.


shutterstock_44372140_200x194.jpg 7. OUT OF THE DARKNESS.  The lyrics of this song continue with the theme of Light, but add the elements of being chosen and being called.  We are called to leave the darkness of sin and wrong doing.  We are called, not because we are  worthy, but because Christ - out of love and mercy - wants to lift us out of the hopelessness of a "fallen race," out of the "flood of trials and tribulations" of life.  By this call and the water of rebirth, we become God's children - members of His household with the apostles, prophets and saints, as our "spiritual relatives,"  whose lives are our role models.  As we journey toward the light of Christ, we strive to live lives of faith and love by serving others.


10530506_486670074806972_202505555218215924_o__2__200x150.jpg 8.  COME CLIMB THE MOUNTAIN.  The lyrics of this song are an "extended" list of invitations that are rich with symbolism. "Mountains" remind us of Mt. Sinai where Moses was given the Ten Commandments and of Mt. Horeb, where the prophet Elijah encountered the Lord, as he was told of his mission.  In the New Testament, we are invited to go up to Golgotha to share in Christ's redemptive suffering on the cross.  We are invited to the "water of baptism," to feel the love of this rebirth, as we rise from darkness-to-light and from death-to-life.  To get the strength for our journey home, we are invited to the "table of plenty" where we, together with our brothers and sisters, share the Body and Blood of Christ under the form of bread and wine. The third invitation that was offered us is the culmination of the other two:  that of being the citizens of the Heavenly Kingdom of coming and staying in the "garden of life" where, through loving service, we will be taken to the height of happiness that of "being with the Lord on His Mountain." 


shutterstock_98658497_200x133.jpg 9.  FOREVER A GREAT LIGHT.  The lyrics of this song address one of the main themes of our faith - Light.  Light indicates warmth and guidance.  While this song is very appropriate for Christmas and the Epiphany, it can also be used for other religious services and individual reflection.  Every Sunday and every time we gather to celebrate the Eucharist or to pray, we come from "near and afar."  When we do so, Christ, who is the Light of the World , is present in our midst.  He guides and walks with us on our "way of the cross," and out of the darkness into the brilliant light of our heavenly home.  These thoughts should inspire us with hope and trust.  

10891582_566797650121112_364528499315502168_n__2__400x400_200x200.jpg 10.  HEAVEN AWAITS.  This song is a reminder of the many parables expressing the Merciful Love of God :  The Prodigal Son, The Shepherd in search of the Lost Sheep, and The woman who swept the house throughout to look for the Lost Coin. These img show the care, concern, and the length the Lord is willing to "go through" for each and everyone of us.  We are important to Jesus and his Heavenly Father.  In fact, the whole Heavenly Court rejoices at the "Return /Conversion" of one person.  We are created for a life of peace and happiness.  God's grace is available, however, like the Prodigal Son, we have to leave the life of "emptiness and darkness burdened with cares and in the shadow of death" to join or rejoin the household of those who Seek the Lord and His Way of Light and Truth.  It is only when we are fed with the Body and Blood of Christ that our hunger and thirst will cease.  Yes, Heaven is waiting for us and our Lord is constantly urging us to come to Him - to be released of the burdens and challenges of life. 


shutterstock_6797014_200x326.jpg 11.  WHO DO YOU SAY THAT I AM.  The Lyrics of this song tell of the Gospel passage, where Peter and the other apostles were asked by Jesus to express their "Understanding of Him."  Like Peter - whose response was recorded - all of us, sooner or later, will be asked the same question by Jesus to define our faith and relationship with Him.  Our answer will be specific and personal.  It requires a commitment and indicates the kind of choices we make not once or twice, but throughout our lives.

These choices are important and will result in "Light or darkness, Life or death, Forgiveness or holding grudges."  Jesus asks us to "Take a Stand, to Declare our Faith, not only in Words, but more so, in Acts of Love and Service.  By ourselves, it will neither be easy or even possible to make these choices.  We need His grace to sustain and to raise us up when we stumble and fall.  We pray for wisdom, perseverance, and deliverance.  We are called to "lose our worldly lives, the lives of the flesh" in order to find the true and everlasting life in Jesus.

shutterstock_46853428_-_2_200x174.jpg 12. IF YOU HAVE JESUS CHRIST.  The lyrics of the song repeat the familiar themes of our Christian Life:  Being Born again " from on high" and Being clothed with Jesus Christ, who is the Way, the Light and the Truth.  We learn through Faith  that Jesus is the Father's Beloved Son - the First Born of all creation.  He is the Beginning and the End of all things that exist.  In other words, it is only through Jesus - who is the Resurrection and the Life - that we live our earthly lives with Faith, Hope and Love, as lived and taught to us by Him.  We reach our eternal home, because of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.  

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