January 16, 2014

January 16

January 16, 2014:  Thursday, 1st week, Ordinary Time

Readings

  • 1 Sm 4:1-11  The Philistines defeated Israel in battle.  Israel's elders asked, “Why did the Lord allow this?  Let's fetch the ark of the Lord that it may save us.”  They brought the ark, and when it arrived, all Israel shouted.  When the Philistines heard the shouting and learned the ark had come, they were afraid:   “Gods have come to them.  Woe to us!  Who can deliver us from these gods that struck the Egyptians with plagues?  Take courage or else you'll become the Hebrews' slaves”  They defeated Israel, killed 30,000, and captured the ark.
    Wordle: Readings 1-16-14
  • Ps 44:10-11, 14-15, 24-25  "Redeem us, Lord, because of your mercy."  You cast us off and let our foes drive us back.  Why do you forget our woe?
  • Mk 1:40-45  Leper/Jesus, “If you wish, you can make me clean.” / “I do. Be made clean...  Show yourself to the priest but tell no one.”  He spread the report.
Pope Francis
  • Homily:  The Israelites brought with them the Ark, but as something magical/external (no true faith), and they were defeated.  What sort of relationship do we have with God:  formal?  distant?  Do we let God's Word change us?  There are many defeats of the Church, of God's people, because we don't hear and seek the Lord, don't allow God to seek us.  Scandals can take place when we don't have a living relationship with God!
Kerygmatic and mystagogical catechesis:  The first (fundamental) announcement (kerygma) is Trinitarian:  the Spirit leads us to believe in Jesus Christ who reveals the Father’s mercy.  Catechists, repeat “Jesus loves you, gave his life to save you, and lives at your side to enlighten, strengthen, and free you.”  The kerygma is solid, profound, and wise; it fulfills our desire for the infinite, and Christian formation is entering more deeply into it.  Stress the elements most needed today:  God’s saving love, freedom, joy, encouragement, and balance.  Foster openness by being approachable, ready for dialogue, patient, warm, welcoming, and non-judgmental. 
We need mystagogical renewal, involving the community and signs of Christian initiation.  Catechesis demands suitable environment, presentation, symbols, a place in a broader growth process, integration of every dimension of the person, and a communal journey. 
Use the “way of beauty” to pass on the faith:  faith and discipleship are beautiful, capable of bringing joy even in difficulties.  Acknowledge every expression of true beauty as a path leading to an encounter with the Lord; beauty touches the heart and enables the Risen Christ to radiate within it.  Use the arts:  build on past treasures, and draw on contemporary expressions to transmit faith in a new language.  Discover new signs and symbols, new flesh to embody and communicate the word, and forms of beauty valued in different settings, including unconventional ones that may mean little to you but be attract others.

To promote fidelity to the Gospel, stress the attractiveness and the ideal of a life of wisdom, self-fulfillment, and enrichment; rejection of life-endangering evils is best understood in light of that positive message.  Be guardians of goodness and beauty shining forth in faithful lives, joyful messengers of challenging proposals, not judges.  (3.IV, 163-168, pp. 129-133) 
Reflections
    • Creighton:  Paradoxes about suffering.  Jesus touches us all.  Leper approached Jesus humbly.
    • RC.net:   Jesus helped the outcasts.  Am I kind to those others shun?
    Music
    Apparel

    "Phone" tie bar:  God's 'call' (week's theme)

    Dress your life!

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