January 7, 2014

January 7

January 7, 2014:  Tuesday after Epiphany

Readings
Wordle: Readings 1-7-14
  • 1 Jn 4:7-10  Love one another, because love is of God.  God sent his Son as expiation for our sins so we might have life through him.
  • Ps 72:1-2, 3-4, 7-8  "Lord, every nation on earth will adore you."  The mountains shall yield peace and the hills justice.  The king shall defend the afflicted and save the poor.
  • Mk 6:34-44  Jesus multiplied five loaves and two fish and fed the crowd of >5000; twelve baskets remained.
Pope Francis
  • Epiphany homily:  Guard the faith from darkness, which may be disguised as light, by holy “cunning,” prayer, and love.  Welcome God's light; the magi are wise companions helping us look to the star and follow our heart's great desires.  Don't settle for a mediocre life but strive for the good, true and beautiful.  Don't be deceived by appearances, but press on towards Bethlehem, where in simplicity shone the King, and reflect God's light to all.
  • Angelus:  God comes towards humanity, and people seek closeness to God:  Jesus is our point of encounter with God as his love incarnate:  God, light, truth, beauty, grace precedes us in Jesus, the Epiphany, the manifestation of God’s love.
  • Today's homily:  Test spirits to understand what’s in your heart:  if a thought or desire takes you along the road of humility and service, it's from Jesus; if to sufficiency, vanity, or pride, no.  Do I test what I think, feel, and want or just accept it without discernment?
Corruption and organized crime vs. fraternity:  Fraternity has to do with our need for fulfillment.  We're brothers and sisters, so don't consider neighbors as enemies.  Fraternity generates peace, balancing freedom and justice, responsibility and solidarity, individual and common good.  Citizens must feel represented by authorities, but often partisan interests drive wedges between them.
    Fraternity overcomes selfishness which conflicts with freedom and harmony.  Selfishness develops in corruption or formation of criminal organizations that tear down justice, strike at human dignity, offend God, and harm others and creation.
    Drug, money, and human trafficking, pollution, prostitution, devastation of natural resources, exploitation of labor, and crimes against minors and migrants all continue.  Power-based society is oppressive, not human, change is possible.  This is a message of hope and confidence; God wants sinners to convert and live.
    Prison conditions are often inhumane; those in custody are reduced to subhuman status and stunted in their hope for rehabilitation.  Do more against this, and let's hope civil authorities will too.
    Reflections
      • Creighton:  In 1 Jn, “love” is better translated “self-giving,” caring deeply.  God's self-giving underlies Christianity.  This letter was composed amid conflict (fighting factions).  If we lose sight of God's self-giving love, we'll fight too. 
      • RC.net:   Jesus' generous feeding of the multitude recalls God's providing manna to Israel and foreshadows Jesus, bread of heaven who can satisfy our deepest hunger.  God gives abundantly so we may share with those who lack.  Do I trust God's provision for me and share freely with others?
      • Universalis:  St. Raymond of Peñafort, Dominican priest who codified canon law.  St. André Bessette, religious brother devoted to St. Joseph.
      Music
      Apparel
      • Suspenders with "love" sticker:  love one another (1st reading)
        • "Star" tie pin:  star guiding the magi (gospel for Epiphany, celebrated today in most of the world)
        • "Peace sign" tie bar:  peace shall flourish (Epiphany psalm); Pope's peace message
        • Wheat and fish pins:  loaves and fishes (gospel)
        • "Christmas lights" tie:  Jesus, Light of the World
        Dress your life!

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