February 13, 2014

February 13

February 13, 2014:  Thursday, 5th week, Ordinary Time

Readings
    Wordle: Readings 2-13-14
  • 1 Kgs 11:4-13  Solomon began to adore and build high places for strange gods, doing evil in God's sight.  The Lord became angry with him and told him: “Since you haven't kept my covenant, I'll deprive you of the kingdom, but for David's sake not in your lifetime and not the whole kingdom.”
  • Ps 106:3-4, 35-37, 40  "Remember us, O Lord, as you favor your people."  Blessed are they who do what is just.  They served idols, and God grew angry with them. 
  • Mk 7:24-30  A Syrophoenician woman whose daughter had an unclean spirit fell at Jesus' feet and begged him to drive the demon out.  Jesus/woman:  “It's not right to throw the children's food to the dogs.” / “Even the dogs eat the scraps.” / “For saying this, you may go.  The demon has gone out.”  She returned to find the child in bed, the demon gone.
Pope Francis
  • Homily:  The courageous pagan woman, unashamed of faith, asks Jesus to free her daughter, and he grants the miracle, but wise, blessed Solomon's passions led him to weakened faith, a corrupt heart, and idolatry.  One can recite the Creed and still have a lack of faith.  Follow the path of the pagan who accepted God's Word leading to salvation.
  • To American Jewish Committee:  Let's continue our dialogue and fraternity between Jews and Catholics, founded on a common theological heritage, aware of our relationship with God.  Let's find ways to cooperate in building a more just and fraternal world, serving the poor, marginalized, and suffering.  Let's transmit our mutual knowledge, esteem, and friendship to future generations, including through study in our communities and formation centers.  Shalom!
The spiritual savor of being a people:  Develop a spiritual taste for being close to people and discovering its joy.  Mission is passion for Jesus and his people.  In Jesus crucified we see love sustaining us but also realize his gaze embraces all people.  He wants to use us to draw closer to his people; he takes us from his people and sends us to them.
Contemplate the closeness he shows!  He looks with love and concern, draws near the blind man, eats with sinners and allows them to anoint him, and receives Nicodemus by night; his cross is the culmination of how he lived.  Like him, enter into society, sharing, listening, helping materially and spiritually, rejoicing, and weeping, building a new world—not out of obligation or duty, but from a decision bringing joy and meaning. 
Touch others' misery and suffering.  When we know the power of tenderness, we experience what it is to be a people.  Jesus doesn't want us to be grandees looking down on others.  Know the missionary joy of sharing life as we strive to light a fire in the world. 
Loving others draws us to God.  When we draw nearer to others and seek their welfare, our hearts are opened to God's gifts.  When we encounter someone in love, we learn something new about God.  To advance in the spiritual life, constantly be a missionary.  A committed missionary is a spring spilling over, refreshing others.  Only one happy to seek others' good can be a missionary. 
Being in the heart of the people is something I can't uproot without destroying myself.  Be branded by this mission of bringing light, blessing, life, healing, and freedom; be with and for others.  Don't separate work from private life.
Every person is God's handiwork, the object of his tenderness, reflects his glory, and is holy and worthy of our love and giving.  He is present in every life, and Jesus offered his blood for them.  Helping one person to have a better life justifies the offering of my life.  Break down walls and fill your heart with faces and names!  (5.I, 268-74, pp. 200-205)
Reflections
    • Creighton:  Worries can discourage and isolate, but in prayer we meet with God’s grace.
    • One Bread One Body:  Solomon's started out successful and faithful but disobeyed and came to disaster.  Persevere daily.
    • Passionist:  Jesus listened to the Syrophoenician woman and transcended the cultural divide and brought liberation.  What bias am I harboring; what voices am I ignoring?  Help me to listen, be taught, and become more human.
    Apparel
    • Tie pin represents the idols (1st reading)
    • Tie with dogs:  "even the dogs eat the scraps" (gospel)
    • Green in suspenders:  Ordinary Time (season)

    Dress your life!

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