February 5, 2014

St. Agatha

February 5, 2014:  St. Agatha, virgin, martyr

Wordle: Readings 2-5-14Readings

  • 2 Sm 24:2, 9-17  King David asked Joab for a census of Israel but then regretted it: “Lord, forgive me.”  Lord to David via Gad:  I offer you 3 years’ famine, 3 months of pursuit, or 3 days’ pestilence.”  David chose pestilence.  70,000 died before God stopped the angel.  David:  “Punish me and my kin, not them.”
  • Ps 32:1-2, 5-7  "Lord, forgive the wrong I have done."  Blessed is he whose fault is taken away; blessed the one in whose spirit there is no guile.  I acknowledged my sin, and you took away the guilt.  You will preserve and free me.
  • Mk 6:1-6  When Jesus taught, hearers took offense:  “Where did he get this wisdom?  What mighty deeds!  But isn't he the carpenter...?  Jesus:  “A prophet is not without honor except with his neighbors and family.”   Amazed at their lack of faith, he could only cure a few there.
Pope Francis
  • Audience:  The Eucharist accompanies us on our pilgrimage of faith, nourishing us with the bread of life and the proclamation of God’s word.  At the Last Supper, Christ broke bread and offered the cup, foreshadowing his sacrifice on the Cross.  In this Eucharistic sacrifice, he gave us the supreme prayer of thanksgiving.  The Eucharist is more than a banquet; it's a memorial of the Lord’s passion, death, and resurrection, making the mystery present in all its saving power.  It's important to go to Mass, to pray and receive the Body of Christ that saves us, forgives us, and unites us with the Father.
Dialogue between faith, reason and science:  The work of evangelization includes dialogue between science and faith, a synthesis of methods of the sciences, and other areas such as philosophy and theology, with faith.  Faith seeks and trusts reason; both come from God.  Evangelization wishes to shed the light of faith on scientific advances so that they’ll respect the human person.  Such dialogue can enrich society, open up horizons for thought, and bring harmony and peace. 
The Church has delights in acknowledging the potential that God has given to the human mind.  When the sciences arrive at a conclusion reason can’t refute, faith doesn’t contradict it—but believers shouldn’t treat unverified scientific opinion as dogma.  Some scientists have overstepped their competence with some claims, but the problem there is with blocking productive dialogue, not with reason. (4.IV, 242-43, pp. 181-82)
Reflections
    • Creighton:  When we feel isolated and sorrowful as Jesus did returning to his neighbors, he who walked the same path is ready to love and console us. 
    • One Bread One Body:  David sinned by taking a census against God's will, causing 70,000 to die.  One sin can have a devastating effect.  What a heavy cross Jesus carried!
    • Passionist:   Jesus' friends' doubts hinder his ability to work mighty deeds; we too hinder others if we hold them in low esteem.  See people as God does.
    Apparel

    • "People" tie pin:  70,000 killed in pestilence (1st reading)
    • "Question mark" tie pin, brown blazer:  "Isn't he the carpenter?" (gospel)
    • Wood tie pin:  "Isn't he the carpenter?" (gospel)
    • Red and white shirt (barely visible top left):  St. Agatha's martyrdom and virginity
    • Horse tie pin (with wood, above):  恭禧發財 happy lunar new year, of the wood horse (celebration still in progress)

    Greetings to and prayers for the community at St. Agatha's!


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