April 16, 2015

April 16

April 16, 2015:  Thursday, Second Week of Easter





  • Crucifix:  you had Jesus killed by hanging him on a tree (1st reading)
  • 'Fruits' tie, 'eyeball' tie pin:  "Taste and see the Lord's goodness" (psalm)
  • 'Pierced hearts' suspenders:  "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted" (psalm)
  • 'Holy Spirit' chain:  "He doesn't ration this gift of the Spirit" (gospel)
  • White and red shirt:  white for Easter season, red for Holy Spirit
Listen

Pope Francis homily
Obeying God means having courage to change paths:  Obedience often brings us along a path different from what I think should be.  The one who obeys has life eternal.  In the first reading, the priests and leaders, jealous, ordered Jesus' disciples to stop preaching and jailed them, but the Angel of the Lord freed them and they returned to preach.  When Peter was questioned again, he responded, “We must obey God.”
One who doesn’t dialogue doesn't obey God:  The priests didn't understand even though they'd studied history, prophecy, law, and theology.  They were stubborn, closed in on themselves, because they didn't dialogue with God or others.  They interpreted how the law could be more precise but were closed to the signs of God in history and closed to their people, and so they didn't obey God.  They didn’t know to listen or dialogue.
One who doesn't dialogue wants to silence those who preach God's newness:   The sign that a person is closed to the Lord's voice is the desire to silence those who preach God's newness.  These are the same people that paid the guards to say the disciples stole Jesus' body; they did all they could to not open themselves to God's voice.
Read

  • Acts 5:27-33  High priest / Apostles:  “You defied our order to stop teaching.” / “We must obey God.  You killed Jesus, but God raised and exalted him; we're witnesses.”  They became infuriated and wanted to kill them.

  • Ps 34:2, 9, 17-20  "The Lord hears the cry of the poor."  Taste and see God's goodness.  The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and delivers the just.
  • Jn 3:31-36  The one who comes from heaven is above all and speaks God's word, testifying to what he's seen and heard.  The Father has given everything over to the Son.  Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life.
Reflect
  • Creighton:  The religious authorities had authority and power, but the apostles taught and healed in the name of Jesus, "unauthorized" but with unexplainable authority that was recognized.  Those in authority can misuse it and make decisions based on power, money, or position; we must discern and follow legitimate, inspiring authority.  Who has authority in my life?  Which examples pull and inspire me to do good?
  • One Bread One Body:  "The Golden Arch":  To have Easter, we must have Pentecost; only by the Holy Spirit can we recognize the risen Christ.  To receive the Holy Spirit and to live our new life in the Spirit, we must obey God.  The word translated 'obey' (peitharchein) is not the common one; it includes 'arch' ('first,' 'authority'); to receive the Spirit we need 'arch-obedience,' not utilitarian or begrudging but submissive to God, putting him first and trumping anything contrary.  Be 'arch-obedient," receive the Spirit, and meet the risen Christ. 
  • Passionist:  John the Baptist's knowledge was grounded on the earth, Jesus’ in the divine.  Jesus witnesses to God's truth; God witnesses to Jesus. 
    • Believers have two wings:  faith and reason  (John Paul II)
    • “Religion without science is lame.  Science without religion is blind!” (Einstein)
    • “Contemplation without politics is sentimentality.  Politics without contemplation is tyranny.” (Metz)
    • Five Great Catholic Ideas:    God respects our freedom.  Scripture needs to be interpreted with the whole Church.  The reign of God begins here.  We're saved by our community.  Great ideas develop over time.  (Bishop Clark
  • DailyScripture.net:  The Holy Spirit reveals God's truth to us.  "I believe in order to understand; and I understand the better to believe."  (St. Augustine)  God gives us freedom to accept or reject truth, and the responsibility to recognize the consequences of our choices.  Do my choices today lead me closer to God?
  • Universalis:  St. Bernadette Soubirous, religious, patroness of the sick, didn't let her serious illness get in the way, showed great humility, inspired great love of prayer and good works, especially service of the poor and the sick.  Mary appeared to her near Lourdes to call sinners to change.  See Catholic EncyclopediaWikipedia.