May 7, 2015

May 7

May 7, 2015:  Thursday, Fifth Week of Easter

National Day of Prayer

Did you find ten connections above
with today's Bible readings and celebration?
Legend below

Listen

Pope Francis homily
Our Lord asks us to abide in his love.  Two criteria help us identify true love:  more deeds than words (not soap opera or fantasy) and communication.
Love is real and constant:  Jesus warned, "Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom, but only the one who does my Father's will."  True love is real, constant, active, concrete, and often painful.  Those who love do the things for which we shall be judged:  feeding the hungry, and so on.  Even the Beatitudes, Jesus ‘pastoral plan,’ are concrete.  One of the first heresies was Gnosticism:  it spoke of a “distant God” with no substance, but the Father's love was concrete; he sent his Son to save us.
"Communication is everything":
My wife gave me this card years ago,
but now I can't find a place to buy one.
Love communicates; it doesn't remain isolated.  Love gives itself and receives; it's the communication between Father and Son, a communication that ‘is’ the Holy Spirit.  No love is isolated.  Monks and nuns are isolated, but they communicate with the Lord a lot.  To abide closed in on oneself is selfishness.
Simple but not easy:  To abide in Jesus' love means doing things and dialoguing with the Lord and others.  It's that simple, but not easy because self-interest attracts us to do nothing and to not communicate.  The Lord says those who abide in his love have his joy.  The Lord who abides in the Father's love is joyful.  If I abide in his love, my joy shall be full; it's joy that often comes along with the Cross, but no one may take that joy away from me.  May the Lord give us the grace of that joy the world can't give.
Read
  • Acts 15:7-21  Peter:  “From early days God chose that through me the Gentiles would hear the Gospel and believe.  God made no distinction between us and them, purifying them and granting them the Spirit, so why are you placing on them a yoke neither we nor our ancestors could bear?  We're all saved through God's grace.”  The assembly fell silent while Paul and Barnabas described the wonders God had worked among the Gentiles.
James:  “Symeon has described how God first concerned himself with acquiring from among the Gentiles a people for his name, and the prophets agree.  We ought to stop troubling the Gentiles who turn to God but tell them to avoid idols, unlawful marriage, meat of strangled animals, and blood.
  • Ps 96:1-3, 10  "Proclaim God’s marvelous deeds to all the nations."  Sing to the Lord a new song; tell his glory and wondrous deeds to all...
  • Jn 15:9-11  “As the Father loves me, so I also love you.  If you keep my commandments, you'll remain in my love, my joy will be in you, and your joy will be complete.”
Reflect
    • Creighton:  "As the Father loves me, so I also love you."  Imagine how much the Father loves Jesus!  May I remain in his love instead of the places that make me restless (attractions, temptations, self-absorptions, self-pity, anxiety, comparisons, fears all be saying, "Make your home here; remain in this place.").  May I make my home in his love for me, choosing freedom, letting go of what's keeping me from seeking true happiness, not clinging to what leaves me empty, seeing and avoiding patterns disruptive of healthy relationships....
    • Passionist:  St. Mother Theodore Guerin:  “Love the children—love those put in your care.”
    • DailyScripture.net:  Jesus gives his disciples a new commandment, a way of love going beyond giving only what's required, loving to the death, total self-giving for others' sake.  Jesus proved his love for us on the cross; we prove ours for God and each other when we embrace the way of the cross.  When my will crosses with God's, God's must be done.
    • Universalis:  St. John of Beverley, monk, bishop, teacher
    Dress legend
    • 'Holy Spirit' chain:  God granted the Gentiles the Holy Spirit (1st reading)
    • Kentucky 'sign':  Paul and Barnabas described the 'signs' God worked... (1st reading)
    • 'Blood drop' pin:  "Let's stop troubling Gentiles who turn to God, just telling them to avoid pollution from...  blood" (1st reading)
    • 'Crown' tie bar:  Say among the nations, The Lord is King (psalm)
    • 'Hearts' suspenders:  God, who knows the heart, purified the Gentiles' hearts. (1st reading); "As the Father loves me, so I also love you.  Remain in my love."  (gospel)
    • 'Children around the world' tie:  "He has made the world firm, not to be moved." (psalm)
    • Red and white shirt:  red for Holy Spirit (1st reading), white for Easter season