June 25, 2015

June 25

June 25, 2015:  Thursday, 12th week, Ordinary Time


  • Tie with stain (see bottom):  When Hagar became aware of her pregnancy, she looked on Sarai with 'disdain'('di-stain' :-) (1st reading)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Ishmael shall be a wild ass of a man, his hand against everyone, and everyone’s hand against him (1st reading)
  • 'Car' tie pin:  Many will say, "Lord, Lord, didn't we 'drive' out demons in your name?" (gospel)
  • 'Rock' tie pin:  "All who listen to and act on these words will be like a wise man who built on rock." (gospel)
  • Green flowers on tie:  Ordinary Time season


    Listen

    Today's homily:  As people in Jesus' time marveled at his authoritative teaching, people today know when someone has the consistency that gives authority.  Jesus admonished his disciples to beware of false prophets.  To discern true preachers from false, look at speech, action, and listening.
    Some people talk and do but can't listen, though listening is the foundation of speaking and doing.  Speaking and doing isn't enough and can be deceptive.  Jesus expects we listen and do:  'Everyone who hears [and acts] is like a wise man who built on rock,' but those who don't listen seriously or put words into practice is like one who builds his house on the sand.  False prophets may speak and work wonders but don't have an open heart to hear God's Word; they're afraid of silence and God's word.  They're 'pseudo-Christians' lacking the rock of God's love and word, without which they can’t preach or build.  They talk too much and maybe they do too much; they can't embrace what they’ve heard.
    One who only speaks and does isn't a true prophet or Christian, and in the end everything collapses because it's not built on the rock of God's love.  But those who listen and act on what they hear, with the strength of another's word, not their own:  that's balance.  Mother Teresa didn't speak, and she listened in silence.  She did so much, and her work didn't collapse!   The great listen and then do from listening; their trust and strength are from the rock of Christ. 
    To  Pontifical Ecclesiastical Academy:  Christ's charity is what makes the Church of Rome universal and credible.  It makes bridges that build communion and call the human race to unity and nourishes hope.  Don't let the Holy See get caught up in factions or be colonized by popular thought.  Don't expect the ground to be ready; plow it yourselves to prepare for harvest.  Don't fish in aquariums or get used to eating fish prepared by others; courageously go to the margins, cast your nets in lesser known areas.  Never forget your life is at the service of the Gospel and the Church.
    To  B'nai B'rith:  Jews and Christians can continue to cooperate and work for peace together.  Nostra Aetate laid the groundwork for the Catholic Church’s relations with Jews.  Respect for life and creation, human dignity, justice, and solidarity unite us for the development of society and for securing a future rich in hope.  We're called to pray and work together for peace.  Unfortunately, many regions of the world live in situations of conflict, and that require a courageous commitment to peace. 
    Read
    • Gn 16:1-12, 15-16  Sarai, having borne no children, to Abram:  Have intercourse with my maid; perhaps I'll have sons through her.”  He did, and Hagar became pregnant; then she looked on Sarai with disdain.  Sarai / Abram:  “You're responsible!” / Do to her what you please.”  She abused her so much that Hagar ran away.  The Lord’s messenger / Hagar:  “Where have you come from?” / “I'm running away from Sarai.” / “Go back; I'll make your descendants too numerous to count.  God has answered you.  You'll bear a son; name him Ishmael; he'll be a wild ass of a man, encamping against his kin.”  She bore a son; Abram, 86, named him Ishmael.
    • Ps 106:1b-5  "Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good."  Blessed are they who do what's right and just.  Help me, that I may see prosperity and rejoice....
    • Mt 7:21-29  [Hear Msgr. Brennan proclaim it] “Not everyone who says, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the Kingdom, only those who do my Father's will.  Many will say, ‘Didn't we prophesy, drive out demons, and work wonders in your name?’  I'll tell them, ‘I never knew you.  Depart, you evildoers.’  Everyone who listens to and acts on these words will be like a wise man who built on rock; his house didn't collapse under rain, floods, and winds because it was solid.  Those who don't will be like a fool who built on sand; his house collapsed and was ruined.”  They were astonished at the authority of his teaching.

    Reflect
    • Creighton:  Marriage, like the house in the gospel, needs a strong foundation in faith and willingness to act on it to survive the inevitable storms.  Divorce data reflect society's secularization.  Pray for successful, God-centered marriages.
      House built on rock
      vs.house built on sand
    • One Bread One Body:  "Sin-bitten":  Sarai regretted telling Abram to have children through Hagar.  We too regret some decisions we make, and we should regret our sins.  When we do, we shouldn't blame others, or take out our regret on others, like Sarai did.  Sin lead to more sin or to repentance.  We must repent.
    • Passionist:  The Sermon on the Mount ends with Jesus addressing the crowds as a prophet.  If the foundation of our lives is strong, so will what we build on it be.  If we have a strong sense of values and priorities, we can focus on what we have to do.   We have a strong foundation in Jesus....
    • DailyScripture.net:  Jesus' story of the houses must have his audience's attention; they saw storms  sweep through without warning.  "When the storm has swept by, the wicked are gone, but the righteous stand firm."  The foundation we build upon determines our survival.  Builders lay foundations with foresight, when weather is best.  We may fool one another but can't deceive God who sees the heart.  Choices and acts, not words, prove sincerity.  Am I reliable before God, neighbor, and myself?  Christ is the only rock that can save us; is he the foundation of my life?
    • Universalis:  St. Luan (Moluag, Lua, Murlach, or Lugaidh), bishop, founded 100 monastic settlements