July 28, 2016

July 28

July 28, 2016:  Thursday, 17th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Hand' tie pin:  You're in my hand as clay in potter's (1st reading)
  • 'Fishes' tie:  The Kingdom is like a net that collects fish (gospel)
  • 'Angel' pin:  Angels will separate the wicked from the just (gospel)
  • Green suspenders:  Ordinary Time (season)
Listen

Pope Francis Czestochowa homily
“When the fullness of time had come, God sent his son, born of a woman.”  When the time came, humanity wasn't especially well-disposed, but God filled our time out of his mercy and love.  It's striking that God came into history by being born of a woman, with no triumphal entrance but simply, like a seed.  God's kingdom, now as then, comes in littleness, in humility.
The gospel takes us to the “third day” of Jesus’ ministry and the proclamation of the “hour” of salvation.  God shows himself in littleness.  In Cana he does no amazing deed before the crowd, just a simple miracle bringing joy to a young, anonymous family.  The water turned wine reveals the spousal face of God, a God who sits, dreams, and holds communion with us.  The Lord, near and real, takes care of us, without making decisions in our place.  He lets himself be contained in little things, unlike ourselves, who want to possess something greater.  To be attracted by power is tragically human, a great temptation, but to give yourself to others, dwelling in littleness and living daily life, is divine.
God saves us by making himself little, near, and real.  The Lord loves and looks to the little ones, who are opposed to the “pride of life” belonging to the world.  He calls the simple and receptive to speak his word.  Through these channels of his love, the Lord has granted gifts to the Church and the world.
God is near, at hand.  The Lord does not want to be feared like an aloof, powerful sovereign; he loves to come down and walk with us.  We are called to listen, get involved, and be neighbors, so that the Gospel can spread, radiating goodness through our lives.
God is real.  Divine wisdom “is like a master worker” and “plays.”  The Word became flesh, was born of a mother, had friends, and went to a party.  He spent time with people in concrete situations.  You have touched the tenderness of the Mother of all.
In Mary we find complete conformity to the Lord.  A Marian thread is woven with the divine thread through history.  Mary is the stairway God took to descend and draw near to us; she's the clearest sign of the fullness of time.  In her we admire the littleness God loves; he “looked on his servant's humility” and “lifted up the lowly.”  He let his flesh be woven from hers, so the Virgin became the Mother of God.  May she continue to point the way to live the humble and simple gospel.
At Cana, Mary offers her nearness and helps us discover what we need.  Now as then, she does it with a mother’s love, by her presence and counsel, teaching us to avoid hasty decisions and grumbling.  She wants to keep her family together.  May she obtain for you the desire to leave behind past wrongs and wounds and build fellowship, without withdrawing or dominating.
At Cana, Mary showed great realism; she took people’s problems to heart and acted.  She handled difficult moments discreetly, efficiently, and decisively, as a mother and a handmaid.  Ask for the grace to imitate her sensitivity and creativity in serving those in need, and spend our lives serving others.  May Mary, Cause of our Joy, who brings peace, obtain for us the outpouring of the Spirit and enable us to be faithful servants.  May the fullness of time come about also for us.  May each of us make an interior passage, a Passover of the heart, towards the divine “style” incarnated by Mary.  May we do everything in littleness and accompany others with a simple and open heart.
Read
    Potter's hands at work
    with words of today's readings
  • Jer 18:1-6  Jeremiah:  When the object turned out badly, the potter tried again.  Lord:  "Can I not do to you as this potter has done?  Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand."
  • Ps 146:1b-6ab  "Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob."  Praise the Lord.  Don't trust people in whom there's no salvation.  God made heaven and earth.
  • Mt 13:47-53  “The Kingdom is like a net that collects fish.  When it's full they haul it in, put what's good into buckets, and throw out the rest.  At the end of the age, angels will separate the wicked from the righteous and throw them into the furnace....  Every scribe instructed in the Kingdom is like one who brings from his storeroom both the new and the old.”
Reflect
    • Creighton:  It’s not fun to be the potter's clay.  Change is uncomfortable, even when we know it will lead to growth, because we don’t know what the potter is making of us. Squeezed and pressed, we react.  We must trust the potter has something beautiful in mind for us.  The Creator is trustworthy and capable of shaping us; he sees everything, not just the clay and wheel.  Jesus tells the disciples how everything, good and bad, will be brought into the Kingdom.  I read this as all parts, good and bad, of ourselves....
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Your net worth":  The parable of the dragnet is the last of the kingdom-parables in Matthew; it ends, "That's how it'll be at the end of the world.  Angels will separate the wicked from the just and hurl the wicked into the furnace...."  The Lord calls us to conversion, to a life of faith in him....
      Pope St. Victor
    • Passionist:  God has created us out of nothing and fashioned us into people of grace and grandeur, created in, surrounded by, and called to love.  God’s gifts of creation, nature, and people often get neglected, but God never takes us for granted!  We can take each other for granted, turn our back on those who don't share our values, or postpone our efforts to be kinder to the earth, but we're called to be potters who mold and shape others following his example.
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Ready to receive the kingdom of heaven":   The two most common ways of fishing were with a casting-net (hand-net) thrown from the shore and the drag-net let down from a boat.  The dragnet took in all kinds of fish, flotsam, and jetsam in its path.  As a drag-net catches every kind of fish, so the church acts gathers in all comers, not discriminating between good and bad, useless and useful. God's kingdom is open to all, but a time of separation will come.  God will give the good and the bad the reward they deserve, offering his kingdom to all believers.
    Precious gems, gold, and choice wines increase in value with age.  Jesus' parable of the old and new points to the "older covenants" God made with his people of the Old Testament, and the "new covenant" he came to establish; he came to fulfill, not abolish, the old.  May we treasure all of his word, all given by the same Father, inspired by the same Spirit, and fulfilled by the same Word.  Both testaments are inspired by same Spirit and shed light on each other.  The Old prepared the way for the Jesus Christ.  The New lies hidden in the Old and unveils the Old; that's why Jesus interpreted Old Testament Scriptures for his disciples and explained how he came to fulfill them....