November 25, 2017

Nov. 25

November 25, 2017:  Saturday, 33rd week, Ordinary Time

See 16 connections with today?Legend below

Listen

Pope Francis to Verona Social Doctrine Festival
We need to change to be faithful both to God and people.  The Word of God helps us distinguish the two faces of change:  fidelity, hope in and openness to new things; and the difficulty of leaving the secure for the unknown.  We feel more secure within our fence, preserving and repeating our usual words and gestures, but this keeps us from starting new processes.  
To be faithful, we must have the capacity to change and launch out, as Abraham, who heeded the Lord and left for a new land.   God's call radically changed his life, opening unexpected horizons for him.  When you respond to God, a process begins that leads to something we never imagined.
Fidelity to people, means going out of ourselves to meet concrete people, opening our eyes and heart to the poor, the sick, the jobless, refugees, and those wounded by indifference and an economy that discards and kills; it's overcoming the centripetal force our own interests and egoism and giving way to passion for others. 
In this way, fidelity to God and to people converge and change us and reality, overcome immobilism and convenience, and create space and work for young people.  Change is healthy not only when things go badly but also when they go well and we're tempted to rest on results achieved.
Read
  • 1 Mc 6:1-13  King Antiochus tries to pillage rich Elymais, retreats when city rises up, hears he lost in Judah, takes to his bed, tells friends his evils are to blame, grieves.
  • Ps 9:2-4, 6, 16, 19  "I will rejoice in your salvation, O Lord" who rebuked the nations and destroyed the wicked.  The needy shall not be forgotten.
  • Lk 20:27-40  Sadducees / Jesus:   “Moses wrote, If a brother dies leaving a wife but no child, his brother must take the wife....  Seven brothers married the same woman in sequence; each died childless.  At the resurrection, whose wife is she?” / “The children of this age marry, but not those who attain the resurrection; they're God's children, like angels.  Moses made it known the dead will rise.  God is of the living, not the dead.”
Reflect
  • Creighton:  Both readings show challenges faithfulness brings and hope to overcome them.  In the 1st, King Antiochus is dying in disgrace after challenging the Chosen People; in the gospel, Jesus avoids a trap.  There's a a historical connection between the readings:  through undermining practice of the Jewish faith, Antiochus had fostered the growth of rebel groups, the success of which led to a century of Maccabean rule.  The Romans eventually reasserted control.  The strained relationship between Jewish leadership and the Romans led to the issues Jesus spoke against.  The Sadducees and Jesus could easily have been at odds; they likely experienced the same type of strained conversations as some families faced at the Thanksgiving table.  Antiochus made his life worse by his decrees, and the Sadducees tried to discredit Jesus.  My mission is not to impose my viewpoint but to serve humbly....
    Santa Caterina d'Alessandria
    Caravaggio
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Denial":  Before Antiochus died, he judged himself kindly and beloved in his rule even though he killed mothers with their babies hanging from their necks, cut out opponents' tongues, scalped seven brothers who opposed him while their mother looked on, and fried seven brothers and their mother.  Our capacity to deny sin is shocking.  Lord, have mercy on me, a sinner!
  • Passionist:  “The history of the Jewish people in the bible is a history of conflict with pagan nations.  This conflict and confrontation are not merely encouraged by God; he actually commands the people to oppose their tyranny, injustice, and immorality.  One of the greatest sins of the Jewish nation was their attempt to be reconciled with the nations who oppressed them” (Nolan, Hope in an Age of Despairsummary).  The view that Christians should always seek harmony and a middle way makes the false assumption that tension and conflict are worse than injustice and oppression.  King Antiochus dies in a foreign land after hearing of the successful revolt, and Jesus picks up the Sadducees' absurd question in a different way instead of lowering himself to their trap.  How is God calling me to derail today's ludicrousness?  How can we move deeper into what's truly significant?  Do I have courage to transform and be transformed?
  • DailyScripture.net:  "All live to him":  We can be like the Sadducces, trying to make heaven into an earthly image.  Jesus gives proof of the resurrection from scripture, then later from his own resurrection....  May we live now in the joy and hope of eternal life.  "May the Lord put his hands on our eyes so we may look at what is not seen.  May he open the eyes that are concerned not with the present and unseal the heart's vision, that we may gaze on God through Christ, whose glory will endure." (Origen, paraphrased)
Today's saints, from Universalis
Dress legend
  • 'Crown' tie bar:  King Antiochus (1st reading), Christ the King (tomorrow's celebration)
  • Silver- and gold-colored accessories:  Elymais was famous for its wealth in silver and gold; king recalls he carried away gold and silver vessels (1st reading)
  • 'Plane' pin:  Armies had been put to 'flight' (1st reading)
  • 'Musical note' tie pin:  "I'll sing praise to your name" (psalm)
  • 'Eyeball,' 'heart' pins:  Sleep has departed from my eyes, for my heart is sinking... (1st reading); I'll thank You with all my heart (psalm)
  • Tie with 'feet':  The nations are sunk; their foot is caught (psalm)
  • '?' tie pin:  Sadducees put question to Jesus (gospel)
  • 'Tree' pin:  Burning bush (gospel)
  • '7 people' pin, upside down:  There were seven brothers; each died childless... (gospel)
  • 'Angel' pin:  Those deemed worthy are like angels (gospel)
  • Green in shirt, 'clocks' suspenders:  Ordinary Time season, ending in days
  • White in shirt, red suspenders:  Virginity and martyrdom of St. Catherine of Alexandria
Special greetings to and prayers for the community at