November 17, 2014

Elizabeth of Hungary

November 17, 2014:  St. Elizabeth of Hungary, Religious

  • 'Angel' pin:  God made the revelation known by sending his angel (1st reading)
  • 'Clocks' tie:  The appointed time is near (1st reading); see also yesterday.
  • Gold-colored accoutrements:  gold lampstands (1st reading)
  • 'Tree' pin:  I will feed them from the tree of life (psalm)
  • 'Eyeball' tie pin [Holy Tony came through with an unsolicited replacement from a reader :-):  "Blind Bart" (gospel)
  • 'No peace' button:  Sunday 2nd reading
  • White shirt:  color of Elizabeth's memorial

For the gospel
For St. Elizabeth of Hungary
Immaculate Heart Radio launched today in LA
Pope Francis
Homily:  The blind man was begging, sad, wondering “Why me?”  He was an outcast, with no way out; he cried out to Jesus, wanting salvation and healing.Those walking with the Lord—apostles, disciples, and converts who had accepted the Kingdom and were happy about salvation—rebuked him, distancing the Lord from the periphery.
Unfortunately, this happens among us believers:  we can create an ecclesiastical microclimate, but in looking at the Lord we can end up not seeing him hungry, thirsty, in prison, in the hospital; in the outcast.  They'd forgotten their own marginalization and how Jesus called them and so, happy in their world, didn't allow others to disturb him.  They'd forgotten the journey of conversion, calling, and healing the Lord made with them; they'd abandoned their first love.  When we become ecclesiastical, privileged with closeness to God, instead of ecclesial, we're tempted to forget the love we had when the Lord called, loved, and saved us.  The disciples were tempted: to forget the peripheries where they once were:  “Lord, he smells; don't let him come to you.”
His response: “Didn't you smell when I kissed you?”  When Jesus stops, it's a grace. He made the disciples turn:  “Don't look only at me. See me in the needy too!”  When God stops, it's with mercy and justice, but also sometimes with anger, as when the ruling class stopped him; it was no caress.  Jesus wanted the man brought near and healed him, recognizing his faith.
The others were the simple people needing signs of salvation.  They gave praise to God; they could celebrate, losing time with the Lord. Often we find simple people, elderly women who walk and sacrifice to go and pray at a shrine; they ask only for grace. They follow the Lord without asking for privileges.
Consider nonbelievers, sinners who don’t want to get up, lacking strength to start over.  Consider the Church of children, the sick, prisoners, simple people, and ask for the grace to never distance ourselves from this Church.that is suffering, asking for salvation, faith, and God's Word.
Angelus:  In the parable, Jesus is the master, we the servants, the talents are what he's given us:  Word, Eucharist, faith, forgiveness…  How do we make them grow in others?  Whom have we ‘infected’ with faith, encouraged with our hope?  How have we loved our neighbor?  We can make our talents grow in any time and place.  Don't hide ('bury') the Gospel or our faith and belonging to Christ but make it circulate in your life, relationships, and concrete situations.
God knows you personally, and gives you what's right for you.  God trusts you, has hope in you!  Don't let fear deceive you, but have confidence in God.  Mary incarnates this attitude in receiving and welcoming the greatest gift, Jesus himself, and offering him to humanity.  May she help us be "good and faithful servants" and participate in the joy of our Lord.
On complementarity and marriage:   The Spirit has endowed each of us with different gifts that work together for the benefit of each.  The Creator made all complementarities; the Spirit brings harmony.  Man-woman complementarity is at the root of marriage and family, taking many forms as each brings distinctive contributions.  Marriage and family are in crisis in this culture of the temporary; the decline is devastating people, especially the most vulnerable.  Social environments, like natural ones, need protection; we need to advance a new "human ecology." 
The family is the foundation of co-existence and a guarantee against social fragmentation;  the contribution of marriage to society is indispensable, transcending the couple's feelings and momentary needs (Evangelii Gaudium 66).  Commitment to solidarity, fidelity, and fruitful love responds to our deepest longings; the young must courageously seek lasting love, not give in to the temporary.  More on Humanum; thanks to Matt Meeks and his team for the site!)
Wordle: Readings 11-17-14
  • Rv 1:1-4; 2:1-5  The revelation of Jesus Christ, to show what must happen soon.  The appointed time is near.  “To the Church in Ephesus:  'I know your works and your endurance, but you've lost the love you had at first.  Repent, and do the works you did at first.'”
  • Ps 1:1-4, 6  "Those who are victorious I will feed from the tree of life."  Blessed those who delight in and meditate on the Lord's law; whatever they do prospers.
  • Lk 18:35-43  Blind beggar / Jesus:  “Son of David, have pity on me!” / “What do you want me to do for you?” / “Lord, please let me see.” / “Have sight; your faith has saved you.”  He received sight and followed him; he and the people gave glory to God.

  • Creighton:  "Remember your first love":  aspirations, convictions, no compromises... / Gospel irony:  "Jesus fans" try to silence the blind beggar Jesus, then praise God once he restores his sight. / Elizabeth loved the poor and suffering, choosing simplicity over luxury, became patroness of Catholic charities and Secular Franciscans.
  • Passionist:  Revelation was written by an exiled persecuted Christian leader, likely during Domitian's persecution, to churches in the Roman province of Asia.  Ephesus was the New York of its day:  busy, cosmopolitan, large, prosperous.  "Lord, let me see" how I've lost my first love...
  •  The beggar, whom Mark identified as Bartimaeus (10:46-52), is determined to get near Jesus, though the crowd, likely conversing with Jesus, is annoyed.  Jesus stops, showing deed is more important than word, commends him for his faith, and grants him sight.  Do I recognize my need for healing and seek Jesus with persistent faith and trust?
St Elizabeth washing a beggar
St. Elisabeth Cathedral
Košice, Slovakia
'Bart,' grateful for the gifts of faith and physical sight, followed Jesus and gave God glory.  The crowd also praised God when they saw this double miracle of spiritual and physical vision.  "Delivered from blindness, he followed Jesus; he was freed from double blindness:  of body and mind/heart, or else he wouldn't have glorified him as God.  He became the means of others giving Christ glory" (Clement of Alexandria, paraphrased).  Do I give God glory for giving me eyes of faith to recognize Jesus as Lord and Healer?
  • Saints via Universalis:
    • Elizabeth of Hungary, mother of 3, cared for sick; see Wikipedia.
    • Hilda, religious, abbess
    • Hugh of Lincoln, Carthusian bishop
    • Dionysius of Alexandria, bishop

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