January 16, 2015

Jan. 16

January 16, 2015:  Friday, 1st week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Stick figures' tie pin:  [3 of the 4] men carrying the paralytic (gospel)
  • 'Question mark' tie pin:  Jesus:  “Why are you thinking that?  What's easier to say:  ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Rise and walk’? (gospel)
  • Green in tie, shirt, and [not shown] suspenders and socks:  Ordinary Time (season)

Pope Francis to families
When Scripture speaks of St. Joseph, we often find him resting.   Family dreams are important; when you lose the capacity to dream, you lose the capacity to love.  At night, ask yourself whether you dreamed about your children, spouse, parents, or grandparents. 
As Joseph’s rest revealed God’s will, when we rest in the Lord, God speaks.   As God chose Joseph to make a home for Jesus, so are you called to make a home for him in your heart, family, parish, and communities.  To do so, you need to rest in the Lord, making time for daily prayer.

Like Joseph, once we hear God’s voice, we must rise and act; faith draws us more deeply into the world.   As the gift of the Holy Family was given to Joseph, so the gift of the family is entrusted to us to advance.   As the angel told Joseph about the dangers so his family could flee to Egypt, so God calls us to recognize dangers threatening our families and to protect them from harm.
There are many pressures on families:  disasters, finances, materialism, destructive lifestyles, efforts to redefine marriage, relativism, lack of openness to life...  Bl. Paul VI defended openness to life in Humanae Vitae, teaching compassion, and seeing that lack of children could cause problems.  We need good, strong families to preserve the family!  Threats to family are threats to society.  Be examples of love, forgiveness, and care, and respect life.

Be prophetic voices:  as Joseph listened to Gabriel, responded to God’s call, and became a blessing for all humanity, serving as model for boy Jesus, when you train your children in faith and values and teach them to contribute to society, they become a blessing and we extend Christ’s kingdom in this world and fulfill our baptismal mission.

Be missionary disciples:  go beyond home and care for those most in need, including those who don't have a family, elderly, children without parents...; never let them feel isolated, or abandoned, but help them know God hasn't forgotten them.   You have gifts to offer when you offer Christ and the Church....


  • Heb 4:1-5, 11  Be on your guard.  We've received the Good News as our ancestors did, but it didn't profit them because they weren't united in faith.  Let us strive to enter into that rest...
    Wordle: Readings 1-16-15
  • Ps 78:3, 4bc, 6c-8  "Do not forget the works of the Lord!"  We know and will declare God's glorious deeds so they may be faithful to his commands.
  • Mk 2:1-12  Jesus preached to the crowds at Capernaum.  They brought him a paralytic through the roof.  Jesus / scribes:  “Your sins are forgiven.” / “He's blaspheming; only God can forgive sins!” / “What's easier to say:  ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or ‘Rise and walk’?  But so you know the Son of Man has authority to forgive sins:  [to paralytic] “Rise, and go home.”  He did; all were astounded.
    • Creighton:  If it were my last day, I'd tell my children how much I love them, spend less time with trivial activities and more counting my blessings, email people who've been kind/helpful to me, and pray more....
    • One Bread One Body:  "Make like a helicopter":  There can be obstacles between us and Jesus:  media, job, lifestyle, the culture of death....  We need stretcher bearers/intercessors, to look foolish and take risks to get to Jesus, and forgiveness.  May we get over the crowd to get to Jesus.
    • Passionist:  Jesus is surprised at the paralytic and his four friends.  "A friend is someone who hears the song in your heart and whispers it to you when your memory fails" (Columba).  "The friends thou hast and their attention tried, grapple them to your soul with loops of steel" (Shakespeare).
    • DailyScripture.net:  Jesus first forgave the paralytic, claiming and demonstrating his God-given authority, healing soul and body.  What's crippling me now?
    "The Lord, wanting to save sinners, shows himself as God both by knowledge of secrets and by actions.  When he asks what's easier to say, he shows the likeness of the resurrection.  He heals body and mind, forgives the sins of the spirits, removes the weakness of the flesh, and so heals the whole person.  Only God can forgive sins, but he also forgives through those to whom he's given the power of forgiveness, but it's more divine to give resurrection to bodies, since the Lord is the resurrection."  (St. Ambrose, Exposition of the Gospel of Luke, 5.12-13.5, paraphrased)
    Lord, set me free!

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