February 15, 2015

6th Sun., Ordinary Time

February 15, 2015:  6th Sunday in Ordinary Time

  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Jesus stretched out his hand, cleansed leper (gospel)
  • 'Kneeling person' tie bar:  Leper knelt before Jesus (gospel)
  • 'People around the world' tie:  People came to Jesus from everywhere (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

God's mercy overcomes barriers.  Jesus' hand touched the leper; he doesn't act from a safe distance or by proxy, but is exposed directly to our evil.  Our evil becomes the place of contact:  he takes away our sick humanity and we take his healing, his healthy humanity.  Whenever we receive a sacrament with faith, he ‘touches’ us and gives us grace.  The Sacrament of Reconciliation heals us from the leprosy of sin.
To be imitators of Christ before the poor or sick, look the afflicted in the eye, and be close to the suffering with tenderness and compassion.  If evil is contagious, so is good; allow good to abound in you, be infected by it and spread the contagion.
  • Lv 13:1-2, 44-46  Lord to Moses:  “If someone has signs of leprosy, bring him to a priest.  If he's leprous, the priest shall declare him so.  Lepers are to rend their garments, cry out, ‘Unclean!’ and dwell apart.”

    Wordle: Readings 2-15-15
  • Ps 32:1-2, 5, 11  "I turn to you, Lord, in time of trouble, and you fill me with the joy of salvation."  Blessed is he whose fault is taken away.  I acknowledged my sin to you,  and you took away my guilt.  Rejoice!

  • 1 Cor 10:31—11:1  Do everything for God's glory.  Don't give offense.  Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ.

  • Mk 1:40-45  A leper came to Jesus and begged him, “If you wish, you can make me clean.”  Moved, he stretched out his hand: “I do will it. Be made clean.”  He dismissed him: “Don't tell anyone, but show the priest and make the prescribed offering.”  He went away and publicized the matter.  Jesus couldn't enter a town openly; he stayed in deserted places, but people kept coming to him from everywhere.
  • Creighton:  In Paul’s Corinth, much meat came from animals sacrificed as offerings to idols, and Christians were divided about whether to eat it.  Paul said they could—the 'gods' didn't exist—but also gave a yardstick for future cases:  avoid scandal; ask how exercising your rights will affect the community.  We need to be concerned for others' rights and act on their behalf.  Jesus didn't assert his rights; neither can we.  Paul also built on cultural family values, giving his converts a tool to help solve such questions.  “You already do this for your kin; now your family is bigger:  all Christians are your sisters and brothers.”
  • One Bread One Body:  "Scabs and pus":  A scab is a past hurt beginning to heal; you feel like picking at and opening the wound once again, but don't.  A pustule is an effect of spiritual infection:  unforgiveness, resentment, bitterness, anger...; don't let it burst.  A blotch is like an allergic reaction:  when you bring up a subject people were allergic to, there's tension, changed tone, and ugliness.  Jesus can cure all these!
  • Passionist:  People can still feel like lepers/outcasts, feeling rejected and worthless:  the unemployed, elderly, or poor, people after a relationship that's ended or being self-destructive....  When we feel alienated like that, we can go to Jesus, and he can heal us of the pain of being cut off.  We should never cast people out from God’s love.  If I consider people 'unclean,' may I see them as Jesus does.
  • DailyScripture.net:  Normally a leper would be stoned if he approached a rabbi, but Jesus healed him and demonstrated God's love and tenderness by touching him.  Do I approach those I find hard to love, or those others shun, with kindness and mercy?

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