March 13, 2015

March 13

March 13, 2015:  Friday, Third Week of Lent

13 connections with today's readings and celebration on March 13!
Legend below
Listen to music for 1st reading

  • Hosea/ Norbet, composer-sung
  • Hos 14:2-10  Return to the Lord, your God; you've collapsed through your guilt.  Say, “Forgive all iniquity.  We'll no longer say, ‘Our god’ to the work of our hands.”  God:  "I'll heal their defection, I'll love them freely; my wrath is turned away from them.  Israel shall strike root and put forth shoots in splendor.  They shall dwell in his shade, raise grain, blossom, and have fame.  I've humbled Ephraim but will prosper him.  Because of me you bear fruit!  Let the wise know and understand these things.  The just walk in the Lord's straight paths, but sinners stumble.
  • Ps 81:6c-11ab, 14, 17  "I am the Lord your God: hear my voice."  “I relieved him of the burden.  You called, and I rescued you.  I'll admonish you; won't you  hear me?”  “Don't worship any alien god.  I led you from Egypt.”  “If you hear me and walk in my ways, I'll feed you with the best of wheat and fill you with honey.”
  • Mk 12:28-34  Scribe/Jesus:  “Which is the first of the commandments?” / “God alone is Lord!  Love the Lord with your heart, soul, mind, and strength.  The second:  Love your neighbor as yourself.  No commandment is greater.” / “Well said.  You're right to say, There is no other.  To love him with heart, understanding, and strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is worth more than all sacrifices.” / “You're not far from the Kingdom.”  No one dared to ask him more questions.
Happy anniversary, Pope Francis!
Read his reflections on his first two years:  migration, drug trafficking, evangelical movements (vs. clericalism or sects), bad homilies, why Catholics leave, curia reform, family synod, protection of minors, conclave details, going out for pizza...
  • One Bread One Body:  "Only escaping or also loving?"  We may have run from home and collapsed through our guilt and decided to ask God's forgiveness.  The Lord rejoices; he wants to heal us and love us freely—more than we want to be loved.  If we receive his love, we'll want to love the Lord with heart, soul, mind, and strength, denying our very selves, and we'd have to repent....
  • Passionist:  The longest distance in humanity may be from mind to heart.  Conversion happens when mind and heart connect.  Jesus commands me to love you as much as I love myself.  How well do I love myself?... 
  •  Hosea's people lived in a time of economic anxiety and fear; they were tempted to trust in their possessions and political alliances rather than God.  Hosea called them to return to God for pardon, healing, and restoration. / Love and obedience go together; God simply requires that we love as he does!  The more we know of God's love, the more we love what he does and reject what's contrary to his will.  Faith and hope strengthen our love of God.  The Lord gives us freedom to love (Gal 5:13).  What do I let keep me from God's love and the joy of generous service?
Apparel legend
  • 'Horse' tie pin: We won't have horses to mount (1st reading)
  • 'Hand' tie pin: We won't say ‘Our god’ to the work of our hands (1st reading)
  • 'Tree' pin: He shall strike root like the Lebanon cedar; his splendor shall be like the olive tree. I'm like a verdant cypress... (1st reading)
  • 'Grapes' pin: They'll blossom like the vine (1st reading)
  • 'Owl' tie pin: Let the wise understand these things (1st reading)
  • 'Phone' tie bar: You 'called' in distress, and I rescued you (psalm)
  • 'Wheat' pin, "bees' knees" button, 'rock' tie pin: If you'd hear me and walk in my ways, I'd feed you with the best of wheat and fill you with honey from the rock. (psalm)
  • 'Commandments' tie: “Which is the first of all the commandments?” (gospel)
  • 'Girl with heart' pin: Love the Lord with all your heart... (gospel)
  • Purple suspenders:  Lenten season
  • 'Scales of justice' tie (oops; forgot to pack):  God's judgment shines forth (1st reading, gospel); Pharisee judges tax collector (gospel)

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