March 26, 2015

March 26

March 26, 2015:  Thursday, Fifth Week of Lent

  • NEW Senate seal (with scroll) pin:  God's covenant with Abraham (1st reading, psalm)
  • 'Olympics' pin:  I am making you the father of a host of nations (1st reading)
  • 'Kings' tie:  Kings shall stem from you (1st reading)
  • 'Stone' tie pin:  They picked up stones to throw at him (gospel)
  • Purple suspenders:  Lenten season

Pope Francis homily:  Meeting Jesus brings joy
Old Abraham believes and opens to hope and is full of consolation.  Jesus reminds the doctors of the law that Abraham rejoiced.  They didn't understand the joy of promise, faith, hope, and the covenant.  Abraham could rejoice because he had faith; they'd lost it.  The "law doctors" even lost the law, since its center is love for God and neighbor!  They only had a system of doctrines, a world without love, faith, hope, trust, or God.  Maybe they doctors could have fun, but with fear, not joy.  Their heart was petrified.  Without joy you're not a true believer.  Pray for the grace to rejoice in hope...

  • Gn 17:3-9  God to Abram:  “I am making you the father of nations.  Kings shall stem from you.  I will maintain my covenant with you and your descendants forever, to be your God.  I will give you the whole land of Canaan.  You must keep my covenant throughout the ages.”
  • Ps 105:4-9  "The Lord remembers his covenant for ever."  Look to and serve the Lord, our God.  You, his servants, his chosen, recall his wondrous deeds!
  • Jn 8:51-59  Jesus / Jews:  “Whoever keeps my word won't see death.” / “You're possessed.  Abraham and the prophets died; are you greater?” / “God my Father glorifies me.  I know him and keep his word.” / “You've seen Abraham?” / “Before Abraham, I AM.” / They picked up stones to throw at him, but he left.
      • Creighton:  We're God's chosen; we belong to him!  Is that how we define ourselves?  
        God's covenant with Abraham, referencing Gn 17:1;
        God and Abe link all today's readings
      • Passionist reflection on 5th station on Way of the Cross, “Simon of Cyrene [now Libya] helps Jesus carry the cross.”  Simon was there when Jesus was in need, and soldiers ordered him to help.  Today people are drafted to help others carry their crosses too.  We take up our own crosses when we help others carry theirs.  Like Simon, the opportunity will likely find us first.  May we appreciate those who have been Simons to others and us...
      •  St. Augustine:  "[Jesus] saw another death from which he came to free us:  eternal death, shared with the devil and his angels!  This is the real death; the other kind is only a passage." God offered Abraham an everlasting covenant, and Jesus came to fulfill it so we'd know and be united with God.  Jesus challenged Israel to accept his word as the revelation of God.  He claimed unique knowledge of God as Son of the Father, that the only way to full knowledge of God is through him, and that he uniquely obeys the Father.  In him we see what God wants us to know and be.

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