October 14, 2015

Oct. 14

October 14, 2015:  Wednesday, 28th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Girl with heart' pin: By your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you store up wrath... (1st reading); pour out your hearts before God (psalm)
  • 'Scales of justice' tie:  Don't judge.  God's judgment is just.  (1st reading)
  • 'Peace sign' tie bar: There will be glory, honor, and peace for all who do good. (1st reading)
  • 'Rock' tie pin:  God alone is my rock and my salvation (psalm)
  • 'Fingers' pin:  You impose burdens but don't lift a finger to touch them. (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

Pope Francis
Jesus says “Woe to the world because of scandals.  If scandals must come, woe to those through whom they do.”  Consider the promises we make to our children when we bring them into the world.  The greatest promise we make is love; every child trusts they'll be loved and cared for.  When that promise is broken, the result is a “scandal” Jesus condemns, telling us that their angels stand in God’s presence.   The Church too, through Baptism, makes promises to our children.  In experiencing human love, a child comes to sense the presence of a God who loves children.  Foster this mysterious relationship by leaving room for God in their young lives.  
This Saturday is the UN International Day for the Eradication of Poverty; it promotes efforts to eradicate poverty and discrimination, and to uphold the rights of all persons.  We're invited to make this intention our own, so that Christ’s charity may reach and uplift our poorest and most abandoned brothers and sisters.
  • Rom 2:1-11  You who pass judgment have no excuse.  For your standard condemns yourself, since you do the same things.  You think you'll escape God's fair judgment?  Do you hold his kindness, forbearance, and patience in low esteem, unaware it leads to repentance?  By your stubbornness and impenitent heart, you store up wrath for yourself.  Affliction and distress will come upon evildoers, but glory, honor, and peace for all who do good; there's no partiality with God.
  • Ps 62:2-3, 6-7, 9  "Lord, you give back to everyone according to his works."  Only in God is my soul at rest; from him comes my salvation.  He alone is my rock, salvation, and stronghold.  Trust in him at all times!  Pour out your hearts before God our refuge!
  • Lk 11:42-46  “Woe to you Pharisees!  You pay tithes but pay no attention to judgment and to love for God.  You love the seat of honor.  You're like unseen graves people walk over.”  Law scholar / Jesus:  “By saying this you insult us too.” / “Woe to you too!  You impose burdens but don't lift a finger to touch them.”
    • Creighton:  Part of our being sent is to call evil evil and good good, but not to judge.  English 'critique' and 'criticize' share a Greek root (krinein) but have different meanings:  we critique products, actions, strategies, principles, but when we move to persons, we criticize and so set ourselves as judges.  We can critique products, because to some extent we can measure them, but we can't measure a person's intention or heart.  Let's remember Paul’s injunction against condemning as we approach the Jubilee of Mercy.
    • One Bread One Body:  "Hell, no":  If we repent of our sin and give our lives to Jesus, we'll receive glory, honor, peace, and eternal life, but if we're disobedient and impenitent, we'll receive wrath and anguish.  God's great love presents us with an awesome decision....
    • Passionist:  When I let judgment lead my encounters, I can shut the door before another’s story can evolve.  Christ came to open and broaden the narrative; his death and resurrection adds merciful possibility.  Lord, as the temptation to judge arises, give me the courage to return my gaze to my own thoughts and words, what I've done and failed to do.   From that place of humble recognition help me open to the dignity of each person I encounter....
    • DailyScripture.net:  "You load burdens hard to bear":  'Woe/alas' expresses both pity and anger.  Jesus was angry because the leaders didn't heed God's word and misled those they were supposed to guide.  Scribes devoted their lives to studying the Law, but in their misguided zeal obscured more important matters like love of God and neighbor.  Jesus used the example of tithing to show how far they missed the mark:  God commanded a tithe of the first fruits, but scribes tithed only on insignificant things while neglecting to care for the needy.  They were filled with pride and contempt, placing burdens without  showing charity.  They went through the motions but forgot the realities. / They believed contact with a grave made a person ritually unclean.  Jesus turns the table on them by saying they defile those who listen to them; they infect others with wrong ideas of God.  They're "unmarked":  others don't recognize the decay or realize the danger of contamination.  They must have heard a double insult:  they're unclean themselves, and they contaminate others.  The essence of God's commandments is love of God and neighbor.  God's love is unconditional and directed toward others' good.  Love lifts others' burdens.  Do I help others carry their burdens?

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