October 30, 2015

Oct. 30

October 30, 2015:  Friday, 30th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Holy Spirit' chain:  My conscience joins with the Spirit in bearing me witness (1st reading)
  • 'Peace sign' tie bar:  He has granted peace in your borders;... (psalm)
  • 'Wheat' pin:  ...with the best of wheat he fills you. (psalm)
  • 'Silverware' tie bar:  Jesus went to dine at a Pharisee's home (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season
Pope Francis to Salvadoran pilgrims
Archbishop Oscar Romero’s life was taken violently, while he was celebrating the Eucharist, supreme sacrifice of love, sealing with his blood the announcement of the Gospel.  Today the blood of many Christian martyrs is still being shed, but with the certain hope that it will bear fruit in a harvest of holiness, justice, reconciliation, and love for God.  No one is born a martyr; it's a grace the Lord gives.  Archbishop Romero himself said, "We must be willing to die for our faith, even if the Lord does not give us the honor.”
The martyr isn't an image to adorn our churches and remember with nostalgia, but rather a brother or sister who accompanies us in the communion of saints, and, united to Christ, doesn't ignore our pilgrimage, sufferings, or agonies.  People like Archbishop Romero are a treasure and hope for the Church and society.
The upcoming Jubilee of Mercy, and the example shown by Romero for his nation is a stimulus for a renewed proclamation of the Gospel.  God's people still face difficult tasks and need the evangelizing announcement of the Gospel to promote justice, peace, and reconciliation.
  • Rom 9:1-5  I have great sorrow and anguish in my heart.  I wish I were cut off from Christ for the sake of my own people, the children of Israel; theirs the adoption, glory, covenants, giving of the law, worship, promises, and patriarchs, and from them is the Christ.
  • Ps 147:12-15, 19-20  "Praise the Lord, Jerusalem."  He has strengthened your gates, blessed your children, granted you peace, filled you with wheat, and proclaimed his word.
  • Lk 14:1-6  On a sabbath Jesus went to dine at a Pharisee's home where there was a man suffering from dropsy.  Jesus asked, “Is it lawful to cure on the sabbath or not?”  He healed and dismissed the man, then said, “If your son falls into a cistern, who wouldn't pull him out on the sabbath?”  They couldn't answer.
    • Creighton:  "Compassion, mercy, and the law":  The Pharisees in Jesus’s time numbered about 6,000; they saw themselves as religious paragons and were self-appointed guardians of the Law.  At dinner they had Jesus under “hostile observation,” suggesting he was invited in order to be ambushed.  The circumstances are set with a man with 'dropsy' (pulmonary edemafluid in the lungs, making breathing difficult).  Imagine the Lord gazing at him, then asking, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?”, then answering by healing him.  Now the Pharisees are trapped, not Jesus:  If they say yes, they'd seem lax in their interpretation of the law, bad examples of strict observance; if no, they feared being accused of cruelty to the man (vs. Jesus' compassion).  They were frozen in legalism.  Compassion transcends and fulfills the law.  We must pray and work for the suffering; we need to see with the compassionate eye of Jesus and help with his merciful hand.  Today’s gospel doesn’t ask whether something is legal; it urges us to love, care, and show mercy.
    • One Bread One Body:  "Painful love":  Paul suffered greatly, largely due to his own people's hatred, but he loved the Jewish people.  When your enemies try to put you through hell, do you love them, so much that you'd do anything for them?  Jesus, Paul, and Christians have had the grace to love enemies. The Lord commands us to do so and gives us the power.  Be like God:  love those who have hurt you.
    • DailyScripture.net:  "They were watching Jesus":  The Pharisees were convinced Jesus was a Sabbath-breaker.  You'd think the 7 gospel-recorded healings on the Sabbath would garner admiration and gratitude, but they incited hostility.  The Pharisees invited Jesus to dinner on the Sabbath, after he'd broken their Sabbath rules; they were "watching" him, likely hoping to discredit him.  The man with dropsy was likely there because homes were open, people dropped in, it was considered uncharitable to exclude beggars, and rabbis (expected to say a few words) drew crowds wherever they went.  Jesus shows the law of love, good, and healing supersedes the law of rest....
      • St. Marcellus, martyr, proclaimed his Christian identity and refused to worship Roman gods
      • Blessed Martyrs of Winchester
        • Roger Dicconson, “undercover priest
        • John Slade, schoolmaster 
        • Ralph Milner, convert
        • Laurence Humphreys, convert, catechist
        • James Bird

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