November 11, 2015

Martin of Tours

November 11, 2015:  St. Martin of Tours, Bishop / Veterans' Day



  • 'Owl' tie pin:  I address you, princes, that you may learn wisdom...  (1st reading)

  • 'Hand' pin:  Deliver the lowly and poor from the hand of the wicked (psalm)

  • 'US flag' tie for Veterans' Day

  • White shirt:  liturgical color for St. Martin memorial

Pope Francis audience
Family togetherness is so important.  Sitting at table for dinner, sharing our meal and our day's experiences, is a fundamental image of togetherness and solidarity.  Because Jesus gave us the Eucharist as a meal, there's a close relationship between families and the Mass.  The togetherness we experience in our families is meant, in the family of the Church, to extend to all as a sign of God’s universal love.  In this way the Eucharist becomes a school of inclusion, in which we learn to be attentive to everyone's needs.  Sadly, the family meal is disappearing in some societies.  Food itself, the sign of our sharing, is wasted in some places, while people go hungry in others.  The Eucharist reminds us that our bread is to be shared with all.  May our families, and the entire Church, be signs of togetherness for the good of the whole human family, especially during the coming Jubilee of Mercy.
  • Wis 6:1-11  God gave you authority and sovereignty.  Because you didn't judge rightly, keep the law, or walk according to God's will, he'll come against you.  The lowly may be pardoned, but the mighty shall be put to the test.  The Lord shows no partiality; he made and provides for great and small alike.  O princes, learn wisdom and don't sin.  Those who keep the precepts shall be found holy....

  • Ps 82:3-4, 6-7  "Rise up, O God, bring judgment to the earth."  Render justice to the afflicted and the destitute.  Rescue the lowly and the poor.

  • Lk 17:11-19  Ten lepers / Jesus:  "Have pity on us!" / "Go show yourselves to the priests."  They were cleansed.   One, a Samaritan, returned to thank Jesus.  "Ten were cleansed, no?  Where are the others?  Has none but this foreigner returned to give thanks?"  To leper:  "Go; your faith has saved you."
    • Creighton:  People in authority are accountable for their actions.  We must accept and care for the marginalized.  Outsiders may have a greater awareness than those in the mainstream.  We're less than a month from the Year of Mercy, a year to focus on reconciliation and service to those in need.  May we take a genuine interest in others, listen with open hearts, forgive what we thought unforgivable, and find new ways to serve others.
    • One Bread, One Body:  "To lead or not to lead":  Leaders in God's kingdom have been entrusted with much, and much will be required of them.  Those in power are put to the test and scrutinized.  Leaders are also opposed by the world, the flesh, and the devil.  But avoiding God's call to receive power is not an option. When you refuse the call to leadership, God's sheep are thrown to the wolves.  Don't refuse to use the gifts of the Spirit; don't stifle the power and gifts of the Spirit God gives to his leaders.  God plans to raise up many leaders to set captives free.  God didn't pour out the Spirit so we'd remain locked in fear but rather so that his leaders would use the Spirit's gifts for the common good.  The decision to lead is made out of self-sacrificing love.  Christ's love impels us to accept his call.  We burn with love for the Lord and the people he places on our hearts.  How will I respond to God's call?
      San Martín y el mendigo
      El Greco
    • Passionist:  At a certain age our lives simplify, become whole, and we need have only three phrases left in our spiritual vocabulary:  "Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!" (West, A View from the Ridge)  A life filled with gratitude is marked by maturity, holiness, and love.  The Samaritan leper demonstrates such gratitude.  The other nine obeyed Jesus’ command but lacked something.  The story emphasizes the importance of gratitude.  The Samaritan was “made well” (from Greek sesoken, healed of spiritual disease and death); the others were merely cleansed (ekatharisthesan, made clean of a disease).  Gratitude is fundamental to wholeness of mind, body, and spirit.  A grateful person experiences healing beyond physical; the Samaritan was restored to family, community, and wholeness in God.  “Gratitude is the basis for all holiness.  The holiest person you know is also the most grateful person you know....  Live in gratitude, and thank your Creator by enjoying your life” (Rolheiser, Sacred Fire).  God blesses and restores us, but we take it for granted....
    •  "He fell at Jesus' feet giving thanks":   "A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity."  When adversity strikes, you find out who your real friends are.  Jews and Samaritans had no dealings with each other even though Samaria was in middle of Judea.  But this Samaritan leper was with nine Jewish ones; sometimes adversity forces you to drop barriers and forget prejudices.  They asked Jesus for mercy, not healing.  'Mercy' is literally 'sorrow at heart'; it's more than compassion, or sorrow at another's misfortune.  Compassion empathizes, but mercy goes further and removes suffering.  A merciful person shares in another's suffering as if it were their own and does anything possible to dispel their misery.  Mercy is connected with justice:  "Mercy doesn't destroy justice, but is a certain kind of fulfillment of it...  Mercy without justice is the mother of dissolution; justice without mercy is cruelty" (Thomas Aquinas).  The lepers, knowing they need healing, approach Jesus with contrition and faith because they believe he'll free and restore them; their request is a plea for pardon and release from suffering.   Gratefulness is related to grace; it's homage responding graciously.  The Samaritan approached Jesus reverently and gave praise to God.  If we don't appreciate the mercy and help we receive, we'll be ungrateful and unkind to others.  Ingratitude is forgetfulness or a poor return for kindness received; it can lead to lack of charity, intolerance, complaining, grumbling, pride, and presumption.  Do I express gratitude to God?  Am I gracious, kind, and merciful towards others in their need?
    • Universalis:  St. Martin of Tours, monk, bishop of Tours, good shepherd, founded monasteries, educated clergy, preached the gospel to the poor, patron of soldiers; see Wikipedia, Catholic Encyclopedia.

    No comments:

    Post a Comment