November 6, 2015

Nov. 6

November 6, 2015:  Friday, 31st week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Eyeball' pin:  "Those who have never been told of him shall see" (1st reading); "In the sight of the nations he revealed his justice" (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  The Lord's right hand has won victory (psalm)
  • 'Olympics' tie pin:  "All the ends of the earth have seen our God's salvation" (psalm)
  • 'Musical note' tie pin:  "Sing joyfully to the Lord" (psalm)
  • 'Calculator' tie:  Dishonest steward prudently adjusts debts so debtors will welcome him (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

Pope Francis interview
My memories of our neighbors in Buenos Aires are the source of my commitment to the poor.  Jesus came into the world homeless and was poor.  The Church wants to embrace everyone and say that everyone has a right to have a roof over you.  The popular movements are working with three t’s:  trabajo (work), techo (roof/house), and tierra (land); we preach that every person has a right to them.
We must resist two temptations as we try to speak for the poor without being exploited:  First, we must speak the truth with the testimony of the poor.  If I speak about poverty or the homeless but lead a pharaoh's life, it can’t be done.  Second, the agreements we make with government leaders must be clear and transparent, because there's always the temptation to corruption in both political and religious life.
I want a world without poverty; we must continue to struggle for it.  Since sin is always within us, with greed, lack of solidarity, and selfishness, it's hard to imagine, but we must always struggle for it.  (Straatnieuws)
  • Rom 15:14-21  You're full of goodness and knowledge.  Minister to the Gentiles.  I can boast but will only speak of what Christ has accomplished through me.  I want to proclaim the Gospel where it hasn't yet been heard.
  • Ps 98:1-4  "The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power."  The Lord is kind and faithful.  Break into song!
  • Lk 16:1-8  Rich man to suspect steward:  "Prepare an account; you're fired."  Steward made deals with master’s debtors to be welcomed after dismissal; master commended him for prudence.  Children of world are more prudent than children of light.
    • Creighton:  “Actions speak louder than words.” We're more likely to attract people to the gospel by living it ourselves. / The gospel teaches us to use goods carefully.  May we be good stewards of material goods, our common home, and God's gifts and talents.  Care is more than stewardship:  you can be good steward without feeling connected. “To care is to let yourself be affected by another, so much so that your path and priorities change” (Card. Turkson).  May I become a better servant, light for others, steward of God’s gifts and goods, and voice for justice and peace.
      Parable of the unjust steward/ Luykention
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The sacraments of initiative":  No matter how we try, we can't make God's works happen, but we should still take initiative in building the Kingdom.  "The initiative of lay Christians is necessary especially when the matter involves discovering or inventing means for permeating social, political, and economic realities with the demands of Christian doctrine and life.  It's a normal element of Church life" (Catechism, 899). We're a people of strong initiative, for we follow God who initiates everything good because he's Love and Christ's love impels us.
    • Passionist:  Are we willing to allow God to challenge us?  The dishonest steward understands the concept of extending mercy and extends it to others, even mercy that's not his to extend.  If he can, then why is it so hard for us?  Could we extend to others our master’s mercy like he did?    Mercy and compassion don’t make sense in an economy of greed, but Jesus extended mercy to all from the cross.  Give away something you don’t have, and discover God's kingdom.
    •  "The necessity of prudent foresight":  The shrewd steward likely overcharged his master's tenants and kept the profit.  On his way out, he steward struck deals with his master's debtors, likely giving up his commission, earning favor with the debtors and making his master look generous and forgiving.  The master praised him for outwitting him and making him appear generous and merciful.  Jesus thought the clever steward would illustrate God's treatment of those in his kingdom.  The steward is commended not for mishandling his master's wealth but for shrewdly averting disaster and for securing his livelihood.  The original meaning of 'shrewdness' is 'foresight'; a shrewd person grasps a critical situation with resolution, foresight, and determination to avoid loss or disaster.
      Jesus wants us to avert spiritual crisis and moral disaster through exercising faith and foresight.  If we expend as much energy to spiritual matters as we do to earthly ones, we'll be better off.  "The bosoms of the poor, the houses of widows, the mouths of children are the barns that last forever.  Wealth consists not in what we keep but in what we give away" (St. Ambrose)   The Lord expects us to use possessions responsibly and put them at his and others' service.  God loves generosity and gives to those who share his gifts with others. If God's love doesn't possess our hearts, some other love will.  What do I treasure?

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