January 29, 2016

Jan. 29

January 29, 2016:  Friday, 3rd week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Crown' tie bar:  Kind David (1st reading, psalm)
  • NEW 'Camera' and 'eyeball' tie pins:  David spying Bathsheba (1st reading), "I have done evil in your eyes" (psalm)
  • 'Girl with heart' pin:  "Create in me a clean heart" (psalm)
  • 'Skeleton' tie pin:  "The bones you have crushed will rejoice" (psalm)
  • White, green in shirt:  "wash me, and I'll be whiter than snow" (skipped verse of psalm); Ordinary Time season
  • 'Fruits' tie:  "of its own accord the land yields fruit" (gospel)

Pope Francis homily
We can sin often, and always return to God for forgiveness, confident he'll grant it, but if we become corrupt and no longer see the need to be forgiven, problems begin. The corrupt feel they don’t need God, as King David when he became enamored with Bathsheba.  When he found out she was pregnant, he tried to cover up his adultery. and when that didn't work, he had her husband killed. 
David is a saint, but also a sinner; yet God loves him very much.  See how sin passes to corruption, as can happen in our own lives; it's easy when you have power like David did.  Sin can become corruption; then we think we don't need forgiveness.  Pray that the Lord save the Church, the Pope, Bishops, priests, the consecrated, and the lay faithful, from corruption.  We're all sinners, but may we never become corrupt!
  • 2 Sm 11:1-4a, 5-10a, 13-17  David saw a beautiful woman bathing, learned she was Uriah's wife, and had relations with her.  He sent Uriah home; when he didn't go, he ordered him placed up front to be killed in battle.
  • Ps 51:3-7, 10-11  "Be merciful, O Lord, for we have sinned."  I acknowledge my offense against you.  Let me rejoice.
  • Mk 4:26-34  The Kingdom is like a man scattering seed that yields fruit he harvests.  The Kingdom is like a mustard seed that grows large.  He spoke parables to all and explained them to his disciples.
    • Creighton:  This episode of David’s life is not provided to point fingers; rather, the focus in the psalm is the grace of God, who forgives him and lets him continue as king.  The psalm describes God with the Hebrew words hanan (mercy), hesed (steadfast love), and rahamim (compassion).  When we experience God’s mercy and forgiveness, we can stop hurting ourselves and others.
      Mustard bush (gospel)
    • One Bread, One Body:  "A sin-sick Church":  Even if the Church in some areas is as small as a mustard seed, it will grow.  Christians are weak, but the Church will become strong, for God's power reaches perfection in our weakness.  But our sins can curtail and delay the growth.  Sin hurts the Church, our families, ourselves, the poor, children, and everyone.  May we repent by God's grace....
    • DailyScripture.net:  "What the kingdom of God is like":  The tiny mustard seed grew to be a tree that attracted numerous birds who loved its seeds.  Similarly, God's kingdom starts from small beginnings in our hearts, works unseen, and causes transformation from within.  We can't become like God till he gives us the Spirit's power.  When we yield to the Lord and allow his word to take root, our lives are transformed.
    The "tree of the cross" spread its branches and grew into a community of faith offering its fruit to the whole world:  "We must sow this seed in our minds and let it grow into a great tree of understanding elevating our faculties; then it'll spread out branches of knowledge, the savor of its fruit will make our mouths burn, its kernel will inflame us, and its taste will dispel our repugnance.  A mustard seed is an image of God's kingdom:  Christ is the kingdom of heaven.  Sown like a seed in Mary's womb, he grew up into the tree of the cross whose branches stretch across the world.  Crushed in the mortar of the passion, its fruit has flavored and preserved every living creature it comes in contact with.  As long as a mustard seed remains intact, its properties lie dormant; but when it's crushed they're evident.  So it was with Christ; he chose to have his body crushed to reveal its power….  He became all things to restore us in himself.  He received the mustard seed that represents God's kingdom; as a man he received it, though as God he'd always possessed it.  He sowed it in his garden, his bride the Church, a garden extending over the world, tilled by the plow of the gospel, fenced in by doctrine and discipline, cleared of weeds by apostles' labor....  When he promised the patriarchs a kingdom, the seed took root in them; with the prophets it sprang up; with the apostles it grew; in the Church it became a great tree of gift-laden branches.  Take the wings of the psalmist’s dove, gleaming in the sunlight, and fly to rest among those branches.  No snares will trap you there; fly with confidence and dwell in its shelter." (Peter Chrysologus, Sermon 98, paraphrased)
    • Passionist:  Our smallest action can help build God's kingdom....

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