May 13, 2016

May 13

May 13, 2016:  Friday, 7th week, Easter

  • 'Angel' pin:  "Bless the Lord, all you his angels." (gospel)
  • 'Hearts' suspenders:  “Simon, do you love me?” (gospel)
  • 'Sheep,' 'lamb' tie bars:  "Tend my sheep"; “Feed my lambs.” (gospel)
  • 'Scales of justice' tie:  It's not Roman practice to hand over the accused before they have an opportunity to defend themselves. (1st reading)
  • 'Crown' tie bar:  The Lord has established his throne in heaven, and his kingdom rules over all. (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  "When you grow old, you'll stretch out your hands, and someone else will... and lead you where you don't want to go.” (gospel)
  • White and red in shirt:  white for Easter season, red for "by what kind of death [Peter] would glorify God." (gospel)

For gospel
For Our Lady of Fatima
Pope Francis Amoris Laetitia capsule

To strengthen marriage we need to present it as a dynamic path to personal fulfillment, not a lifelong burden, and encourage openness to grace, not simply stress doctrinal and moral issues.  We must make room for conscience; often the faithful respond to the Gospel amid their limitations and can discern in complex situations. We must form, not replace, consciences.
We're grateful most people value permanent, respectful family relationships and appreciate the Church’s help.  Many are touched by the grace of sacramental Reconciliation and Eucharist that helps them face their challenges.  We're also grateful for the witness of lasting, fruitful, loving marriages.  All this can inspire a positive approach, but often we've been on the defensive.  Many feel the Church’s message on marriage and family doesn't reflect the attitude of Jesus, who set forth a demanding ideal but also showed compassion.
We must still warn against cultural decline that doesn't promote love or self-giving, against a “culture of the ephemeral.”  Some people move quickly from one relationship to another, believing love can be connected or disconnected at whim.  Some fear commitment, are obsessed with free time,  and enter into relationships weighing costs and benefits, treating relationships like disposable objects.  Narcissism keeps people from looking beyond their own desires and needs, but those who use others end up being used themselves, discarded by the same mindset.  Breakups often occur among older adults who seek “independence” and reject the ideal of growing old together, looking after one another.  (II:37-39)
  • Acts 25:13b-21  Festus referred Paul’s case to the king:  “The chief priests and elders demanded his condemnation.  They only had issues with him about their religion and about 'Jesus.'  I asked if he were willing to stand trial in Jerusalem, Paul appealed to the Emperor, and I ordered him held until I could send him.”
  • Ps 103:1-2, 11-12, 19-20ab  "The Lord has established his throne in heaven."  Bless the Lord, and forget not his benefits:  His kindness is surpassing.  He put our transgressions far from us.  His kingdom rules over all.
  • Jn 21:15-19  Jesus / Simon Peter:  “Do you love me more than these?” / “Yes; you know I love you.” / “Feed my lambs.” / “Do you love me?” / “Yes; you know I love you.” / “Tend my sheep.” / “Do you love me?” / (distressed he asked a third time) “Lord, you know everything; you know I love you.” / “Feed my sheep.  When you were younger, you used to go where you wanted; but when you grow old, someone else will lead you where you don't want to go.”  (He signified by what kind of death he'd glorify God.)  “Follow me.”
  • Greek words for love:  ἔρως (passionate, sensual eros), φιλία (philia, friendship, affection); ἀγάπη (selfless, sacrificial, unconditional agape)  In today's gospel, Jesus asked twice whether Peter agape-loved him, and Peter responded he philia-loved him; then he asked whether he philia-loved him, and he said yes.  Peter had professed his love before, then betrayed him; now he humbly offered philia (not agape) and Jesus accepted it.  Jesus encounters us where and how we are.
    • Creighton:  Peter is restored to fellowship with Jesus, commissioned, told the cost of service, and shown the path to success.  Peter was reconciled with Jesus, healed of the events around the charcoal fire where he denied him.  Jesus commissioned the restored Peter to serve God's people.  To tend the sheep, you need to be in contact with them; a good shepherd stinks and gets filthy like the sheep.  When the good shepherd picks up a sheep, his shoulders get dirty.  Jesus tells Peter the cost of service is death.  Even if we're not executed, we need to be willing to lay down our life for the sheep.  May we allow the Lord to heal us, teach us how to care for others, and give us the strength to live a cruciform life and follow him.
    "Lovest thou me?"/ Del Parson
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Restoring love":  Jesus treated Peter with mercy and grace, allowing him to undo his denials with professions of love (by another charcoal fire), restoring him in front of the disciples (giving him renewed credibility and authority), and choosing him to feed His lambs.  Jesus' love covered Peter's sins.
    • Passionist:  Jesus knew Peter’s need for healing, even if Peter hadn't yet realized it.  He wants to heal Peter of the memory of his denial when he asks “do you love me?” then he commissions him to “feed my sheep.”  Peter doesn’t seem to show remorse as he declares, “Lord, you know I love you” in the shadow of his denial!  Peter comes to understand Jesus’ message of acceptance of God's merciful love; he doesn’t fall into the trap of unforgiveness; he doesn’t question Jesus' forgiveness.  He opens his heart in trust to his Redeemer and stands before him embracing his redeemed humanity. Might Jesus have been testing Peter's awakening to his message, giving Peter a chance to verbalize it?  The grace in Peter’s life is at work in ours.  How many feel shame and don't feel worthy to approach Jesus? Unclaimed shameful experiences become larger out of sight.  May we to step through like Peter, and encounter Jesus’ healing so as to be an instrument of God’s healing.
    Agnus Day
      Our Lady of Fatima
    •  "Do you love Jesus more than these?"  Jesus asked Peter, and asks us, Do you love me more than anything else that might be dear to you?  Jesus spoke about God's unquenchable love. God is love because he is the creator and source of all that is true love.  His love is unconditional, unmerited, unlimited, enduring, unwavering.  It's a gift, freely given, freely received.  It’s why God created us and why he wants us to be united with him.  Love is the choice to give oneself to another for their sake; love is oriented to the other's good.  God's love heals and transforms our lives and frees us from fear, selfishness, and greed; it draws us to God and compels us to give our best, our gifts, our time, our resources, our allegiance, our everything.  Jesus' questions to Peter must have caused great sorrow, but remorseful Peter professes his love and willingness to serve.  The Lord calls each of us to respond to his graciousness and mercy, loving him above all else; only our own pride and stubbornness can keep us from receiving his love.
    "Late have I loved you, O Beauty so ancient and so new. Late have I loved you! ...You showed yourself to me to drive away my blindness.  You breathed your fragrance upon me and in astonishment I drew my breath; now I pant for you!  I tasted you, and now I hunger and thirst for you.  You touched me; I burn to live within your peace" (Augustine, Confessions 10:27).
        • Our Lady of Fátima:  3 shepherd children saw Mary Mother of Jesus near Fátima (Portugal) 6 times in 1917
        • St. Erconwald, convert, monastery and convent founder, abbot, bishop

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