May 24, 2016

May 24

May 24, 2016:  Tuesday, 8th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Holy Spirit' chain:  Spirit of Christ, Holy Spirit (1st reading)
  • 'Olympics' tie pin:  All the ends of the earth have seen God's salvation (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  The Lord's right hand has won victory (psalm)
  • 'Music' tie:  Sing to the Lord a new song (psalm)
  • 'Abacus' pin:  Those who give up for Jesus' sake will receive 100 times more (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season


Pope Francis homily
You can't buy holiness or earn it by human strength.  No; you only attain it through courage, hope, grace, and conversion.  From 1 Peter, a small treatise on holiness, holiness is walking in God's presence without reproach.  It's a journey; you can't buy or sell it or give it away.  It's a journey to God I must make; no one else can do it for me.  I can pray for you to be holy, but you're the one who have to work towards holiness.  Walk in God's presence.  Everyday holiness can be “anonymous.” 
Courage:  The path to holiness takes courage.  Jesus’ Kingdom of Heaven is for those who have the courage to go forward.
Hope:  Courage is generated by hope.  Courage hopes in an encounter with Jesus.  Read Heb 11; it beautifully recounts the journey of those God first called:  Abraham went out without knowing where he was going, but with hope.
Grace:  "Put all your hope in that grace."  Holiness is a grace. Being good, being saintly, progressing daily in Christian life is a grace of God we must ask for.  We must make the journey with courage, hope, and the willingness to receive this grace.
Conversion, continuous effort towards cleansing the heart, is also important:  not beating yourself up for committing wrong, but small conversions.  Don't speak ill of others.  If you want to criticize a neighbor or workmate, bite your tongue; it'll swell, but your spirit will be holier.  Nothing grand.  The path to holiness is simple.  Always advance with fortitude; don't go back.
  • 1 Pt 1:10-16  Gird your mind's loins, live soberly, set your hopes on grace, and be holy in every aspect of your conduct.
  • Ps 98:1, 2-4  "The Lord has made known his salvation."  He has remembered his kindness and his faithfulness.  Sing joyfully to the Lord!
  • Mk 10:28-31  Anyone who has given things up for my sake and the Gospel's will receive much more now:  houses, brothers, sisters, mothers, and children and lands, with persecutions, and eternal life.  Many of the first will be last, and the last first.
    • Creighton:  Today's readings focus on sacrifice and giving oneself to Christ.  There are temporarily pleasurable things inconsistent with following Christ, and we humans can fall into them, but Christ forgives us if we ask and try to do better.  The readings call us to find the right kind of joy:  helping others, maintaining good relationships even when challenging, reflecting on the beauty of God’s creation....
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The battle of desires":  Satan tries to pressure and manipulate us through our desires.  We must lay aside our former way of life and old self and "put on Christ and make no provision for the desires of the flesh."  "Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified their flesh...."  May we hunger and thirst for righteousness, seeking God's kingdom and way.... 
    • Passionist:  "Leaving and following Jesus":  We must leave all, trimming away whatever detracts from being a productive disciple.  Scripture speaks 76 times of following Jesus; 'follow' is ἀκολουθέω, from 'on the road.'  Discipleship is accompanying Jesus on a journey.  We must keep moving but never out of his sight!
    •  "We've left everything and followed you":  We lose what we keep and gain what we give away.  What we give God returns a hundredfold.  After the rich young man story, Peter wanted to know what his followers would get,  Jesus replied:  a hundredfold now, unending life—and opposition and persecution....
      • Our Lady, Help of Christians:  Mary, Help of Christians was chosen as Patroness of Australasia, but we need her help too.  Her intercession and example indeed help us.
      • St. Aldhelm, abbot, monastery founder, while bishop, writer, poet, songwriter, renowned for learning and sanctity.  He sang and preached in public places to attract people to the faith; too bad his Old English music hasn't survived.  [I can't find his Latin works online either.]
      • Bl. Louis-Zépherin Moreau, bishop

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