May 7, 2016

May 7

May 7, 2016:  Saturday, 6th week, Easter

  • 'Crown' tie bar  "God is king of all the earth." (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  "Clap your hands" (psalm)
  • 'Jubilee year' button:  "Ask and you will receive, that your joy may be complete." (gospel)
  • 'Holy Spirit' chain:  Pentecost novena (in progress even though we don't celebrate Ascension till tomorrow)
  • White in shirt and socks:  Easter season


Pope Francis Amoris Laetitia capsule
The Experiences and Challenges of Families
The welfare of the family is decisive for the future of the world and the Church.
The current reality of the family
Families now enjoy greater freedom through equitable distribution of duties and responsibilities; greater emphasis on communication between spouses helps to make family life more humane.  But cultural changes are leading individuals to receive less social support.
But extreme individualism is weakening family bonds and considers each family member as an isolated unit, sometimes leading to the idea that personality is shaped by desires seen as absolute.  A culture caught up with possessions and pleasures leads to intolerance and hostility in families.  Life's fast pace, stress, and the organization of society and labor also militate against permanent decisions.  And uncertainty and ambiguity are widespread:  a personalism opting for authenticity rather than mere conformity has value, but though it can favor spontaneity and better use of talent, when misdirected it can foster attitudes of suspicion, fear of commitment, self-centeredness, and arrogance.  Freedom of choice makes it possible to make the most of ourselves, but if it lacks noble goals or discipline, it degenerates into an inability to give oneself generously to others.  Concern for justice is praiseworthy, but if it's misunderstood, it can turn people into clients just interested in being served.  (II, 31-33)
  • Acts 18:23-28  Apollos spoke and taught accurately about Jesus, though he knew only of John's baptism.  Priscilla and Aquila took him aside and explained to him the Way of God more accurately.  He helped those who had come to believe, refuting the Jews and establishing from Scripture that the Christ is Jesus.
  • Ps 47:2-3, 8-10  "God is king of all the earth."  Shout to God with cries of gladness....
  • Jn 16:23b-28  “Whatever you ask the Father in my name he'll give you.  Ask and you'll receive, so your joy may be complete.  When I tell you clearly about the Father, you'll ask in my name.  The Father loves you, because you've loved me and believe I came from God.  Now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”
    • Creighton:  Jesus is our connection to the Father.  Jesus reminds us he came from the Father and he is going back to him; our love for Jesus must be centered on our belief that he came from and has returned to God.  Professions of love and faith in the community of believers empower us to ask God for whatever we need and to receive God’s blessings in joy.  Our confidence comes through Jesus, who gives us one another and knowledge that God loves us.  We can forget that love; we need others to remind us.  And we need to share the love with those who haven't heard, as Priscilla, Aquila, and other early believers did. We've been given a great commission in addition to the gift of faith:  to help others know Jesus and God's will and love.... 
      St. John of Beverley
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The most obscure are the most powerful":  Priscilla and Aquila were kicked out of Rome because they were Jews; they were victims of religious persecution and refugees. They were nobodies by the world's standards, obscure, oppressed, and ignored, but in God's eyes they were most important; they helped Paul recover from his failed Athens mission, led Apollos to faith in Jesus, and risked their lives for Paul.  They lived their marriage and life in the Spirit and bore great fruit.  God continues to choose "the world's lowborn and despised, those who count for nothing" to bear fruit and renew the earth in the power of the Spirit (Ps 104:30). On this second day of the Pentecost Novena, surrender your life to the Holy Spirit
    • Passionist:  Today’s 1st reading tells how the early church worked together to tell them the Good News of Jesus....
    •  "Ask in Jesus' name, that your joy may be full":  Jesus often taught with illustrations/parables, but here he speaks plainly:  "The Father loves you!"  Through the gift of the Spirit, Jesus makes it possible for his disciples to have a new relationship as God's children. Because of Jesus, we can now pray, "Our Father..."  The Spirit's presence and action in us proves this new relationship.  "When we cry, ‘Abba! Father!' the Spirit is bearing witness with our spirit that we're God's children."  We can approach our Father and ask for what we need; in love he bids us draw near.
    • Universalis:  St. John of Beverley, monk, bishop, teacher

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