September 16, 2016

Cornelius and Cyprian

September 16, 2016:  SS. Cornelius, Pope, and Cyprian, Bishop, Martyrs

Photo credit:  Sr. Kathleen Bryant, RSC

  • 'Plane' tie pin:  "Jesus journeyed from one town and village to another" (gospel)

  • 'Phone' tie bar:  "Lord, I call you" (psalm)

  • 'Birds' tie:  "Hide me in the shadow of your wings" (psalm)

  • Red shirt, 'blood drop' pin, red in suspenders:  Today's martyrs

    • 1 Cor 15:12-20  How can you say there's no resurrection of the dead?  If not, Christ hasn't been raised, our preaching and your faith are empty, we're liars, you're still in your sins, and we're pitiable.  But Christ has been raised from the dead!
    • Ps 17:1bcd, 6-8b, 15  "Lord, when your glory appears, my joy will be full."  Lord, I call you; attend to my outcry, and show your mercies.  Hide me in the shadow of your wings.  I'll be content in your presence.
    • Lk 8:1-3  Jesus journeyed from one town to another, proclaiming the good news of the Kingdom.  The Twelve, some women he cured, Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Susana, and others accompanied him.

      • Creighton:  The 1st reading is a logical argument to convince people of the resurrection.  If Jesus hadn't risen, he'd be just another preacher who died because of his message.  It was unusual for the women's presence to have been mentioned, so it must have been important to Luke.  Pope Francis recently raised the celebration of Mary Magdalene from Memorial to Feast to emphasize her role in Jesus' life, her first witness of the Resurrection, and her importance to Catholic tradition.  The resurrection speaks of God's power, life after death, and hope.  How does Christ bring us hope?...
        St. Cornelius
      • One Bread, One Body:  "Living the change":  Our response to Jesus' Resurrection makes a total difference in the world around us.  If we don't live risen life to the full, transformed, then we look no different from others.  When we live a listless, faithless life, the world sees that resurrection makes no practical difference, but when we encounter the risen Jesus, receive the Spirit, and change our lifestyles, others won't be able to miss the joy and the changes, even if they don't believe.  In Jesus, we renounce sin and radiate joy, love, peace, and courage....
      • Passionist:  Luke introduces Mary Magdalene for the first time.  She washed Jesus' feet with her tears and dried them with her hair.  He cured her of illnesses.  Accompanying her is Joanna, the wife of Herod’s financial steward, and Suzanna.  They ministered to Jesus out of their resources, which implies they had money.  They served Jesus and the Twelve.  Mary Magdalene and Joanna would later be at the foot of the cross and at the tomb.  This gospel deals with Luke’s favorite themes:  use of possessions and wealth, the groups who ministered with Jesus (the Twelve and these women), and the diversity of persons included in Jesus’ ministry.  This talent of Jesus is a hallmark for the Church.  The more diverse the people we embrace, the more like God we are....
        St. Cyprian
      •  "The women provided for Jesus":   A diverse band of women accompanied Jesus and the Twelve:   Mary Magdalene, who lived a troubled life before Jesus freed her, was the first to see Jesus as risen Lord.  Joanna, wife of Herod's CFO, was wealthy.  What united these two unlikely partners?  Jesus and his message had transformed them. These women didn't seek position or demand privileges; they were just grateful to serve Jesus.  Am I content to serve Jesus quietly and generously with my resources?  Jesus "came not to be served but to serve and to give his life...."  The gospel honors these women who imitated Jesus in his selfless love and service.  Our privilege as Jesus' disciples is to serve humbly as he did.  God gives us what we need to carry out our mission.  God needs no one but chooses to entrust his work to us; his Spirit equips us with what we need to love and serve others.  No one is unimportant or unnecessary to God.

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