September 23, 2016

Padre Pio

September 23, 2016:  St. Pius of Pietrelcina (Padre Pio), Priest

  • 'Clocks' tie:  "There's an appointed time for everything" (1st reading)
  • 'Rock/stone' tie pin:  "Blessed be the Lord, my Rock" (psalm); "There's a time to scatter, and gather, stones" (1st reading)
  • 'Peace sign' tie bar:  "There's a time of peace" (1st reading)
  • 'Plant' pin:  "A time to plant" (1st reading)
  • 'Question mark' tie pin:  "Who do the crowds say I am?  What about you?"  (gospel)
  • Crucifix:  "The Son of Man must suffer, be rejected, and be killed..." (gospel)
  • 'Blood drop' and 'nail' pins:  Padre Pio's stigmata
  • White shirt:  liturgical color for St. Pius/Padre Pio

    "A time for everything"
  • Eccl 3:1-11  There is an appointed time for everything:  to be born/die, plant/uproot, kill/heal, tear down/build, weep/laugh, mourn/dance, scatter/gather stones, embrace/not embrace, seek/lose, keep/cast away, rend/sew, be silent/speak, love/hate, be at war/peace.  God has made everything appropriate to its time, and put the timeless into our hearts, without our discovering his work.
  • Ps 144:1b, 2abc, 3-4  "Blessed be the Lord, my Rock!"  God is my mercy, fortress, stronghold, deliverer, shield.  We're like a breath...
  • Lk 9:18-22  Jesus / disciples:  “Who do the crowds say I am?” / “John the Baptist, Elijah, or an ancient prophet.’” / “But who do you say I am?”  Peter: “The Christ of God.”  He directed them not to tell anyone.  “The Son must suffer, be rejected, be killed, and be raised.”
Pope Francis Amoris Laetitia capsule:  Passionate love
Vatican II teaches that conjugal love “embraces the good of the whole person; it can enrich the sentiments of the spirit and their expression with dignity and ennoble them.”  So love lacking pleasure or passion doesn't fully symbolize the union of the heart with God:  “Supernatural and heavenly love find the symbols they seek in marital love, rather than in friendship, filial devotion, or devotion to a cause, because of its totality.”  Why not speak of feelings and sexuality in marriage?  (IV:142)
        • Creighton:  "The ‘Time’ of our lives":  There's time for birth, death and all in between:  sickness, joy, sorrow, trials, peace, penance, mercy, consideration of others (poor, sick, dying, addicted....)...  No matter the ‘time’, God is loving, forgiving, and merciful....
        • One Bread, One Body:  "Crowded conditions":  Jesus asked his disciples who the crowds thought he was before asking who they thought he was to show we must separate ourselves from the crowd to truly acknowledge him as the Messiah, Lord, and God.  Crowd-pleasers aren't God-pleasers. The crowd helped crucify Jesus, and it hasn't changed. Don't be a crowd-pleaser, set on things the crowd runs after.  The crowd will see this as a judgment against it, and we'll be unpopular, rejected, hated, and persecuted.  Follow Jesus; leave the crowd behind.

        • Passionist:  Jesus asks his disciples who people were saying he was, then asks them, “who do you say I am?”  Peter says, “The Messiah of God,” then Jesus says, “The Son of Man must suffer, be rejected, be killed, and be raised.”  He acknowledges Peter’s confession, then says how he'll be Messiah:  by sacrifice to the point of death, followed by resurrection.  People were expecting a different kind of Messiah, and even the apostles had trouble understanding.  Understanding Jesus’ death as an act of redemption helps us understand God doesn't promise to remove all our difficulties but rather that he'll get us through them.  Can we live in hope, and so tell the world who we say Jesus is?
        •  "Who do you say that Jesus is?"  Many recognized Jesus as a man of God, like the great prophets.  Peter spoke professed that Jesus was the "Christ of God," "the Son of the living God"; only God could have revealed that.  Through the eyes of faith, Peter recognized Jesus as more than a teacher, prophet, and miracle worker.  'Christ' (Greek) and 'Messiah' (Hebrew) both mean 'Anointed One.'
        Why does Jesus tell the disciples to keep quiet?  "There were things yet unfulfilled that must also be included in their preaching:  the passion, the cross, the death in the flesh, the resurrection, that glorious sign that testifies that he's truly God....  He destroyed death and destruction, robbed hell, overthrew the enemy, took away sin, opened heaven to earth dwellers, and united earth to heaven; these proved him to be God.  So he commanded them to guard the mystery until the whole plan would arrive at a conclusion" (Cyril of Alexandria, Commentary on Luke, Homily 49, paraphrased).  Jesus won eternal life and freedom for us through humiliation, suffering, and death.  To share his victory, we must take up our cross and follow him.  Who do you say Jesus is?

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