July 27, 2017

July 27

July 27, 2017:  Thursday, 16th week, Ordinary Time

  • 'Mountain' tie pin:  The Lord came down on Mt. Sinai (1st reading)
  • 'Fire' pin:  The Lord came down in fire (1st reading)
  • Tie with clouds:  “I'm coming to you in a dense cloud”  (1st reading)
  • 'Thunderbolt/lightning bolt' pin:  There was thunder and lightning...  (1st reading)
  • 'Angel with trumpet' pin:  "On the 3rd day...  there was a loud trumpet blast" (1st reading)
  • 'Eyeball' pin:  "The Lord will come down before all the people's eyes" (1st reading); "they look but don't see..." / "Blessed are your eyes because they see"  (gospel)
  • 'Heart' pin:  "Gross is this people's heart"  (gospel, quoting Isaiah)
  • Green in shirt, tie, suspenders:  Ordinary Time season
Amazing Grace settings with bagpipes for 1st reading, gospel, and Bagpipe Appreciation Day

  • Ex 19:1-2, 9-11, 16-20b  The Israelites pitched camp at the Sinai desert.  Lord to Moses:  “I'm coming to you in a cloud, so when people hear me speaking with you, they'll have faith in you too.  Have them sanctify themselves to be ready for me to come down on Mt. Sinai before their eyes.”  There were thunder, lightning, a cloud over the mountain, and a trumpet blast; people trembled.  But Moses led them out to meet God at the foot of the mountain.  The Lord came upon Mount Sinai in fire, smoke rose, and the mountain trembled.  Moses spoke, and God answered with thunder.  The Lord came to the top of Mount Sinai and summoned Moses there.
  • Mt 13:10-17  “Knowledge of the mysteries of the Kingdom has been granted to you but not them.  I speak to them in parables because they look and hear but don't see, listen, or understand.  The prophecy is fulfilled:  You shall look and hear but not see or understand.  Gross is their heart....  they have closed their eyes, lest they see, understand, and be converted and healed (Is 6:9-10).  “Blessed are you because you see and hear; many longed to see and hear what you do but didn't get to...
    • Creighton:  Our readings relate to our need to see, touch, feel, and experience something for it to be 'real.'  We want proof, but faith calls us to believe what we can't 'know.'  God, understanding the Israelites might need 'evidence' God was with them and Moses could be trusted, became present to them in fire.  But Jesus understood God wouldn't making himself known so dramatically to us, and that many choose not to see or hear, dismissing his gifts as luck, the result of hard work, close calls, or something else.  Jesus knew that he could best convey God's work through stories, not direct messages.  For anyone with open eyes, ears, and hearts, knowledge of the Kingdom has been granted and more will be given. We don't need scientific 'proof' or fire; we do need to discern through faith....
      St. Panteleimon
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The most blessed":  Consider yourself blessed if you're among the 1/3 of people who have been baptized into the Church, the 1/5 who have ever received Communion, the 1% who go to Mass and Communion daily, the minority who have ever read part of the Bible.  Many longed to see and hear what you do but didn't.  Count your blessings!  "Much will be required of those to whom much has been given."
    • Passionist:  "You look but don't see and hear but don't listen or understand."  Parents, teachers, and other authority figures say this too.  “Understand with your hearts and be converted.”  To understand with my heart I have to be vulnerable, open to deep conversion, to a deeper reality; I have to change, to see and listen with my heart.  What is my heart asking of me right now?  To forgive, be forgiven, be vulnerable to God, be open to people today, be aware of God around me?
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Many longed to hear what you hear":  Faith and understanding are gifts of the Spirit that enable us to hear God's word and know God better.  Isaiah warned that some would see and hear but not believe.  Scribes and Pharisees who knew scripture heard Jesus' parables and saw his signs but didn't accept him, hearts closed and minds blocked by pride and prejudice.  How could a carpenter's son know more than them?  Only a humble spirit can open a closed mind.  'Disciple' means one willing to learn and submit to God.  God reveals the kingdom to the humble who know they need him.  If we approach God's word with indifference, skepticism, and disbelief, we may hear and see but not perceive and understand.  God's word takes root when we listen with reverence and faith, ready to believe and submit.  "You're reading [scripture]?  No.  Your Betrothed is talking to you, united with you, tearing you away from solitude, bringing you to his home, saying, 'Enter into your Master's joy'" (Jerome).
      Today's saints, from Universalis and beyond
      • Bl. Titus Brandsma, Carmelite priest, philosopher, journalist, outspoken against Nazism, martyr
      • Bl. Robert Sutton, convert, Jesuit priest, martyr:  "I lived and died in the light of the Catholic faith."
      Pope Francis Amoris Lætitia capsule:  Love and pregnancy
      Pregnancy is difficult but wonderful. A mother joins with God to bring forth new life.  The mother shares in the mystery of creation.  “You knit me together in my mother’s womb.”  The child in her womb is part of God's loving plan and has a place in God’s heart.  With God's eyes see the embryo and its value from the moment of conception.

      A pregnant woman can participate in God’s plan by dreaming of her child.  When a family doesn't dream, children and love don't grow; life shrivels up and dies.  Baptism is part of that dream.  Parents pray, prepare for baptism, and entrusting their baby to Jesus even before birth. (V:168-69)

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