September 10, 2017

23rd Sun., Ordinary Time

September 10, 2017:  Twenty-third Sunday in Ordinary Time

  • 'Clef' tie pin:  Sing joyfully to the Lord (psalm)
  • 'Sheep' tie bar:  We're the people the Lord shepherds, the flock he guides (psalm)
  • 'Commandments' tie:  The commandments are summed up in "Love your neighbor..." (2nd reading)
  • 'Eyeball' pin:  I've appointed you watchman (1st reading)
  • 'Hearts' suspenders:  "If you hear God's voice, harden not your hearts." (psalm); love one another (2nd reading)
  • 'Rock' pin:  "Acclaim the rock of our salvation." (psalm)
  • 'Persons' pin:  Witnesses, "2 or 3 gathered in my name..." (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

2nd reading-inspired

From Ed Bolduc's blog
Four new psalm settings for the next two Sundays
Pope Francis in Colombia

Medellín discipleship homily:  Remain steadfast and free in Christ:  After calling his first disciples, Jesus calls the Twelve.  He tells them their journey will lead them to lepers, paralytics, and sinners.  They learned that following Jesus presupposes other priorities and considerations.  We disciples can't cling to a style or practices make us more like Pharisees than Jesus.  Jesus’ freedom contrasts with the Pharisees' rigorous interpretation and practice of the law.  Jesus brings the law to its fullness.  He wants us to follow him in what's essential, be renewed, and get involved.

Go to the essential:  Jesus came to fulfill, not abolish, the law,”  to go to what matters and has value for life.  Being in relationship with God can't be attachment to norms or outward actions that don't change your life.  Discipleship begins with an experience of God and his love; it's continuous movement towards Christ, experience of his presence, listening to him.  We hear his word through others' needs.

Be renewed:  As Jesus broke the doctors of the law from rigidity, the Spirit shakes the Church to lay attachments aside.  Don't be afraid of renewal.  The Church always needs renewal; she renews herself “firm in faith, stable, steadfast, in hope.”  Renewal entails sacrifice and courage to respond better to God's call.  The Lord invites us to reflect on regulations when our following him is at stake; when his wounds and cries for justice call us and demand responses of non-violence, reconciliation, and peace.

Get involved, even if it seems you're getting dirty.  As David entered the Temple when he was hungry and Jesus' disciples ate grain in the field, so are we called to be brave.  Help the hungry be satiated by God.  Don't put up “do not enter” signs or claim ownership of something not ours.  The Church is God's, not ours; he owns temple and field; everyone has a place and is invited to find nourishment here.  We simple servants can't prevent this encounter; “give them something to eat.”  Slave of the slaves forever” Peter Claver understood this; he knew he couldn't remain indifferent to suffering and had to alleviate it.  Form missionary disciples, disciples who can see, judge, and act like Jesus, as in the Aparecida document.  Remain steadfast and free in Christ; manifest him in all you do; take up his path with all your strength, know him, let him call and teach you, and proclaim him with joy.

At Hogar San José:  So many children suffer unjustly, innocent victims of evil.  Baby Jesus was a victim of hatred and persecution; he had to run away with his family, leaving country and home, to escape death.  Today children, Jesus’ favorites, are mistreated, denied the right to live peacefully and joyfully, and denied hope.  But Jesus never abandons them.   This “home” is a sign of Jesus’ love for you and his desire to be close to you; he does it through the care of the good people with you, who make this place a home and loving family. 

This home is named after St. Joseph, who did all God told him to do.  As he protected the Holy Family, so is he defending and caring for you.

Caregivers, never forget the love that sees Jesus present in the smallest and weakest, and the duty of bringing children to Jesus.  May Joseph's example inspire and help you care for these little ones, the future of Colombian society, the world, and the Church, so they may grow in wisdom and grace....

    Wordle: Readings 9/7/14
  • Ez 33:7-9  I've appointed you watchman; when you hear me say anything, warn them.  If I tell the wicked, “You shall die,” and you don't speak out, I'll hold you responsible for their death, but if you warn them and they refuse to turn from their way, they'll die but you'll save yourself.
  • Ps 95:1-2, 6-9  "If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts."  Sing to the Lord; Come to him with thanksgiving, bowing in worship; he is our God, we the people he shepherds.
  • Rom 13:8-10  Love one another; the one who loves has fulfilled the law.  The commandments are summed up in “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” 
  • Mt 18:15-20  “If your brother sins against you, tell him privately.  If he listens, you've won him over; otherwise, go with others.  If he doesn't listen, tell the church.  If he still refuses to listen, treat him as a Gentile or a tax collector.  What you bind/loose on earth shall be so in heaven.  If two of you pray for and agree about anything, my Father shall grant it.  Where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in their midst.”
  • Creighton:  Today's psalm calls us to sing to the Lord and warns us against hardening our hearts.  Hard heartedness keeps us from joy, repentance, and loving others and ourselves.  Christ lives in and among us so we may more easily overcome hardheartedness and be joyful, loving, and forgiving!  If we accept the Lord is our salvation, we can come into his presence with thanksgiving and joy!  If we accept we're God's people, we can be grateful and joyful.  Joy is deeper than happiness; it's about our souls.  Joyful people don't harden their hearts to God; they're open-hearted, grateful, redeemed sinners.  We open our hearts to hear the good news, then sing joyfully to the Lord, come into his presence with thanksgiving, bow before the Lord, and hear his voice.
  • One Bread, One Body:  Ask the Lord for the love and courage to correct others, after we repent and forgive.  "If someone is detected in sin, gently set him right, trying to avoid falling into temptation yourself.  Carry one another's burdens and fulfill the law of Christ."
  • Passionist:  We're all connected, all God's children called to live the Gospel.  I have a responsibility to defend those who don’t have privileged status.  I want to stand up for those who need healthcare, food, housing, education, and work.  I want a government that upholds the dignity of all people and of the earth.  We must follow Jesus Christ, speaking out when we see injustice, oppression, evil.  If we don't, we'll die for the evil we didn't call out.  The more we stay silent as evils emerge, the more they'll take over and affect us too.  Our nation is on the verge of changing our identity, values, beliefs, and system of government; they're hard to get back.  Jesus did, spoke out, witnessed, and taught.  He spoke truth to the powerful even when they didn’t want to listen. He didn’t stop in the face of trials.  He stayed true to God's message of love, compassion, and the worth of every person, the common good, healing, and inclusion till he was killed.  We must not let death defeat us; God didn't.  We must be peaceful but not silent.  May we collaborate to create just laws and claim victory together.  God holds us accountable for our actions and inactions.  Answer God's call.
  •  Don't brood over an offense; it poisons you and makes it harder to go to the offender.  Seek help of others and then the community to restore the relationship.  Do I seek God's help seek to win them over?

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