January 31, 2018

John Bosco

January 31, 2018:  St. John Bosco, Priest

See 14 connections with today?
Legend below
    For the gospel

    For Psalm 32
    Pope Francis
    General Audience:  At Mass put yourself in silent openness to God’s saving message, fundamental to God’s dialogue with us.  God speaks to us in the Liturgy of the Word, and the Spirit who inspired Scripture opens our minds and hearts to that living word.  That’s why personal choices regarding the readings are unacceptable.  The Lord speaking to us.  If you chat during Mass, you miss God’s Word.  Once you receive his message, put it into practice.
    Since we don't live by bread alone but by every word that comes from God, we need to be open to, and challenged by, that word, in our lives as individuals and as a Church.  This is why we talk about the Liturgy of the Word as "the table of God’s Word" that the Lord sets to nourish our spiritual life as we listen to Scripture proclaim the mystery of Christ and call for our response.
    The Responsorial Psalm favors God’s dialogue with us as it sets the mood for the next reading.  Participate in it; it expresses and favors ecclesial communion and accompanies us in our faith journey.  We need good readers and psalmists, who practice; they favor an atmosphere of receptive silence.  The Lord’s Word lights our path and helps us avoid getting lost.  How could we undertake our earthly pilgrimage without being nourished and enlightened by God’s Word that resounds in the Liturgy?  Listen not only with your ears but with an open heart so the Word can enter you and make itself evident in your hands as you do good works.  Official summary
    • 2 Sm 24:2, 9-17  King David asked Joab for a census of Israel but then regretted it: “Lord, forgive me.”  Lord to David via Gad:  I offer you 3 years’ famine, 3 months' pursuit, or 3 days’ pestilence.”  David chose pestilence.  70,000 died before God stopped the angel.  David:  “Punish me and my kin, not them.”
    • Ps 32:1-2, 5-7  "Lord, forgive the wrong I have done."  Blessed is he whose fault is taken away; blessed the one in whose spirit there is no guile.  I acknowledged my sin, and you took away the guilt.  You will preserve and free me.
    • Mk 6:1-6  When Jesus taught, hearers took offense:  “Where did he get this wisdom?  What mighty deeds!  But isn't he the carpenter...?  Jesus:  “A prophet has no honor in his native place.”   Amazed at their lack of faith, he could only cure a few there.
    • Creighton:  Why should we be surprised Jesus had to get out of town to fulfill his mission?  God selects unlikely messengers from unpromising places for important tasks.  God often entrusts great deeds to people from obscure origins; he sends humble prophets and saints to communities everywhere.  Today’s gospel teaches us to respond to saints and prophets in our midst rather than reject them because they’re like us. If God can recognize them, so can we....
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Down for the count":  David committed serious sin, including adultery and arranging for murder. He counted the men fit for military duty, resulting in the deaths of 70,000 innocent people.  Counting can be a sin:  counting the times we've been offended can be a sin against love.  Counting money can be greed.  Counting people in your ministry can be pride.  Counting someone out may be unforgiveness or arrogance.  Counting our blessings can be a way of comparing ourselves to others.  May we count responsibly....
      Jesus in the synagogue at Nazareth/ Olsen
    • Passionist:  Jesus is in his home town to heal and share his message, but they were too closed and angry to accept him.  The reading foreshadows the end of his life:  praised and loved, then pushed away.  Yet God still pursued us, sending his son to call us home.  What love to care and forgive those who would kill you.  How has God pursued you, how have you turned your back, what led you to take his hand, and how have you been his hands, reaching out to others?
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Jesus marveled because of their unbelief":  People familiar to us can be our worst critics:  family, neighbors, co-workers....  Jesus was severely tested when he returned home as a rabbi with disciples.  He startled his audience with a seeming rebuke that no prophet can receive honor among his own.  The locals took offense at him and didn't listen; he was a mere workman, a carpenter, a layman with neither formal training nor distinguished family background.  Familiarity can breed contempt.  If people come together to hate and don't understand, all they'll see is their own point of view, and they won't love and accept others.  How do I treat those disagreeable to me?"
      • John Bosco, priest, cared for the young (night classes, boarding house...), founded the Salesians
    Dress legend
    • 'Abacus' tie pin:  David:  Take a census...; 70,000 killed in pestilence (1st reading)
    • 'Angel' pin:  God told angel not to destroy Jerusalem (1st reading)
    • 'Sheep' tie bar:  David:  I the shepherd sinned, not the sheep (1st reading)
    • 'Owl' tie pin:  "What kind of wisdom has been given to Jesus?" (gospel)
    • 'Hammer,' 'nail,' 'wood,' and '?' pins:  "Isn't he the carpenter?"  (gospel)
    • 'Hands' pin:  Jesus cured some people by laying hands on them (gospel); "stay your hand"; "let us fall by God's hand..." (1st reading)
    • 'Boundless mercy' button:  "...for he is most merciful" (1st reading)
    • 'Celebrate teaching' pin:  Jesus taught in the synagogue (gospel)
    • White shirt:  Color for St. John Bosco memorial

    January 30, 2018

    Jan. 30

    January 30, 2018:  Tuesday, 4th week, Ordinary Time

    See over a dozen connections with today?
    Legend below

    For 1st reading
    For Psalm 86
      • Mighty Lord/ Foley [needs banjo]; use free Spotify login
    For gospel
    Today's gospel is “a day in the life of Jesus.”  The two healing stories are a model for shepherds, bishops, and priests.  Jesus, surrounded by a crowd, is caring for the people, in their midst; he didn't post a sign with hours and fees.  This is his example of being a shepherd.
    The gospel describes Jesus as being pressed upon, but he doesn't retreat.  He shows the attitude of a true shepherd.  Priests and bishops are anointed with oil, but the true oil–interior oil–is the oil of closeness and tenderness.  The shepherd who doesn’t get close to people is lacking something.  A shepherd without tenderness will be rigid.  A shepherd like Jesus ends his day tired from doing good.  Lord, give our shepherds grace to walk with the people and be present for them with tenderness and closeness.
      Wordle: Readings 2-4-14
    • 2 Sm 18:9-10, 14b, 24-25a, 30-19:3  Absalom came up against David’s servants.  His hair got caught in a tree, and someone thrust pikes in his heart as he hung.  When David heard he died, he wept:  “My son Absalom!  If only I had died instead of you...!”
    • Ps 86:1-6  "Listen, Lord, and answer me."  You are good, forgiving, and kind.
    • Mk 5:21-43  Synagogue official Jairus asked Jesus to lay hands on his daughter to heal her; they went off.  A woman with hemorrhages touched Jesus' cloak and was cured.  "Who touched my clothes?"  She told him everything.  "Your faith has saved you; go in peace."  To Jairus:  "Your daughter has died."  Jesus, hearing the wailing:  "She's asleep."  He took her by the hand:  "Arise!"  She rose; all were astounded....
    • Creighton:  The 1st reading takes us into the conflict between David and his disloyal son.   Absalom fomented a rebellion against his father.  When one of David's soldiers killed Absalom, the entourage expected a celebration, not David's grief.  We marvel at how love can triumph over retribution, especially when we're on the receiving end, though sometimes we're the disloyal rebel.  David, who himself needs mercy, shows love and mercy.
    First, Jesus healed the woman who touched his cloak, then used the unexpected outcome as a teaching moment.  When he came to the daughter of Jairus, she was already dead.  Those present ridiculed Jesus and his assessment, but Jesus surprised them by raising her.  But how did they respond?  God's unexpected works can transform more than the direct beneficiaries, but that depends on their openness to change.  How do we need to adjust our thinking to leave room for God's work among us?  How do we perceive the effects of God's works?  We may need more love, mercy, and patience....
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The culture of death":  Nathan revealed to David that David's adultery would result in many deaths. The child conceived from his adultery died.  His son Amnon raped his sister Tamar, whose brother Absalom murdered him and started a war against his father with heavy casualties.  When David heard of Absalom's death, he wept....
    • Passionist:  “The shot heard 'round the world” (Concord Hymn) refers to the shot that began the Revolutionary War.  In Sunday’s gospel we heard of Jesus' cure of a man with an unclean spirit, “the cure heard 'round the world.”  Yesterday we heard of the cure of another possessed man; today we hear of the cure of a sick woman and the raising of a girl thought dead.  Jesus keeps healing, expelling demons, and giving life.  The battle continues against today's demons.  “Only light can drive out darkness.  Only love can drive out hate” (M. L. King, Jr.).  To drive out demons from ourselves, others, and our world, we need the light of humility, from which follows forgiveness.  We also need unconditional hospitality, welcoming all.  We need self-sacrificing love that brings joy to others.  The gospel message “heard ‘round the world” is that God wins and evil loses.
    • DailyScripture.net:  "The woman who took heart in Jesus": Helpless people weren't disappointed when they sought Jesus out.  Jesus gave hope in apparently hopeless situations; he hoped in God, spoke words of hope, and ignited faith.  Jesus showed his concern for others and readiness to heal and restore life.
    "Glory to you, Son of God; your healing power is proclaimed through the woman's suffering.  Through her they could see the divinity that can't be seen. Through his healing power his divinity became known.  Through her healing her faith was made manifest.  She caused him to be proclaimed and was honored with him.  For truth was proclaimed together with its heralds.  She was a witness to his divinity; he was a witness to her faith... He saw her hidden faith and gave her a visible healing" (Ephrem the Syrian)
    Jesus gave hope to Jairus who had the courage to go to him openly, inviting scorn.  People had no hope, but Jesus took his daughter by the hand and delivered her from death.  Peter Chrysologus:  "The man was a ruler of the synagogue, versed in the law.  He'd surely read that God created man.  He trusted his daughter would be recreated and restored by that same hand...." (Peter Chrysologus)
    Dress legend
    • 'Tree' pin:  Absalom's hair caught fast in the tree (1st reading)
    • 'Heart' pin:  Absalom's heart thrust with pikes (1st reading), Fathers' love for their children (1st reading, gospel)
    • 'Boundless mercy' pin:  "Have mercy on me..." (psalm)
    • 'Phone' tie bar:  "...for I call to you all day" (psalm)
    • 'Doctor's office' tie:  Healings of daughter of Jairus and woman with hemorrhage (gospel)
    • 'Boat' tie bar:  Jesus crossed in the boat (gospel)
    • 'Feet' pin:  Jairus fell at Jesus' feet (gospel)
    • 'Money bag' pin:  Hemorrhaging woman had spent all her money (gospel)
    • 'Peace sign' tie bar:  "Go in peace and be cured" (gospel)
    • 'Blood drop' pin:  Woman with hemorrhage (gospel)
    • 'Hands' pin:  Woman suffered at doctors' hands; "lay your hands on my daughter"; Jesus took her by the hand (gospel)
    • Clothes:  "If I just touch his clothes, I'll be cured"/"Who touched my clothes?" (gospel)
    • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

    January 29, 2018

    Jan. 29

    January 29, 2018:  Monday, 4th week, Ordinary Time

    See 17 connections with today?Legend below

    For gospel
    Pope Francis
    Homily:  David was a great man:  he overcame Goliath, and he didn't kill Saul when he could have.  But he was also an adulterer and arranged a murder.  Yet we venerate him as a saint because he recognized himself as a sinner, accepted forgiveness, repented, and let the Lord transform him.  In the 1st reading, David is humiliated by defeat, flight, and insult.  His ascent up the Mount of Olives foreshadows Jesus’ climb up Calvary to give life: he too was insulted and discarded.  Sometimes we think humility is to go quietly, perhaps head down, but it isn't; even pigs walk head down.  Humility isn't justifying yourself and trying to look good.  Fake humility neither saves nor guards the heart.  There's no true humility without humiliation; if you can't tolerate humiliation, you're not truly humble, even if you pretend to be.
    David and Jesus, both saints, burden themselves with sins and are humiliated.  There's always the temptation to counter slander and oppose whatever humiliates us, but they both said no.  The path is the one Jesus took and David foreshadowed:  bearing humiliation.
    There's no humility without humiliation.  Ask the Lord for humility, with humiliations.  And if you're brave, ask the Lord to send humiliations so you may be more like the Lord [Ignatius of Loyola, Spiritual Exercises 167].
    At conference on responsibility in the fight against anti-Semitism:  We're responsible when we can respond.  It's not only a question of analyzing the causes of violence but of being prepared to respond to them.

    Indifference:  We fight not only against hatred but even more fundamentally, indifference; indifference paralyzes and impedes us from doing right.  Indifference is a contagious virus in this time when we're connected with others but increasingly less attentive to them.
    Memory:  To recover our humanity, our understanding of reality, and apathy towards others, we need memory.
    Formation:  Memory is the key to accessing the future.  We're responsible to hand it on in a dignified way.  To foster a culture of responsibility, memory, and closeness, we need to educate young generations to struggle against hatred and discrimination, overcome past conflicting positions, and always to seek the other.

    Reforming Catholic higher edToday Pope Francis released Veritatis gaudium, updating Sapientia Christiana

    • 2 Sm 15:13-14, 30; 16:5-13  David, informed Israel is now loyal to his son Absalom, takes flight and weeps.  His kinsman Shimei curses and throws stones at him.  “God told him to curse; leave him alone.  Maybe God will make it up to me.”
    • Ps 3:2-7  "Lord, rise up and save me."  You, my shield, answer and sustain me.
    • Mk 5:1-20  Jesus / Gerasene with unclean spirit:  “Come out of him!” / “What have you to do with me, Son of the Most High?  Don't torment me!” / “What's your name?” / “Legion; we're many.  Send us into the swine.”  They entered the swine and drowned all 2,000.  All saw and were amazed.  “Announce all the Lord has done for you.”
    Archbishop Gomez at Archdiocesan assemblyOur journey has led us to this cross, where Jesus in his merciful love wants to draw near to each of us and go with us.  Every life must become a "cross-road," a "way of the cross," where we encounter Jesus as the disciples on the road to Emmaus did.  Like those disciples, sometimes we're distracted—wounded by life’s disappointments—and we can't recognize Jesus, but he does draw near.  Wherever we are, even lost or despairing, Jesus seeks us out.
    As Jesus comes to us today, give him your heart and invite him into your life, as the disciples did when they said, “Stay.”  Allow his words of love to burn in your heart.  Join your life to his in the Eucharist, to let him open your eyes to know him.  Take up your cross and walk behind Jesus, following him as he carries his cross.
    This cross symbolizes the national Encuentros sponsored by the Catholic bishops.  The Encuentro experience has inspired the faith of many and given us a sense of our responsibility to be leaders in the Church and in the new evangelization.  This is what this Fifth Encuentro is all about....  Let us answer our call to go tell everyone of our encounter with Christ, as the disciples at Emmaus did.
    Follow Jesus and bring people to a new encounter with him and God's mercy and love.  Reach out especially to those on the “peripheries”:  the homeless, immigrants, prisoners, the sick, the suffering, the child waiting to be born....  Let us walk together with Jesus and bring our nation and our world — to the new encounter with Jesus Christ.  Angelus News article
    • Creighton:  The man in the gospel was possessed, homeless, naked, screaming, crazy, bloody, likely smelly.  How would you have responded to him?  When he couldn't be tamed, he was chained, shunned, ignored, and marginalized.
    How is God calling us to respond to the "unlovable"?  Jesus saw beyond what the man was to what he could be and drew him to serve God's kingdom.  It's natural to love lovable people, but it takes the Holy Spirit's work in us for us to love the "unlovable."  Christ can change anybody once his love is shared and received.  May we manifest his love to those the world considers unworthy.  And do I accept Christ's love and believe he can change me, sinner that I am?
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Love the captives into Jesus":  Shimei behaved toward David like Satan behaves toward God's people, kicking him while he was low, trying to drive him out.  The Gerasenes likewise drove Jesus, a greater king, out.  People choose hell over God's kingdom because they don't know Jesus; they fear him more than the devil. The Gerasenes knew the devil's terror, but Jesus' power and love "terrorized" them more.  They chose the familiar terror over the "terror" of Jesus' love that would require them to change.  Today the thought of holy living brings terror to many:  forgiveness, chastity, generosity, discipleship....  Though many been captive in abuse, fear, and sin, they choose the familiar over the presumed terror of God's kingdom.  God has put you into their lives so they may know Jesus' loving mercy....
      Medieval illustration of Jesus healing the Gerasene
    • Passionist:  Words can lift someone up, heal, soothe, or harm.  Words are hard to take back once they leave our mouths.  David gives us an example of not reacting to words spoken out of anger.  Jesus’ healing of the demoniac gives us an example of how what needs to be said to one person may not help others.  “Where words are many, sin is not wanting; but those who restrain their lips do well.”  How do I use my words?
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Tell them how much the Lord has done for you":  A 'legion' is an army over 5,000 strong, capable of committing atrocities.  Our age has also witnessed mass destruction at the hands of possessed rulers and their armies.  God's word reminds us no destructive force can keep anyone from the peace God offers to those who seek him.  Jesus took pity on the man who was overtaken by a 'legion' of evil spirits.  After Jesus freed him, the people feared Jesus and begged him to leave, perhaps because the price for liberation was more than they wanted to pay.  Jesus is ready to free us from whatever binds us and keeps us from his love.  Are you willing to part with it?
    Dress legend
    • 'Blood drop' pin:  "The Lord has requited you for all the bloodshed..." (1st reading)
    • 'Crown' tie bar:  "...and given over the kingdom to your son Absalom." (1st reading)
    • 'Airplane' pin:  "Let us take flight" (1st reading)
    • 'Feet' pin:  David was walking barefoot (1st reading)
    • 'Dogs' tie:  “Why should this dead dog curse my lord the king?” (1st reading); “Legion is my name, for we are many (gospel, since there are many dogs on the tie)
    • 'Stone' tie pin:  Shimei throws stones at David and his officers (1st reading); demoniac bruised himself with stones (gospel)
    • 'Phone' tie bar:  When I call out to the Lord,... (psalm)
    • 'Alps' pin:  ...he answers me from his holy mountain (psalm)
    • 'JC' chain:  Jesus Christ expels Legion; nobody could restrain the possessed man, even with a chain (gospel)
    • 'Boat' tie bar:  Jesus got out of the boat, then got in (gospel)
    • 'Pigs' suspenders:  Jesus let the evil spirits enter into the swine (gospel)
    • '?' tie pin:  "What is your name?" (gospel)
    • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

    January 28, 2018

    4th Sun., Ordinary Time

    January 28, 2018:  Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

    For Psalm 95
    For future celebrations
    Pope Francis
    Homily:  Mary's presence in this temple makes it a home for us children.  We recognize the Church as home, where we find rest, consolation, protection, refuge.  Our ancestors have taught us to turn to Mary, to gather under her mantle.  Mary guards our faith, protects relationships, saves us in stormy weather, and preserves us from evil.  When she's in the home, the devil stays out.  When we pray to her, she answers promptly, just as she promptly went to Elizabeth in her time of need.
    We pray that Mary free us from danger.  Because the Lord knows we need shelter and protection, from the Cross Jesus entrusted John, the beloved disciple, and his future disciples, to his mother.  Like John, we must take Mary into our homes, inviting her into our homes, hearts, and lives.  If we're neutral or detached from our mother, we'll lose our identity as children.  May we make our Mother the guest of our daily life, the constant presence in our home, our safe haven.
    Angelus:  Today's gospel is inside the story described as the ‘day in Capernaum.’  When Jesus exorcises the demon, he's presented as a prophet powerful in word and in deed.  Those who witnessed the exorcism were amazed by his words; they didn't resemble what they were used to hearing.  He had a new teaching, given with authority.
    Christ’s authority was in word and deed.  The few words he addressed to the man were enough to obtain victory over Satan.  His power confirms the authority of his teaching.  He manifests God's project with words and works, revealing God's love with both preaching and acts of caring and relief of the sick, the needy, children, and sinners.
    Jesus is our Teacher, powerful in words and works; he communicates to us all the light that illumines our path and the strength to overcome difficulties, trials, temptations.  What a great grace to have recognized this powerful, good God!  May Mary, the woman of listening, help us to achieve silence within and around us, and so hear the authoritative word of her Son, who announces the meaning of our existence and frees us from every form of slavery.
    • Dt 18:15-20  Moses:  “God will raise up a prophet like me from among your kin, as you requested at Horeb; listen to him.  God:  'If a prophet speaks in my name an oracle I didn't command him to speak, he'll die.'”
    • Ps 95:1-2, 6-9  "If today you hear his voice, harden not your hearts."  Sing joyfully to the Lord, rock of our salvation.  Come with thanksgiving; bow in worship before the Lord our God who made us.  We're the flock he guides.  "Don't harden your hearts as in the desert where your fathers tested me though they'd seen my works."
    • 1 Cor 7:32-35  Be free of anxieties.  An unmarried man is anxious about how he may please the Lord, but a married man is divided, anxious about things of the world and how he may please his wife.  An unmarried woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, but a married woman is anxious about things of the world and how she may please her husband.  I tell you not to restrain you but so you may adhere to the Lord undistracted.
    • Mk 1:21-28  The Capernaum people were astonished at Jesus' teaching with authority.  Jesus rebuked a man with an unclean spirit; it convulsed him and came out.  “What?  Even unclean spirits obey him.”  His fame spread.
    • CreightonGod promised his people he'd speak directly to one of their kin like he speaks to Moses so they may hear and understand.  They'll hear God's word in their own language and culture.  Today it seems hard to be sure of God’s will; I'd love to hear directly from God.
    Even the demons listen to Jesus and obey.  He calls out and destroys the unclean spirit that recognizes Jesus, and the people are amazed.  Today it's harder to hear and understand God's voice, but not impossible. We can read it in Scripture, sense it in our conscience, and see it in creation. May we be alert and aware for God's voice around us.
    • One Bread, One Body:  "Cradle Catholics":  We must read the 2nd reading in context:  Paul believes Jesus will return soon shortly.  If "time is short," it's vital to convert "as many as possible" before Jesus returns.  Long-term endeavors like marriage and family could get in the way.  When Jesus didn't return in Paul's lifetime, the Church then realized its members needed to "make disciples" by bearing and rearing godly children.  In this context, married persons are essential to "the Lord's affairs."  Paul then realized God is so pleased by marriage that He considers it to be a reflection of his love for the Church.
    • Passionist:  The Lord makes it clear to his people that when Moses speaks God’s message, he will be blessed, but if he presumes to speak as a false prophet, he will have to answer for it.  The prophets paved the way for the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ.  The New Testament is filled with the accounts of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection.  Many followed the prophets' messages to become the good and holy people God created them to be.  Today we honor the prophets of our times:  some famous, others working side by side with us.  Remember and thank God for the prophets who have helped you become who you are today....
    • DailyScripture.net:  God’s word has power to set us free and transform us; when he commanded, even demons obeyed.  St. Augustine: "Faith is mighty, but without love it profits nothing.  Devils confessed Christ but lacked charity."  Faith works through love and abounds in hope.  Love orients us to God and the good of others created in his image.  Hope anchors our faith and purifies our desires.  Faith must be nourished with God's Word....
    Don't look; I forgot to take a picture...
    • 'Fire' pin:  You said, "Let us not again see this great fire" (1st reading)
    • 'Hearts' suspenders:  If you hear God's voice, don't harden your hearts (psalm)
    • 'Musical notes with "joy"' tie pin:  Sing joyfully to the Lord (psalm)
    • 'Rock' tie pin:  Acclaim the rock of our salvation (psalm)
    • 'Sheep' tie bar:  We're the flock the Lord guides (psalm)
    • 'Abacus' tie pin:  A married man is divided (2nd reading)
    • "Celebrate teaching" pin:  Jesus taught in the synagogue on the sabbath (gospel)