April 30, 2018

April 30

April 30, 2018:  Monday, 5th week, Easter

See more than a dozen connections with today?
Legend below

Pope Francis
Homily:  Children’s "contemplative curiosity" is healthy; seeking explanations for what they don't understand develops autonomy.  But gossip is bad curiosity; it dirties others and tells people things they have no right to know.  Children who go online curious come across ugly things.  Help them live in the virtual world and not become prisoners of their curiosity.
The apostles' curiosity in today's gospel was healthy; they wanted to know what would happen, and Jesus gave them certainty, promising the Spirit as companion on our journey to lead us to joy and keep us from making mistakes.  Pray for grace to discern between good and bad curiosity and to open your heart to the Spirit.
To Una vita rara:  Rather than focusing on the negative aspects of having a son with a chronic disease, you did something for him and others affected by a rare disease.  Your association's name says you know how to look at the positive.  That positive outlook is a ‘miracle’ of love. Love finds the good even in negative situations and is open to others and to creating solidarity.
Gaudete et exsultate nugget:  Blessed those who hunger and thirst for righteousness; they will be filled.”  Hunger and thirst are intense, involving our survival instinct.  Those who desire justice with such intensity will be satisfied, for justice will come.  We can help make it possible, even if we don't see the fruit of our efforts.
The world's justice is often marred, manipulated, or mired in corruption or daily quid pro quo politics.  Some follow the winners instead of fighting for justice.  Many suffer injustice, powerless while others enjoy the good life.  
The justice Jesus offers comes when we're just in our decisions, when we pursue justice for the poor and weak.  While 'justice' can mean faithfulness to God’s will, if we give the word too general a meaning, we can forget justice towards the most vulnerable:  “Seek justice, correct oppression; defend the fatherless, plead for the widow.”  Holiness is hunger and thirst for righteousness. [77-79]
  • Acts 14:5-18  Gentiles and Jews, with their leaders, tried to stone Paul and Barnabas, who realized it, fled, and continued to proclaim the Good News.  A cripple listened to Paul, who, seeing he had faith to be healed, called out, “Stand on your feet.”  Seeing him walking, the crowds cried out, “Gods have come down to us.”  The priest of Zeus brought oxen to offer sacrifice, but the Apostles shouted, “We're human like you and proclaim the good news to you so you may turn from idols to the living God....”
  • Ps 115:1-4, 15-16  "Not to us, O Lord, but to your name give the glory."  Our God is in heaven; their idols, peoples' handiwork.
  • Jn 14:21-26  “Whoever observes my commandments loves me and will be loved by my Father, and I'll love him and reveal myself to him.  Whoever loves me will keep my word, and we will make our dwelling with him....  The Advocate, the Holy Spirit the Father will send, will teach you everything and remind you of all I told you.”
    'Paraclete' (παράκλητος, 'advocate'),
    not 'parakeet' :-)
  • Creighton:  Today's gospel promises the Spirit.  Acts goes against how we might expect the Spirit to work; Paul and Barnabas fled from a hostile crowd, then faced an awkward situation after a cure where they were identified as Greek gods.
Two of the Spirit's gifts are fortitude and wisdom. Fortitude is courage in adversity, not strength of will.  Paul and Barnabas fled but didn't give up; they worked where they had greater impact.  How we understood past things affects how we understand things now:  the crowd interpreted Paul's actions in the religious context they knew....
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Taking instructions":  The Spirit instructed Paul and Barnabas to endure and flee persecution, proclaim the good news, and heal a cripple.  The Spirit instructs us about being witnesses for Christ, God's wisdom, what "eye has not seen,..." "what lies at the depths of God," the Church, vocations, parenting, work, lifestyle, repentance, forgiveness, death, eternal life, and Jesus' final coming.  May we be docile....
  • Passionist:  Before today's gospel Jesus had just washed his disciples' feet and begun a discourse on our relationship with God and one another.  Jesus wanted his disciples to believe he was the Way to God and to know that an Advocate, the Spirit, would guide them, remind them of his teachings, and give them new insights.  After Pentecost, the apostles were making paths by walking, creating new experiences of Church by believing, being faithful, doing, going out, preaching, teaching, and loving, never wavering.  If we're faithful to Jesus’ Word, surrendering our selfish ways, we're his disciples.  If we think we're more important than others, we're not his disciples.  Being his disciple takes vigilance, commitment, and prayer.  By following Jesus' Word, God dwells in us, and we receive grace and forgiveness to go beyond our weakness and go forward....

  • DailyScripture.net:  "If you love me, keep my word":  Jesus is preparing his disciples for his return to his Father, exhorting them to prove their love for him through their obedience to his word and promising them the instruction and consolation of the Spirit.  The Lord loves each of us as if there were only one of us to love (Augustine).  The Spirit helps us grow in knowledge of God and his love, enables us to experience God's love and be sure of his presence, and opens us to hear and understand God's word.  Holy Spirit, inflame me with love of God and his word.
Dress legend
  • 'Stone' tie pin:  They tried to stone Paul and Barnabas (1st reading)
  • 'Eyeball' tie pin:  Paul looked intently at the cripple (1st reading)
  • 'Feet' pin: “Stand up straight on your feet” (1st reading)
  • 'Walker' tie pin:  Lystra cripple, healed, began to walk about (1st reading)
  • 'Heart' pin:  "God filled you with nourishment and gladness for your hearts" (1st reading)
  • 'People' tie:  Barnabas and Paul:  "We're people, not gods" (1st reading)
  • 'Boundless mercy' pin:  Glory to you, Lord, because of your mercy and truth (psalm)
  • '?' tie pin:  Why should the pagans say, “Where is their God?”? (psalm)
  • Silver- and gold-colored accessories:  Their idols are silver and gold (psalm)
  • 'Dove' pin:  The Father will send the Spirit... (gospel)
  • 'Celebrate teaching' pin:   ...who will teach and remind you (gospel)
  • White shirt and socks:  Easter season

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