July 7, 2018

July 7

July 7, 2018:  Saturday, 13th week, Ordinary Time

  • Tie with grapes and other fruits, 'alps' pin (oops; forgot the mountains):  The juice of grapes shall drip down the mountains.  They'll plant vineyards and drink the wine, set out gardens and eat the fruits (1st reading); people put new wine into fresh, not old, skins (gospel)
  • 'Peace sign' tie bar:  The Lord speaks of peace to his people (psalm)
  • 'Scales' pin:  Justice shall walk before him (psalm)
  • The above two placed together:  Justice and peace shall kiss (psalm)
  • '?' tie pin:  "Why do we and the Pharisees fast, but not your disciples?" (gospel)
  • Cloth in shirt:  No one patches an old cloak with a piece of unshrunken cloth (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

Pope Francis
At Bari ecumenical prayer meeting:  Peace!  is today's cry.  We have no right to say, “Am I my brother’s keeper?”  Indifference kills; we oppose it.  We want to give a voice to the voiceless.  The Middle East has been covered by clouds of war, violence, destruction, occupation, fundamentalism, forced migration, and neglect, amid the complicit silence of many.  It has become a land of people who leave their own land behind.  A Middle East without Christians would not be the Middle East.
With the lamp before St. Nicholas, let us kindle a flame of hope.  Christians are the light of the world not only when everything is bright but also when they refuse to accept encircling gloom, feeding the wick of hope with the oil of prayer and love.  When we pray and stretch out our hands to others, the Spirit of unity and of peace leaps into flame.  Implore God on behalf of the little ones, the simple ones, the wounded; beg, “Let there be peace!”
After Bari ecumenical meeting:  Jesus and Christianity came from the Middle East.  He asked his disciples to put weapons away.  We must give ourselves like he did, not flee or take to the sword.  May we find our safety and consolation in him alone, and make him known.
Peace must be cultivated in the parched soil of conflict and discord, via listening and dialogue.  May signs of power yield to the power of signs as people open themselves to dialogue and others' ideas.  Let there be an end to the few profiting from the sufferings of many!  For the sake of the children, who have looked at rubble instead of schools and heard explosions rather than the happy din of playgrounds, may the long and work for peace.  May the Middle East be an ark of peace, not war.  May peace be on you, justice dwell within your borders, and God’s blessing rest on you’

  • Am 9:11-15  I will rebuild David's fallen hut.  All the nations shall bear my name.  The plowman shall overtake the reaper, and the vintager, the sower.  The juice of grapes shall drip down the mountains.  I'll restore my people; they shall rebuild and inhabit their ruined cities, plant vineyards and drink the wine, set out gardens and eat the fruits.
  • Ps 85:9ab, 10-14  "The Lord speaks of peace to his people."  His salvation is near to all who fear him.  Kindness and truth shall meet; justice and peace shall kiss.  Truth shall spring from the earth and justice from heaven.  The Lord will give his benefits...
  • Mt 9:14-17  John's disciples / Jesus:  “Why do we fast but not your disciples?” / “Wedding guests don't mourn when the groom is there, but when he's taken away, they'll fast.  If you patch an old cloak with new cloth, the tear worsens.  If you put new wine into old skins, the wine spills and the skins are ruined.  New wine, fresh skins!”
    New wine, fresh skins!
  • Creighton:  Amos prophesies that the Lord will create a new order in which God's people will be restored to the earth and their homes and rebuild their lives.  God wants us all to live in peace and justice, but it seems so hard to achieve.  How do we learn to live in peace, kindness, truth, and justice?  We must learn to care for our common home and for others.
We can't follow Jesus by putting new wine into old skins.  To follow Jesus, we and our relationships must be transformed.   Salvation isn’t just restoring what was taken unjustly from us; it's working toward that restoration for others.  It's not about following old rules better but about living in new, better ways of peace and justice.  May we hear God's voice and let it transform us....
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Ruins":  Many people and things are in ruins:  marriages, families, ministries, neighborhoods, cities, finances, lives....  Humanly, it is impossible to raise up these ruins, but "nothing is impossible with God."  The Lord will raise up the ruins.  "The foundations from ages past you shall raise up; they'll call you 'repairer of the breach,' 'restorer of ruined homesteads.'"  We can be part of the fulfillment of the prophecies of Amos and Isaiah.  When you see ruins, hope, for we know the Lord's promises and faithfulness.  Be ready to tell the reason for your hope.
  • DailyScripture.net"The day will come when they will fast":  John's disciples were upset with Jesus', who didn't fast.  Fasting, prayer, and almsgiving were the three most important religious duties.  Jesus explained there's a time for fasting and one for celebrating.  To walk with Jesus is to experience a joy of relationship like that of a wedding feast, but we must also bear the cross of affliction and purification, humbly seeking the Lord, fasting, and mourning over sin.
Don't put new wine into old skins...
To warn his disciples not to close their minds, he used an image familiar to them:   New wine poured into skins was still fermenting; new skins could take the pressure, but old ones would burst.  May we find the right time and place for both old and new, not clinging to the past but open to the Spirit's new work.

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