July 23, 2019

July 23

July 23, 2019:  Tuesday, 16th week, Ordinary Time

See about a dozen connections with today?
Legend below

For the gospel
For 1st reading and canticle
  • Ex 14:21—15:1  Moses stretched out his hand, and the Lord turned the sea into dry land.  The Israelites marched in, with a wall of water on both sides.  The Egyptians followed into the sea, but the Lord cast upon them a glance that threw them into panic, he clogged their wheels, and they sounded the retreat.  The Lord told Moses, “Stretch out your hand, that the water may flow back upon the Egyptians.”  He did, the sea flowed back, the Lord hurled the Egyptians into its midst, and they all drowned.  Thus the Lord saved Israel from their power.  When Israel saw the Egyptians dead, they believed in the Lord and his servant Moses and sang to the Lord....
  • Ex 15:8-10, 12, 17  "Let us sing to the Lord; he has covered himself in glory."  The waters congealed, and the enemy boasted, “I'll overtake and despoil them!”  But when your wind blew, the sea covered them and they sank....
  • Mt 12:46-50  “Jesus, your mother and your brothers are asking to speak with you.” / “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?  Here are my mother and my brothers.  Whoever does my Father's will is my brother, and sister, and mother.”
  • CreightonToday's readings show God’s special attention to his people.  In the 1st reading, God clears the path for the Israelites and subdues those in the way; in the gospel, Jesus shows acceptance and closeness to believers, extending beyond ethnicity or social status.  Lord, grant me perseverance in times of doubt and frustration.  Help me accept and welcome those I perceive as different.  Thank you for helping me find ways out of difficult situations.
  • One Bread, One Body"Problem areas":  Where's the Red Sea in your life?  Where must you make an act of faith and leave the enemy behind?  Stretch out the hand of faith and put your foot in the water,  Our Savior, whose love is everlasting, didn't bring us this far to leave us; he is the Way.  When the Red Sea is before you, the devil behind you, and the mountains around you, rejoice; Jesus is the way into the promised land.  "Nothing is impossible with God."  If you're being pushed into a sea of problems, Jesus will either part the waters or have you walk on them.  Problems are just occasions for God to manifest His love.
    St. Bridget of Sweden
  • PassionistIn the Gospel, Jesus indicates that in him we're sisters and brothers.  As God saved the Israelites by parting the water, God saved the world in Christ.  As the waters drowned the Egyptians but freed the Israelites, may we let God's love wash over us and set us free from hatred, fear, and divisions, free to see each other as sisters and brothers.  And may we work towards the freedom of all.
  • DailyScripture.net"Who are my brothers and sisters?"  Jesus used the occasion of today's gospel to point to our relationship with God and those who belong to God.  God's love is consistent, unwavering, unconditional, unrelenting, and unstoppable.  He created us to be united with him and share in his love.  He made us in his image, free to choose what's good, loving, and just and reject what's contrary to his love and justice.  Jesus challenged his followers, even his relatives, to recognize God as the source of all relationships.  God wants our relationships to be rooted in his love and goodness.  An early martyr said "a Christian's only relatives are the saints."  Jesus' disciples enter into a new family, one of "saints" on earth and in heaven.  Our adoption as God's children transforms our relationships and requires loyalty to God first and his kingdom of justice and peace....
    • Philip Evans (“I die for God and religion’s sake; and I think myself so happy that if I had many lives I would willingly give them all for so great a cause”) and John Lloyd, priests, martyrs
Dress legend
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Moses stretched out his hand over the sea; "the sanctuary your hands established" (1st reading, psalm); Jesus stretched out his hand toward his disciples (gospel)
  • 'Abacus' tie pin:  The Red Sea was 'divided'  (1st reading)
  • 'Clef' pin:  "I will sing to the Lord" (1st reading, psalm); the Red Sea was 'cleft' in two (1st reading :-)
  • 'Horses' tie, 'chariot' tie pin:  Water covered Pharaoh's horses, chariots, and charioteers  (1st reading, psalm)
  • 'Sword' tie bar:  "I will draw my sword"  (psalm)
  • 'Alps' pin:  "You planted them on the mountain of your inheritance" (psalm)
  • 'Mary' and 'people' pins:  "Your mother and brothers are outside" (gospel)
    • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

    June 13, 2019

    Anthony of Padua

    June 13, 2019:  St. Anthony of Padua, Priest and Doctor

    See over a dozen connections with today?
    Legend below

    For 1st reading
    For Psalm 85
    Pope Francis
    To skaters:  All sports are in fact a cause and an expression of the joy of exercising, being together, being alive, and receiving God's gifts.  Skating offers an exhilarating experience of life and freedom of movement, plus training in discipline, teamwork, and pursuing excellence.  And the sport is inclusive, erasing social and age barriers.
    Managers and trainers, guide young people; help them mature as productive members of the larger community.  The respect, courage, altruism, balance, and self-control learned in sport are preparation for success in life.  Sport is meant to be at the service of humanity.
    World Day of the Poor message (for 11/17)
    • 2 Cor 3:15—4:1, 3-6  When Moses is read, a veil lies over the Israelites' hearts, but when you turn to the Lord, the veil is removed.  Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there's freedom.  We who gaze on the Lord's glory are transformed into his image.  We preach Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your slaves for his sake.  God has shone in us to bring his glory to light.
    • Ps 85:9ab, 10-14  "The glory of the Lord will dwell in our land."  God proclaims peace to his people.   His salvation is near to those who fear him.  Kindness and truth shall meet, justice and peace kiss....
    • Mt 5:20-26  “Unless your righteousness surpasses the scribes', you won't enter the Kingdom.  Your ancestors heard, "You shall not kill," but I tell you, whoever is angry will be liable to judgment.  If you bring your gift to the altar and recall your brother has anything against you, leave your gift, be reconciled, then return and offer your gift.  Settle with your opponent quickly, or else you'll be imprisoned till you've paid the last penny.”
    "Justice and peace kissing" gallery
    Justice and peace/ Giaquinto
    Psalm 85/ Swanson
    The kiss of peace and justice/ de la Hyre
    Justitia et pax osculantur/ Dell'Orto
    • Word of the day:  Raqa (rēqā’ or rēqâ, Aramaic, from gospel):  probably 'blockhead' or 'imbecile,' a term of abuse.
    • Creighton:  Today’s gospel encourages us to forgive, show mercy and justice, and strive for unity in and with Christ. Jesus speaks, quoting from the Commandments: “you've heard it said, 'You shall not kill,' but I say whoever is angry with his brother will be liable to judgement.” Jesus encourages us to reconciliation:  if I'm bringing my gift to the altar and remember my brother has something against me, I must be reconciled with my brother before offering God my gift.  The antidote to lack of unity is the person of Christ.  Each of us is unique and blessed by our uniqueness; in that blessing comes the invitation to seek unity in him.  We need to be proud of our unity with faithful people worldwide.
    • One Bread, One Body:  "The Spirit unveils the Word":  When I read Scripture after my Life in the Spirit seminar, God's Word came alive in a new way; the Spirit had removed the veil that was obscuring my understanding. Jesus and the Spirit are still opening my eyes.  Turn to the Lord and beg for a new outpouring of the Spirit.  When we turn, the veil is removed.  The Spirit wrote the Bible.  We understand a book more clearly when we sit with the author and ask what they meant when writing.  How much more can we understand God's Word with the Spirit's inspiration!
    • Passionist:  In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus presents his teaching with divine authority, to the astonishment of the scribes and Pharisees, who equated righteousness with outward observance of the law.  Jesus called his disciples to go further, to deeper righteousness, deeper obedience to God’s laws.  The disciples had to understand and obey God's law more deeply in order to enter into God's kingdom.  Jesus gave examples of the necessary behavior.  Not murdering isn't good enough.  Sin grows like a seed.  Remove the attitudes and actions that lead to killing, and every obstacle to unconditional love.  If you're angry, leave your sacrifice at the altar and seek reconciliation.  If you're in a feud, settle and avoid the risk of divine judgment against you.  Let's not proclaim the good news of God's kingdom, unless the news penetrates us and we obey the commandments of love and forgiveness.
    • DailyScripture.net:  "Be reconciled...":  God warned Cain:  Why are you angry?  Sin is at the door, but you must master it.  Sin grows as a seed in our heart and chokes us if not uprooted.  Jesus addressed the issue of keeping the commandments with his disciples.  Jesus:  unless evil desires are eradicated, we'll be corrupted.  He points to forbidden anger, selfish, long-lived anger that nurses grudges.  The antidote is mercy, kindness, and forbearance from a loving, forgiving heart.  In the cross we see the supreme example of love and forgiveness.  Only God's love and grace can free us from the tyranny of pride and revenge.  Am I quick to be reconciled?  Through the Spirit may we overcome evil with good, hatred with kindness, and injury with pardon.
    May I be no one's enemy; may I be the friend of what's eternal.  May I never quarrel: and if I do, may I be reconciled quickly.  May I love, seek, and attain only what's good.  May I wish for the happiness of all and envy none.  May I never rejoice in the ill fortune of one who's wronged me.  When I've done or said what's wrong, may I never wait for others' rebuke but rebuke myself and make amends.  May I win no victory that harms my opponent or me.  May I reconcile friends who are angry with each other.  May I never fail a friend in danger.  May I soften the pain of those in grief.  May I respect myself.  May I keep tame what rages within me.  May I be gentle, never angry with people because of circumstances.  May I never discuss who's wicked and what they've done, but know good people and follow in their footsteps.  (Eusebius)
    • Universalis:  Anthony of Padua, monk, Franciscan friar; missionary to Africa, Italy, and beyond; theologian, "hammer of heretics," "evangelical doctor," "lost and found" patron; see also Wikipedia.
    Dress legend
    • 'Dove' pin:  Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there's freedom (1st reading)
    • 'Jesus' pin:  We preach Jesus Christ as Lord (1st reading)
    • 'Street light' tie bar:  God who said, Let light shine... (1st reading)
    • 'Heart' pin:  ...has shone in our hearts... (1st reading); love your neighbor (gospel)
    • 'Peace sign' tie bar:  Justice and peace shall kiss (psalm); make peace (gospel)
        • 'Joker' tie:  Whoever says, 'You fool' will be liable to Gehenna (gospel)
        • 'Scales of justice' pin:  Justice and peace shall kiss (psalm); settle with your opponent, or the judge and guard will imprison you... (gospel)
        • 'Penny' button:  ...till you've paid the last penny (gospel)
        • Doctor's office' tie (if my "joker" tie hadn't trumped it):  Anthony of Padua, 'Doctor' of the Church
        • White and green shirt:  White for St. Anthony, green for Ordinary Time

        June 12, 2019

        June 12

        June 12, 2019:  Wednesday, 10th week, Ordinary Time

        How many connections with today can you fine?
        Legend below
        For Psalm 99

        Communion and ‘freedom from oneself’ are part of the Christian's DNA.  Christ’s choice of twelve Apostles shows the continuity between the Church and the people of Israel.  After Judas defected, the Apostles knew another had to take his place.  So the community joined in prayer to discern the Lord’s choice.

        Jesus told his disciples they'd be known by their love for one another and explained that their unity was their first form of witness to the Lord and his love.  Judas preferred death, but the eleven chose life and salvation and took on the responsibility of passing it on.  It became necessary to reconstitute the Twelve after the wound Judas's abandonment created.  This inaugurated community discernment, seeing reality through God's eyes, in the perspective of unity and communion.  Communion overcomes division, isolation, and prioritizing private space.

        In Acts, the Twelve manifest the style of the Lord.  Rediscover the beauty of witnessing to the Risen One, going beyond self-referential attitudes, not keeping God's gifts to ourselves, not yielding to mediocrity.  Ask the Lord to help you bear witness to God's love by our unity, which triumphs over pride and divisiveness.

        Yodh (animate)
        • 2 Cor 3:4-11  We have confidence through Christ toward God, who's qualified us as ministers of a new covenant, one of the spirit who gives life.  The ministry of the Spirit will be glorious....
        • Ps 99:5-9  "Holy is the Lord our God."  Extol and worship the Lord.  Many called upon him, he answered, and they heard the law he gave.
        • Mt 5:17-19  “I came not to abolish the law and prophets but to fulfill them.  Whoever breaks the least commandment will be called least in the Kingdom, but whoever obeys and teaches the commandments will be called great.”
        • Yodh (Yud)the "smallest letter" of the Hebrew alphabet, is the first letter of God's Name; its top spur is "the smallest part of a letter" (Mt 5:18).  Not the smallest letter or part will disappear from the Word.  God uses the small to demonstrate his power.  More
        • Creighton:  Paul knew the law and how easily it is to be enslaved to it.  Rules have their place, help us live our lives, and point us to invisible realities, but they often hinder our growth, understanding, and compassion.  But if they hinder compassion and mercy, they're no longer useful.  The emphasis on fulfillment doesn't negate the sacrifices Hebrews made on behalf of the law.  Jesus emphasized that he wasn't nullifying or destroying the law but fulfilling and completing it.  The ceremonies, sacrifices, restrictions, and other features of the Old Covenant were only a shadow of good things coming,  not the realities themselves.  Rediscover the law in the person of Jesus, its perfect fulfillment, who personifies the meaning behind the law.
          Tetragrammaton (YHWH)
          starting with Yodh
          (remember Hebrew is right-to-left)
        • One Bread, One Body:  "Your credit rating":  We quickly shift from giving God the credit to taking the credit ourselves.  Our perspective is wrong:  we ask God to help us instead of asking God for the privilege of helping him. "When you've done all you've been commanded to do, say, 'We're useless servants; we've just done our duty'" We owe everything to God. "Everything is grace."  "Owing to God's favor, salvation is yours through faith.  It's God's gift, not your own doing or a reward for anything you accomplished, so don't pride yourself on it."  "Every worthwhile gift... comes from above."  "Let the last word be,  He is all in all!  Praise him..."
        • Passionist:  "The letter brings death, but the Spirit gives life.”  The Holy Spirit brings us to new life in Christ.  Paul was overwhelmed with the excitement of following Christ. Though he had been a servant of the law, once he encountered Christ, he knew what a difference the new law and the Spirit could make and eager to share it.  Some people who find the Lord slip back into old ways, but Paul remained a new man forever.  In the gospel, Jesus also addressed the relationship between the old law and the new.  Jesus says he's not denying the law and the prophets but fulfilling them.  Am I alive in the Spirit, eager to live the faith Christ gave me?  Will the way I live my faith reveal the joy of discipleship and life in the Spirit?
        • DailyScripture.net:  "Great are those who teach and obey the commandments":  Jesus' loved and meditated on God's law.  "The law" referred to the 10 commandments, the Pentateuch/Torah, or God's whole teaching to his people; Jews also used it to describe the oral law to which scribes added more than God intended.  Jesus made it clear God's commandments must be fulfilled.  God's law of grace, love, and freedom flows from his love, goodness, and holiness.  Jesus taught reverence for God, the Lord's Day, parents, life, property, oneself, and others.  Respect for God's commandments teaches us love of God and neighbor.  God gives us grace to love, forgive, think, and act like him.  We must love his commandments and hate wrongdoing.  The Spirit writes God's law on our hearts, gives us wisdom and understanding, helps us in our weakness, strengthens us in temptation, and transforms us into the likeness of Christ....
        Dress legend
        • DISC lanyard, DISC 2003 T-shirt:  DISC 2019 in progress
        • 'J' tie bar (10th letter, like י):  "Not the smallest letter will pass from the law..."; Jesus is fulfillment of the Law and the Prophets (gospel); the 'letter' brings death,... (1st reading)
        • 'Dove' pin:  ...but the Spirit gives life (1st reading)
        • 'Stone' tie pin:  The ministry of the Spirit will be more glorious than the ministry of death carved on stone  (1st reading)
        • 'Phone' tie bar:  They 'called' on the Lord, and he answered (psalm)
        • Tie with 'clouds':  The Lord spoke from the pillar of cloud (psalm)
        • 'Tablet' pin (oops; forgot):  I came to fulfill, not abolish, the law...  (gospel) 

        June 11, 2019


        June 11, 2019:  St. Barnabas, Apostle

        See 17 connections with today?
        Legend below

        For Psalm 98
        For the gospel
        Pope Francis homily

        We're called to serve and love others as God has done with us.  We can't remain stationary; our way of life impels us to hit the road, always.  Jesus has given us the mission to proclaim the kingdom of heaven, cure the sick, raise the dead, cleanse lepers, and drive out demons.  Christian life is for service.  It saddens us to find Christians who once served but later make use of God's people, harming them.

        You can't buy salvation; God saves us free of charge.  As God has done with us, so we are to do with others.  The Lord is full of gifts for us; he only asks for an open heart.  When we pray ‘Our Father,’ we open our heart.  Often when we need a grace, we say, ‘I'll fast, do penance, pray a novena…’  But be careful:  do it to open your heart so grace may enter, not to ‘buy’ grace.

        God’s gifts are free, but a closed heart can't receive such love.  Don't bargain with God.  Give freely.  We always run the risk of slipping up on the payment question, even when praying, as if we need to bribe the Lord.  No!  I make a promise, to expand my heart to receive what's already waiting, free.  This relationship will help us to have rapport with others, in witness, service, and pastoral work.  Preach and serve, but don't use others.  Give what you've freely received.  May our life be permeated by this openness, so God's gratuitousness may enter.

        (Thanks, WordArt and Clipart-library)
        • Acts 11:21b-26; 12:1-3  A great number turned to the Lord.  News reached Jerusalem, and they sent Spirit- and faith-filled Barnabas, who saw God's grace, rejoiced, and encouraged them to be faithful; more were added to the Lord.  He brought Saul back to Antioch; for a year they met with the Church and taught many.  The Spirit said, “Set apart Barnabas and Saul for the work I've called them to....”
        • Ps 98:1-6  "The Lord has revealed to the nations his saving power,"  done wondrous deeds, won victory, made his justice known, and remembered his kindness and faithfulness.  Sing joyful praise to the Lord with harp, trumpets, and horn!
        • Mt 5:13-16  “You're the salt of the earth, but if salt loses its taste, it's no longer any good.  You're the light of the world.  People put lamps on stands to give light to all.  Shine your light so others may see your good deeds and glorify your Father.”
        • Creighton:  The 1st reading starts, “In those days,” a phrase denoting separation between then and now.  If the time between the existence of water and the present were compressed into a single year, Jesus lived on earth about 14 seconds ago.  We can feel disconnected from our past, but we may not be as disconnected as we think....
        • One Bread, One Body:  "Name change":  Joseph's name was changed to Barnabas ("son of encouragement") because he was such an encouragement through his words and finances.  For a Jew, "Joseph" referred to Joseph from Genesis, the dreamer his brothers sold into slavery who became responsible for the survival of Egypt and the rest of the Middle East during a famine.  His story was one of recovery of freedom, family, and food; he helped others survive.  Barnabas was a builder of the kingdom, recovering from the past, building the future, breaking ground, acting (not merely reacting) in faith, attacking the gates of hell, not just playing defense. He was not only reacting in faith but acting in faith.  We too need a name change, from crisis intervention to evangelization, survival to revival, avoiding defeat to claiming victory.
        • Passionist:  Barnabas was an encourager.  The Jerusalem Church, needing someone to send to Antioch, dispatched Barnabas.  Once he arrived, he encouraged them to remain true to the Lord.  Barnabas was a friend.  Many feared and shunned Paul, the former Christian persecutor, but Barnabas befriended him and invited him to join him in his Antioch mission.  Barnabas was compassionate.  Barnabas, take us to Antioch with you.  Teach us how to encourage those who want to know the Lord.  Introduce us to those who feel shunned and lonely.  Show us how to be compassionate to the discouraged.  Show us how to reveal others' potential.  Show us how to be a compassionate encourager and friend, good, and filled with the Spirit and faith.
          St. Barnabas
        • DailyScripture.net:  "Salt of the earth, light of the world":  Jesus used ordinary images to convey extraordinary truths that transform us.  Salt was a valuable commodity.  People traded with it, and it flavored and preserved food.  Jesus used the image of salt to describe the transforming effect of God's work and how the Spirit wants to work through us to bring God's power and blessing to others.  As salt purifies, preserves, and flavors our food, we disciples of Jesus are 'salt' for human society.  The Lord wants us to help purify, preserve, and spread the flavor of God's kingdom of justice, peace, and joy in the Spirit."
        Salt was put into ovens to intensify the heat, then when no longer useful, thrown onto the ground where it would get stepped on and swept away.  The Lord wants us to preserve our "saltiness" through virtuous living and rejection of sin, for our sake and others'.  We're called to be "the aroma of Christ to God among those being saved and among those perishing."  May we let the fragrance of Christ's love, truth, and holiness permeate every area of our life...
        Jesus also used the image of light to illustrate God's transforming work.  Lamps enable people to see and work in the dark and avoid stumbling.  Light also symbolized God's beauty, truth, and goodness of God.  "In his light we see light ." "His word is a lamp that guides us."  God illumines our darkness and fills us with spiritual light, joy, and peace.  As natural light enables one to see, so the light of Christ shines in believers and enables us to see God's kingdom.  Our mission is to bear the light of Christ so others may see the truth of the gospel and be freed from sin and deception....
        Dress legend
        • 'Lights' tie, 'street light' tie bar:  You are the light of the world; shine before others, as lighted lamps give light to all (gospel)

        • 'Feet' pin:  Flat salt is good for nothing but to be trampled underfoot (gospel)

        • 'Alps' pin:  A city set on a mountain can't be hidden (gospel)

        • 'Heart' tie pin:  Barnabas encouraged them to remain faithful to the Lord in firmness of heart (1st reading);
        • 'Dove' tie pin:  Barnabas was filled with the Spirit (1st reading)
        • 'Abacus' tie pin:  A large number was added to the Lord....  They taught a large number... (1st reading)
        • 'Phone' tie bar:  In Antioch the disciples were first 'called' Christians (1st reading)
        • 'Hands' pin:  ...then laid hands on Barnabas and Saul...  (1st reading); the Lord's right hand won victory (psalm)
        • 'Olympics' pin:  All the ends of the earth have seen God's salvation (psalm)
        • 'Angel with trumpet,' 'horn' pins:  With trumpets and the sound of the horn,... (psalm)
        • 'Musical notes with "joy"' tie pin:  ...sing joyfully before the Lord (psalm);  Barnabas rejoiced at God's grace (1st reading)
        • 'Scales of justice' pin:  The Lord has revealed his justice (psalm)
        • Red shirt for feast of apostle Barnabas