February 17, 2019

6th Sun., Ordinary Time

February 17, 2019:  Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

See a dozen connections with today?
Legend below
"Beatitunes" (gospel)
Psalm 1-inspired (also 1st reading theme)
Check out Ed Bolduc's blog
For next Sunday
Pope Francis

Angelus:  In the beatitudes Jesus opens his eyes to us, makes us see with his gaze, beyond appearances, beyond the surface, and teaches us to discern with faith.  Jesus declares blessed the poor, the hungry, the afflicted, and the persecuted and admonishes the rich whom people acclaim.  The "woes," to those doing well today, are to "awaken" them from the deception of selfishness and open them up to love.

Today's gospel invites us to reflect on the meaning of faith, trusting the Lord, who alone can give us the fullness we desire.  Many promise happiness, success, profit, and magical solutions.  It's easy to slip into idolatry, to replace God with an idol.  But Jesus opens our eyes to reality.  We're called to be happy, blessed, and become so when we put ourselves on the side of God, of his Kingdom, of what endures, when we recognize ourselves as needy before God, and, if, like and with him, we're close to the poor, the afflicted, and the hungry.

The Beatitudes warn us not to place our trust in transitory things.  The Lord helps us open our eyes, acquire a penetrating look at reality, and heal from the myopia the worldly spirit infects us with; he shakes us up and makes us recognize what really enriches us and gives us joy and dignity.

Pray for the Protection of Minors meeting:   All the Episcopal Conference Presidents will be at the meeting, as an act of pastoral responsibility in the face of an urgent challenge.  I want it to be an assembly of Pastors, a catechetical and working gathering, characterized by prayer and discernment.  The meeting will include plenary sessions, working groups, common prayer, testimonies, a penitential liturgy, and a closing Mass.  I'll be present for it all, and Fr. Federico Lombardi, SJ will moderate the plenary sessions.  The goal is that all Bishops clearly understand what they need to do to prevent and combat sexual abuse of minors.  Global problems can only be resolved with global responses.

    Today's gospel is from the Sermon on the "Plain"
  • Jer 17:5-8  Those who trust in human beings, who turn away from the Lord, are like barren bushes standing in waste, but those who trust and hope in the Lord are like trees planted beside water that stretch out its roots to the stream:  their leaves stay green, and they bear fruit.
  • Ps 1:1-4,6  "Blessed are they who hope in the Lord"; they're like trees planted near running water, yielding fruit, prospering, but the wicked are like chaff the wind drives away.  The Lord watches over the just.
  • 1 Cor 15:12,16-20  Christ has been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep.
  • Lk 6:17,20-26  "Blessed are you poor; God's kingdom is yours.  You hungry will be satisfied.  You who weep will laugh.  Rejoice when people hate, exclude, insult, and denounce you; your reward will be great in heaven.  But woe to you rich; you've received your consolation.  You who are filled now will be hungry.  You who laugh now will grieve...."
  • Creighton:  We prefer verdant tress, fertile soil, fruitful life, satisfaction blessing, comfort, approval, and laughter to barren bushes, parched lava, withering death, hunger, thirst, curses, mourning, rejection, and grieving, but we don't always get what we want.  Sometimes we choose not to fulfill a desire, or to sacrifice goods, to achieve a greater good; we're created with freedom to make such choices.  If we choose to sin, say by using the wrong means to attain some good, we cause trouble; it may seem easier, but it won't lead to true happiness.  Going against the current takes vigilance and courage.  We must discern by reference to eternal truths, not immediate consequences.  Justice will come.  Whom do we trust?  Are we willing to experience distress because we hold on to unpopular truths?...
  • One Bread, One Body:  Jesus says, "Blessed are you poor" and "Woe to you rich," though the rich don't like to hear their lives may be wasted and the poor don't like the idea that God may never want them rich.  Jesus, who died and rose for us, calls each of us to give our life to him.  Will you listen and repent, or hold "him up to contempt"?
  • Passionist:  The 1st reading presents a decision that pivots the outcome of our lives. Shall I trust in myself, others, or fleeting things, and cut myself off from the Source of life, or trust in and follow God and bear fruit?  The 2nd reading declares that Jesus' resurrection testifies that in God we find love stronger than death, so we can live in hope.  In the gospel, Jesus tells us we find life when we build God's kingdom.  May we seek justice, feed the hungry, comfort the sorrowful, and stay faithful to Christ whatever the cost.
    Beatitudes from the Sermon on the Plain
  • DailyScripture.net:  "Blessed are you poor; God's kingdom is yours":  No one can escape trials.  Jesus gave his disciples a "way of happiness" that transcends difficulty and trouble.  'Beatitude' means happiness/blessedness.  Jesus' way demands transformation from within, conversion only possible through the Spirit's gift and work.  To be happy, we must empty ourselves of whatever shuts God out.  The poor in spirit possess God alone as their treasure.  Spiritual hunger seeks nourishment and strength in God's word. Sorrow and mourning over sin leads to freedom.
Ambrose links the beatitudes with the four cardinal virtues:  "See how Luke encompassed the eight blessings in the four.  There are four cardinal virtues:  temperance, justice, prudence, and fortitude.  One poor in spirit is not greedy.  One who weeps is submissive and tranquil, not proud.  One who mourns is humble.  One who's just doesn't deny what's given to all for us.  One who's merciful gives away his goods.  One who bestows his goods doesn't seek another's or contrive traps.  These virtues are interwoven, so that we see that one with one has several.  Where virtue abounds, so too the reward; thus temperance has purity of heart and spirit, justice compassion, patience peace, and endurance gentleness" (Exposition of the Gospel of Luke 5.62–63, 68, paraphrased).
God reveals to the humble the true source of happiness. Jesus promises heaven's joys will more than compensate for this world's troubles and hardships. "No one can live without joy. One deprived of spiritual joy goes after carnal pleasures" (Thomas Aquinas).
Dress legend
  • Flesh-colored suspenders:  Those who seek strength in flesh,... (1st reading)
  • 'Heart' clip:  ...whose heart turns away from the Lord,... (1st reading)
  • 'Tree with green leaves' pin:  ...are like barren bushes standing in a waste; those who trust and hope in the Lord are like trees stretching out their roots to the stream, whose leaves stay green (1st reading); those who delight in the Lord's law are like trees... (psalm)
  • 'Fruit' pin:  ...yielding fruit (1st reading, psalm)
  • 'Resurrection cross' (robes, no Christ):  How can you say there's no resurrection? Christ has been raised... (2nd reading)
  • 'People' tie:  Crowd (gospel)
  • 'Eyeball' pin:  Jesus raised his eyes toward his disciples (gospel)
  • 'Musical notes with "joy"' pin:  Leap for joy when people hate, exclude, insult, or denounce you (gospel)
  • 'Prize' pin:  Your reward will be great in heaven (gospel)
  • 'Money bag' pin:  Woe to you rich (gospel)

February 10, 2019

5th Sun., Ordinary Time

February 10, 2019:  Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

See 17 connections with today?
Legend below

For 1st reading
For Psalm 138
Don't forget Ed Bolduc's blog

For next Sunday
Pope Francis
Angelus:  The motto for this year's World Day of Prayer and Awareness against Human Trafficking, “Together against Human Trafficking, invites us to join forces to overcome this challenge.  We must work together to denounce exploitation and slavery of men, women, and children.
Prayer sustains our common commitment to ending trafficking:  St Josephine Bakhita, as a child you were sold as a slave and had to face unspeakable difficulties and suffering.  Once you were freed from slavery, you found redemption in the encounter with Christ and His Church.  Help all trapped in slavery.  In their name, intercede with the God of mercy that their chains be broken.  May God free all who have been threatened, wounded, or mistreated by the trade and trafficking of human beings.  May he bring relief to those who survive and teach them to see Jesus as a model of faith and hope, that their wounds may be healed.  Intercede for us all, that we not fall into indifference, that we may open our eyes and look on the miseries and wounds of our brothers and sisters deprived of dignity and freedom, and hear their cry.

To World Government Summit:  UAE is a modern country looking to the future without forgetting its roots.  Even in the desert, flowers spring up and grow.  May the world's deserts bloom like this.  You face fundamental issues including political challenges, economic development, protection of the environment, and use of technology.  There's no sustainable development without solidarity.  May the Lord bless your commitment to a more just and prosperous world for everyone.

  • Is 6:1-2a, 3-8  The Lord was on his throne with seraphim above.  I said, "I'm doomed:  I'm unclean but have seen the Lord!"  Angel, touching my mouth with ember:  "Your sin is purged."  Lord:  “Whom shall I send?” / “Send me!”
  • Ps 138:1-5, 7-8  "In the sight of the angels I will sing your praises, Lord."  You heard me.  You've made your name and promise great.  You answered and save me.
  • 1 Cor 15:1-11  Remember the gospel I preached and you received.  It's saving you if you hold fast:  Christ died for our sins, was buried, was raised, appeared to Cephas, then the Twelve, then more than 500, then James, then all the apostles, then to me, the least of the apostles.  God's grace to me has been effective....
  • Lk 5:1-11  Jesus saw two boats alongside the lake.  He got into Simon's, asked him to put out near the shore, taught the crowds from the boat.  Jesus/Simon:  "Put out into deep water." / "OK, but we haven't caught anything all night."  Then they caught so many fish their nets tore, and they filled their boat and their partners' to the sinking point.  Simon/Jesus:  "Depart from me; I'm a sinner." / "Don't fear; you'll be catching people."  They brought their boats to shore, left everything, and followed him.
  • Creighton:  The disciples, professional fishermen, spent the night toiling without catching anything.  Simon must have resisted Jesus' request to go out into the deep, but they caught so many fish that they had to call their companions in another boat for help.  When Simon asked him to go, Jesus told him not to fear and promised he'd catch people.  "The deep" implies things deeper than the sea:  throwing yourself into Jesus' call.  We too are so invited.  We need not fear because Jesus is with us and keeps his promises.  We're called to serve, to trust in Jesus’ promise, that though we're sinners we too may catch people...
    Miraculous draught of fishes/ Raphael
  • One Bread, One BodyIsaiah saw the Lord in the temple and was converted:  he saw God's glory, became aware of his sinfulness, was forgiven and purified, and accepted God's call.  Saul was also converted:  he heard the risen Lord, was struck blind, prayed, then was healed, baptized and filled with the Spirit. Simon was converted:  when Jesus helped him have the best day at work ever, he became aware of his sinfulness, left everything, and became his disciple. May we live out our conversion.
  • Passionist: Before I teach, I pray to be an instrument of healing and peace, a conduit for God, to return God's love for me by loving others.  Isaiah, struck by how unworthy he is, shrank back, but the angel proclaimed him worthy, and he responded to God, “Send me,” perhaps hesitatingly, with fear and trembling.  But he grows into his role as prophet, allowing God’s love to fill him, and loving and serving in return.  I believe all of us are chosen and called the same way.  The angel has touched our lips, endowed us with talents, and God is waiting for our answer, but we're still afraid of not being capable or worthy, and we make excuses.  Where is God sending you, and how will you respond?
  • DailyScripture.net:  "You will catch people for God's kingdom":  Simon was weary from a night of fruitless toil but did what Jesus told him to do.  When I meet disappointment or failure, do I hear and do his word?  God works in and through each of us.  When we cooperate with him, we do more than we can on our own.  "Jesus has so incomprehensible a love for us that he wills that we have a share with him in the salvation of souls.  He wills to do nothing without us. The Creator awaits the prayer of a poor little soul to save others redeemed at the price of his Blood." (Thérèse of Lisieux)  When we respond to God's word with faith and obedience we're changed and made new in Christ.  God chooses ordinary people and ordinary circumstances to draw others into his kingdom.  We will catch people for the kingdom if we allow the light of Christ to shine through us. Do I witness to those around me the joy of the Gospel?
Dress legend
  • 'Crown' tie bar:  All kings shall thank You (psalm); "I've seen the King, the Lord"; "I saw the Lord seated on a throne,..." (1st reading)
  • 'Train' tie bar:  "...with the 'train' of his garment filling the temple" (1st reading)
  • 'Car with mouth' pin:  "I'm a man of unclean lips, living among a people of unclean lips"; angel touched my mouth (1st reading); You've heard the words of my mouth (psalm)
  • 'Angel' pin: Seraphim stationed above the throne (1st reading); "in the sight of the angels..." (psalm)
  • 'Eyeball' pin:  My eyes have seen the Lord (1st reading); "in the sight of the angels..." (psalm)
  • 'Clef' pin:  ...I'll sing Your praises (psalm)
  • 'Heart' clip:  I'll thank the Lord with all my heart (psalm)
  • 'Phone' tie bar:  When I 'called,' you answered me (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Your right hand saves me; forsake not the work of your hands (psalm); I 'handed' onto you what I received (2nd reading)
  • 'Fishes' tie:  Disciples caught many fish (gospel)
  • 'Boat' tie bar:  They filled both boats to the sinking point (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time season

February 4, 2019

Feb. 4

February 4, 2019:  Monday, 4th week, Ordinary Time

See 16 connections with today?
Legend below

For 1st reading

For Psalm 31
For gospel
Pope Francis in UAE

At interreligious meeting:  I'm a believer thirsting for peace.  We're here to desire, promote, be instruments of peace.  To safeguard peace, we need to enter together into an ark and sail the stormy seas. God is at the origin of the one human family.  No violence can be justified in religion's name.  We must avoid judging others.  Heaven's perspective embraces persons without discrimination.

Look after each other with "the courage of otherness":  recognizing others' freedom and rights.  Religious freedom includes seeing others as children God leaves free, whom no human institution can coerce.  Prayer restores fraternity; it purifies us from turning in on ourselves.  Investing in culture encourages a decrease of hatred and a growth of civility and prosperity.

Be the voice of the least; stand on the side of the poor; warn humanity not to be blind to injustice.  Indifference, such as failing to care about creation or strangers' dignity, risks converting flourishing realities into desert lands.  Living together, founded on education and justice, a human development built on a inclusion and the rights of all, are the seeds of peace we're called to flourish.  War only creates misery.  Our being together is a message of trust, not surrender to violence and dearth of altruism.  God is with peacemakers.

Document on Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Togetherwith Grand ImamFaith leads believers to love and support others.  May all persons with faith unite and work together.  God created all human beings equal in rights, duties, and dignity.  God has forbidden the killing of innocent human life.  Adopt a culture of dialogue, cooperate, and seek mutual understanding.

Spread the culture of tolerance and peace; end war, conflict, environmental decay, and moral and cultural decline.  Spread “justice, goodness, beauty, fraternity, and coexistence.”  Important causes of the world's crises are desensitized consciences, distancing from religious values, individualism, and materialistic philosophies.  “Moral deterioration influences action, and a weakened spiritual values and responsibility” leads to extremism and war.  Political crises, injustice, and inequitable distribution of resources lead to poverty, sickness, and death.

The family, and renewed religious awareness, are important to confront individualistic and selfish tendencies and address extremism.  Protect God's gift of life.  No one may take it away or threaten it; safeguard it from its beginning to its natural end.  We condemn genocide, terrorism, forced displacement, human trafficking, abortion, euthanasia, and policies that promote them.

Religions must never incite war, hate, hostility, extremism, violence, or bloodshed.  Don't use religion to incite hatred, violence, extremism, or fanaticism.  Don't use God's name to justify murder, exile, terrorism, or oppression.  Freedom of belief, thought, expression, and action is everyone's right.  God wills pluralism, diversity, and freedom.  Don't force people to adhere to a certain religion or culture.

Religions, human values, and the law guarantee protection of places of worship.  Terrorist acts threaten people's security and peace and disseminate panic and pessimism, due to incorrect interpretations of religious texts and to unjust, oppressive policies.  Don't support or try to justify terrorism.  Establish the concept of full citizenship and reject the use of 'minorities' that engenders feelings of isolation and inferiority.

Recognize women's right to education and employment and their political rights.  Free them from social conditioning contrary to principles of faith and dignity.  Protect them from exploitation.  Denounce practices that violate children's dignity and rights.  Be vigilant against dangers they're exposed to, particularly in the digital world, and consider trafficking of their innocence and violations of their youth as crimes.  May this Declaration become a “sign of the closeness between East and West, North and South.”


  • Heb 11:32-40  I don't have time to tell of those who by faith conquered kingdoms, did right, closed lion's mouths, put out fires, escaped the sword; they were made strong and powerful.  Some were afflicted, tortured or killed, or endured mockery or imprisonment.  Yet they all didn't receive what had been promised.  God foresaw something better....
  • Ps 31:20-24  "Let your hearts take comfort, all who hope in the Lord."  How great is the goodness You have in store for those who fear you.  You shelter them, show mercy.  You heard my pleading....
  • 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.”
  • Creighton:  What “Legions” take over your life, leave you not in control, not free to love?  Desire to pursue wealth and power at any cost, consumerism, addiction, anger, impatience?  Ask Jesus to “clean” and free you.  If we stand before Jesus as we are, he'll free us to live in peace and joy. / Once healed, Jesus sent the man to tell his people how he'd been freed.  May we share the news of Jesus’ healing presence. / The people seized with fear who begged Jesus to leave likely didn't want the healed man to stay either.  We might be rejected too....
  • One Bread, One Body"Deep-sea dumping":  When Jesus takes away the sins of the world, he'll cast our sins into the sea, dump them into the ocean, where they fall and remain forever, irretrievable. If you want to get them back and return to your old sinful lifestyle, Jesus has placed a "No fishing" sign.  Repent of your sins, let the Lord take them away, and let them stay in the sea.  When the Son sets you free, you're really free!
    Medieval illustration of Jesus healing the Gerasene
  • Passionist"Take courage; God provides!"  God continues to act on our behalf, helping us live, making the most of our opportunities and challenges.  The 1st reading encourages faith in God’s people who had lost heart by recalling what past heroes endured.  The gospel of Jesus healing the Gerasene demoniac shows Jesus’ loving determination to help and the people’s awe at Jesus’ power.  Problems were faced with faith in God who provides for our needs.  No matter what our challenges and 'demons' are, we're asked to draw strength, enthusiasm, and perseverance from our faith.  Jesus helps rid us of our demons by his love and power, so we may share the news of his transforming love.  May we experience his touch, then “Go home... and announce all the Lord in his mercy has done.”
  • 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
  • 'Lion' pin:  People with faith closed lions' mouths,... (1st reading)
  • 'Fire' pin:  ...Put out raging fires,... (1st reading)
  • 'Sword' tie bar:  ...Escaped the sword (1st reading)
  • 'JC' chain:  Jesus Christ expels Legion; nobody could restrain the possessed man, even with a chain (gospel); others endured chains,... (1st reading)
  • 'Stone' tie pin:  ...Were stoned,... (1st reading); demoniac bruised himself with stones (gospel)
  • 'Sheep' tie bar:  ...Went about in sheepskin,... (1st reading)
  • 'Alps' tie pin:  ...Wandered about on mountains... (1st reading)
  • 'Heart' clip:  Let your hearts take comfort... (psalm)
  • 'Boat' tie bar:  Jesus got out of the boat, then in (gospel)
  • 'Dogs' tie:  “Legion is my name, for we are many (gospel; many dogs on tie)
  • '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

February 3, 2019

4th Sun., Ordinary Time

February 3, 2019:  Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

See 16 connections with today?
Legend below

For next Sunday
Jesus’ compatriots, skeptical he's the one the Spirit descended on sent to save humanity, demand he work miracles, but he refuses.  God wants faith; they want miracles.  God wants to save everyone; they want a Messiah for their own advantage.  The people were called to open their hearts to the gratuitousness and universality of salvation, but they rebelled and raged, about to throw Jesus off a cliff.
Jesus, in living the mission the Father entrusted to him, knows he must face fatigue, rejection, persecution, and defeat This is the price of prophecy, even today.  Rejection doesn't discourage Jesus or stop the fruitfulness of his prophetic action.  Today’s world also needs to see the Lord’s disciples acting as prophets, courageous, persevering, following faith, not miracles, serving all, not excluding any, open to accepting the Father's will, committing themselves to witnessing to it faithfully.  May we grow and walk in the same zeal for God's Kingdom that animated Jesus’ mission.

  • Jer 1:4-5, 17-19  Before you were born, I knew you and appointed you prophet.  Tell them all I command you.  I've fortified you and am with you to deliver you.
  • Ps 71:1-6, 15-17  "I will sing of your salvation."  Hear and rescue me; I take refuge in you.
  • 1 Cor 12:31—13:13  No matter what I do, without love it's nothing.  Love is patient and kind, not jealous, rude, self-interested or quick-tempered.  It rejoices in truth, bears, believes, hopes, endures, never fails.  I used to act like a child, but now I put childish ways aside.  We'll see face to face and know fully.  Faith, hope, love remain, but the greatest is love.
  • Lk 4:21-30  Jesus spoke in the synagogue:  “Today this Scripture passage is fulfilled in your hearing.”  All spoke highly of him and were amazed. They asked, “Isn’t this Joseph's son?”  He said to them, “No prophet is accepted in his own native place:  there were many widows in Israel in the days of Elijah, but he was sent only to a widow in Zarephath.  There were many lepers in Israel during the time of Elisha, but only Naaman the Syrian was cleansed.”  When they heard this, they were furious, drove him out, and led him up a hill to hurl him down, but he passed through them and left.
  • Creighton:  The townsfolk are impressed with Jesus’ words, but the stories he recalls provoke them to change:  They don't like the implications of his message and so try to get rid of the messenger.  Persons with limited vision can assume they can see more than they can, so they more easily bump into or knock over things, too confident in what they see and less aware of what they can't.  The Nazareth folks were blinded, seeing Jesus as limited to their own expectations.  Seeing a little, they thought they could see more.  We have low vision about most things, especially God.  Faith helps us see the glimpses God offers; grace helps us trust in what's behind and beyond them.  When we think we know about God or others or something, we only know enough to attract or distract us.  Jesus came to help the blind recover sight.  Jesus left the townspeople because their low vision led them to think they knew more than they did....
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Simply love":  The meaning of life is love, for God is Love. All we have to do is to love God, ourselves, and others.  God can be easy to love, but when he speaks truth in love we may want to throw him over a cliff.  We live in an epidemic of self-hatred:  abortion, euthanasia, addiction, idolatries, are manifestations of self-hatred.  To love others means to love everyone, including our enemies.  We can't relate to God/Love unless we love. "We love because he first loved us."  Let the Spirit reveal in a new way Abba's love for you.
  • PassionistWhen Jesus senses the people are doubting him, he speaks of a prophet not having honor in his native place, then gives examples of God working outside human boundaries:  Elijah helping a widow outside of Israel, Elisha cleansing a leper from Syria. Then the people get indignant and try to kill him.  We can have similar thoughts and feelings towards others. “Who does he think he is?”  If we reject what others are saying, no matter how reasonable, we're no better than white supremacists, xenophobes, or clerics who give no voice to laypeople. God works outside our barriers.  Jesus reaches out beyond Israel, and to people beyond what conventional wisdom dictated.  The 2nd reading tells why Jesus gives such a model:  love. When we get indignant, believing we're standing up for what's right, but without love, we're standing up for nothing. Love takes no pleasure in anyone's destruction of anyone, but in justice and peace for all.  Many turn a deaf ear to the promotion of life, the need for reconciliation, to people of faith, but don't let that deafness lead you away from love. If we believe in the meaning of the Cross and the empty tomb; if we believe God wants to heal, reconcile, and redeem us, then we're called to love as Jesus does, to be open to where the Spirit leads us, even if it means crossing boundaries, even if people don't want to hear....
  • DailyScripture.net:  Do you believe God wants to act with power in your life today, to heal leprosy of soul and body?  "Naaman was sent to the Jordan as to the remedy capable to heal a human being.  Sin is the leprosy of the soul, though our senses don't perceive it.  We must be delivered from it by Christ's power.  Naaman represents all our purification through baptism." (Ephrem the Syrian, Commentary on 2 Kings 5.10-1)  The Lord wants to renew in each of us the gift of faith and regenerating power of baptism and the Spirit that cleanses us of the leprosy of sin and makes us God's "newborn" children.
When Jesus first proclaimed the good news to his own townspeople, he confronted them with their sin of indifference and unbelief, startling them by saying no prophet could receive honor among his own people.  He then angered them, complimenting Gentile "outsiders" who had shown more faith than Jews.  They threw him out and would have done him harm had he not stopped them.  We all need God's grace and merciful help every day.  He'll set us free if we let him cleanse and heal us.
    • Blase (Blaise), bishop, missionary, martyr; see also Wikipedia.  “Through the intercession of St. Blase, bishop and martyr, may God deliver you from ailments of the throat and from every other evil.”
Dress legend
  • 'Clef' pin:  "I will sing of your salvation" (psalm)
  • 'Rock' tie pin:  You are my rock of refuge (psalm)
  • 'Hand' tie pin:  Rescue me from the hand of the wicked (psalm); "If I 'hand' my body over but don't have love, I gain nothing" (2nd reading)
  • 'LOVE' suspenders sticker:  Love (2nd reading)
  • 'Bear' tie bar:  Love 'bears' all things (2nd reading)
  • 'Eyeball' pin:  We see indistinctly but will see face to face (2nd reading)
  • 'We [children] work together' tie, 'hammer' and 'nail' pins:  "When I was a child, I used to talk, think, and reason as a child" (2nd reading); isn't he the son of Joseph [the carpenter]? (gospel)
  • 'Car with mouth' pin:  My mouth shall declare your justice (psalm); 'tongues' will cease (2nd reading); furious, they 'drove' him out of the town (gospel)
  • 'Alps' pin:  They led Jesus to the brow of the hill (gospel)
  • Green shirt:  Ordinary Time (season)