May 21, 2019

May 21

May 21, 2019:  Tuesday, 5th week, Easter

See about a dozen connections with today?
Legend below

For the gospel
For Psalm 145
Pope Francis

Homily:  How can we reconcile Paul's tribulations and persecutions with the peace Jesus promised in the gospel?  Though a life of persecution and tribulation seems to be without peace, remember “Blessed are you when men revile you and persecute you and utter evil against you falsely on my account.”  Jesus' profound peace goes with this life of persecution, of tribulation.  No one can touch that gift, peace like a sea that's tranquil deep down despite waves on the surface.  Living in peace with Jesus is having this experience within.

This is the only way we can understand how saints lived their final moments without losing peace, going to their martyrdom like guests to a wedding.  We can't obtain such peace through human means like taking anti-anxiety drugs; it comes from the Holy Spirit within us who brings strength.  Jesus' peace teaches us to go forward, to endure.  'Endure' is a Christian word for carrying burdens.  Carry the life's burdens without losing peace; bear them with courage and go forward.  The Holy Spirit within gives us Jesus' peace.  If we get caught up in fervent nervousness and lose this peace, something isn’t working.

Face life's difficulties with this gift, not the world's false peace.  Go forward with the ability to make the heart smile.  If you live this peace, you don't lose your sense of humor; you smile at yourself and others, even when things are dark.  Humor is close to God's grace.  Jesus' peace in daily life, in tribulations, and with a sense of humor, helps us breathe easier.  May the Lord grant us this peace that helps us endure life's difficulties.

To Italian bishops:  A bishop must be close to his priests without discrimination or favoritism.  A true shepherd lives among his flock, listens, and welcomes all.  Don't just welcome nice or flattering priests.
Don't give assignments just to “climbers,” ignoring the shy, meek, or problematic.  Support, encourage, and console priests disrespected, made fun of, or condemned because of colleagues' errors.  Bishops who can't establish relationships with their priests risk ruining their mission and weakening the church's.  Everyone in the church must walk together, working to share the Gospel.  Make sure that laypeople, priests, and bishops all recognize their shared responsibility for the life of the church....

    Peace I bequeath to you
  • Acts 14:19-28  Some Jews stoned Paul and assumed him dead, but when disciples gathered around him, he got up and left to proclaim the good news elsewhere.  They returned and exhorted the disciples to persevere in the faith:  “It is necessary to undergo hardships to enter the Kingdom.”  They appointed presbyters, commended them to God, proclaimed the word on the road, then called the Church together to spend time with the disciples and report on what God had done and how he opened faith's door to the Gentiles.
  • Ps 145:10-13ab, 21 "Your friends make known, O Lord, the glorious splendor of your kingdom."  Let your works give you thanks and your faithful ones bless you.
  • Jn 14:27-31a  “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you, not as the world gives.  Don't let your hearts be troubled or afraid.  Rejoice that I'm going to the Father.  The ruler of the world is coming, but he has no power over me.  The world must know I love the Father and do as he has commanded.”
  • Fr. Brian Nunes homily videoDo our lives say we love the Father and do what he commands?  Put others' needs ahead of yours; forgive; make known the splendor of God's kingdom.
  • Creighton:  Do we carry the "Peace" of today's gospel, and the sign of peace at Mass, to our actions, say in the grocery line or at work?  To pass on the peace Jesus gives, I need to live my faith and that peace in small and large ways, being for and with others, letting other cars go ahead of me, being friendly, taking a breath when I'm irritated....  Peace takes continual action.  May we bring peace to our corner of the world and pray for it in every corner.  May God help me make peace in every way I can.
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Tough love":  Paul's tough love was encouraging beyond measure.  He headed right back to town and on mission.  When someone who was pelted with stones and judged dead says you must undergo hardships to enter God's kingdom, you take it seriously!  We're tempted to fear trials, pain, hardships, and persecution, but Jesus gives us his peace amid hardships:  "Don't be distressed or fearful."  So don't shy away from hardships for God's sake; they're they brand marks of Jesus on you that give God glory.  When the going gets tough, the tough love to get going.
  • Passionist:  How do you define success:  achieving a goal, attaining a benefit or elevated status?  The success stories in Acts are shaded by mishaps, setbacks, and difficulties.   In the 1st reading, the Jews have already won over the crowds, and Paul gets stoned and dragged out, but they make many disciples.  “It is necessary for us to undergo hardships to enter God's Kingdom” proclaims the light of grace and the shadow that's nearby.  The negative never overwhelms Luke; he's filled with faith and hope.  His faith is rooted in the experience and knowledge of Christ.  In the gospel, Jesus declares his gift of peace but also says the ruler of the world is coming.  He tells his disciples to not give into doom mentality:  “Don't let your hearts be troubled or afraid.”  Today evangelists proclaim discipleship as a road to gold and glory, and messengers of hopelessness profess a gloomy world, but our ancestors counted success in terms of God’s will.  Growth follows times of persecution as believers stay focused on “the One who has overcome the world.”  Success is more about trusting the Lord...
  •  "My peace I give to you":  The peace of Christ is more than the absence of trouble; it includes everything that makes for our highest good.  The world wants to avoid conflict and unpleasant things, but Jesus offers peace that conquers fear and anxiety.  We can receive the peace the Lord offers through, inspired by the Spirit, yielding our anger, fear, and pride to God.  The Spirit helps us in our weakness and strengthens us so we can live as Christ's disciples.  "Peace is serenity of mind, tranquility of soul, simplicity of heart, the bond of love, the fellowship of charity. It removes hatred, settles wars, restrains wrath, tramples on pride, loves the humble, pacifies the discordant, and makes enemies agree....  It doesn't seek what belongs to another or consider anything as its own.  It teaches people to love because it doesn't know how to get angry, extol itself, or become inflated with pride.  It's meek and humble to everyone, possessing rest and tranquility.  When a Christian exercises Christ's peace, Christ brings it to perfection.  All who love it will be God's heirs, while anyone who despises it rebels against Christ.  When our Lord was returning to the Father, he left his followers peace as their inherited good....  If you've received this peace, keep it; if you've destroyed it, look for it; if you've lost it, seek it...." (Caesarius of Arles)
Dress legend
  • 'Stone' tie pin:  "They stoned Paul and dragged him out" (1st reading)
  • 'Sailboats' tie:  travel from Antioch/Iconium to Derbe, Lystra, Iconium, Antioch, Pisidia, Pamphylia, Attalia, and back to Antioch (1st reading)
  • 'Knocker' pin:  They reported how God had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles (1st reading)
  • 'Crown' tie bar:  Your friends make your kingdom's splendor known (psalm)
  • 'Car with mouth' pin:  May my mouth speak the Lord's praise... (psalm)
  • Flesh-colored suspenders:  ...and may all flesh bless his name (psalm)
  • 'Peace sign' tie bar: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you." (gospel)
  • 'Heart' pin: "Don't let your hearts be troubled or afraid" (gospel)
  • 'Musical notes with "joy"' pin:  If you loved me, you'd rejoice that I'm going to the Father (gospel)
  • 'Ruler' pin:  "The world's 'ruler' is coming but has no power over me" (gospel)
  • White shirt and socks:  St. Joseph the Worker, Easter season

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