November 27, 2019

Nov. 27

November 27, 2019:  Wednesday, 34th week, Ordinary Time

See 16 connections with today?
Legend below

For 1st reading
  • But who may abide the day of His coming, from Messiah/ Handel:  traditional"soulful" (gospel)
Pope Francis

Inflight press conference:  Light comes from the East, luxury and consumerism from the West.  Eastern wisdom is not only of knowing, but of time, of contemplation.  Western society, always in a hurry, should learn contemplation, stopping and looking poetically at things.  The East can look at things with eyes that go beyond, searching for personal perfection through fasting, penance, and the wisdom of sages.  I believe it would do us Westerners good to stop and give time to wisdom.

Hiroshima was a catechesis on cruelty.  The possession of nuclear weapons is immoral.  An accident or a government leader's madness can destroy humanity.  Using nuclear power has limits because we haven't achieved absolute safety.  Even electricity can cause a disaster, but it would be smaller.   I wouldn't use nuclear energy until it's completely safe.  There's no guarantee a disaster won't happen.   We have to do research on safety, both to avoid disasters and because of environmental consequences. 

The death penalty is immoral.  Some countries can't abolish it because of political problems, but they suspend it.  Any sentence must allow for reintegration; one with no hope is inhuman.  One must even think of how someone serving a life sentence can be reintegrated, inside or out.   When people are sentenced because of insanity, sickness, genetic incorrigibility, we must seek a way to make them feel like people. Many prisons are overcrowded; they're warehouses of humanity, often corrupt.  We must combat the death penalty slowly.  Some cases make me happy, but some countries haven't yet reached a humane way of thinking.

Bullying is violence.  It is a problem we are trying to solve with many educational programs.  Everything that can be done to stop arms production and war, to negotiate and mediate, must be done.  We have to stop the hypocrisy of Christian countries talking about peace and living off weapons.  Peace is weak, but don't be discouraged.  Legitimate defense with arms is valid only after diplomacy and mediation.   The progress we're making confirms humanity is moving towards good.

To Nizami Ganjavi Foundation:  Thank you for addressing the principal challenges of our day to promote peace through dialogue and mutual respect, for placing your values and experience at the service of the global community.  Thanks especially for the contribution you hope to make regarding climate change.  A culture of dialogue is the path, mutual cooperation the code of conduct, and reciprocal understanding the method to grow in fraternity.

  • Dn 5:1-6, 13-14, 16-17, 23-28  At King Belshazzar's banquet, fingers appear and write on the wall.  Terrified, the king asks Daniel to interpret:  “You rebelled against the Lord.  God sent the hand to write mene, tekel, peres:  God has put an end to your kingdom; you've been found wanting; and your kingdom has been given to the Medes and Persians.
  • Dn 3:62-67  "Give glory and eternal praise to him."  Sun, moon, stars, showers, winds, fire, heat, cold, and chill, bless the Lord!
  • Lk 21:12-19  “They'll seize you, persecute you, and hand you over because of me.  You'll give testimony.  Don't prepare your defense; I'll give you wisdom nobody can refute.  All will hate you, but by perseverance you'll secure your lives.”

  • Fr. Chidi Ekpendu homily video:  The king, under the influence, desecrated the temple vessels.  Pray for addicts, and be careful at Thanksgiving dinner.
  • Creighton:  Jesus speaks of others putting us in positions where we'll be called on to witness to our faith.  Though such violent acts will happen to few of us, we often face such inquisition subtly, at work, at play, or alone sick: we must witness to our faith and love in every choice we make.  The witness isn't always directly to other people, and others may react negatively.  The hardest part comes from our own hearts:  choosing faithfulness and gratitude, knowing we'll never completely succeed.  In making our choices, we're witnessing to ourselves and learning how our attempts to yield to God affect us.  That transformation also affects how we witness to others; the Spirit's gifts and fruits fill us with peace, patience, generosity, purity, gentleness, and more, and others see God at work in us....
  • Passionist:  Following Jesus isn't easy, but he gives us the wisdom and gifts we need.  Not everyone will be our friend or accept or understand, but every path he leads me to, every event, every obstacle, prepares and leads me.  We may ache as we see family members leave the Church.  Being Catholic takes work:  reading, study, prayer, dedication....  Persevere; Christ, our rock, fortress, and shield, is always with us.
    Belshazzar's Feast/ Rembrandt
  •  "Not a hair of your head will perish":  Jesus warns his followers they'll be confronted with wickedness, false teaching, persecution, and temptation to renounce their faith.  Satan opposes God and his followers; Jesus calls him a "murderer" and the "father of lies."  Satan will use any means to turn people away from God:  envy, deception, hatred, fear....  Jesus' response to hostility and persecution is love, forbearance, and forgiveness.  Only love can overcome prejudice, hatred, and envy.  God's love purifies us of all that would divide and tear people apart.  Jesus tells us we don't need to fear; he promises strength, wisdom, and courage as we take a stand witness to Christ.  The Gospel has power to set people free from sin, fear, and death, and bring peace, pardon, and life.  God gives endurance to those who trust in him.  Endurance is patience that never gives up hope.  Patience looks beyond present difficulties to the promised reward.  Endurance is linked with hope, the assurance we'll see God face to face and inherit his promises.  Jesus is our model; he endured the cross for our sake.  "When persecution comes, God's soldiers are tested, and heaven opens to martyrs.  We have not enlisted in an army;...  the Lord has taken first place in the conflict" (Cyprian).  Martyrs live and die as witnesses of the Gospel, overcoming their enemies through hope, courage, love, forbearance, kindness, goodness, and compassion, whether or not they actually shed their blood for bearing witness.  May we testify to the Gospel in our daily challenges; may people see us loving our enemies, joyful in suffering, patient in adversity, pardoning injuries, and showing comfort and compassion to the hopeless and helpless....
Dress legend
  • 'Silverware' tie bar:  King Belshazzar's banquet (1st reading)
  • 'Chalice' tie pin:  You and your guests drank wine from the temple vessels (1st reading)
  • Purple shirt:  King promises purple clothing to Daniel if he interprets the writing on the wall (1st reading)
  • Gold- and silver-colored accoutrements:  King ordered gold and silver vessels brought in, promises gold to Daniel if he interprets the writing (1st reading)
  • 'Scales' tie:  'Tekel,' you have been weighed on the scales and found wanting (1st reading)
  • 'Abacus' tie pin:  'Peres,' your kingdom has been divided (1st reading)
    • 'Crown' tie bar:  King Belshazzar (1st reading); they'll have you led before kings (gospel)
    • 'Hand' tie pin:  Fingers of a hand wrote on king's wall; your life is in God's hand (1st reading); they'll 'hand' you over (gospel)
    • 'Owl' tie pin:  King heard of Daniel 's wisdom (1st reading); I'll give you wisdom (gospel)
    • 'Star' tie pin:  Stars of heaven, bless, praise, and exalt the Lord (canticle)
    • 'Sun' pin:  Sun and moon, bless, praise, and exalt the Lord (canticle)
    • 'Gun' pin:  They'll put some of you to death (gospel)
    • 'Clocks' suspenders:  Persevere (gospel); countdown to eschaton and end of Ordinary Time season

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