January 4, 2020

Mother Seton

January 4, 2020:  St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, Religious and Mother

See 15 connections with today?
Legend below
  • 1 Jn 3:7-10  Those who act justly are righteous, just as he is righteous, but sinners belong to the Devil.   No one who doesn't love others belongs to God.
  • Ps 98:1, 7-9  "All the ends of the earth have seen the saving power of God."  Sing to the Lord, for he has done wondrous deeds.  Let the sea, what fills it, the world, those dwelling in it, the rivers, and the mountains all shout for joy before the Lord; he comes to rule the earth with justice and equity.
  • Jn 1:35-42  As John stood with two of his disciples and watched Jesus walk by, he said, "Behold, the Lamb of God."  They heard him, followed Jesus, and asked where he was staying; Jesus said, "Come and see," and they went, saw, and stayed with him.  Andrew told his brother Simon, "We've found the Messiah" ('Christ'), and brought him to Jesus, who told him, "You are Simon; you'll be called Cephas" ('Peter').
  • Creighton:  Jesus isn't asking the men whom they're seeking but what.  If we're seeking God, each step will lead us, whether or not we're aware of it.  Do I blindly follow a road others determine?  Do I work or accumulate resources as if they're ends in themselves?  Do I "find God in all things" (and see all things in God)?  We seek not principles or some truth but Jesus himself, who speaks to, challenges, calls, and heals us.   What and whom do I seek?
  • One Bread, One Body:  "Star wars":   God became human to destroy the devil's works. That's why the anti-Christ denies Christ come in the flesh.  Herod convulsed when he heard about the newborn King, understanding the meaning of Christmas better than most.  Christmas is God's invasion of the devil's privacy, an attack on hell, a behind-the-lines insurgency of the kingdom of light against the kingdom of darkness; it's placing Christ's enemies beneath his feet.  Will you join the Lord's Christmas army, or are you with Herod?  Neutrality is complicity with the enemy....
    • Passionist:  Jesus asks, “What are you looking for?”  The two disciples of John the Baptist heard John speak of Jesus as “Lamb of God” and wanted to get to know him better; Jesus invited them to “come and see.”  Jesus has touched many through the centuries.  We seek fulfillment, love, a sense of purpose and worth, and companionship.  As we realize our blessings including faith, Church, and vocation, we have reason to hope and embrace each day's opportunities and challenges.
      Today we celebrate St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, the first American-born saint.  Reared as an Episcopalian, she helped rear their five children.  She was drawn to Catholicism by a family she met while traveling with her husband.  After her husband died of TB at 30, she embraced the Catholic faith and opened a parish school to support her family and witness her faith, despite protests from family and friends.  Drawn by her faith and fervor, other women joined her, forming the American Sisters of Charity, following the rule of Vincent de Paul; they helped found other schools and orphanages.  Like Mother Seton, we respond to Jesus’ question/invitation and seek to live for God as we share the Good News.  May God bless this year, inspired by great saints.  Jesus calls, loves, and sends us!
      • DailyScripture.net:  "We found the Messiah!"  John calls Jesus the Lamb of God, signifies his redemptive mission.  Jesus freely offered his life for us; his blood cleanses, heals, and frees us.  John was son of Zechariah, who participated in the sacrifice of a lamb for people's sins.  In Jesus John saw the sacrifice that could deliver us from bondage to sin.  The Holy Spirit revealed Jesus' nature to John so that he could bear witness to the Son of God.  The Spirit makes Christ known to us too.
      John eagerly pointed beyond himself to the Christ (Messiah).  Jesus took the initiative to invite his disciples them into his company, asking, "What are you looking for?"  He asks the same of us.  Only God can show us our purpose.  Jesus invites each of us to draw near to know what he wants to offer us.  "If God hadn't called you, what could you have done to turn back?  The One who called you when you were opposed to him made it possible for you to turn back" (Augustine).   God initiates and draws us to himself; we can't find him on our own.
      It's natural to want to share something good.  When Andrew discovered Jesus was the Messiah, he told his brother right away, bringing him to Jesus so he too could "come and see."  Jesus reached out to Simon as he had to Andrew; he revealed he knew who Simon was and where he came from, then gave him a new name signifying God's mission for him:  'Cephas,' Aramaic for 'rock,' translated as Peter (Greek 'Petros,' Latin 'Petrus'), also meaning 'rock.'  To call someone 'rock' was a great compliment. The rabbis said that when God saw Abraham, he exclaimed: "I discovered a rock to found the world on."  Through faith Peter grasped Jesus was the Messiah.  Faith in Christ makes us rocks or spiritual stones....
      Dress legend
      • 'Children' pin:  "Children, let no one deceive you" (1st reading)
      • 'Olympics' tie pin:  "All the earth has seen God's saving power" (psalm)
      • 'Musical notes with "joy"' tie pin, 'Christmas music' tie:  Sing to the Lord a new song (psalm)
      • 'Hands' pin:  The Lord's right hand has won victory; let the rivers clap their hands... (psalm)
      • 'Alps' tie pin:  ...and the mountains shout with them for joy (psalm)
      • 'Ruler' tie bar:  The Lord comes to 'rule' the earth with justice (psalm)
      • 'Magnifying glass' (search icon) pin, '?' tie pin:  "What are you looking for?" (gospel)
      • 'Celebrate teaching' pin:  They said to him, "Rabbi..." ('Teacher') (gospel)
      • 'Lamb' tie bar:  "Behold, the Lamb of God" (gospel)
      • 'Eyeball' pin:  "Come, and you'll see" (gospel)
      • 'Rock' tie pin:  "You'll be called Cephas" (gospel)
      • White shirt:  Color of today's liturgical celebration
      • Christmas pin, 'Christmas trees' suspenders:  Christmas season continues through next Sunday

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