September 1 : Twenty Second Sunday in Ordinary Time – Take the Lower Place

August 27th, 2013



In the Gospel of Luke today we also hear Jesus talking about humility. Our Gospel acclamation today says “I am meek and gentle of heart.” Indeed this quality of humility is one for which Jesus is very much a role model. We often talk about how Jesus lowered himself to become like us – a God becoming a man! How much more humble could he be? So when Jesus talks about humility we know that he is “walking the talk”! This idea is actually a theme in Luke, and it is the same theme that we read in the first reading: The greater you are, the more you must humble yourself; so you will find favor in the sight of the Lord. Luke started this theme in the first chapter with the beautiful Magnificat of Mary we heard two weeks ago: He has filled the hungry with good things and the rich he has sent away empty. He will end it with Jesus at the Last supper taking on the role of servant.

August 25th: Twenty First Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C – Enter through the narrow Gate

August 21st, 2013



“The gate to perdition is the devil, through whom we enter into hell; the gate of life is Christ, through whom we enter into the kingdom of Heaven. The Devil is said to be a wide gate, not extended by the mightiness of his power, but made broad by the license of his unbridled pride. Christ said to be a strait Gate not with respect to smallness of power, but to His humility; for He whom the whole world contains not, shut Himself within the limits of the Virgin’s womb” (St. John Chrysostom).

August 18 : Twentith Sunday in Ordinary Time Year C – Fire upon the Earth

August 15th, 2013


Jesus makes an important statement in today's Gospel.
a. "I have come to bring fire on the earth." This is not the fire of destruction, the fire that ravages rain forests every year. It is the fire of heat and light. It is the fire that cleanses and purifies. It is the fire of God's presence as in the burning bush that Moses saw, as in the pillar of fire that accompanied the Israelites in the desert, as in the tongues of fire at Pentecost where the bringing of fire was mandated to the disciples, to the Church, to all of us. As a purifying fire it can also bring pain and purification but it ultimately leads to conversion and liberation.
c. "I have come not to bring peace but division." It is especially painful to hear the Gospel speak of families being broken up because of Jesus. But this is less a prophecy or an expression of God's will than a description of the Church's very real experience from the time the Gospels were being written down to our own day. In many countries, both Christian individuals and Christian communities are seen as a threat to governments, various power groups and other religious groups. We saw this in practically every Communist regime during this century: the Soviet Union, the East European satellites, China and Vietnam. And these governments had reason to fear even though Stalin mockingly asked once how many divisions the Pope had. Yet it was the faith of Christians, who, without firing a shot (Stalin was right), was significantly instrumental in the collapse of Communism in Central and Eastern Europe. Yet, in the long history of the Church, how many families have suffered because members became Christians? Most of us – especially those who have lived in non-Christian or anti-Christian societies – probably have met someone who was rejected by their family for becoming an active Christian. And, not infrequently, persecution comes even from other Christians, from within the Church itself. And how many people realize that there have been more martyrs for the faith in the supposedly advanced and civilized 20th century than in all the preceding centuries!

Aug 15th : The Solemnity of the Assumption of Our Lady into Heaven – Crown of Glory

August 13th, 2013

 

 

The Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary into Heaven at the end of her earthly life is a defined dogma of the Catholic Church. On November 1, 1950, Pope Pius XII, exercising papal infallibility, declared in "Munificentissimus Deus" that it is a dogma of the Church "that the Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heavenly glory." As a dogma, the Assumption is a required belief of all Catholics; anyone who publicly dissents from the dogma, Pope Pius declared, "has fallen away completely from the divine and Catholic Faith." The "Magnificat," which we find in Luke's Gospel, indicates that the praise of the Holy Virgin, the Mother of God, intimately united to Christ her son, regards the Church of all times and places. The evangelist's report of these words presupposes that the glorification of Mary was already present at that time and that he saw it as a duty and task of the Christian community for all generations. Mary's words tell us that it is a duty of the Church to recall Our Lady's greatness in faith. This solemnity is, then, an invitation to praise God and to look to Our Lady's greatness since we know who God is by gazing about the faces of those who are His.

 



 

August 11th - Ninteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time: Being Faithful & Being Prepared

August 7th, 2013

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Today the Gospel speaks to us -as the first theme-  of the need to be prepared since our God is  a God who comes, a God who visits us. He can come to us in many ways. For example through the Sacraments, through the Word of God, through the Priest, through the Community gathered for worship, through the poor, the sick and the lowly, He could come and speak to us through our live events and experiences etc etc. Are we ready to welcome him in all these modes of his coming? The second theme for today speaks to us the need to be faithful at all times. Thus Mother Theresa of Calcutta would say : "God did not call us to be successful, but to be faithful." It is not what we do that matters at the end but how far we have been faithful to Him and His Gospel. Let us ask God for the grace to be prepared all the time to welcome Him and that we be faithful we He calls us.

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