Archive for January, 2013

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Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

January 28, 2013

STORIES THAT ROOT BUT DO NOT BIND

This Sunday we are reminded of the importance of story-telling. It is a fundamental part of who we are as Christians, and even as humans. Look to any civilization or culture and you will find stories that convey identity, which become most important during times of trial.

The stories of our past root our lives like a tree with branches the spread ever farther. And like that tree, the deeper and stronger the roots, the more the branches will be able to spread with out jeopardizing the life of the tree.

In our first reading, the priest gathers an assembly around him so that they may listen to the Torah; so that they may listen to their own story; their ancestry. They listened so that they would not forget who they are.

But the Bible does not just root us to a past, it also gives us strength to grow. In our Gospel, Jesus reads the stories of the past and declares that they are no longer past, but present.

CLICK HERE  for the readings for the Third Sunday in Ordinary Time: (Nehemiah 8:2-6,8-10; Psalm 19; 1 Corinthians 12:12-30; Luke 1:1-4,4:14-21)

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Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

January 21, 2013

A WEDDING OF THE CHURCH

There is probably no day more romanticized than a wedding.  They are moments full of hope, promise, joy and love – which is precisely why weddings are a metaphor of the mystical union between God and God’s people.  It is an amazing metaphor as Isaiah says, as a bridegroom rejoices in his bride, so shall the Lord rejoice in you. 

The Gospel story is also quite instructive – in fact we could be here for hours reflecting on the rich, rich symbolism of this story.  It is not simply about a wedding, but about the new relationship about to be formed with humanity through Christ.  This is not just the wedding of two people, but through Christ, we are being told about the mystical wedding of heaven and earth.

CLICK HERE  for the readings for the Second Sunday in Ordinary Time: (Isaiah 62:1-5; Psalm 96; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11; John 2:1-11)

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The Feast of the Baptism of the Lord

January 14, 2013

A LESSON ABOUT GRACE

Jesus’ own baptism offers no better time than this Sunday for us to reflect on the nature of our own baptism.

Since most of us were children when were were baptized, we do not understand that our baptism is the very foundation of who we are and what we do. Everything stems from this for it is when we become sons and daughters of God.

How and why does this happen? These are the subjects of our lesson today.

CLICK HERE  for the readings for the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord: (Isaiah 42:1-4,6-7; Psalm 29; Acts 10:34-38; Luke 3:15-16,21-22)

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Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord

January 7, 2013

THREATS OR GIFTS?

This Sunday, we celebrate the promise of fulfillment.  The arrival of the magi is the fulfillment of the promises God foretold through Isaiah (the very promise outlined our first reading).  The magi are most famous for the gifts they brought and so it is fitting that we consider the reasons why we give gifts today.  However, we will also consider the meaning of the gift, for all gifts are ultimately a statement of some kind.

Gifts are always given in recognition of a relationship – even if they are complete strangers, we give because we recognize some one worth giving to in their person.  Yet, some, like Herod, are threatened by gifts and the promises they contain.

Lastly, we must consider the gifts we have to give in addition to those we receive.  What are we willing to give. . . to others. . . and to God?

CLICK HERE  for the readings for the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord: (Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72; Ephesians 3:2-3,5-6; Matthew 2:1-12)

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Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God

January 1, 2013

REFLECTING ON HER BELIEF

Throughout all of the early chapters of Luke, which are the most detailed account we have of the early days of Mary, Joseph and Jesus, Mary is described over and over again as the one who ponders; keeps things in her heart; she is reflective, pensive, and silent.

Like all Jews, Mary believed that the Messiah would come and redeem her people.  Her conceptions of the Messiah would have been no different than any other Jew, but something was not right.

This is no birth for a king.  Nothing about this situation would have been congruent with her Jewish ideas.  Her knowledge was not in line with her belief.

Mary taught Jesus what she knows – just as any mother would; but Jesus would have taught Mary to ponder more about what she believes, rather than what she knows.

CLICK HERE  for the readings for the Solemnity of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Mother of God: (Numbers 6:22-27; Psalm 67; Galatians 4:4-7; Luke 2:16-21)