Mercy

Extravagant Mercy – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Extravagant Mercy – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

The message is clear: we can either be driven by our devotion to mammon—that is acquiring, storing up material possessions, which will ultimately fail—or we can store for ourselves treasures that do not fail in “the eternal habitations” by giving freely giving of our possessions to those in desperate need for mercy. In neither case are the possessions ever really ours. They are entrusted to our care and our stewardship them is a mark of our faithfulness to the Master and our trust in his mercy.

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The Heart of the Law – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

The Heart of the Law – Meditation of the Studies in the Gospel of Luke

Jesus’ question to the Pharisees and Scribes serves not only as a challenge to those present, but also to us who, likewise, are called to know and reflect the heart of God to one another and in the world around us. Notice that he leaves no room for a middle ground: one either does good or does harm; one either saves a life or destroys it—and this in reference to a man whose condition was not life-threatening or even necessarily urgent. The uncomfortable truth with which we are confronted in this is that, in the face of suffering and human need, there is no neutral position. We either do good or we do harm; we either save a life or we destroy it—and the decision we make in this matter is the ultimate reflection of whether or not we have understood the heart of God’s law and are obedient to it.

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Grace and Obedience – Fourth Meditation in the Studies of 1 Peter

Grace and Obedience – Fourth Meditation in the Studies of 1 Peter

Throughout both the Old and New Testaments, our obedience to His command is a double response to what he has already done. It is first the response of gratitude, our due thanks for his gift. Second, it is the response of trust. Knowing that he has already shown he has our best interests at heart, we are certain that whatever he asks is for our well being.

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Mercy and Marriage – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

Mercy and Marriage – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time

While these two points may seem minor to modern eyes, in fact they were revolutionary for their time and are absolutely vital to our ability to understand Jesus’ teaching here on divorce and, consequently, marriage. For the same heart that seeks to protect the most vulnerable in society and to affirm the absolute equality of men and women is precisely the same heart that challenges us uphold the sanctity of marriage. At the end of the day marriage is sacred precisely because the individuals in question are sacred.

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The Humility of Faith – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time

The Humility of Faith – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time

“I received a glimpse into what I can only call the Infinite Mercy of God…I realized that none of my theological or social questions really made any difference. I didn’t have to know the answers to these questions precisely because God did…And how could I possibly know what He knew? And why should I remain apart from Him because I could not grasp all that He could grasp?…Did this mean that I thought doctrine and principles didn’t matter? No. Did it mean I thought everything was relative? Certainly not. Did it mean I did not continue to ponder a multitude of ideas? God forbid. What it did mean was that put myself in the hands of God entirely and that my faith would light the pages I read in the Book of Life from then on.” (Anne Rice, Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt)

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Abundant Grace – First Reading in Preparation for the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Abundant Grace – First Reading in Preparation for the Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

This is how it always is with God. His grace is not just sufficient, it is abundant. There is always some left over. When he sets a table, it is a banquet. When he pours the wine, “my cup runneth over”. His gifts are not miserly but lavish. It is his pleasure to pour out blessing. This we must know and claim in every corner of our lives and every day of our lives. Yes, we face grave difficulties and hard times, but we must know that his promise is for us: “They shall eat and there shall be some left over.” As Jesus himself said, “Fear not, little flock, it is the Father’s good pleasure to give……”(Luke 12:32)

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The Fount of Mercy – Gospel for Good Friday of The Lord’s Passion

The Fount of Mercy – Gospel for Good Friday of The Lord’s Passion

From the moment Jesus was lanced by the soldier’s spear, pouring blood and water from his pierced heart, we have recognized that it was from this very wound that the promised fount of mercy flowed. This wound immediately became the most graphic image of everything that He accomplished for us on the cross: his body given and his blood poured out “for us and for our salvation”.

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A Clean Heart – First Reading in Preparation for the Fifth Week in Lent

A Clean Heart – First Reading in Preparation for the Fifth Week in Lent

Lent is a time of exile. It is a time in which, recognizing our own sinfulness, we seek to strip away all of those things that, in big and little ways, have led us away from God, away from the life we are meant to lead and the people we are meant to become. But we do so precisely in the hope that we see held out for us in these two passages: that our lives will be healed by the wounds of sins and our hearts be made new through intimacy with God in order that we can receive and live the life which He has promised us.

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Not Fair – First Reading of the Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Not Fair – First Reading of the Twenty Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

“Fairness would only demand that the wicked are punished and the righteous rewarded, each for their own behavior. However, with God, “if the wicked should turn away from all their sin… and do what is lawful and right, they shall surely live.”(v. 21) Not only is he not unfair, he is gracious, merciful, and forgiving. As he says in the last verse of this chapter, “I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, says the Lord. Turn then, and live”(v.32)

…God not fair? Of course he is! Fair and more. God is love.”

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Love and Mercy – Gospel Reading for the Twenty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Love and Mercy – Gospel Reading for the Twenty Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Some read this as the God given means by which a wronged party can get his due from an offender and, this failing legitimately shun him – treat him “as a Gentile or tax collector”. But look at the context in which this passage is set. On one side is the parable of the lost sheep (18:10-14) in which a shepherd leaves a flock of ninety-nine to find then one lost sheep that had wandered away. On the other side is the question by Peter, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him?” Our Lord’s answer is unequivocal in its call to mercy: “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy times seven.” (18:21 – 22) There can be no doubt that our passage, bracketed by these, is not about the correct procedure to exclude a brother who has offended us. Rather it is about seeking out and forgiving a lost brother seventy times seven. It is about mercy.

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