Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Drinking the Cup – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Drinking the Cup – Gospel in Preparation for the Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

But the call to willingly participate in the cross is not only a call to suffer, but also with Christ, “to scorn the shame of the cross” for the joy that is set before us (Heb 12:2). This, perhaps, is the hardest part because it can mean any number of things in which we, like Christ, look to the Father and plead, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do,” even as we endure the blows of loving those who may not be able to love us in return or who, in their own woundedness, unwittingly hurt us. It does not mean, of course, turning a blind eye to sin or injustice. But, following the example of Dr. King, Jr., it does mean not retaliating in kind, and even showing mercy to those who might not show it to you.

More

Confident in Mercy – Second Reading in Preparation for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Confident in Mercy – Second Reading in Preparation for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Our confidence does not change God at all, but it does change everything for us. From fear we turn to assurance, from worry we turn to trust. We may not know how God will answer, but that he will (and even that his answer will be informed by his love) is never in doubt. The writer of Hebrews originally wrote so that those in his day who were struggling with a difficult time, growing weary and on the brink of giving up might find the strength not only to endure but to conquer. He asked them to take their eyes off of their difficulties and put them on Jesus. They were to become as confident as Paul: “If God is for us, who can be against us?!” And they were to be absolutely certain that God was for them because he had so clearly demonstrated it through Jesus and his work on the Cross.

More

Robbing the Cross – First Reading in Preparation for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Robbing the Cross – First Reading in Preparation for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

I do not know why I am so enamored with the sentence. “He shall see the fruit of his travail of his soul and be satisfied”, but I am. Perhaps it is the Holy Spirit. I only know that I want to do everything in my power to see that Christ is not robbed of the satisfaction that should by rights be his because he “poured out his soul to death. I want his cross to have its full effect in my life, convicting me of my sin, convincing me of his love, covering my sin with his blood, and converting me to “live for him who died for me”. I do not want to ever minimize the cross nor my response to it. Instead, I pray that the cross of Christ will always be in my heart, on my mind, and governing my actions. I want him, when he looks at me, to be able to see” the fruit of the travail of his soul and be satisfied.”

More

God’s First – Gospel for the Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

God’s First – Gospel for the Twenty-Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

“…No one could have fulfilled the first part of his duty as a citizen more fully. However, when Henry split with the Church over his proposed divorce from Katherine of Aragon and declared himself “Supreme Head of the Church of England”, Sir Thomas refused to agree. He went through imprisonment, a cursory trial, and was beheaded for what the king called “treason”. But Thomas saw it as something else entirely. As he stood on the scaffold, only moments before his beheading, he spoke these words to all gathered:

‘I am dying for our Catholic faith, good people. And I call you to witness that I die the king’s loyal servant – but God’s first.'”

More

God is Able! – First Reading for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

God is Able! – First Reading for the Twenty Ninth Sunday in Ordinary Time

“At the center of the Christian faith there is the conviction that in the universe there is a God of power who is able to do exceedingly abundant things in nature and in history…The ringing testimony of the Christian faith is that God is able….Let this affirmation be our ringing cry. …When our days become dreary with low hovering clouds and our nights become darker than a thousand midnights let us remember that there is a great benign Power in the universe whose name is God, and he is able to make a way out of no way, and transform dark yesterdays into bright tomorrows” –Martin Luther King, Jr.

More