July 2018

Reflection July 31

2018-07-14T17:02:17-05:00July 31st, 2018|Reflections|

St. Ignatius of Loyola

Matthew 13:36-43

Alexander Solzenitzyn points out that there is no dividing line separating good people and evil people in the world. That dividing line runs right through each of us. This is a powerful recognition that in each of us there is both the power for great good and the capacity for great harm. We ourselves are both wheat and weeds. The only possible result of a dedicated campaign to whack away all the weeds in the world or the church would be the absolute destruction of every one of us. Instead, we wait in patience and in hope for the day when God will sort through the harvest, sift through the wheat and weeds in each one of us, and gather us all as forgiven and reconciled into the final harvest.

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Reflection July 30

2018-07-14T17:01:24-05:00July 30th, 2018|Reflections|

St. Peter Chrysologus

Matthew 13:31-35

Jesus speaks of the smallness of a mustard seed and the work of hidden yeast.  Both can change the world. We look back at the small beginnings of Jesus to a few fishermen, prostitutes, tax collectors, sinners, and yet, the Church is everywhere today. We look at Francis of Assisi who was laughed at for his simple way of life and thousands continue to follow in his footsteps. I am sure many had their doubts about Vincent de Paul and today he is known throughout the world. By no means are any of us insignificant. We can bring about the kingdom in our own little way. We are to be leavening agents in our world. By our actions and our words we can make a difference!

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Reflection July 29

2018-07-14T17:00:16-05:00July 29th, 2018|Reflections|

Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

John 6:1-15

This gospel story reminds us that as individuals we can and do make a difference. Every worthwhile accomplishment in this world depends upon attitudes and actions of individual lives. The difference in attitude is highlighted by two very specific virtues: gratitude and generosity. When Jesus saw the small supply they had to feed the crowd, he raised his eyes to heaven and pronounced a blessing over them. When the disciples saw the small supply of food, they complained. Jesus was not only grateful he was also generous. He shared it with the crowd. And in that act of sharing it became enough and more than enough.  Life always seems to work that way.  So very often the ones who have the least are the most generous. Generosity is more than a matter of economics, it is a way of living.

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Reflection July 28

2018-07-14T16:58:52-05:00July 28th, 2018|Reflections|

Matthew 13:24-30

The parable of the weeds and wheat obviously deals with membership in the kingdom. There are both good and bad in it. It is still the growing season and what seems to be a weed might turn out as the finest grain of wheat and what seems to be wheat might just be weeds. It is not in our place to judge which is which. We all need to grow together doing our best. We did not do the planting! What we think are weeds might just be a different kind of wheat!

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Reflection July 27

2018-07-14T16:57:28-05:00July 27th, 2018|Reflections|

Matthew 13:18-23

We are all sowers of seed. By our attitudes, our beliefs, our actions we sow seeds of encouragement, joy and reconciliation – but some seeds contribute to cycles of discouragement, anger, violence, abuse, and injustice. Discipleship, however, calls us to be careful and deliberate “sowers” of a harvest far greater and lasting than our own interests and profit. Christ calls us to be sowers of his Word in every situation and relationship, especially when such “sowing” yields a harvest that benefits others far more than ourselves. Wherever you find yourself today, plant a seed of hope and possibility – and watch it grow

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Reflection July 26

2018-07-14T16:56:20-05:00July 26th, 2018|Reflections|

Saints Joachim and Anne

Matthew 13:10-17

Today we celebrate the feast of St. Joachim and St. Ann. Even though the scriptures tell us nothing about Joachim and Ann, their holiness is inferred from Mary who was steadfast in her faith and who was a woman of prayer and religious devotion. Mary’s family love for Jesus and Joseph reflect her own growing up in a loving family. How often we say that children reflect their parents. Mary’s parents, whose feast we celebrate today, represent all those who live their faith day-by-day and establish an atmosphere for the coming of Christ into our world. May our lives be filled with wonder and expectation – to meet the Lord in all we do today.

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Reflection July 25

2018-07-14T16:55:22-05:00July 25th, 2018|Reflections|

St. James

Matthew 20:20-28

The story in today’s gospel sheds light upon the Christian life. We look at the early church and realize so many of them died a martyr’s death. Our death might not be that dramatic! And so the cup that Jesus asks us to drink may well be the long, sometimes boring routine of Christian living with all the daily sacrifices we make for one another, its heartbreaks, the disappointments and the tears. Our suffering and martyrdom may just be trying to live out each day at a time. (A Roman coin had a picture of an ox and the ox was facing two things – an altar and a plough – the inscription read – ready for either.)

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Reflection July 24

2018-07-14T16:52:42-05:00July 24th, 2018|Reflections|

St. Sharbel Makhluf

Matthew 12:46-50

In the midst of Jesus addressing the people, some of his family members arrive and ask to speak with him. In Mark’s Gospel they come in search of him because they think he had gone mad! Jesus takes advantage of this opportunity and he makes a very radical and shocking declaration. Gesturing to his disciples he says these are my sisters and brothers, this is my family. He redefines family as being based on doing the will of his Father in heaven. Do we realize what it fully means to be able to share with Jesus in calling God our Father? This not only makes us brothers and sisters of Jesus but brothers and sisters to one another. How do we live out that relationship each day?

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Reflection July 23

2018-07-14T16:39:03-05:00July 23rd, 2018|Reflections|

St. Bridget

Matthew 12:38-42

Have you ever followed a car and sensed the driver of that car had no idea where he was going or have the feeling that he or she was lost?  At almost every intersection or driveway they would slow down to try to read an address or look for signs. Now it was characteristic of the Jews to ask for signs and wonders from those who claimed to be messengers of God. They wanted to see some credentials. But their big mistake was looking for God in the abnormal. Moreover, we have an advantage over them. We have the sign of Jesus himself, living, dying and rising for us. Whenever we celebrate the Eucharist, let us be grateful for this sign of God’s love for us and beg the courage and strength to make the journey. Do what is right, love goodness and walk humbly with your God.

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Reflection July 22

2018-07-14T16:37:45-05:00July 22nd, 2018|Reflections|

Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Mark 6:30-34

The greatest obstacle to wisdom is the assumption that one must always be doing something worthwhile. This seems to be Jesus’ message in today’s Gospel when he calls his disciples to an out-of-the-way-place for some time for themselves. Jesus seems to be speaking to the workaholic in each of us. Without time for ourselves and those we love, our families and the significant people in our lives could become “sheep without a shepherd,” families without parents, parents without children, friends without friends. In short, we could become people without people. We would do well to consider Jesus’ invitation to come away to an out-of-the-way place and take time for R, R, R and R – rest, relaxation, reflection and refreshment.

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