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June 12, 2018 - Learning from a Widow & a Stranger

Tuesday of the Tenth Week in Ordinary Time

Scripture Readings

We mere mortals are called by Jesus in the text from Matthew today to be not only the salt of the earth but the light of the world and a city on a hill. That is such a tall order. How are we to do that? Perhaps the poor widow in the Old Testament text can help.

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June 11, 2018 - Jesus and the New Normal

Memorial of Saint Barnabas, Apostle

Scripture Readings

After we experience major life events such as getting married, having a child, a new job, a death of a loved one, a move to a new place-life is significantly changed.  All that has happened before this experience does not disappear or become void, but things are not the same- this is what I would call the “new normal”.  As Christians, we are called to live a “new normal”- a life that is changed in great ways following Jesus and His call to discipleship. 

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June 9, 2018 - Immaculate Hearts

Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Scripture Readings

As Catholics, we profess that Mary was Immaculate and today we celebrate the Memorial of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.  There are many misconceptions surrounding this belief.  One such belief is that Mary was perfect.  That is not the case in the truest sense of the word. Only God is perfect, for only God has no need of another to exist.  Mary is professed to be sinless, but she was still utterly dependent on God.  So what does Immaculate mean?

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June 8, 2018 - Strength To Comprehend Love

Solemnity of Most Sacred Heart of Jesus

Scripture Readings

I grew up a Protestant, and was always a little bit freaked about by the pictures I saw in some Catholic material that showed Jesus holding his large heart, with what seemed like bolts of lightning emanating from the heart. And, when I first became Catholic, this was not a feast day toward which I immediately gravitated. Like the rosary, the Sacred Heart was one of those Catholic oddities that overwhelmed my Protestant sensibilities, because it didn’t seem quite scriptural – and well, maybe a little bit because the idea of Jesus holding his heart seemed a bit too Indiana Jones (the second movie). As I have grown in my Catholic faith, though, I have come more and more to appreciate the Sacred Heart, even reading about the lives of Saint Margaret Mary and Sr. Josefa Menendez. This is a feast day that focuses so much on Jesus’ love and mercy for the world – important things for our world that has so many hurting people who want something more for their lives. 

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June 7, 2018 - Teach Me To Love

Thursday of the Ninth Week in Ordinary Time

Scripture Readings

Today’s readings are among my personal favorites, because they encourage a simple understanding of the gospel.  We hear Jesus’s famous Rule #1 and Rule #2: Love God, Love your neighbor.  The Jews have understood the Shema (Love God) as Rule #1 for a very long time, and Jesus is quoting it because he is a Jew himself.  But he adds what ought to naturally flow through the first rule; if we love God, we must love all that God created.  How can we love God and reject the many gifts he gives to us?  But it needs to be said, and that’s why Jesus said it. To remind us to loving God isn’t detachment from the world, but engagement with it.  We the baptized are co-creators in the redemptive work of Jesus’s salvation.  It’s so much better for us to love in the first place, rather than trying to make up for our mistakes later with good deeds, “…offerings and sacrifices.”

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