Wednesday, October 18, 2017

The Twenty-Ninth Sunday of Ordinary Time

The Twenty-Ninth Sunday of Ordinary Time
October 22, 2017
Isaiah 45:1, 4-6; Psalm 96; 1 Thessalonians 1:1-5; Matthew 22:15-21

We admire the cleverness of Jesus when the Pharisees plot to trap him with his words. They set him up with a compliment as if they are befriending him, but Jesus sees right through their malice and he does not take the bait. Instead, Jesus is able to maintain truthful integrity while teaching his critics about the seriousness of their deceitful intent. Our words, if we are to speak at all, must lead us to the truth.

In the first reading, God tells the people of Jerusalem that he is the sole creator who is above all other forces. Nothing happens in the world outside of God’s plan. The sun rises and sets according to God’s design. Rulers of the world rise and fall, and kings are made to govern the people, but through it all, God’s majesty endures. Jesus, in all he does, will always remind us of God’s sovereignty. After all, he is the Word of God.

Word games and entrapment, in the long run, will fail. Jesus proved that as he remained above the trickery of the religious authorities who had power to crush him, and still he spoke plainly. We have to be able to speak plainly to bring the truth to the light, even though we may feel very alone and isolated. The current news of sexual abuse by Harvey Weinstein and other prominent figures give our society a courageous chance to correct grievous wrongs. Though the sexual abuse by people in positions of authority and influence is devastating, we, as church, have been through and continue to grow through our crisis. We still have many faults and much more work to do, and we are learning to deal with potential abuse better. Our job as church is to help people reclaim their God-given dignity and to help victims validate their experience and to know of their redeemed worth in the eyes of God.

No woman, no man, ought to be subjected to unwanted sexual advances or undue pressures, and it is now time to change around the culture that silently permits it. As a society, we do not understand the pervasiveness of this culture or the effects of it, but it does silence and marginalize people who deserve to be heard and treated with dignity. Our fundamental stance must be to honor the stories we hear from victims.

Jesus silenced his critics by speaking uncomfortable truths. We must follow that example because we believe in God’s universal care for each person. Let us give time and space to people who needs to tell their story of injustice, and let us encourage them to realize that life gets better when they bring what was once hidden into the light of day. As a society, we cannot change without their help. Come forward. Speak up. Know that we will honor your story and walk with you. You do not need to do this on your own because you will find many other victims who are saying, “Me too. I’ve been abused by unfair treatment.” Let’s bring an end to this destructive behavior because you deserve more than you have been given.

We will honor you with the prayer of St. Paul that we hear in Thessalonians, “We give thanks to God always for all of you, remembering you in our prayers, unceasingly calling to mind your work of faith and labor of love and endurance in hope of our Lord Jesus Christ.” You are special to God, and you are special to us. In the end, God’s word will see the light of day.

Scripture for Daily Mass

First Reading: 
Monday: (Romans 4) Abraham did not doubt God's promise in unbelief; rather, he was empowered by faith and gave glory to God and was fully convinced that what God had promised he was also able to do.
Tuesday: (Romans 5) Through one man sin entered the world, and through sin, death, and thus death came to all men, inasmuch as all sinned.
Wednesday: (Romans 6) Sin must not reign over your mortal bodies so that you obey their desires. For sin is not to have any power over you, since you are not under the law but under grace.
Thursday: (Romans 6) For just as you presented the parts of your bodies as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness for lawlessness, so now present them as slaves to righteousness for sanctification. For when you were slaves of sin, you were free from righteousness.
Friday (Romans 7) So, then, I discover the principle that when I want to do right, evil is at hand. For I take delight in the law of God, in my inner self, but I see in my members another principle at war with the law of my mind.
Saturday (Ephesians 2) Through him the whole structure is held together and grows into a temple sacred in the Lord; in him you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.

Monday: (Luke 12) Then he said to the crowd, "Take care to guard against all greed, for though one may be rich, one's life does not consist of possessions."
Tuesday: (Luke 12) The master will gird himself, have them recline at table, and proceed to wait on them. And should he come in the second or third watch and find them prepared in this way, blessed are those servants."
Wednesday (Luke 12) Be sure of this: if the master of the house had known the hour when the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.
Thursday (Luke 12) I have come to set the earth on fire, and how I wish it were already blazing! There is a baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished!
Friday (Luke 12) You know how to interpret the appearance of the earth and the sky;
why do you not know how to interpret the present time?
Saturday (Luke 6) Jesus went up to the mountain to pray, and he spent the night in prayer to God. When day came, he called his disciples to himself, and from them he chose Twelve, whom he also named Apostles

Saints of the Week

October 23: John of Capistrano, priest, had a vision of Francis of Assisi when he was imprisoned during an Italian civil war at which time he was the governor of Perugia. He entered the Franciscan Friars Minor in 1415 after ending his marriage. He preached missions throughout Europe including a mission to Hungary to preach a crusade against the Turks. After the Christian victory at the Battle of Belgrade in 1456, John died.

October 24: Anthony Claret, bishop (1807-1870) adopted his father's weaving career as a young man, but continued to study Latin and printing. After entering seminary, he began preaching retreats and giving missions. He published and distributed religious literature and founded the Missionary Sons of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. He was appointed archbishop of Cuba but was called back to Spain to be Queen Isabella II's confessor. He resumed publishing until the revolution of 1868 sent him into exile.

October 28: Simon and Jude, apostles (first century) were two of the Twelve Disciples called by Jesus, but little is known about them. We think they are Simon the Zealot and Judas, the son of James. Simon was most likely a Zealot sympathizer who would have desired revolution against Rome; Jude is also called Thaddeus, and is patron saint of hopeless causes. Both apostles suffered martyrdom.

This Week in Jesuit History

·      October 22, 1870: In France, Garibaldi and his men drove the Jesuits from the Colleges of Dole and Mont Roland.
·      October 23, 1767: The Jesuits who had been kept prisoners in their college in Santiago, Chile, for almost two months were led forth to exile. In all 360 Jesuits of the Chile Province were shipped to Europe as exiles.
·      October 24, 1759: 133 members of the Society, banished from Portugal and put ashore at Civita Vecchia, were most kindly received by Clement XIII and by the religious communities, especially the Dominicans.
·      Oct 25, 1567. St Stanislaus Kostka arrived in Rome and was admitted into the Society by St Francis Borgia.
·      Oct 26, 1546. The Province of Portugal was established as the first province in the Society, with Simao Rodriguez as its first provincial superior.
·      Oct 27, 1610. The initial entrance of the Jesuits into Canada. The mission had been recommended to the Society by Henry IV.

·      Oct 28, 1958. The death of Wilfrid Parsons, founder of Thought magazine and editor of America from 1925 to 1936.

El vigésimo noveno domingo del tiempo ordinario

El vigésimo noveno domingo del tiempo ordinario
22 de octubre de 2017
Isaías 45: 1, 4-6; Salmo 96; 1 Tesalonicenses 1: 1-5; Mateo 22: 15-21

Admiramos la astucia de Jesús cuando los fariseos conspiran para atraparlo con sus palabras. Lo montaron con un cumplido como si estuvieran haciendo amistad con él, pero Jesús ve a través de su malicia y no toma el anzuelo. En cambio, Jesús puede mantener la integridad verdadera mientras enseña a sus críticos acerca de la seriedad de su intención engañosa. Nuestras palabras, si queremos hablar en absoluto, deben conducirnos a la verdad.

En la primera lectura, Dios le dice a la gente de Jerusalén que es el único creador que está por encima de todas las demás fuerzas. Nada sucede en el mundo fuera del plan de Dios. El sol sale y se pone según el diseño de Dios. Los gobernantes del mundo se levantan y caen, y los reyes se hacen para gobernar al pueblo, pero a través de todo, la majestad de Dios perdura. Jesús, en todo lo que hace, siempre nos recordará la soberanía de Dios. Después de todo, él es la Palabra de Dios.

Los juegos de palabras y la trampa, a la larga, fallarán, aunque queremos una corrección inmediata de las formas abusivas de las personas. Tenemos que ser capaces de hablar para llevar la verdad a la luz, aunque podamos sentirnos solos y aislados. El caso actual de abuso sexual por Harvey Weinstein le da a nuestra sociedad una valiente oportunidad de corregir agravios graves. Aunque el abuso sexual por parte de personas en posiciones de autoridad e influencia es devastador, nosotros, como iglesia, estamos mejor preparados para enfrentarnos a él. Nuestro trabajo como iglesia es ayudar a las personas a recuperar su dignidad dada por Dios y ayudar a las víctimas a validar su experiencia y a conocer su valor redimido a los ojos de Dios. Tristemente, nuestra iglesia ha pasado y continúa creciendo, nuestras propias fallas con la crisis del abuso sexual.

Ninguna mujer, ningún hombre, debe ser objeto de avances sexuales indeseados o presiones indebidas, y ahora es el momento de cambiar la cultura que lo permite silenciosamente. Como sociedad, no entendemos la omnipresencia de esta cultura o sus efectos, pero silencia y margina a las personas que merecen ser escuchadas y tratadas con dignidad. Nuestra postura fundamental debe ser honrar las historias que escuchamos de las víctimas.

Jesús silenció a sus críticos hablando verdades incómodas. Debemos seguir ese ejemplo porque creemos en el cuidado universal de Dios para cada persona. Démosle tiempo y espacio a las personas que necesitan contar su historia de injusticia y aliéntelos a darse cuenta de que la vida mejora cuando traen lo que alguna vez estuvo oculto a la luz del día. Como sociedad, no podemos cambiar sin su ayuda. Presentarse. Hablar alto. Sepa que honraremos su historia y caminaremos contigo. No necesita hacer esto por su cuenta porque encontrará muchas otras víctimas que dicen: "Yo también. Fui abusada por un trato injusto ". Acabemos con este comportamiento destructivo porque mereces más de lo que te han dado.

Los honraremos con la oración de San Pablo que escuchamos en Tesalonicenses, "Damos gracias a Dios siempre por todos ustedes, recordándoles en nuestras oraciones, invocando sin cesar a su trabajo de fe y trabajo de amor y perseverancia en esperanza de nuestro Señor Jesucristo ". Eres especial para Dios y eres especial para nosotros. Al final, la palabra de Dios verá la luz del día.

Escritura para la misa diaria

Primera lectura:
Lunes: (Romanos 4) Abraham no dudó de la promesa de Dios en la incredulidad; más bien, fue empoderado por la fe y le dio gloria a Dios y estaba plenamente convencido de que lo que Dios le había prometido que también era capaz de hacer.
Martes: (Romanos 5) A través de un hombre, el pecado entró en el mundo, y por el pecado, la muerte, y así la muerte, vino a todos los hombres, en la medida en que todos pecaron.
Miércoles: (Romanos 6) El pecado no debe reinar sobre tus cuerpos mortales para que obedezcas sus deseos. Porque el pecado no es tener poder sobre ti, ya que no estás bajo la ley, sino bajo la gracia.
Jueves: (Romanos 6) Pues así como presentaste las partes de tus cuerpos como esclavos a la impureza y al desorden por la impiedad, ahora debes presentarlos como esclavos a la justicia para la santificación. Porque cuando fuiste esclavos del pecado, estabas libre de justicia.
Viernes (Romanos 7) Entonces, descubro el principio de que cuando quiero hacer lo correcto, el mal está a la mano. Porque me deleito en la ley de Dios, en mi interior, pero veo en mis miembros otro principio en guerra con la ley de mi mente.
Sábado (Efesios 2) A través de él toda la estructura se mantiene unida y crece en un templo sagrado en el Señor; en él también se está juntando en una morada de Dios en el Espíritu.

Lunes: (Lucas 12) Luego dijo a la multitud: "Cuídate de guardar contra toda codicia, porque aunque uno sea rico, la vida no consiste en posesiones".
Martes: (Lucas 12) El maestro se ceñirá, hará que se acuesten en la mesa, y procederá a esperarlos. Y si él entrara en la segunda o tercera guardia y los encuentre preparados de esta manera, benditos sean esos siervos ".
Miércoles (Lucas 12) Asegúrese de esto: si el dueño de la casa hubiera sabido la hora en que vendría el ladrón, no habría permitido que se rompiera su casa. También debes estar preparado, porque a la hora que no esperas, vendrá el Hijo del Hombre.
Jueves (Lucas 12) ¡He venido a incendiar la tierra, y cómo desearía que ya estuviera ardiendo! ¡Hay un bautismo con el cual debo ser bautizado, y cuán grande es mi angustia hasta que se cumpla!
Viernes (Lucas 12) Sabes cómo interpretar la apariencia de la tierra y el cielo;
¿Por qué no sabes cómo interpretar la hora actual?
Sábado (Lucas 6) Jesús subió a la montaña a orar, y pasó la noche en oración a Dios. Cuando llegó el día, llamó a sus discípulos para sí mismo, y de ellos escogió a Doce, a quienes también llamó Apóstoles

Santos de la semana

23 de octubre: Juan de Capistrano, sacerdote, tuvo una visión de Francisco de Asís cuando fue encarcelado durante una guerra civil italiana en la que era el gobernador de Perugia. Ingresó a los frailes menores franciscanos en 1415 después de terminar su matrimonio. Predicó misiones en toda Europa, incluida una misión a Hungría para predicar una cruzada contra los turcos. Después de la victoria cristiana en la Batalla de Belgrado en 1456, John murió.

24 de octubre: Anthony Claret, obispo (1807-1870) adoptó la carrera de tejer de su padre cuando era joven, pero continuó estudiando latín e imprenta. Después de ingresar al seminario, comenzó a predicar retiros y dar misiones. Publicó y distribuyó literatura religiosa y fundó los Hijos Misioneros del Inmaculado Corazón de María. Fue nombrado arzobispo de Cuba pero fue llamado a España para ser el confesor de la reina Isabel II. Reanudó la publicación hasta que la revolución de 1868 lo envió al exilio.

28 de octubre: Simón y Judas, apóstoles (primer siglo) fueron dos de los Doce Discípulos llamados por Jesús, pero poco se sabe sobre ellos. Creemos que son Simón el Zelote y Judas, el hijo de Santiago. Simón era muy probablemente un simpatizante zelote que hubiera deseado una revolución contra Roma; Judas también se llama Thaddeus, y es el santo patrón de las causas desesperadas. Ambos apóstoles sufrieron el martirio.

Esta semana en la historia jesuita

• 22 de octubre de 1870: en Francia, Garibaldi y sus hombres expulsaron a los jesuitas de los colegios de Dole y Mont Roland.
• 23 de octubre de 1767: Los jesuitas que habían sido prisioneros en su universidad en Santiago, Chile, durante casi dos meses fueron llevados al exilio. En los 360 jesuitas de la Provincia de Chile fueron enviados a Europa como exiliados.
• 24 de octubre de 1759: 133 miembros de la Sociedad, desterrados de Portugal y puestos en tierra en Civita Vecchia, fueron muy amablemente recibidos por Clemente XIII y por las comunidades religiosas, especialmente los dominicos.
• 25 de octubre de 1567. San Estanislao Kostka llegó a Roma y fue admitido en la Sociedad por San Francisco Borgia.
• 26 de octubre de 1546. La Provincia de Portugal se estableció como la primera provincia en la Sociedad, con Simao Rodríguez como su primer superior provincial.
• 27 de octubre de 1610. La entrada inicial de los jesuitas a Canadá. La misión había sido recomendada a la Sociedad por Enrique IV.

• 28 de octubre de 1958. La muerte de Wilfrid Parsons, fundador de la revista Thought y editor de América desde 1925 hasta 1936.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

A New Insight

After Jesus had spoken,
a Pharisee invited him to dine at his home.
He entered and reclined at table to eat.
The Pharisee was amazed to see
that he did not observe the prescribed washing before the meal.
The Lord said to him, "Oh you Pharisees!
Although you cleanse the outside of the cup and the dish,
inside you are filled with plunder and evil.
You fools!
Did not the maker of the outside also make the inside?
But as to what is within, give alms,
and behold, everything will be clean for you."

As I prayed over today's readings, I came across a line that I have never heard before and it gave me much positive energy. Of course, the reading about the inside of the cup is well known to many, and I'm more familiar with Matthew's version (ch. 23) but this line of Luke grabbed me:

But as to what is within, give alms, and behold, everything will be clean for you.

Jesus gives us a solution. Our generosity, our concern for others, takes care of the muckiness that is within us. We make our insides clean by being generous. It leaves it up to Jesus to clean, but the more help we give others, the cleaner we become. I like the immediacy of this action.

Photo: Morning Has Broken

Spirituality: “Weathered into Glory” by Margaret Silf

Bryce Canyon in Utah is magical in the predawn hours, when the light of the just-rising sun sets the rock column alight, as if with inner fire.

You could almost imagine that this inner fire is the living afterglow of that first flaring forth of our universe, billions of years ago. The hoodoos are so amazingly beautiful, not because they have acquired layers of grandeur through the millennia, but because they have lost so much. Their beauty is revealed because they have suffered eons of erosion, as the biting winds and the flash floods stripped them down to their essential core. When you go down to the depths of the canyon at dawn, you can meet the Creator at work and tune into this great paradox: creation and destruction are the yin and yang of the one life-generating power we call God.

Could it be that our personal diminishments might also sometimes, reveal a deeper beauty we never guessed was there? I reflect on a few people I have known, whose lives seem to illustrate the truth of this proposition. At the nadir of their lives – perhaps in terminal illness, or in the throes of some tragic event – they seemed to be shining with an inner light that has illumined the lives of those around them.

A story is told of a young girl who had a good singing voice. Her parents didn’t want to put her through the stress of professional musical training unless they were assured that she had a special talent, so they asked a musician friend to give her an informal audition in their home. When she had sung for him, he sat back and considered his verdict. “She sings beautifully,” he said at last. “When her heart has been broken she will sing sublimely.”

The hoodoos tell the same story. These pinnacles were always beautiful. But after having suffered the lashings of wind and water for countless millennia, they have indeed become sublime. Locked up in every rock is a work of breathtaking wonder. Only hardship and erosion, or the sculptor’s chisel, can release it.

Source: Margaret Silf, Compass Points: Meeting God Every Day at Every Turn, pp. 5-6.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Photo: Chairs and Mural

Prayer: Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J.

God, I wish from now on to be the first to become conscious of all that the world loves, pursues, and suffers. I want to be the first to seek, to sympathize, and to suffer; the first to unfold and sacrifice myself, to become more widely human and more nobly of the earth than any of the world’s servants.