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Archive for July, 2015

Readings for the Week – August 30, 2015

Monday: 1 Thes 4:13-18; Ps 96:1, 3-5, 11-13; Lk 4:16-30
Tuesday: 1 Thes 5:1-6, 9-11; Ps 27:1, 4, 13-14; Lk 4:31-37
Wednesday: Col 1:1-8; Ps 52:10-11; Lk 4:38-44
Thursday: Col 1:9-14; Ps 98:2-6; Lk 5:1-11
Friday: Col 1:15-20; Ps 100:1b-5; Lk 5:33-39
Saturday: Col 1:21-23; Ps 54:3-4, 6, 8; Lk 6:1-5
Sunday: Is 35:4-7a; Ps 146:7-10; Jas 2:1-5; Mk 7:31-37

Readings for the Week – August 23, 2015

Monday: Rv 21:9b-14; Ps 145:10-13, 17-18; Jn 1:45-51
Tuesday: 1 Thes 2:1-8; Ps 139:1-6; Mt 23:23-26
Wednesday: 1 Thes 2:9-13; Ps 139:7-12ab; Mt 23:27-32
Thursday: 1 Thes 3:7-13; Ps 90:3-5a, 12-14, 17;Mt 24:42-51
Friday: 1 Thes 4:1-8; Ps 97:1, 2b, 5-6, 10-12; Mt 25:1-13
Saturday: 1 Thes 4:9-11; Ps 98:1, 7-9; Mk 6:17-29
Sunday: Dt 4:1-2, 6-8; Ps 15:2-5; Jas 1:17-18, 21b-22, 27; Mk 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23

Readings for the Week – August 16, 2015

Monday: Jgs 2:11-19; Ps 106:34-37, 39-40, 43ab, 44; Mt 19:16-22
Tuesday: Jgs 6:11-24a; Ps 85:9, 11-14; Mt 19:23-30
Wednesday: Jgs 9:6-15; Ps 21:2-7; Mt 20:1-16
Thursday: Jgs 11:29-39a; Ps 40:5, 7-10; Mt 22:1-14
Friday: Ru 1:1, 3-6, 14b-16, 22; Ps 146:5-10; Mt 22:34-40
Saturday: Ru 2:1-3, 8-11; 4:13-17; Ps 128:1b-5; Mt 23:1-12
Sunday: Jos 24:1-2a, 15-17, 18b; Ps 34:2-3, 16-21; Eph 5:21-32 [2a, 25-32]; Jn 6:60-69

Readings for the Week – August 9, 2015

Monday: 2 Cor 9:6-10; Ps 112:1-2, 5-9; Jn 12:24-26
Tuesday: Dt 31:1-8; Dt 32:3-4ab, 7-9, 12; Mt 18:1-5, 10, 12-14
Wednesday: Dt 34:1-2; Ps 66:1-3a, 5, 8, 16-17; Mt 18:15-20
Thursday: Jos 3:7-10a, 11, 13-17; Ps 114:1-6; Mt 18:21 — 19:1
Friday: Jos 24:1-13; Ps 136:1-3, 16-18, 21-22, 24;Mt 19:3-12
Saturday: Vigil: 1 Chr 15:3-4, 15-16; 16:1-2; Ps 132:6-7, 9-10, 13-14; 1 Cor 15:54b-57; Lk 11:27-28
Day: Rv 11:19a; 12:1-6a, 10ab; Ps 45:10-12, 16; 1 Cor 15:20-27; Lk 1:39-56
Sunday: Prv 9:1-6; Ps 34:2-7; Eph 5:15-20; Jn 6:51-58

August 30, 2015 – Twenty-Second Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

How many of us can recall that childhood maternal command: “Wash your hands first” as we headed for the lunch or supper table? It is etched in our memories mostly because of our inventive ways to get dirty hands and how Mom was instilling us with the connection between cleanliness and food. Despite being ready to dive into the meal, we obeyed the cook. How disconcerting to learn nowadays that not everybody observed such a ritual. Why else would we see that sign in the restaurant restroom that says: “Employees must wash hands.”

For the most part, we Americans expect cleanliness in our public spaces, at least, as we indirectly accept the adage that “cleanliness is next to godliness.” Granted, we still have our “sloppy Joes” (people not sandwiches) and our “sloppy Joannes” (to avoid gender bias). We even use mechanical sweepers for our streets and impose fines for littering. Yes, we collectively believe in cleanliness.

Sadly, however, that belief gets lost when it comes to the dirt that soils our inner cleanliness. Many of us prefer to tolerate it. We let it linger inside us. We dislike anybody who challenges us to clean up our personal morality and behavior. But only a true friend would do so.

August 23, 2015 – Twenty-First Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

The gregarious, wise and witty archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, chose St. Peter’s question in today’s Gospel excerpt as his motto: “To whom shall we go?” Knowing that bit of trivia came into my mind as I pondered today’s original setting for the question. I’m sure the good cardinal had his own reasons for the motto choice, but I couldn’t help thinking how apropos it is for him as archbishop of New York. Here he is, a spiritual leader of the city that is acknowledged as the very center of the communications industry for our country, if not the world. A city where the options for basing one’s outlook on life are almost without limit, and its bishop is in full agreement with the first bishop of Rome in declaring to New York: “You (Jesus) have the words of eternal life.” The presumption here is “You alone, O Jesus.”

Jesus Himself must have felt buoyed up by Peter’s answer that day, because just then we are told that “many” of His disciples decided to walk away from Him. They “returned to their former way of life” as the Scripture puts it, most likely a pagan one.

What caused the rift? Nothing other than the announcement of the Holy Eucharist. It was just too much for them to believe in something so beyond the power of the senses. They ignored the credentials of the One who announced it. This despite the marvelous signs they had seen like the wine at Cana and the walking of the crippled man. One wonders what they thought of the raising of Lazarus yet to come.

August 16, 2015 – Twentieth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

“RSVP”. When those four letters appear on an invitation, you are taking on an obligation. Translated from the French “Repondez s’il vous plait” they translate “Please answer.” The host wants to know your intentions so that he or she in turn can make sure that the preparations for the event, especially concerning food and drink, are enough for every invitee’s enjoyment. At today’s prices, an exact head count is a serious matter. Not to respond, or showing up unexpectedly, is an equally serious violation of etiquette, even of charity.

Today we see a Scriptural theme of wisdom interwoven with an invitation to eat and drink. The choicest invitation from the ultimate Host! Over the centuries this invitation of Christ is conveyed through His Church. The early community slowly came to realize this in the wake of Pentecost. The departure of Jesus visible and the coming of the Spirit invisible gave them the impetus to rely on each other for support in the battle against temptation and sin.

We faithful followers know all this from the Bible and our catechetical education. We respond as best we can come Sunday. Hopefully we come to Mass motivated by love and not merely by law. How could we ever turn the Lord down?

August 9, 2015 – Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

Onomatopoeia. I know it sounds like something best handled by the Center for Disease Control. As a matter of fact, the word is all about sound. It is a figure of speech in which a descriptive word sounds like the item it describes. So we have brooks that “babble” and steaks that “sizzle.” As a result of its use, the subject matter is better understood and appreciated. You can almost hear that steak on the grill.

Today the gospel uses such a word when it describes the crowd after listening to Jesus’ startling announcement about Himself as bread when it records that “the Jews murmured.” “Murmur” sounds like what it is: a complaint expressed in low vocal tones; a grumble.

Why did the people murmur? The gospel gives us two reasons. First, the people knew Our Lord’s origins. His earthly parents were most likely their neighbors. They were likely friendly with some of Our Lord’s cousins. Second, they presumed that no local boy they knew about should ever put on airs or otherwise dare to speak about Himself as Jesus did that day. “Bread from heaven?” So they murmured. Of course, Jesus heard them and ordered them to stop their noise.