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Archive for January, 2017

Readings for the Week – February 12, 2017

Monday: Gn 4:1-15, 25; Ps 50:1, 8, 16bc-17, 20-21; Mk 8:11-13
Tuesday: Gn 6:5-8; 7:1-5, 10; Ps 29:1a, 2, 3ac-4, 3b, 9c-10; Mk 8:14-21
Wednesday: Gn 8:6-13, 20-22; Ps 116:12-15, 18-19; Mk 8:22-26
Thursday: Gn 9:1-13; Ps 102:16-21, 29, 22-23; Mk 8:27-33
Friday: Gn 11:1-9; Ps 33:10-15; Mk 8:34 — 9:1
Saturday: Heb 11:1-7; Ps 145:2-5, 10-11; Mk 9:2-13
Sunday: Lv 19:1-2, 17-18; Ps 103:1-4, 8, 10, 12-13; 1 Cor 3:16-23; Mt 5:38-48

February 12, 2017 – Sixth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

Political correctness has done a lot of damage to our thinking and also to the meaning of language.  It has pressured us all to be amateur diplomats, afraid sometimes to utter the plain truth.  Some of us have even taken to be “proprietors of the proper” correcting others of their misuse of terms.

Admittedly, there are occasions when telling the whole truth and nothing but can be like a cold stab in the heart to someone.  So out of charity, we have to be delicate in our telling.

On this World Marriage Day on our universal Church calendar, when we celebrate that vocation and all that it implies, married couples would be among the first to tell us the importance of refraining from the bluntness of the whole truth from time to time.  A husband facing his wife’s question “Do these jeans make me look fat?” is in a bind, and he certainly has to be careful with his reply.  A wife facing her husband’s question: “Does this suit jacket look tight?” is in the same situation, although a guy might not ask.

Readings for the Week – February 5, 2017

Monday: Gn 1:1-19; Ps 104:1-2a, 5-6, 10, 12, 24, 35c; Mk 6:53-56
Tuesday: Gn 1:20 — 2:4a; Ps 8:4-9; Mk 7:1-13
Wednesday: Gn 2:4b-9, 15-17; Ps 104:1-2a, 27-28, 29bc-30; Mk 7:14-23
Thursday: Gn 2:18-25; Ps 128:1-5; Mk 7:24-30
Friday: Gn 3:1-8; Ps 32:1-2, 5-7; Mk 7:31-37
Saturday: Gn 3:9-24; Ps 90:2-6, 12-13; Mk 8:1-10
Sunday: Sir 15:15-20; Ps 119:1-2, 4-5, 17-18, 33-34; 1 Cor 2:6-10; Mt 5:17-37 (20-22a, 27-28, 33-34a, 37)

February 5, 2017 – Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

Cooking shows on TV.  Hosted by talented chefs at home in the kitchen, they can be delightful to watch, even if boiling water is our ability limit. Why is that? Most likely because we all like to eat, and learning how to make the process as pleasant as possible is generally a good thing.

Our Lord talks about a common cooking ingredient when He compares us to salt.  In His time, salt was highly valued as a flavor enhancer and a preservative.  We can agree about the flavor thing even if the doctor tells us to guard our sodium usage.  And even in our time of ready refrigeration, we can detect its preservative aspect just by reading the label of many processed foods.  So we as Christian believers are called to enhance the “flavor” of human living just by our fidelity to Christ each day.  We can also act as preservers of what Christ actually taught in a time of watered down religion that recommends ease and rarely mentions sacrifice.

Readings for the Week – January 29, 2017

Monday: Heb 11:32-40; Ps 31:20-24; Mk 5:1-20
Tuesday: Heb 12:1-4; Ps 22:26b-28, 30-32; Mk 5:21-43
Wednesday: Heb 12:4-7, 11-15; Ps 103:1-2, 13-14, 17-18a; Mk 6:1-6
Thursday: Mal 3:1-4; Ps 24:7-10; Heb 2:14-18; Lk 2:22-40 (22-32)
Friday: Heb 13:1-8; Ps 27:1, 3, 5, 8b-9; Mk 6:14-29
Saturday: Heb 13:15-17, 20-21; Ps 23:1-6; Mk 6:30-34
Sunday: Is 58:7-10; Ps 112:4-9; 1 Cor 2:1-5; Mt 5:13-16

January 29, 2017 – Fourth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

Sometimes seven isn’t a lucky number. In the case of knowing the heart of Jesus, we are fortunate to have eight “exclamations of congratulations to people living in a state of happiness.”  That is one definition of a beatitude accepted by biblical scholars. These remarks, traceable to Jesus, tell us who are blessed in His estimation. We call them “the Beatitudes.” They reveal a lot about the Preacher of the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew’s gospel.

The scholars who devote their lives to understanding the Bible have probed their meaning with linguistic analysis. Spiritual writers have given us whole books of reflection on these eight statements. One of those latter persons has cleverly called them “the be-attitudes,” or the outlook we ought to cultivate in our lives.  Not a bad interpretation at all, even if the phrase itself is a bit cutesy. 

Readings for the Week – January 22, 2017

Monday: Heb 9:15, 24-28; Ps 98:1-6; Mk 3:22-30, or any of the readings for the Day of Prayer
Tuesday: Heb 10:1-10; Ps 40:2, 4ab, 7-8a, 10, 11; Mk 3:31-35
Wednesday: Acts 22:3-16 or Acts 9:1-22; Ps 117:1bc, 2; Mk 16:15-18
Thursday: 2 Tm 1:1-8 or Ti 1:1-5; Ps 96:1-3, 7-8a, 10; Mk 4:21-35
Friday: Heb 10:32-39; Ps 37:3-6, 23-24, 39-40; Mk 4:26-34
Saturday: Heb 11:1-2, 8-19; Lk 1:69-75; Mk 4:35-41
Sunday: Zep 2:3; 3:12-13; Ps 146:6-10; 1 Cor 1:26-31; Mt 5:1-12a

January 22, 2017 – Third Sunday in Ordinary Time

Reflection by Rev. Leonard N. Peterson

Somewhere in the world there must exist a “hot button.”  Not a physical one, of course, but a metaphorical one that gets used to describe certain issues by preachers and pundits alike.  It means that those items are potentially dangerous to discuss, because the reaction of people to them is never emotionally neutral, and frequently overheated.

On this late January weekend, we come face to face with the sad anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decision in 1973 to legalize baby killing in our country, otherwise known as abortion.  The years in between have not turned down the “temperature” of the issue. Once upon a time in our so-called “enlightened” country, abortion was thought a horror, at least by Christians. Now, thanks to supporters of all kinds it is practically considered a constitutional right even by some believers in God.