Friday September 11, 2009 of the 23rd week in ordinary to time
Readings: Timothy 1: 1-2, 12-14 Psalm 16: 1-2a, 5, 7-8, 11 Luke6: 39-42
Psalm Response: “You are my inheritance, Lord”
Paul spiritual son, Timothy, has been the recipient of two of his extant letters! Like us, Timothy was taught by his grandmother and mother. He remained like his grandparents, Christian, despite his father’s paganism. Paul encouraged him in his vocation to be a spokesperson for Christ in the areas where Paul could no longer be there in person because he was in prison.
When Timothy was faced with the skepticism and even apostasy of his recent converts, Paul reminds him of his own obstinacy when he was a neophyte, a strict Pharisee and had to be roughed up when he was acting in accordance with what he thought was the Law.
So, he advises Timothy to be forgiving, faithful and loving to those who disagree with his teaching; God has the power and the word to bring them about. They must be receptive to Him, not necessarily to His ministers. Timothy was to teach as he had been taught without wandering from the faith Paul has imparted to him.
Exuberance was to be the watchword of the Jews and to us. We are to be penetratingly obstinate when we explain the reason for our joy. Everything and all creation was enabled through God’s word so we must be when we proclaim the Gospel.
Christ departs from the parasitic teachings calling for retribution instead of forgiveness when we are demeaned or scoffed at. The practice of Love of neighbors follows the lesson of Leviticus.
As He points out, even the pagans love those who love them.
It is when we learn our lessons from Christ, Who forgave His murderers while He was being scourged and crucified. If we claim His principles, then display anything but peace and love toward those who demean us, we become active hypocrites.
It won’t be easy except if we make pardon part of our normal behavior.
Saturday September 12, 2009 of the 23rd week in ordinary time
Readings: 1Timothy 1: 15-17 Psalm 113; 1-7 Luke 6: 43-49
Psalm Response: “ Blessed be the name of the Lord, forever!
In his exhortation to Timothy, Paul uses himself as the worst of the opposition to Christ. He was given the admonition of the New Way from the high priests themselves. Therefore, armed with the power to arrest and extradite members of the sect professing Christ as the God/Man, he wrongly accused and convicted many before Christ confronted him and brought hi \m to his senses as the prodigal son di when he was brought to the truth.
We have always had the truth before us; either by our teachers or by our parents. They may not have possessed the wisdom of the ages but they followed the Church in Her wisdom unwaveringly when the imparted the faith unaltered to us as sure.
When we stand at our pew, raise our arms as a sign of our fealty, we become the example of Faith and Truth for others to follow.
The example of the pagan Centurion, in his belief in the power of Christ to forgive sin, and thereby heal sicknesses, the Centurion embossed on our souls the everlasting words disclaiming our worthiness to receive Him Body and Soul.
We truly are unworthy. However, God authorizes us to receive Him at every Eucharistic celebration if we repent and exhibit our sorrow through our love of our neighbors.